Nova (1974– )
8 Jan. 2014Alien Planets Revealed
From PBS - It's a golden age for planet hunters: recently, they've discovered more than 750 planets orbiting stars beyond our sun. Some of them, like a planet called Kepler-22b, might even be able to harbor life. What would that life look like? Combining startling animation with input from expert astrobiologists, Alien Planets Revealed takes viewers on a journey of the imagination as we "build" aliens from the ground up.
15 Jan. 2014Zeppelin Terror Attack
From PBS - In the early days of World War I, Germany, determined to bring its British enemies to their knees, launched a new kind of terror campaign: bombing civilians from the sky. But the aircraft delivering the lethal payloads weren't planes. They were Zeppelins, enormous airships, some the length of two football fields. With a team of engineers, explosives experts, and historians, NOVA investigates the secrets behind these deadly war machines. Zeppelin Terror Attack explores the technological arms race that unfolded as Britain desperately scrambled to develop ...
22 Jan. 2014Killer Typhoon
From PBS - It was the strongest cyclone to hit land in recorded history. On November 8, 2013, Typhoon Haiyan -- what some are calling "the perfect storm" -- slammed into the Philippines, whipping the low-lying and densely-populated islands with 200 mile-per-hour winds and sending a two-story-high storm surge flooding into homes, schools, and hospitals. It wiped villages off the map and devastated cities, including the hard-hit provincial capital Tacloban. Estimates count more than 5,000 dead and millions homeless. What made Haiyan so destructive? In-depth interviews ...
29 Jan. 2014Ghosts of Murdered Kings
From PBS - A corpse found in a bog in the hills of Ireland's County Tipperary dates to the Bronze Age, more than 3,000 years ago. A CAT scan reveals a violent demise: the body covered in axe marks, the spine snapped and the arm broken in two places. NOVA follows archaeologists and forensic experts in their hunt for clues to the identity and the circumstances of this and other violent deaths of victims unearthed in bogs. A new theory suggests that they were ritually murdered kings, slain to assure the fertility of land and people.
5 Feb. 2014Roman Catacomb Mystery
From PBS - Beneath the streets of Rome lies an ancient city of the dead known as the catacombs, a labyrinth of tunnels, hundreds of miles long, a cemetery for the citizens of ancient Rome. In 2002, maintenance workers stumbled through an opening in one of the tunnel walls and discovered a previously unknown complex of six small rooms, each stacked floor to ceiling with skeletons. It was a mass grave, locked away for nearly 2,000 years. Who were these people? Why were so many interred in one place, piled atop each other? And most important, what killed them? NOVA's ...
12 Feb. 2014Great Cathedral Mystery
From PBS - The dome that crowns Florence's great cathedral of Santa Maria del Fiore -- the Duomo -- is a masterpiece of Renaissance ingenuity and an enduring source of mystery. Still the largest masonry dome on earth, it is taller than the Statue of Liberty and weighs as much as an average cruise ship. Historians and engineers have long debated how its architect, Filippo Brunelleschi, kept the dome perfectly aligned and symmetrical as the sides rose and converged toward the center. More than four million bricks could collapse at any moment -- and we still don't ...
9 Apr. 2014Inside Animal Minds: Bird Genius
From PBS - Today, researchers are discovering that some creatures have mastered skills purportedly restricted to humans. Many are bird brains. Meet a cockatoo with a talent for picking locks; a wild crow on a mission to solve an eight-step puzzle; and a tame raven who can solve a puzzle box so quickly that his performance has to be captured with high-speed photography. Are these skills really evidence of high intelligence or just parlor tricks, the result of training and instinct? To find out, NOVA tests the limits of some of the planet's brainiest animals, searching ...
16 Apr. 2014Inside Animal Minds: Dogs & Super Senses
From PBS - What is it like to be a dog, a shark or a bird? This question is now getting serious attention from scientists who study animal senses. Humans rely on smell, sight, taste, touch and sound; other animals have super-powered versions of these senses, and a few have extra senses we don't have at all. From a dog that seems to use smell to tell time to a dolphin that can "see" with its ears, discover how animals use their senses in ways we humans can barely imagine. But it's not just the senses that are remarkable -- it's the brains that process them. NOVA goes ...
23 Apr. 2014Inside Animal Minds: Who's the Smartest?
From PBS - What makes an animal smart? Many scientists believe the secret lies in relationships. Throughout the animal kingdom, some of the cleverest creatures -- including humans -- seem to be those who live in complex social groups, like dolphins, elephants and apes. Could the skills required to keep track of friend and foe make animals smarter? To find out, NOVA goes inside the social lives of some of the smartest animals on the planet.
7 May 2014Why Sharks Attack
From PBS - In recent years, an unusual spate of deadly shark attacks has gripped Australia, resulting in five deaths in 10 months. At the same time, great white sharks have begun appearing in growing numbers off the beaches of Cape Cod, Massachusetts, not far from the waters where Steven Spielberg filmed Jaws. What's behind the mysterious arrival of this apex predator in an area where it's rarely been seen for hundreds of years? Are deadly encounters with tourists inevitable? To separate fact from fear, NOVA teams with leading shark experts in Australia and the United...
14 May 2014Escape from Nazi Alcatraz
From PBS - Colditz Castle, a notorious prisoner of war camp in Nazi Germany, was supposed to be escape-proof. But in the dark days at the end of World War II, a group of British officers dreamt up the ultimate escape plan: in a secret attic workshop, they constructed a two-man glider out of bed sheets and floorboards. Their plan was to fly to freedom from the roof of the castle, but the war ended before they could put it to the test. Now a crack team of aero engineers and carpenters rebuild the glider in the same attic using the same materials, and they'll do ...
28 May 2014D-Day's Sunken Secrets
From PBS - On June 6, 1944, the Allies launched the biggest armada in history to invade the Normandy beaches and liberate Europe from the Nazis. In less than 24 hours, more than 5,000 ships crossed the English Channel, along with thousands of tanks and landing craft and nearly 200,000 men. Hundreds of ships sank while running the gauntlet of mines and bunkers, creating one of the world's largest underwater archeological sites. Now, NOVA has exclusive access to a unique collaboration between military historians, archeologists, and specialist divers to carry out the ...
10 Sep. 2014Vaccines - Calling the Shots
The science of vaccination, and the personal medical consequences when too many people decline to cooperate in the public health measure.
24 Sep. 2014Rise of the Hackers
From PBS and NOVA - Our lives are going digital. We shop, bank and even date online. Computers hold our treasured photographs, private emails, and all of our personal information. This data is precious -- and cybercriminals want it. Now, NOVA goes behind the scenes of the fast-paced world of cryptography to meet the scientists battling to keep our data safe. They are experts in extreme physics, math and a new field called "ultra-paranoid computing," all working to forge unbreakable codes and build ultra-fast computers. From the two men who uncovered the world's most ...
8 Oct. 2014Why Planes Vanish
An examination of the disappearance of Malaysia Airlines Flight MH370 and how airplane tracking systems could be improved to prevent a similar occurrence.
8 Oct. 2014Surviving Ebola
A recounting of the 2013-15 West African Ebola epidemic and the efforts to contain it.
8 Oct. 2014Ben Franklin's Balloons
From PBS and NOVA - The epic first stage in the adventure of human flight didn't begin with the Wright brothers at Kitty Hawk but with daring inventors and aeronauts in 18th century Paris. In a period of just 19 months, humanity not only left the ground for the first time, but a handful of brilliant and colorful pioneers developed all the essential features of today's hot air and gas balloons. Their exploits fascinated Benjamin Franklin, who was serving in Paris as the American ambassador, and created a sensation in the city. To explore this extraordinary burst of ...
22 Oct. 2014First Air War
An exploration of the development of aerial warfare in World War One.
5 Nov. 2014Bigger Than T. Rex
A team of palaeontologists led by Nizar Ibrahim go in search of Spinosaurus, a giant meat eater believed to be even larger than Tyrannosaurus rex.
12 Nov. 2014Emperor's Ghost Army
Nova's examination or how thousands to terra cotta soldiers in Qin dynasty's terra cotta army were created digresses into reviews of Qin history and technology.
Scientists examine the causes of the 2014 Oso, Washington, landslide, the worst in decades.