Natural science

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$180 million to go toward mapping world’s species

We can’t take care of the Earth’s species unless we know what species exist. A collaborative project that will help us know more is being launched in Trondheim during The Big Challenge science festival.

Planting the seeds for a bioliterate tropical country

Ecologist Daniel H. Janzen has spent virtually all of his half-century career trying to catalogue and understand the creatures in a patch of dry tropical forest in northwestern Costa Rica. Little did he realize his efforts would evolve into building a sea-to-summit conservation area — and a drive to inventory all million species in the country in partnership with the Costa Rican government.

How you can help the insect world

Many insect species are struggling. But all of us can help them, whether we live in an apartment or in a house with a garden.

Reindeer adapt to climate change by eating seaweed

The arctic archipelago of Svalbard is already experiencing dramatic effects from climate change. A new study shows how these changes can force wild reindeer to graze on seaweed, a strategy that increases their likelihood of survival— and is recorded in their poop.

When the extreme becomes the norm: Svalbard reindeer cope with dramatic climate change

Climate change is increasing the likelihood of extreme winter rain events in the Arctic. These kinds of winter storms on Norway’s Svalbard archipelago can cause a thick cap of ice to cover the forage that reindeer eat. You’d think that more frequent rain-on-snow events would spell the end for these arctic animals — but you’d be wrong.

How do species adapt to their surroundings?

Several fish species can change sex as needed. Other species adapt to their surroundings by living long lives — or by living shorter lives and having lots of offspring. The ability of animals and plants to change can sometimes manifest in apparently extreme ways.

Ocean life in 3-D: Mapping phytoplankton with a smart AUV

Phytoplankton form the base of the marine food chain but are notoriously difficult for scientists to account for — a little like trying to identify and count motes of dust in the air. A truly independent underwater vehicle shows it can do the job.

Eight myths about your brain

Do we have a dominant brain hemisphere? Do we use our whole brain? Can we train our brains to be smarter? Does our ability to learn depend only on our genetic inheritance?

Solving the mystery of Serengeti’s vanishing wild dogs

Twenty-five years ago, African wild dogs (Lycaon pictus) disappeared from Serengeti National Park. A firestorm of debate followed when one researcher claimed that handling by scientists was the cause. New research refutes that claim and offers another explanation.

WITH VIDEO

Eating your veggies, even in space

Travelling to Mars will require astronauts to grow their own food. NTNU is creating the planters for cultivating veggies in space. Now that researchers have finished lettuce-growing experiments, they’ll be embarking on bean trials.

When the hum of insects disappears

Several countries are warning of massive insect deaths. Right now we don’t know how matters stand in Norway. But that’s about to change.

Spending our carbon budgets wisely

Our carbon emissions are much higher than are needed for us to have happy, healthy lives. But cutting these emissions requires us to think differently about how we measure growth and progress.

World’s tiniest circuit takes shape

Components are falling into place for the technology of the future. They can provide smaller, faster and cheaper electronics with minimal energy consumption.

When 80 microns is enough

Should you care that scientists can control a baffling current? Their research results could someday affect your daily living.

New super laboratory coming to Trondheim

Research on minerals and materials is important in helping society make the transition to a greener economy. NTNU, the Geological Survey of Norway and SINTEF have joined forces to establish a national laboratory to that end.