Natalie Wolchover

Senior Writer/Editor

cosmology

Physicists Hunt for the Big Bang’s Triangles

The story of the universe’s birth — and evidence for string theory — could be found in triangles and myriad other shapes in the sky.

dark matter

Debate Intensifies Over Dark Disk Theory

In the new, free-for-all era of dark matter research, the controversial idea that dark matter is concentrated in thin disks is being rescued from scientific oblivion.

condensed matter physics

The Quantum Secret to Superconductivity

In a virtuoso experiment, physicists have revealed details of a “quantum critical point” that underlies high-temperature superconductivity.

Q&A

From Einstein’s Theory to Gravity’s Chirp

The path from a revolutionary set of equations to the detection of gravitational waves was strewn with obstacles and controversy, explains the physicist Daniel Kennefick — and the struggle continues.

astrophysics

Gravitational Waves Discovered at Long Last

Ripples in space-time have been detected a century after Einstein predicted them, launching a new era in astronomy.

astrobiology

Scientists Debate Signatures of Alien Life

Searching for signs of life on faraway planets, astrobiologists must decide which telltale biosignature gases to target.

Physics

A Fight for the Soul of Science

If a theory can’t be tested, is it still science?

complex systems

Nature’s Critical Warning System

Scientists are homing in on a warning signal that arises in complex systems like ecological food webs, the brain and the Earth’s climate. Could it help prevent future catastrophes?

Mathematics

Theorists Draw Closer to Perfect Coloring

A theorem for coloring a large class of “perfect” mathematical networks could ease the way for a long-sought general coloring proof.