Carolyn Wilke

Former Staff Writer, Science News for Students

Carolyn Wilke recently earned her Ph.D. in environmental engineering at Northwestern University, where her research drew on the fields of environmental chemistry, materials science and toxicology. She got her start in science writing by blogging for HELIX, Northwestern’s science magazine and wrote as a AAAS Mass Media Fellow at The Sacramento Bee. Prior to working at Science News for Students, Carolyn interned at Science News and The Scientist. When not delving into a new scientific discovery, you might find Carolyn behind her sewing machine or trying to amuse her cat. 

All Stories by Carolyn Wilke

  1. Physics

    Shape-shifting cuts give shoes a better grip

    With pop-out structures inspired by kirigami and animals, a shoe sole goes from flat to spiky to boost friction on slippery surfaces such as ice.

  2. Physics

    A contrast between shadows and light can now generate electricity

    A new device exploits the contrast between bright spots and shade to produce a current that can power small electronics.

  3. Fossils

    Fossil stomach reveals a dinosaur’s last meal

    A rare fossilized stomach reveals a dino’s dining preferences. It also provides clues to the ecosystem in which the reptile lived.

  4. Chemistry

    Working up a sweat may one day power up a device

    Tech that turns sweat into power may make for greener gadgets. A new device uses perspiration to charge a supercapacitor and run a sensor.

  5. Chemistry

    Scientists Say: Polymer

    Polymers can be natural or man-made, but they are all big molecules made up of smaller units linked together.

  6. Oceans

    Going bright may help corals recover from bleaching

    When some corals bleach, they turn neon colors. Flashy hues may be part of a response that helps these corals recover and reunite with their algae.

  7. Oceans

    Scientists Say: Tsunami

    This is a series of ocean waves triggered by an underwater earthquake or volcano. The event starts as small waves, but those waves can grow as they approach land.

  8. Fossils

    Saber-toothed anchovy relatives were once fearsome hunters

    Today’s plankton-eating anchovies sport tiny teeth. But their ancient kin were armed with spiky lower teeth and a giant upper sabertooth.

  9. Space

    Scientists Say: Spaghettification

    Black holes cram a lot of mass into a small area. When another object gets close, the black hole’s gravity can stretch it into a noodle-like strand.

  10. Chemistry

    This tube worm’s glowing slime may help sustain its own shine

    Snot oozed by a marine tube worm can glow for up to 3 full days. The secret of how this works might lead to long-lasting lights that glow on and on.