Quirks and Quarks Segmented Show from CBC Radio

Quirks and Quarks Segmented Show from CBC Radio

www.cbc.ca/radio/podcasts/science-and-tech/quirks-quarks
CBC Radio’s Quirks and Quarks covers the quirks of the expanding universe to the quarks within a single atom… and everything in between.


Should we have humans in space? A Quirks & Quarks public debate
Jun 14 • 65 min
In our first ever Quirks & Quarks public debate, recorded live in Toronto, astronaut Chris Hadfield, cosmologist Renée Hlo┼żek, planetary scientist Marianne Mader and space flight historian Amy Shira Teitel weigh in on whether we should leave space to the…
Do auroras occur on other planets and moons?
Jun 7 • 2 min
They occur on Mars and other planets, not on the moon
Depressing conclusion as new research reverses 25 years of research
Jun 7 • 15 min
25 years of research on the genetics of depression is wrong
The elephant’s mathematical trunk can smell numbers
Jun 7 • 8 min
Elephants can smell numbers - sort of
Concussion symptoms reversed in mice using magnetic therapy
Jun 7 • 6 min
Magnetic stimulation may reverse concussion symptoms in the future
We’re consuming a lot of plastic and have no idea of the risks
Jun 7 • 8 min
Microplastics are everywhere - including in your food and drink
Canada is using science to lay claim to the North Pole
Jun 7 • 9 min
How we’re trying to prove we own the North Pole
Did our ancestors evolve to walk upright because of supernovae?
May 31 • 6 min
Supernovae might have been the trigger for our ancestors to descend from the trees
Right whales were in the wrong place because of the wrong climate
May 31 • 7 min
Right whales are dying from ship strikes thanks to climate change
Drink like an Egyptian - 5000 year old yeast is resurrected to brew ancient beer
May 31 • 7 min
Ancient beer comes back to life using 5,000 year old yeast
Video games aren’t corrupting young minds - they may be building them
May 31 • 20 min
Video games might be just the homework your kids need this summer
Don’t bury or cremate - soon you may compost your corpse
May 31 • 8 min
People in Washington will soon be able to turn their loved ones into soil
What happens to oil spills after dispersant is used?
May 24 • 2 min
Dispersant breaks oil down into droplets, where bacteria break them down further,
Scientists create robot-like biomaterial with key traits of life
May 24 • 7 min
Building machine-like biomaterial with key traits of life
Fungus fossils shows the complexity of Earth’s life a billion-years-ago
May 24 • 7 min
Billion-year-old fungus fossils shed light into ancient evolutionary history
Ancient beavers as big as bears died out because of their woodless diet
May 24 • 7 min
The giant beaver did not eat wood, which led to its extinction
No, really, calculus can be beautiful and this mathematician will tell us why
May 24 • 16 min
Finding the beauty in a dreaded subject: calculus
Flying food for fish? Tiger sharks are somehow eating songbirds
May 24 • 8 min
How have sharks developed a taste for twittering songbirds?
Moonquakes show the moon is still geologically ‘alive’
May 17 • 6 min
The moon still has activity geologically
Why do Canada geese honk while migrating?
May 17 • 2 min
They honk to communicate their position in the flock
Learning from tragedy - a baby lacking critical brain cells and a medical detective story
May 17 • 7 min
A tragic story of a baby born without microglia cells sheds light on brain development
We need plastics - how do we avoid choking the planet with them?
May 17 • 19 min
Plastics are the scourge of the Earth: What we can do about it?
Processed food is full of bad stuff, but the real problem is you eat too much of it
May 17 • 8 min
Processed food creates a slippery slope where people eat too much of it
‘Siri, does my baby have an ear infection?’ An app does medical diagnosis
May 17 • 6 min
Your smartphone could soon diagnose your child’s ear infection
The secret of STEVE’s glow - understanding the purple pal of the aurora borealis
May 10 • 8 min
We’ve finally figured out ‘STEVE’ and why he shines so bright
Barnacles stuck to ancient whales kept an itinerary of whale migration routes
May 10 • 8 min
Fossil barnacles hold the secrets to prehistoric whale migration
It’s all about the sugar fix: Eating too much sugar causes fruit flies to eat even more
May 10 • 8 min
Eating too much sugar causes fruit flies to eat more sugar
Countdown to the moon landing: Apollo 10 - the mission that came so close to the moon
May 10 • 9 min
The dress rehearsal for that one small step
Cutting-edge experiments show an electrical zap improves memory in older adults
May 10 • 17 min
Improving memory in older adults with electrical stimulation
How big is too big for quantum mechanics?
May 3 • 3 min
Is there a cut off point for measuring by quantum mechanics versus physics
Holy coral reefs? They’ve got a ‘halo’ that could show if they’re healthy
May 3 • 8 min
How can you tell if a reef is healthy? Check its halo
Stitching up surgical cuts with slug slime
May 3 • 7 min
Sticky slug goo may work as a medical adhesive
How air conditioners could keep you cool and capture carbon
May 3 • 8 min
Air conditioners could be used for carbon capture to make oil from the atmosphere
Hippo poop provides a key mineral for vital algae’s tiny skeletons
May 3 • 7 min
Hippos provide the skeletons for freshwater algae
How late is too late to revive a brain? Pig brain study raises questions
May 3 • 15 min
Do we know how late is too late to revive a brain?
Transcending the uncertainty of quantum mechanics in ‘Einstein’s Unfinished Revolution’
Apr 26 • 15 min
Taking the observer out of quantum mechanics in new book: ‘Einstein’s Unfinished Revolution’
Have species from Canada invaded other places?
Apr 26 • 2 min
Canada has give the world oyster mussels and the grey squirrel for example.
A comet fragment trapped inside an meteorite captures a time capsule of the early solar system
Apr 26 • 7 min
A comet inside an asteroid fell to Earth as a meteorite
Mice reinvent the hamster wheel in zero gravity
Apr 26 • 8 min
Mice respond to microgravity on the ISS with unusual exercise routine
CO2-sniffing plane finds oilsands emissions higher than industry reported
Apr 26 • 7 min
Oilsands greenhouse gas emissions are higher than we calculated
Cataracts, small brains, and DNA damage - Chernobyl’s wildlife 33 years after the meltdown
Apr 26 • 9 min
Chernobyl’s wildlife still suffering from radiation damage 33 years later
How do insects like ants time their emergence so precisely?
Apr 18 • 1 min
Temperature play a key role in mating dances.
Is there life ‘out there?’ How we’ll search for traces of life on nearby exoplanets
Apr 18 • 18 min
Life on exoplanets could be found within our lifetime, according to NASA scientists
Why the long face? Human faces evolved to reveal emotions and communicate
Apr 18 • 7 min
Our faces evolved to reveal and communicate our emotions
Sharks cope with levels of heavy metals in their blood that would kill other animals
Apr 18 • 6 min
Heavy metals in their blood would kill others, but not the great white shark
Scientists have put a human brain gene into monkeys. Have they crossed the line?
Apr 18 • 8 min
They really did it. Scientists put human brain gene into monkeys
Pee-oneering archeology. A new technique uses urine to study the ancient past
Apr 18 • 7 min
10,000 year-old urine helps reveal the history of animal domestication
How and why do cats purr?
Apr 12 • 2 min
A brain signal to the larynx followed by vibrating airwaves as a cat breathes results in purring
Ketamine works its magic on depression by ‘stabilizing the brain in a well state’
Apr 12 • 8 min
How ketamine can work to magically, if temporarily, lift depression
Female dolphins may know the joy of sex thanks to a human-like clitoris
Apr 12 • 6 min
Examination of dolphin clitoris reveals they enjoy sex too
A new tiny hominin discovery gives the ‘hobbit’ a distant cousin
Apr 12 • 8 min
New hominin discovery sprouts a new branch on human family tree
Collapsing coral reefs - can we rebuild them?
Apr 12 • 16 min
Coral reefs less resilient now due to climate change - can we rehabilitate them?
Seeing the first black hole - and what we’ll see next
Apr 12 • 8 min
Black hole image confirms the entire story of general relativity
Roadside THC tests do not test for impairment. How can science help?
Apr 5 • 8 min
Do we need a better roadside test for pot impairment?
A catastrophe frozen in time - a new fossil site shows how the dinosaurs died
Apr 5 • 15 min
A new fossil site captures the day the dinosaurs died
The race to the moon - what the Russians were doing behind the Iron Curtain
Apr 5 • 11 min
Countdown to Apollo - what the Russians were up to
Permafrost landslides are eating great swathes of Arctic landscape
Apr 5 • 7 min
Ground giving away in Canadian Arctic as climate warms
Tasmanian Devils are learning to live with the cancer that was pushing them to extinction
Apr 5 • 9 min
Tasmanian Devils might be beating the cancer that has threatened their survival
What would happen if the Yellowstone supervolcano exploded?
Mar 29 • 2 min
Possible global cooling would result for years if Yellowstone erupted.
A woman who can smell Parkinson’s disease could hold the key to early diagnosis
Mar 29 • 8 min
How a woman who can smell Parkinson’s disease is helping to develop a diagnostic test
Google glasses could help kids with autism read emotional cues in people’s faces
Mar 29 • 7 min
Google glasses can help kids with autism read faces
Meet the odd little moons that interact with Saturn’s spectacular rings
Mar 29 • 8 min
Cassini’s close encounter helps show off Saturn’s tiny ring moons
Big, old and banged-up - Canada is home to the world’s largest Tyrannosaurus Rex
Mar 29 • 7 min
Scotty - the world’s largest T-rex - discovered in Saskatchewan
How to remember to forget - the new science of erasing memories
Mar 29 • 15 min
Remembering to forget - the new science of erasing memories
How long does it take to dream a dream?
Mar 22 • 3 min
Dreams only happen at some points during sleep
Our farming ancestors are the reason we can say ‘f’ words today
Mar 22 • 7 min
How our switch to soft foods has affected our speech
Mysterious green icebergs from Antarctica might be fertilizing the southern ocean
Mar 22 • 8 min
Green icebergs might be feeding the southern ocean
Your gut bacteria are actively involved in your emotions, how you think, and even behave
Mar 22 • 16 min
Your brain and belly are in fact, connected
“Weird wonders” in China - new half-billion year-old fossils from the dawn of animal life
Mar 22 • 7 min
Unearthing a treasure trove of Cambrian era fossils in China
A Japanese spacecraft visits an asteroid - and will bring back a souvenir
Mar 22 • 7 min
A visit to an asteroid may reveal the secrets to life on Earth
Do wind turbine farms have an effect on climate?
Mar 15 • 2 min
Turbines absorb energy from the wind, so is there an effect “downstream” and with regard to climate?
‘Skeleton Keys’ - a new book explores the secret life of bones
Mar 15 • 17 min
The story of bones from a man obsessed with them
When a butterfly’s disguise fails, its backup plan is poison
Mar 15 • 7 min
A tasty butterfly has an unpalatable backup plan
Actors’ brains have different activity patterns when they’re in character
Mar 15 • 8 min
To get the role, your brain activity needs to play the part too
Inactive ingredients in your meds might not be so inactive after all
Mar 15 • 7 min
Inactive ingredients in medications could be a health concern
Super-powerful solar storms hit Earth in the past - and could recur in the future
Mar 15 • 7 min
Our planet’s been hit with humongous solar storms in the past
Clam gardens have been cultivated by indigenous people for millenia
Mar 8 • 8 min
Clam garden aquaculture on the west coast is 3500 years old
Man and man’s best friend have both been experiencing declines in sperm quality
Mar 8 • 7 min
Man’s best friend comes to the rescue to inform declines in dog and man sperm
Military sonar puts blue whales off their feed
Mar 8 • 7 min
Sonar disturbs the feeding habits of blue whales
Your brain may need sleep to repair your brain’s DNA ‘potholes’
Mar 8 • 8 min
Just what are your chromosomes doing while you’re sleeping?
Exploring the powerful emotion of awe - how it can be awe-some and aw-ful
Mar 8 • 19 min
Harnessing the powerful emotion of awe for good or evil
Do cows produce more methane than rotting grass?
Mar 1 • 2 min
Bacteria produce the methane in both examples
Creating coal from CO2 - undoing fossil fuel burning to save the climate
Mar 1 • 7 min
Converting carbon dioxide back into coal
How selecting for genes to keep the hive clean could help honeybee survival
Mar 1 • 7 min
Encouraging bee hygiene could be the secret to fighting colony collapse
Countdown to the Moon landing - How Apollo 9 tested the lunar lander in Earth orbit
Mar 1 • 10 min
Countdown to Apollo 11: Testing the lunar lander in Earth orbit
Potty talk: the secrets Kim Jong Un could be hiding in his private portable toilet
Mar 1 • 8 min
Why Kim Jong Un travels with his own portable toilet
The Goodness Paradox - Why humans are so good and so bad
Mar 1 • 16 min
Humans evolved to be virtuous and violent, says the author of ‘The Goodness Paradox’
What would it be like to stand on the surface of the sun?
Feb 22 • 2 min
This week’s Quirks question: The answer is you wouldn’t stand, you’d sink!
Hacking photosynthesis to re-engineer crop plants and feed the world
Feb 22 • 16 min
Scientists are redesigning fundamental parts of the way plants grow to start a new green revolution
Zebra stripes confuse tiny predators, not the big ones
Feb 22 • 7 min
Tests reveal the zebra stripes confuse disease-carrying biting flies so they can’t land easily on the zebras coat
Scientists can read the ‘rust’ on a person’s DNA to predict when they’ll die
Feb 22 • 8 min
Stressors like smoking and obesity leave marks on DNA that can reveal your biological rather than your calendar age
Art gets a bad case of acne and it has conservators concerned
Feb 22 • 8 min
Acne-like protrusions are a result of chemical reactions in the paint and new technology will help us understand them better.
Tiny tyrannosaur fossil helps scientists understand how T-rex grew so large
Feb 22 • 8 min
Much older than T-rex this diminutive dinosaur gives new insights into tyrannosaurid evolution
Do other vertebrates suffer from dementia or memory loss as we do?
Feb 15 • 3 min
Animals like dogs and cats certainly suffer from dementia.
Swallowing needles packed in a turtle shell to treat diabetes
Feb 15 • 8 min
A new needle pill is out to replace insulin pens, but without the pain
‘Earth Shattering’ - all the ways the universe is trying to kill us
Feb 15 • 12 min
Cataclysmic events have shaped our world and our universe
Flavour chemicals in e-cigarettes could damage lung tissue
Feb 15 • 9 min
E-cigarette flavouring chemicals may damage lung tissue
Canadian researcher proves Darwin right by jailing mice in Nebraska
Feb 15 • 9 min
Connecting the dots in evolution: a unique experiment in Nebraska
Breast milk is best, but is there a problem with pumping?
Feb 15 • 8 min
Pumping breast milk depletes the milk microbiome
How do birds find their prey when hunting in muddy water?
Feb 8 • 2 min
Birds may use their beaks to feel around for their prey.
Searching for Endurance: Antarctic researchers hunt for the relics of Antarctic adventurers
Feb 8 • 7 min
Searching Antarctic waters for Shackleton’s lost ship The Endurance
50 million deaths in the New World drove cooling in the the Little Ice Age
Feb 8 • 7 min
50 million deaths led to climate change 500 years ago
A stick-on sensor sucks in sweat and can reveal dehydration and more
Feb 8 • 6 min
A stick-on sensor sucks in sweat and can reveal dehydration
When is your brain stronger than your genes? How the mind can fool the body
Feb 8 • 8 min
Genetic risks can be washed out by the mind’s deception
Months locked in a tiny box - how solitary confinement can erode mental health
Feb 8 • 17 min
Solitary confinement - what science says about the effects on mental health
A Robot reconstruction of a 300-million-year-old fossil shows how it walked
Feb 1 • 7 min
Scientists reverse engineer a 300-million-year-old land animal
Does the speed of sound change with temperature?
Feb 1 • 2 min
Sound travels faster in warmer air
How to build a death ray - a new book looks attempts to make the ultimate weapon
Feb 1 • 16 min
Lasers, phasers and ray guns - the quest to make a ‘death ray’
Rocking yourself to sleep improves sleep quality and memory - even in grownups
Feb 1 • 7 min
Rocking your brain to sleep - why it’s not just good for babies
Body language could be the secret behind the sweetest music
Feb 1 • 8 min
The science of sway measures how well musicians play
The first feathers for flight? A 160 million year old dinosaur might have had them
Feb 1 • 8 min
Anchiornis was a dinosaur with feathers, but could it fly?
Termites may be hell in your house, but they help protect the rainforest from drought
Jan 25 • 7 min
Termites act like a buffer against serious droughts in tropical forests
Why warm-blooded predators thrive in the coldest places on Earth
Jan 25 • 7 min
Fish are easier to prey on in cold water
Countdown to the moon landing - re-live the missions that led to ‘one small step for man’
Jan 25 • 12 min
Apollo 11 really was just one small step in a long road to the moon
Preventing PTSD with a ‘video game’ that trains soldiers to control their brains
Jan 25 • 8 min
Dialing back the brain’s alarm system in soldiers might prevent PTSD
Not all poop is created equal, and ‘super-poopers’ could be life savers
Jan 25 • 15 min
A dose of super poo could save lives when all else fail
Will Edmonton run out of water as the Columbia Icefield continues to melt?
Jan 18 • 3 min
Edmonton’s water supply could be impacted by the melting Columbia Icefield.
Waves are getting stronger and more dangerous thanks to climate change
Jan 18 • 7 min
Ocean warming is directly linked to a dangerous increase in wave strength
Repeated pain makes men more sensitive - but not women
Jan 18 • 7 min
Women feel pain more, but men are more likely to remember it
Scott Kelly spent a year in space - and it literally changed him
Jan 18 • 15 min
Scott Kelly on spending a year in space and experiencing ‘Infinite Wonder’
Elephants are evolving to be tuskless after decades of poaching pressure
Jan 18 • 8 min
Elephants are evolving to be tuskless in response to poaching
Discovery of room temperature superconductors could bring floating trains and more
Jan 18 • 7 min
Discovery of room temperature superconductors a ‘holy grail of physics’
We’re making our fresh water salty by massively changing the landscape
Jan 11 • 8 min
Salt from human activities is polluting our freshwater resources
For every exoplanet we see transiting a star, how many go unseen?
Jan 11 • 2 min
There are many more planet we don’t see, than ones we see transiting.
Viruses that kill superbugs could save lives when antibiotics don’t work
Jan 11 • 15 min
Can we fight superbugs with viruses?
Zombies in Antarctica - Isolated researchers enter ‘psychological hibernation’
Jan 11 • 9 min
Overwintering in Antarctica puts people into a ‘psychological hibernation’
A genetically modified houseplant could suck up dangerous indoor air pollution
Jan 11 • 6 min
This genetically modified houseplant can suck up indoor air pollution
Blue pigment found on a medieval woman’s teeth suggests she was a skilled, literate artist
Jan 11 • 8 min
Dental plaque key to understanding women’s role in the creation of medieval manuscripts
The Quirks & Quarks Question Show
Jan 4 • 53 min
The Q & Q Question show for 2019 features 10 scientists each answering one question submitted by a listener.
TESS, the planet hunting space telescope, is on track to discover a sky full of exoplanets
Dec 28, 2018 • 8 min
NASA’s new planet hunter is searching for other Earth-like planets in the starry sky
The year in Climate Change: Fires and heat-waves show things are heating up
Dec 28, 2018 • 8 min
Climate change went from a future problem to a now problem in 2018
A lake of water was found on Mars - and may be the first of many
Dec 28, 2018 • 8 min
Water lake discovery may be the first of many we’ll find in Mars
Billions of viruses are raining down on you from the upper atmosphere every day
Dec 28, 2018 • 8 min
Trillions of viruses are riding the jet-stream around the world and raining down on us
Even kids as young as four want to punish freeloaders
Dec 28, 2018 • 7 min
Young children have a more extreme sense of fairness than older kids
Lab grown lungs are transplanted in pigs today, they may help humans tomorrow
Dec 28, 2018 • 8 min
Lab grown lungs transplanted in pigs may be the future for humans in need
Our atmosphere is a thin veneer on our planet, but this writer says it’s where the action is
Dec 21, 2018 • 16 min
Everyone talks about the weather, but a poet writes a book about it
How important is dust to making it rain?
Dec 21, 2018 • 2 min
How are raindrops and snowflakes created?
A writer and sound engineer investigates the science of the human voice
Dec 21, 2018 • 15 min
Now You’re Talking looks at the evolution of human voice from caveman to artificial intelligence
A revolution in evolution is turning back the clock more than 200 years, says new book
Dec 21, 2018 • 16 min
How epigenetics is revolutionizing our understanding of evolution