“It’s effectively a new machine, poised to set us on the path to new discoveries.” CERN Director-General Rolf Heuer on the Large Hadron Collider, which goes back online in early 2015 after 2 years of upgrades and maintenance.
Soft robots | Stiff robots
Sorry, R2-D2: Inspired by animals and armed
with better materials and compact hardware,
squishy robots take center stage.
Polio in Pakistan | Polio in Nigeria
As the disease disappears from its African
stronghold, cases are soaring in Pakistan.
Senator Lamar Alexander (R–TN)
Representative Lamar Smith (R–TX)
Reforming federal oversight of U.S. higher
education may eclipse last year’s brawl over
National Science Foundation peer review.
Europa or bust | Asteroid capture
Congress lights a fire under NASA to visit
European Political Strategy Centre
E.U. science adviser
Anne Glover’s stint in Brussels ends; a new
entity will give the European Commission
Next Generation Science
Standards | Common Core
Science advocates hope to avoid
missteps that have plagued math and
iPS cell clinical trials | STAP cells
A simple recipe for stem cells was too good
to be true, but reprogrammed adult cells
ISRO, CNSA | NASA
NASA’s mission drifts while the ambitions of
India’s and China’s space programs grow.
Chikungunya | MERS
Worries about the respiratory virus in the
Arabian Peninsula ease, but a mosquito-borne agent is exploding in the Americas.
Paris climate talks
Lima climate talks
The debate moves away from whether
developing nations should cut carbon
emissions … to by how much.
We know where extrasolar planets are—
now the more penetrating questions begin.
“I’m not a scientist.”
Direct attacks on science
U.S. politicians reframe their rhetorical
assaults on climate change and evolution.
Reproducibility | Glamour journals
As retractions mount in high-profile
journals such as Science, Nature, and Cell,
the community pushes for reproducible
Ebola drug and vaccine trials
U.S. Ebola panic
Efficacy trials in West Africa will likely
determine whether an Ebola vaccine works
—and can help end this epidemic.
Evolutionary trees with dozens of
genomes | Trees with dozen of genes
More DNA means better family trees; recent
bird and insect phylogenies built from
dozens of genomes set the bar for 2015.
British chemist Humphry Davy once said that “nothing is so fatal to the progress of the human mind as to suppose that our views of sci- ence are ultimate … that there are no new worlds to conquer.” In that spirit, Science takes a look at trends and ideas that preoccupied the scientific community last year—and makes some guesses at what new themes are likely to take hold in 2015. Our—subjective!—list, in no particular order, for your consideration:
What’s hot | What’s not
2015: A LOOK AHEAD
A robot that went soft,
at Harvard University.
Genomes pinned down