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Understanding NSF Research

Arctic & Antarctic

Earth's polar regions may seem like mirror images. But each is a unique environment with features we are still trying to understand, and each affects the rest of the globe.

Date Updated: January 31, 2005

Astronomy & Space

Astronomy may well be the oldest science of all, seeking answers to questions such as: "Where did it all come from?" and "Are we alone?"

Date Updated: January 31, 2005

Biology

A bat, a mushroom, a blade of grass--they're easy to identify as "life." But what about a cold virus or mold? Biologists are life's detectives, discovering what “alive” really means.

Date Updated: January 31, 2005

Chemistry & Materials

Most of what you touch, taste, hear or smell every day in the modern world is the direct or indirect result of research in chemistry or materials science – an effort that never ends.

Date Updated: January 31, 2005

Computing

The Internet, Google, and web browsers show how past progress in computing affects our daily lives. The cutting-edge systems under design now will have an enormous impact on society--and science.

Date Updated: January 31, 2005

Earth & Environment

Our planet gives up its secrets slowly. But every year we learn more about its oceans and air, its restless continents, its myriad ecosystems, and the way living things interact with their environments.

Date Updated: April 5, 2012

Education

Learning how people learn, while also supporting the very best ideas and students in U.S. science, engineering and mathematics are essential goals in today's changing world.

Date Updated: January 31, 2005

Engineering

Engineers bridge the gap between what the mind can imagine and what the laws of nature allow. They work at the outermost frontiers of electronics, manufacturing, bioengineering, structural design and more.

Date Updated: January 31, 2005

Mathematics

Mathematics is the natural language of science and engineering. It is about numbers, shapes, symmetry, chance, change and much more. Mathematics is deeply interwoven into all of modern life.

Date Updated: January 31, 2005

Nanoscience

Nanoscience is the ability to manipulate atoms and molecules. This fast-moving field is transforming our ability to custom-design objects and processes at sizes smaller than 1/1000th the width of a hair.

Date Updated: January 31, 2005

People & Society

Out of fascination and need, people have always studied people. When curiosity is backed by scientific methods, we get fascinating insights into human behavior, origins, societies and economies.

Date Updated: January 31, 2005

Physics

Physics is the science of matter, energy, space and time. It looks both inward and outward, from the smallest subatomic particle to the vastness of the universe--and yet it is also intensely practical.

Date Updated: January 31, 2005