Paper Boys

Episode 42

Did supernovae make us walk upright?

Could radiation from stars have prompted ancient humans to walk upright?

Recent science news has been covering a paper drawing a connection between supernovae and the advent of human ancestors walking upright. The new headlines went viral, but their short titles made it hard to understand the actual findings of the research. Was this due to radiation causing genetic mutations? Did the supernovae impart some magical powers on our ancient ancestors? Or was it more circuitous than that? This week, James dives into the real research behind the headlines to uncover what findings were actually published in the paper.

Check out the paper from that was submitted to the Journal of Geology, available on arxiv here and the article here.

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