Nova (1974– )
4 Jan. 2017Secrets of the Sky Tombs
The towering Himalayas were among the last places on Earth that humanity settled. Scaling sheer cliff sides, a team of daring scientists hunts for clues to how ancient people found their way into this forbidding landscape and adapted to survive the high altitude. They discover rock-cut tombs filled with human bones and enigmatic artifacts, including gold masks and Chinese silk dating back thousands of years, and piece together evidence of strange rituals and beliefs designed to ward off the restless spirits of the dead.
11 Jan. 2017The Nuclear Option
Five years after the earthquake and tsunami that triggered the unprecedented trio of meltdowns at the Fukushima Daiichi nuclear power plant, scientists and engineers are struggling to control an ongoing crisis. What's next for Fukushima? What's next for Japan? And what's next for a world that seems determined to jettison one of our most important carbon-free sources of energy? Despite the catastrophe-and the ongoing risks associated with nuclear-a new generation of nuclear power seems poised to emerge the ashes of Fukushima. NOVA investigates how the realities of ...
1 Feb. 2017Search for the Super Battery
We live in an age when technological innovation seems to be limitlessly soaring. But for all the satisfying speed with which our gadgets have improved, many of them share a frustrating weakness: the batteries. Even though there have been some improvements in last century, batteries remain finicky, bulky, expensive, toxic and maddeningly short-lived. The quest is on for a "super battery," and the stakes in this hunt are much higher than the phone in your pocket. With climate change looming, electric cars and renewable energy sources like wind and solar power could hold...
8 Feb. 2017Ultimate Cruise Ship
Weighing 54,000 gross tons and stretching over two football fields, the Seven Seas Explorer is no ordinary boat. Join pioneering shipbuilders as they endeavor to build the ultimate cruise ship. It will be decked with the finest gold, marble, and crystal and designed to offer guests the roomiest accommodations of any commercial cruise ship. However, engineering opulence is no easy feat. NOVA follows a pioneering team of ship builders as they embark on what is advertised to be a milestone in maritime engineering.
15 Feb. 2017The Origami Revolution
The centuries old Japanese art form has gone high tech. Building with examples in biology and applying sophisticated mathematics, computer software and good old fashion imagination it looks like any structure can be folded and practical applications are everywhere.
22 Feb. 2017Why Trains Crash
A look at several recent train crashes, their causes and a technological solution which should make such events occur much less often.
19 Apr. 2017Holocaust Escape Tunnel
For centuries, the Lithuanian city of Vilnius was one of the most important Jewish centers in the world, earning the title "Jerusalem of the North," until the Nazis destroyed it. About 95% of its Jewish population of Vilna, its name in Hebrew and Yiddish, was murdered and its synagogues and institutions were reduced to ruins. The Soviets finished the job, paving over the remnants of Vilna's famous Great Synagogue, for example, so thoroughly that few today know it ever existed. Now, an international team of archaeologists are trying to recover this lost world. They ...
26 Apr. 2017Building Chernobyl's Megatomb
An international team of engineers races to construct a gargantuan dome to contain the lingering radioactive materials and crumbling remains of the Chernobyl nuclear reactor, decades after being the site of the world's worst nuclear disaster.
17 May 2017Chinese Chariot Revealed
Experts reconstruct and test China's first super-weapon, the chariot, which dominated the battlefields for more than 1000 years.
31 May 2017Poisoned Water
In this special report, NOVA investigates the water disaster in Flint and unravels a disturbing truth about the vulnerabilities of water systems across the country. Discover the delicate intricacies of water chemistry, the biology of lead poisoning, and the engineering challenge of replacing this ravaged infrastructure.
21 Aug. 2017Eclipse Over America
On August 21, 2017, millions of Americans witnessed the first total solar eclipse to cross the continental United States in 99 years. As in all total solar eclipses, the moon blocked the sun and revealed its ethereal outer atmosphere - its corona - in a wondrous celestial spectacle. While hordes of citizens flocked to the eclipse's path of totality, scientists, too, staked out spots for a very different reason: to investigate the secrets of the sun's elusive atmosphere. During the eclipse's precious seconds of darkness, they gathered new clues on how our sun works, ...
13 Sep. 2017Death Dive to Saturn
For over a decade, the Cassini space probe has been sending dazzling images of Saturn's breathtaking rings and mysterious moons. Join Nova on a suspenseful ride during Cassini's final hours as it dives into Saturn's atmosphere.
4 Oct. 2017Secrets of the Shining Knight
Discover what it was like to be a knight in shining armor and follow the historic manufacturing process. Master armorers re-engineer the Greenwich armor - considered some of the greatest armor ever made - and then put it to the test.
11 Oct. 2017Ghosts of Stonehenge
Who built Stonehenge and why? Groundbreaking archaeological digs have revealed major new clues about Britain's enigmatic 5,000-year-old site and the people who constructed it.
25 Oct. 2017Killer Volcanoes
Volcanologists search for an elusive volcanic mega-eruption that plunged the medieval earth into a deep freeze. Investigate the geologic evidence from Greenland all the way to Antarctica to identify the 750-year-old culprit.
1 Nov. 2017Killer Hurricanes
Killer Hurricanes pursues the riddle of an 18th century Caribbean superstorm that killed 20,000, the highest known death toll of any single weather event. To reconstruct its epic scale and investigate what made it so devastating, NOVA joins historians and storm sleuths as they track down clues in eyewitness chronicles, old ruins, and computer simulations.
8 Nov. 2017Killer Floods
Geologists examine extreme terrain on Iceland, the Scablands in Washington State, and submerged in the English channel to see if they were created by the same process, a sudden titanic flood.
22 Nov. 2017Extreme Animal Weapons
Why some animals have extreme armaments, including claws, horns, fangs and stings.
20 Dec. 2017Bird Brain
Join NOVA to witness the brainpower of birds. Long mocked as empty-headed, our feathered friends hide surprisingly acute intelligence. But how smart are they? Watch as scientists test avian aptitude and challenge our basic notions of intelligence.