The Science of Sustainability

Television

QUEST Lab: Five-Cent Battery

QUEST Lab: Five-Cent Battery

How much electrical power will a nickel buy you? This week the Exploratorium shows us how to make an LED flashlight battery for only five cents.

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Asteroid Hunters

Asteroid Hunters

Everyone knows that eight planets orbit the Sun. But thousands of other objects, including icy comets and football field-sized asteroids, are also zooming around our solar system. And some of them could be on a collision course with Earth. QUEST explores how these Near Earth Objects are being tracked and what scientists are saying should be done to prevent a deadly impact.

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Web Extra: Citizen Science – Mud Snails

Web Extra: Citizen Science – Mud Snails

They spend hours in the mud in search of a tiny snail. Meet the volunteers working with the Bay Institute to eradicate an invasive Japanese mud snail on the shores of San Francisco Bay.

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Animal Chefs

Animal Chefs

Ever wonder how to make krill shakes, squid tacos or fishy sausages to tempt the taste buds of a 400-pound mola mola? The chefs at the Monterey Bay Aquarium prepare such meals daily to feed thousands of species, from otters to octopi to sharks. Find out what it takes to come up with nutritious and tasty meals for diners with wild appetites.

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Your Photos on QUEST: Laura Watt

Your Photos on QUEST: Laura Watt

Photographer Laura Watt has lived in the Bay Area for most of her life but it was not until she started sailing in San Francisco Bay at age 35 that she began to appreciate the patterns, textures and colors of the precious water that surrounds us all. Self-described as "trawler trash," she lives aboard her boat in San Rafael's Loch Lomand Marina, granting her a front row seat to the dynamic body of water that she captures so well in her moody, intimate images.

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Zeppelins Resurrected

Zeppelins Resurrected

In 1935, the USS Macon went down in 1000 feet of water off the coast of Monterey, California. Now, as scientists study the recently-discovered wreckage, dirigibles are returning to the Bay Area. But these aren't the same dirigibles – these are new and improved.

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Producer's Notes: Animal Chefs

Producer's Notes: Animal Chefs

Few images will stay as indelibly with me as the sight of a 500 pound grizzly bear devouring a horse bone while standing waist high in water.

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Web Extra: Sights and Sounds of the Natural Bridges SB Tidepools

Web Extra: Sights and Sounds of the Natural Bridges SB Tidepools

The intertidal rocks at Natural Bridges State Beach are covered in life: sea stars, seaweeds, urchins, and crabs are just some of the area's intertidal inhabitants. Visit them in their tidepool homes down in Santa Cruz, California.

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How do you use QUEST?

How do you use QUEST?

How do you use QUEST? Take our 10 minute online survey and be entered to win a $50 Amazon certificate.

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Chasing Beetles, Finding Darwin

Chasing Beetles, Finding Darwin

It's been 150 years since Charles Darwin published On the Origin of Species. Yet his ideas remain as central to scientific exploration as ever. QUEST follows entomologist David Kavanaugh, who predicted that a new beetle species would be found on the Trinity Alps. Find out if his prediction came true…

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Producer's Notes: Chasing Beetles, Finding Darwin

Producer's Notes: Chasing Beetles, Finding Darwin

Today QUEST TV broadcasts its half-hour documentary "Chasing Beetles, Finding Darwin," which tells the story of California Academy of Sciences beetle expert David Kavanaugh's unusual prediction that a new species of beetle would be found in Northern California's Trinity Alps.

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Inside an Explosion

Inside an Explosion

What happens when something explodes? Scientists at Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory are now getting a first glimpse of the microscopic properties of an explosion.

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Fido Fights Cancer

Fido Fights Cancer

Humans and dogs have been partners for thousands of years. Now our canine friends are joining the fight against cancer. Researchers are training dogs to smell cancer in the breath samples of human patients. And by studying cancers in dogs, we may discover new treatments for cancer in human and canine cancer patients.

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Waiting for the Electric Car

Waiting for the Electric Car

If you're looking to buy an all-electric car you can drive on the freeway, your options are limited. $100,000 will buy you an electric sports car from Tesla. But an affordable all-electric vehicle remains elusive, due to the difficulty in making a battery that is powerful, long-lasting, and cheap. QUEST visits a local battery laboratory and investigates the odds of a breakthrough.

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Producer's Notes: Waiting for the Electric Car

Producer's Notes: Waiting for the Electric Car

General Motors, Chrysler and Ford face an uncertain future. They have been lobbying Congress for a $25 billion bailout, which representatives seem reluctant to grant them. It seems like an odd time to be talking about technological breakthroughs in the automotive industry.

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Producer's Notes: Inside an Explosion

Producer's Notes: Inside an Explosion

We see or hear about explosions practically every day on TV, the movies and in the news, most people have no idea what an explosion really is.

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Producer's Notes: Fido Fights Cancer

Producer's Notes: Fido Fights Cancer

I love my dog. For the past ten years, through thick and thin, Brodie has been my happy sidekick, trusted confidant, eager hiking partner and beloved friend. Most of all the kid makes me laugh. He is, I am prone to say, "a glorious twit!"

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Your Photos on QUEST: John Albers-Mead

Your Photos on QUEST: John Albers-Mead

Foster City photographer and naturalist John Albers-Mead describes visiting the tide pools near Half Moon Bay as "a treasure hunt that changes by the minute." QUEST joins Albers-Mead on Moss Beach at low tide as he captures these sometimes-sunken treasures with his digital camera.

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Producer's Notes: Geothermal Heats Up

Producer's Notes: Geothermal Heats Up

When I first began researching this story for QUEST, I was surprised that I hadn't heard more about geothermal energy. It's never lumped into that renewable energy laundry list that's recited by politicians and journalists alike — you know, "…solar, wind, hydroelectric and biofuels". But it turns out that geothermal energy has really great potential.

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Super Ball Fission

Super Ball Fission

As a physics professor at UC Berkeley, Richard Muller considers what his students would need to know — if one were elected president. In today's lesson, he demonstrates the principles of fission and the basics of a nuclear explosion — using super balls!

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