PBS' premier science series helps viewers of all ages explore the science behind the headlines. Along the way, NOVA programs demystify science and technology and highlight the people involved in scientific pursuits.
At 2:50pm on April 15, two bomb blasts turned the Boston Marathon finish line from a scene of triumph to tragedy, leaving three dead, hundreds injured and a city gripped by heartbreak and terror. Less than five days later, the key suspects were identified and apprehended with one dead, the other in custody. How did investigators transform the chaos of the bombing into a coherent trail of clues, pointing to the accused killers? NOVA follows the manhunt step by step, examining the role modern technology -- combined with old-fashioned detective work -- played in cracking the case. Given hundreds of hours of surveillance and bystander videos, how did agents spot the bad guys in a sea of spectators? Why couldn't facial recognition software I.D. the criminals? How much could bomb chemistry analysis, cell phone GPS, infrared imagery and crowd sourcing reveal about the secrets behind this horrific crime? With the help of top criminal investigators and anti-terrorism experts, NOVA explores which technological innovations worked -- and which didn't -- in the most notorious case of today, and how the world of crime fighting could be transformed tomorrow.
Millions of people around the world live in the shadow of active volcanoes. Under constant threat of massive volcanic eruptions, their homes and their lives are daily at risk from these sleeping giants. From Japan's Mount Fuji to the "Sleeping Giant" submerged beneath Naples to the Yellowstone "supervolcano" in the United States, travel with scientists from around the world who are at work on these sites, attempting to discover how likely these volcanoes are to erupt, when eruptions might happen and how deadly they could prove to be.
Every year, 100 million monarch butterflies set off on an incredible journey across North America. These beautiful creatures fly 2,000 miles to reach their remote destination: a tiny area high in the mountains of Mexico. Yet scientists are still puzzling over how the butterflies achieve this tremendous feat of endurance - and how, year after year, the monarchs navigate with such hair's-breadth precision. NOVA flies along with the monarchs, visiting the spectacular locations they call home and meeting the dangers they encounter along the way. As this program reveals, the monarch is a scientific marvel locked in an inspiring struggle for survival.