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environmental sciences posts

Finding the coldest place on Earth News

by David, 5 July 2018 | 0 comments

Image of buildings in a flat icy landscape.

It’s the middle of winter in our part of the world. And if you live in southern parts of Australia, you might think it’s a bit chilly. But there are places on Earth that are much colder. New research has found places in Antarctica colder than we have ever measured before!

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Coral polyps just love the taste of plastic News

by David, 18 January 2018 | 0 comments

Photo of brown and white star like coral polyps clustered closely together.

Plastic waste in our oceans is a big problem for marine fauna. Not only can it look like food, it seems some animals have developed a taste for the material. And that’s a problem.

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Pop goes the bearcat News

by David, 23 October 2017 | 0 comments

bearcat lying down

An animal that smells of popcorn sounds more like a creature from a fairy tale than from reality. But the bearcat, found in Southeast Asia, is a real-life fantastic beast known for its unusual popcorn scent. The source of its smell, though, is hardly appetising.

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Wild weeds of the subantarctic News

by David, 22 August 2017 | 0 comments

A scientists studies the ground as pengins walk past

Double Helix talks to weed hunter and botanist, Laura Williams. Read on to find out about her research on Macquarie Island, a remote subantarctic island fondly referred to as ‘Macca’. What do you like most about your work? I really love solving problems, which is the most important part of being a scientist! I also…

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Zippy zappy cars

by David, 2 May 2016 | 0 comments

It’s been really busy at Double Helix headquarters in the last few weeks. We’ve moved office, to the CSIRO Discovery Centre in Canberra. There are lots of cool things at our new workplace, including a whole museum of CSIRO science! And when CSIRO staff need to zip into town or out to a research station,…

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Feral fences’ funny fail

by David, 6 April 2016 | 0 comments

The Aussie bush was once full of cute, furry creatures. But these days, quolls, bandicoots and bettongs have a hard time keeping safe from feral foxes and wild dogs. So how can we protect our native animal friends? Out at Mulligan’s Flat Woodland Sanctuary on the outskirts of Canberra, the rangers built fences to protect…

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New theory for eco-friendly kangaroo farts

by Jasmine, 22 February 2016 | 0 comments

By Julia Cleghorn Cow farts and burps are a big, smelly problem. They contain a lot of methane – a greenhouse gas that contributes to climate change. Kangaroos, on the other hand, produce a lot less methane when they toot. Some researchers have suggested that kangaroos have a unique microbiome – a mix of bacteria…

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Kirigami steers solar panels

by David, 15 December 2015 | 1 comments

When you’re installing solar panels, it’s important to point them at the Sun. But the Sun isn’t always in the same place – it moves across the sky over the course of a day. If you can aim the panels towards the Sun as it moves, they can produce up to 40 per cent more power…

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Solar race across Australia

by David, 30 October 2015 | 0 comments

In the latest issue of Double Helix magazine, we feature solar powered cars racing from Darwin to Adelaide. They zoomed to the finish line last week. The winner is Dutch team Nuon with their car Nuna 8!

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Robot assassin protects the reef

by David, 21 September 2015 | 0 comments

The crown-of-thorns is a venomous starfish that lives in the Great Barrier Reef. Growing up to massive lengths of 80 centimetres and having a body entirely covered in toxic spikes, the starfish is almost indestructible and is a vicious predator. They eat coral, the building blocks of the Great Barrier Reef. It’s said that one…

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