Bipyrazole rocket ship image with blue background

Chlorine-free rocket fuel

Compound bearing 10 nitro groups could cut dangerous emissions from rocket launches

A photograph suggestive of a body of water on the prebiotic Earth

Prebiotically plausible version of pH gradient generating catalyst

Scientists create simple metal ion system could have facilitated early metabolic processes, like ATP synthesis

Mechanochemical treatment with carbohydrates

A sweet way to make graphene

Green method generates nanomaterial by exfoliating graphite with sugars


Facile synthesis of silk-cocoon S-rich cobalt polysulfide as an efficient catalyst for hydrogen evolution reaction

Silk cocoon-shaped electrocatalyst for water splitting

Cobalt polysulfide shows promise as low-cost alternative to platinum group catalysts

Figure 1 3 to 2 Niobium tungsten oxides for high-rate lithium-ion energy storage by Anthony King

Complex metal oxides open passage to fast-charging devices

Chemists make lithium-ion battery electrodes made from niobium tungsten oxides that can rapidly intercalate large quantities of lithium

False colour SEM of the Quantum-dot heat engine device

Quantum dot heat engine works without moving parts

Similar systems could be used to generate electricity from waste heat in solar cells


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The perils of conference dining

Herding scientists at a meeting is a lot like herding cats

George Smoot, illustration portrait

'Beyoncé's assistant helped me star on The Big Bang Theory...'

George Smoot on Queen, Queen B and winning $1 million on a gameshow


Illustration of plants bearing tablets and drug capsules as flowers

From folklore to pharmacy

Although many drugs have in the past come from plants, Hayley Bennett discovers that it’s hard work getting them approved today

3 to 2 ratio pic of Derek Barton

Derek Barton and shape-shifting molecules

It’s 100 years since Derek Barton was born. Mike Sutton looks at his work developing conformational analysis

Hydrogen hero illustration

Hydrogen: still the fuel of the future?

Is the dream of a hydrogen-fuelled future still a pipe dream, or is it in the pipeline? Angeli Mehta investigates





  • Book Club – The Beautiful Cure

  • Book Club – Unthinkable

  • Exhibition: Life at the Edges

  • The Beautiful Cure: Harnessing your body's natural defences

  • All that remains: a life in death

  • The space barons: Elon Musk, Jeff Bezos, and the quest to colonize the cosmos

  • Unthinkable: an extraordinary journey through the world’s strangest brains