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Listed under:  Science  >  Scientific inquiry  >  Explanations (Scientific inquiry)  >  Hypotheses  >  Theories
Video

Atoms of Fire: Vitalism disproved through evidence

Discover how the scientific theory of vitalism, championed by the Swedish chemist Jöns Berzelius, was disproved by his former student Friedrich Wöhler. Find out the way chemists study how the different atoms in organic compounds combine in set ratios depending on the 'valence' of those atoms.

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ABC News: 'Junk DNA' not junk after all

Geneticists have long thought that 98 per cent of human DNA was 'junk' (or 'non-coding') DNA. However, recent scientific research suggests that there is much more to this DNA than first thought. Watch this clip to discover more.

Video

Catalyst: Accelerating glaciers in Antarctica

Discover a white world in which glaciers are racing toward the sea at seven times their normal speed. This is what is happening in Antarctica now and the consequences will eventually be felt at your nearest beach. Travel with scientist Dr Paul Williams to see some stunning images of what is occurring around the fringes ...

Video

When neutron stars collide

Using technologically advanced supercomputers, scientists have developed theories about the creation of black holes deep in outer space. Watch the computer simulation in this clip to see how the collision of two neutron stars produces a gamma ray burst and a new black hole. Discover that our continuing understanding of ...

Video

Catalyst: Climate and bushfires in Australia

What can science tell us about the major cause of bushfires in Australia's past? How can it help us predict future bushfires? Two scientists discuss evidence related to bushfire regimes (bushfire patterns, types and intensity). Please note that this clip contains recent images of homes destroyed by fire that may disturb ...

Video

Atoms of Fire: Building models of organic molecules

Have you seen the model of long-chain carbon molecules first developed by Friedrich August Kekulé? This model enabled chemists to make a great leap forward in their understanding of the structure of organic molecules. See how to represent the structure of methane, ethane, propane, butane and octane. Find out how to rearrange ...

Video

Catalyst: Thinning ice sheet

Discover that that the massive ice sheet in East Antarctica has been losing mass since 2006 instead of growing, as was previously thought. Watch animations to see how scientists from NASA and Australia are using satellite technology and aerial monitoring to investigate the thickness of East Antarctica's ice sheet. Find ...

Video

Catalyst: Large Hadron Collider discovery, 2012

Have you heard of the Large Hadron Collider (LHC)? Watch this clip to find out about a scientific discovery at the LHC that left physicists uncharacteristically emotional. Catalyst's Dr Derek Muller takes you inside the LHC and talks to scientists there about the discovery of the Higgs boson and what it means for our understanding ...

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Atoms of Fire: Atoms and organic compounds

Can you imagine someone who lived over 2400 years ago saying that all matter is made up of atoms? Democritus, an ancient Greek, did. Explore the history of this scientific idea with chemist Amanda Tilbury. Hear how Swedish scientist Jöns Berzelius postulated much later that only living tissue could make an organic compound ...

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Catalyst: Megafauna fossils

Travel back in time in outback Australia and investigate the giant lumbering beasts of the past - the megafauna. Visit a fossil site in Cuddie Springs, New South Wales, where megafauna bones have been discovered. Explore the connection between Aboriginal peoples and megafauna, and theories for the extinction of Australia's ...

Interactive

Tectonics investigator

Investigate the internal structure of the Earth using earthquake measurements. Examine the Earth’s outer layer. Fit the Earth's tectonic plates together like a jigsaw puzzle. Identify how plate movements produce many features of the Earth’s surface. Predict the formation of new volcanic islands. This learning object is ...

Interactive

Exploring atoms: atom structure

See how scientists such as Ernest Rutherford have investigated the structure of atoms. Explore possible models. Fire charged particles at atoms and find which model best fits the results. This learning object is one in a series of six objects. Three of the objects are also packaged as a combined learning object.