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(NASA)

Adler Planetarium astronomer Lucianne Walkowicz will spend the next year figuring out how humans can get along while exploring one of the more curious planets in our solar system: Mars. 

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First went the plastic bags, then the plastic straws. Now they’re coming for more. The Shedd Aquarium announces a new initiative to significantly reduce or eliminate the use of disposable plastic bottles by 2020.

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University of Illinois researchers and physicians at Carle Foundation Hospital developed a rapid test for sepsis that counts white blood cells and certain protein markers that surge when a person’s immune response increases. (Credit: Janet Sinn-Hanlon)

Sepsis affects more than 1 million hospital patients each year in the U.S., but detecting it can take days. Now, scientists at the University of Illinois are developing a rapid test to detect the potentially deadly condition.

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(Wisconsin Department of Natural Resources / Dan Nedrelo)

Life as an amphibian is no easy hop through the woods. Why Chicago scientists are measuring levels of cortisol (the stress hormone) in Lake County frogs.

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BraveCamp participants at work on a project. (Courtesy of Brave Initiatives)

There are plenty of coding classes for teens and young adults in Chicago, and most of them aren’t cheap. But one local nonprofit is shaking up the landscape by offering coding classes to young women—for free.

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A silver carp was captured Thursday in the Illinois Waterway below the T.J. O’Brien Lock and Dam, about 9 miles from Lake Michigan. (Courtesy of Illinois Department of Natural Resources)

An 8-pound Asian carp was discovered last week beyond an electric barrier designed to prevent the invasive fish from reaching Lake Michigan. 

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(Roman Boed / Flickr)

Chicago data scientists competed against teams from Canada and the Netherlands in an annual event that highlights the innovative use of technology to improve the water quality of the Great Lakes. 

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About 5,000 tons of trash from the Chicago area is dumped every day at a landfill in Livingston County, but hardly any of it goes to waste. How yesterday’s trash becomes tomorrow’s energy.

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The Chicago chapter of Women Who Code wants to help shape the culture of the city’s technology industry.

The international nonprofit Women Who Code boasts 100,000 members worldwide. This week, it’s relaunching its Chicago chapter and plans to offer meet-ups and other networking opportunities.

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Get a behind-the-scenes look at the Field Museum, and the role and influence of the curators who put the museum's incredible collection together.

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Herman White has been working at Fermilab for more than 40 years.

Since 1967, a laboratory just outside Chicago has been pushing the boundaries of scientific discovery. We go for a look.

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Researchers are working on “Paula,” the American Sign Language avatar that will automatically translate English into ASL. (Courtesy of DePaul University School of Computing)

A team of researchers at DePaul University is working to bridge the gap between the deaf and hearing communities. Meet “Paula,” the American Sign Language avatar they created that translates English into ASL.

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Chicago Techweek takes place from June 19-23. (Courtesy of Motion PR)

The technology festival Chicago Techweek returns for a sixth year. We speak with the Techweek CEO about this year’s “radical shift” in programming.

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Americans use an estimated 500 million straws each day, but a Shedd Aquarium initiative is trying to put a dent in that figure. Last week, nearly two dozen restaurants joined the effort.

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University of Chicago professor Zeray Alemseged discovered the most complete spinal column of any early human relative. (Zeray Alemseged / DRP)

What the nearly complete skeleton of a 2 1/2-year-old child tells researchers about the history the human spine – and human evolution.

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(Creative Commons /  © 2013, Jeremy Atherton)

A new $450,000 federal grant program partners CPS students with university professors to study the impact of toxic metals on Chicago neighborhoods. 

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