Science Friday

Science, technology, environment and health news and discussion with host Ira Flatow.


Friday 11 a.m. – 1 p.m and 9 p.m. – 11 p.m
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Friday, September 12, 2014 Permalink

Science Friday: Volcanic Eruptions, Jovian Moon, Urban Ecosystems and More

Holuhraun lava field in Iceland. NASA Earth Observatory image by Jesse Allen, using Landsat data from the U.S. Geological Survey.


Keeping an Eye on Eruptions Around the World


  • Elizabeth Cottrell 
    Geologist and Director, Global Volcanism Program
    Smithsonian Institution’s National Museum of Natural History
    Washington, DC
  • Cynthia Ebinger 
    Professor of Geophysics
    Earth and Environmental Sciences
    University of Rochester
    Rochester, New York

A Jovian Moon With Earth-Like Tectonics


  • Simon Kattenhorn 
    Former Professor, Department of Geological Sciences
    University of Idaho
    Conoco-Phillips Company
    Moscow, Idaho

Understanding the Urban Ecosystem


  • Sujay Kaushal 
    Associate Professor, Geology 
    University of Maryland
    College Park, Maryland
  • William McDowell 
    Director, New Hampshire Water Resources Research Center
    Professor, Environmental Science 
    University of New Hampshire
    Durham, New Hampshire

Can Conservation Efforts Save the Birds?

It’s been 100 years since the last passenger pigeon died. Would we have been able to save the bird today? What is the state of bird conservation in North America? Gary Langham of the National Audubon Society and Ken Rosenberg from the Cornell Lab of Ornithology discuss which species are under threat and how climate change might affect birds in the future.

After 40 Years, a Blue Whale Population Bounces Back


  • Trevor Branch 
    Assistant Professor, Aquatic and Fishery Sciences
    University of Washington
    Seattle, Washington

The Science of ‘Sameness’: Developing Generic Medications

Are generic and brand-name medications ever really the same? Medical historian and physician Jeremy A. Greene tackles this question in his new book, Generic: The Unbranding of Modern Medicine. Greene traces the development of generic medications, from suspect substances to American healthcare mainstay. He also explains how the notion and measure of “sameness” have evolved since generic drugs were first introduced. (Readn an exerpt fro the book here.)
Produced by Becky Fogel, Production Assistant


  • Jeremy A. Greene 
    Author, Generic: The Unbranding of Modern Medicine
    (Johns Hopkins University Press, 2014)
    Associate Professor, Medicine and History of Medicine
    Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine 
    Baltimore, Maryland


How to Save $1 Billion Without Even Trying