Michelle Starr, ScienceAlert

Michelle Starr


Sydney, NSW, Australia

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Recent articles by Michelle:

A Cephalopod Has Passed a Cognitive Test Designed For Human Children

A new test of cephalopod smarts has reinforced how important it is for us humans to not underestimate animal intelligence. → Read More

For The First Time, A 'Space Hurricane' Has Been Detected Over The North Pole

For the first time, a hurricane has been detected in Earth's upper atmosphere. In 2014, satellites recorded a huge flowing swirl of plasma extending high into the magnetosphere that lasted for hours before dispersing. → Read More

We Just Found The Largest Luminous Glowing Shark Species in The World

Three species of shark that inhabit the twilit depths of the ocean just turned out to have been bioluminescent this whole time. → Read More

Eerie Stars of 'Dark Matter' May Be Behind Largest Gravitational Wave Detection Yet

On 21 May 2019, from a distance of 7 billion light-years away, our gravitational wave detectors were rocked by the most massive collision yet. From analysis of the signal, astronomers concluded that the detection was the result of two black holes s → Read More

In a Momentous Discovery, Scientists Show Neanderthals Could Produce Human-Like Speech

Our Neanderthal cousins had the capacity to both hear and produce the speech sounds of modern humans, a new study has found. → Read More

Slime Mold Doesn't Have a Brain, But It Can 'Remember' Where to Find Food

It may be a single-celled organism, but the slime mould Physarum polycephalum has some pretty fascinating tricks up its pretty yellow sleeves. Now new research has found that it seems to "remember" where it previously found sources of food - even wit → Read More

NASA Deliberately Made Eerie Glowing Clouds... to Study Eerie Glowing Clouds

If you're in the right place at the right time, and you turn your eyes to the sky, you just might catch sight of something eerily beautiful: Wisps of cloud, high in the sky, glowing softly even though the Sun has already slipped below the horizon. → Read More

Feast Your Eyes on This Mind-Blowingly Close Photo of Venus

Although its main mission is staring at the Sun, NASA's Parker Solar Probe will take any opportunity to send data back home to Earth. → Read More

For The First Time, Physicists Have Filmed The Oscillation of a Time Crystal

For the first time, physicists have captured an enigmatic state of matter on video. → Read More

10,000-Year-Old Dog Remains From Alaska Hint at a Beautiful Tale of Migrating Together

A tiny, ancient bone fragment found in Southeast Alaska is a lot more than meets the eye. It belonged to a dog that lived in the region 10,150 years ago, which means it's a piece of the puzzle of dog migration into the Americas - and the humans tha → Read More

There's a Secret Message Coded Into Percy's Parachute. But It's Not The Only One

When NASA's Perseverance rover made its daring descent to the red planet, you may have noticed that its parachute bore an unusual arrangement of red and white chevrons. → Read More

Really Small Black Holes Could Be Out There, Devouring Neutron Stars From Within

Tiny, all-but-undetectable primordial black holes could be one of the mysterious sources of mass that contributes to dark matter. There are significant limits to their lifespan in open space, but in recent years, astrophysicists have asked: what if t → Read More

Scientists Have Grown Microbes on Actual Rock Bits From Mars

Rock from Mars is a rare and precious resource here on Earth. So far, the only samples we have are chunks of meteorite, dislodged from the red planet and travelling through the Solar System until they smack into Earth. → Read More

For The First Time, We've Detected a 'Ghost Particle' Coming From a Shredded Star

A star completely torn apart when it ventured too close to a black hole has given science a rare gift. For the first time, scientists have detected a high-energy neutrino that was flung out into space during one of these violent events. → Read More

The White Dots in This Image Are Not Stars or Galaxies. They're Black Holes

The image above may look like a fairly normal picture of the night sky, but what you're looking at is a lot more special than just glittering stars. Each of those white dots is an active supermassive black hole. → Read More

Earth's Magnetic Field Flipped 42,000 Years Ago. The Consequences Were Dramatic

A global period of upheaval 42,000 years ago was the result of a reversal in Earth's magnetic field, new research has found. → Read More

Astronomers Mapped The Spectacular Accelerating Outflows of a Stellar Explosion

Material accelerating away from the site of a stellar explosion has been discovered in a star-forming cloud. → Read More

We Thought We Understood The 'First' Black Hole. But We Were Wrong, Scientists Say

Astronomers have revisited the very first stellar-mass black hole ever identified, and found that it's at least 50 percent more massive than we thought. → Read More

Scientists Just Confirmed The Existence of a New Crystalline Structure of Ice

Not all water ice is the same. Locked inside, the arrangement of molecules varies significantly, based on the pressure and temperature conditions under which it forms. → Read More

Scientists Have Sequenced Mammoth DNA That's Over a Million Years Old

In a feat right at the limits of our scientific capabilities, an international team of geneticists has recovered and sequenced the oldest DNA to date. → Read More