Classifying the geometry of snowflakes highlights their beauty and diversity

Science News, November 2015

As snowflakes gently meander past your living room window this winter, take a break from your hot cocoa and consider nature’s ice-cold architecture. When water molecules chill down, they assemble into a myriad of spectacular shapes from simple hexagons to star-shaped dendrites. Inspect these frozen fractals and you’ll find a recurring theme: the number six. Six sides, six edges, six branches — ice crystals seem six obsessed.

Geoengineering is world’s last hope, new book argues

Science News, November 2015

The plans sound like something out of the handbook of a James Bond villain: generate artificial volcanic eruptions, seed colossal clouds that shade the planet, cover the oceans in immense algal blooms visible from space. Despite seeming outrageous, such Earth-altering schemes, some argue, may be the only viable way to stave off threats posed by climate change.

Earth just had its first storm-free hurricane peak in 38 years

Science News, September 2015

September 12 marks the peak of the Atlantic Ocean hurricane season, but this year the day passed without any named storms. Odder still, the recently restless Pacific Ocean had a quiet day, too. In fact, across the entire Northern Hemisphere, not a single tropical storm swirled.