The Top 10 Science Stories of 2012

A devastating storm, a new phase of Mars exploration, a recipe for a pandemic flu—these and other events highlight the year in science and technology

Many more than 10 events took place during 2012 that reveal how science and technology play integral roles in our lives. As a broad topic, climate change took center stage, offering many possible choices, including efforts to combat it head-on with a rogue geoengineering experiment meant to suck carbon dioxide out of the air as well as efforts to develop clean energy, such as the creation of microbes that convert seaweed into ethanol.

The Internet and other communications technology still creates challenges for policymakers, companies and individuals. Among the most notable controversies was the one centered on the Stop Online Piracy Act (SOPA), which led to a blackout protest by some well-trafficked sites, such as Wikipedia.

And research in basic science continues to assault conventional thinking, such as the reported discovery of ovarian stem cells. If confirmed, the finding would overturn the long-held notion that women are born with all the eggs they will ever have.

Alas, cultural norms and conventions dictate that we stick to 10 items; channeling Spinal Tap and dialing it up to 11 would hardly help. Feel free to discuss your own picks in the comments section below.

Read more: The Top 10 Science Stories of 2012: Scientific American.

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