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Cave Structures Shed New Light on Neanderthals

The recent discovery of broken stalagmites arranged in circles in the Bruniquel Cave (southwestern France) indicate that humans started occupying caves much earlier (more than 100 millennia) than previously thought. These man-made structures also rank among the very first in human history and traces of fire show that Neanderthals knew how to use it to navigate dark and enclosed spaces, well before Homo sapiens.

Watch the video (7 min)




The Machine that Selected the Citizens of Athens

In the Greek cities of antiquity, a lottery system was devised to select citizens for public duty. For the first time, researchers were able to build a stone replica of a kleroterion, the amazing machine that made this random selection possible. 

Watch the video (7 min)


Earth's Critical Zone of Life

All life on Earth exists on a thin layer that surrounds the planet. To better understand this so-called "critical zone," researchers are setting up state-of-the-art instruments and creating open-air laboratories all over the world. We take you on a guided tour of one of these environmental observatories in France.

Watch the video (7 min) The photo report


Now Boarding for the Stars

Sofia is a Boeing 747 like no other. Run by NASA and the DLR, the German space agency, this aircraft was specially modified to accommodate a telescope. Come on board with astrophysicist Olivier Berné and jet to the stratosphere to observe the nebula of Orion, where stars are born.

Watch the video (7 min)


Finding the Perfect Hornet Trap

Since 2004, the yellow-legged hornet—also known as Asian hornet—has been spreading throughout Europe at an alarming rate. How can we get rid of this invasive species without killing other insects? The key is in finding the perfect trap...

Watch the video (5 min)


The Science of Cycling

One of best ways for cyclists to optimize their speed is to work on their riding position. The French Cycling Federation recently teamed up with researchers to help athletes improve these cycling positions. On your marks for a performance optimization session with France’s junior cycling team at the Vélodrome National de Saint-Quentin-en-Yvelines.

Watch the slideshow The photo report


History Down the Drain

While renovating a sand filter, a water purification device located in Orléans, researchers were able to access sediments that had accumulated since 1942 from particles transported in the wastewater and rainwater network. They hope to reconstruct over 70 years of local history through their analyses.

Watch the slideshow The photo report


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Last update: January, 2018

In brief


Pushing back the frontiers of science

CNRS News is a scientific information website aimed at the general public. Its mission is to contextualize the latest scientific results and ongoing research.


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