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NOVA scienceNOW: Science of Taste; Walrus Language; Sangeeta Bhatia; Capturing Carbon

Airs Tuesday, July 21 at 9 p.m. on KPBS TV

Studies of walrus and sea lion vocal and intellectual abilities are shedding ...

Credit: Doug Hamilton

Above: Studies of walrus and sea lion vocal and intellectual abilities are shedding light on the evolutionary roots of human language. Pictured: New correspondent Ziya Tong and Siku, a female walrus.

The Science of Picky Eaters: Don't like broccoli? Your DNA may explain why. NOVA scienceNOW explores the science behind our sense of taste. In this web-exclusive video, Neil deGrasse Tyson meets a genetically modified mouse that can't sense bitter. Tour the tongue in this audio interactive, learn how our sense of taste works, and why we evolved the ability to detect flavors like bitter and sweet.

Smart Sea Lions and Talking Walruses: Shed light on the evolutionary roots of human language through studies of walrus and sea lion vocal and intellectual abilities. Marine mammals are wowing researchers with more than just circus tricks. Two experts—and two walruses—demonstrate how to speak walrus. Watch our audio slide show.

Profile: Sangeeta Bhatia: Intrigued by the idea of artificial organs, a biomedical engineer uses computer-chip technology to craft tiny livers. Scientist, MIT professor, and mom, Sangeeta Bhatia says she's just a "regular person." Hear audio highlights or read the full interview.

Capturing Carbon: An 8th-grader's science project prompts her scientist father to develop a new way to pull excess carbon dioxide out of the atmosphere. He's attempting to invent a product that may fulfill the dream of creating an artificial tree that can absorb carbon dioxide directly from the air. Explore options for storing the carbon dioxide that threatens to turn Earth into a solar oven. How many pounds of CO2 does a person breathe out every year, and how many pounds does a tree take up? Watch this video extra on capturing carbon.

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