Ferns bounced back much faster than other plants after the meteor impact that wiped out the dinosaurs.
Why Did Ferns Persist When All Other Plants Perished?
A strange layer in the fossil record contains evidence that fern populations exploded following the mass extinction that ended the Cretaceous period. Scientists want to know why.
Why Did Ferns Persist When All Other Plants Perished?
Why Did Ferns Persist When All Other Plants Perished?

A strange layer in the fossil record contains evidence that fern populations exploded following the mass extinction that ended the Cretaceous period. Scientists want to know why.

A strange layer in the fossil record contains evidence that fern populations exploded following the mass extinction that ended the Cretaceous period. Scientists want to know why.

astrobiology
Illustration of a meteorite shower heading for Earth
All RNA and DNA Base Types Are Found in Meteorites, Study Claims
Catherine Offord | Apr 27, 2022
The discovery could add weight to the hypothesis that the building blocks of life on Earth originally came from space, but some scientists note the possibility of contamination.
Microbial Fossils Found in 3.4-Billion-Year-Old Subseafloor Rock
Ruth Williams | Jul 14, 2021
The material, now part of an African mountain range, bolsters the idea that hydrothermal veins supported early forms of life.
lightning, life, Earth, meteorite, phosphorous, fulgurite, schreibersite, DNA, RNA, microbes, evolution
Lightning Might Have Sparked Early Life on Earth
Asher Jones | Mar 17, 2021
Electrical storms, rather than meteorites as scientists had previously thought, could have unlocked phosphorus necessary for the development of ancient life, according to a new study.
Water on the Moon Confirmed
Lisa Winter | Oct 27, 2020
So far, the bulk of the identified water molecules are too distant from one another to form ice or liquid.
Mars, astronomy, space, extraterrestrial life, extremophile, liquid water, south pole, radio waves, radar, satellite
Discovery of More Ponds on Mars Hints at Possibility of Life
Amanda Heidt | Sep 29, 2020
The three smaller water bodies join a previously discovered lake buried beneath ice at the red planet’s south pole.
Life Rides the Wind in the Desert
Ashley Yeager | Dec 1, 2019
As the afternoon breezes blow harder in the Atacama Desert—a place so desolate it’s used as a model of Mars—more microbes move into its driest regions.
Mars on Earth
The Scientist Staff | Dec 1, 2019
Astrobiologist Armando Azua-Bustos draws parallels between the Red Planet and the Atacama Desert in Chile.
Bacterial Genetics Could Help Researchers Block Interplanetary Contamination
Ashley Yeager | Aug 1, 2018
Identifying microbes from Earth that can survive on spacecraft may help scientists eliminate them from future space missions and from searches for extraterrestrial life.
Surface of Mars Hostile to Microbes
Bob Grant | Jul 6, 2017
Researchers confirm that chemicals present in the dust of the Red Planet are highly toxic to bacteria.
60,000-Year-Old Life Found in Crystals in Mexican Cave
Bob Grant | Feb 21, 2017
NASA researchers have discovered ancient microbes locked inside minerals, suggesting a possible niche for interstellar life.
Speaking of Science
The Scientist Staff | Sep 1, 2015
September 2015's selection of notable quotes
Speaking of Science
The Scientist Staff | May 1, 2015
May 2015's selection of notable quotes
The Scientist on The Pulse, November 14
Kerry Grens | Nov 14, 2014
Mounting and drilling a comet, mind-controlled gene expression, and dissecting cat genomes
Earth’s “Cousin” Found
Bob Grant | Apr 21, 2014
Researchers pinpoint a distant planet that may be the right size and temperature to support liquid water and life.
Saturn’s Icy Moon Harbors Ocean
Bob Grant | Apr 4, 2014
A body of liquid water beneath Enceladus’s surface makes the tiny moon a potentially hospitable home for extraterrestrial life.
Summoned From the Depths
Anna Azvolinsky | Mar 1, 2014
Geobiologist Roger Summons analyzes organic material in rocks found deep inside Earth, looking for evidence of how life originated and evolved on our planet—and possibly on Mars.
 
Is Earth Special?
David Waltham | Mar 1, 2014
Reconsidering the uniqueness of life on our planet
Book Excerpt from Lucky Planet
David Waltham | Feb 28, 2014
In the book's prologue, author David Waltham compares a fictitious planet to Earth, highlighting the biologically supportive luck that our planet has enjoyed.
Astrogerm
Bob Grant | Nov 11, 2013
Researchers find a new bacterial species lurking in clean rooms used to assemble spacecraft at NASA and the European Space Agency.