IFLScience The Big Questions: Exploring Some Of The Biggest Scientific Puzzles Of 2023

Every episode of season 3 of The Big Questions podcast is now available, where we take a deep dive into the biggest questions in science with a host of top experts to fire them at.

Holly Large - Editorial Assistant

Holly Large

Holly Large - Editorial Assistant

Holly Large

Jr Copy Editor & Staff Writer

Holly is a graduate medical biochemist with an enthusiasm for making science interesting, fun and accessible.

Jr Copy Editor & Staff Writer

Season 3 Roundup

From Jurassic Park to space junk, we've delved into all kinds of interesting science in Season 3.

Image credit: © IFLScience

In season 3 of IFLScience's podcast The Big Questions we tackled some of the most fascinating scientific mysteries of 2023, from how to prepare for the next big solar flare to the chances of making Jurassic Park a reality. Hosts Dr Alfredo Carpineti, Rachael Funnell, and Eleanor Higgs were joined by international guest experts to investigate questions and problems at the very limit of our knowledge. What did we learn? Find out below.

Episode 1 -  Is Jurassic Park Possible?

For the 30th anniversary of the iconic movie, paleontologist Dr Susie Maidment from the Natural History Museum, London and Ben Lamm from de-extinction company Colossal Biosciences help us to answer a question 66 million 30 years in the making.


Episode 2 - How Is Climate Change Affecting Polar Bear Populations?

We speak with Alysa McCall, Polar Bears International staff scientist and director of conservation outreach to figure out what is really going on with climate change and the “white hairy canaries” of the Arctic. 

Episode 3 - Why Is Space Junk Such A Big Deal?

Together with space environmentalist Professor Moriba Jah, we discuss why space junk is such a real threat and how we can make space safe, secure, and sustainable.


Episode 4 - Can We Save A Species On The Very Brink Of Extinction?

Is it possible to use genetics research to save the northern white rhino? If so, how? And importantly, should we even try? We tackle these complex questions with the help of Dr Susanne Holtze from the Leibniz Institute for Zoo and Wildlife Research.

Episode 5 - How Does A Quantum Computer Work And How Will They Change The World?

In this episode, we explore the promise of quantum computers, speaking with Professor Winfried Hensinger, professor of quantum technology at the University of Sussex, UK, to discover why we need them, what they could be used for, and why it's taking so long to get them.


Episode 6 - What Is Space Weather And How Does It Affect Us?

We discuss all things space weather with Dr Nigel Meredith of the British Antarctic Survey, and how solar events millions of kilometers away impact our planet. You can even listen to the incredible sounds made by some of these events!

Episode 7 - What Is Ancient Ice Telling Us About The Future?

Dr Liz Thomas of the British Antarctic Survey's Ice Core Research Group joins us to chat all things ancient ice, and how it can help us look back into the Earth’s climate history to predict what we might be facing in the future.


Episode 8 - Are E-Fuels The Future Of Aviation?

As much as people enjoy flying abroad, the cost of the climate impact is making people think twice. So what can we do? We speak to Sophie Zienkiewicz and Alasdair Lumsden, co-founders of Carbon Neutral Fuels, to find out if e-fuels could revolutionize the future of the fuel industry and help offset climate change.

Episode 9 - How Are Glaciers Changing In A Warming World?

With glaciers around the planet disappearing, Dr Peter Davis from the British Antarctic Survey explains how scientists keep track of these changes, as well as the possible consequences of such rapid melting. 


Episode 10 - Are We Ready For The Next Massive Solar Flare?

As we're gearing up to the solar maximum, the Sun's peak activity, it begs the question of how a powerful event might impact an increasingly tech-reliant world. Dr Ryan French, astronomer at the National Solar Observatory, joins us to find out.

Bonus Episode - Would You Eat Plant-Based Meat For Christmas Dinner?

During the holiday season, many of us will be tucking into delicious meals which may well include meat. We speak to Daniel Dikovsky, chief technology officer at Redefine Meat, to find out how scientists are creating environmentally friendly, plant-based alternatives for the Christmas dinner plate and beyond.



  • tag
  • climate change,

  • quantum computing,

  • space weather,

  • extinction,

  • jurassic park,

  • glaciers,

  • solar flares,

  • Space junk,

  • podcast,

  • plant-based,

  • Learn with IFLS,

  • The Big Questions