Sid Perkins

Freelance Writer

Sid is a freelance science journalist. He lives in Crossville, Tenn., with his wife, two dogs and three cats. He specializes in earth sciences and paleontology but often tackles topics such as astronomy, planetary science, materials science and engineering. 


In 2009, Sid won the Award for Distinguished Science Journalism in the Atmospheric and Related Sciences from the American Meteorological Society. And in 2002, he shared the American Astronomical Society’s Solar Physics Division’s Award for Popular Writing on Solar Physics. Sid’s writing also appears in Science, Nature, Scientific American, the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences and Science News.

All Stories by Sid Perkins

  1. Plants

    Need a little luck? Here’s how to grow your own

    A 2019 Intel ISEF finalist used a plant hormone and extra fertilizer to boost the numbers of multi-leafed clovers — including lucky four-leafed plants — she could reliably grow.

  2. Materials Science

    Analyze This: Do exotic woods make better guitars?

    When comparing the sound of guitars made from rare and costly woods to those made with common, cheaper alternatives, guitarists couldn’t tell much of a difference.

  3. Physics

    Heat signatures help track down old and still deadly land mines

    A new technique for locating land mines uses infrared cameras on drones. The novel technology uses temperature differences to find camouflaged mines before anyone might accidentally step on them.

  4. Earth

    Earth’s permafrost is heating up

    Climate change is warming Earth’s permafrost — and in some places thawing it. This could lead to massive releases of planet-warming greenhouse gases.

  5. Earth

    ICESat-2 measures ice and more from space

    ICESat-2, launched in September 2018, will detect changes in Earth’s ice sheets and glaciers. It also will monitor our planet’s forests and clear shallow waters.

  6. Computing

    These young researchers take aim at sports

    Three Broadcom MASTERS finalists invented sports-related devices. They illustrate that young inventors can find inspiration anywhere, even at work and play.

  7. Computing

    New apps match donated items with people in need

    Two 2018 Broadcom MASTERS finalists developed apps to help match donors’ aid of food or disaster relief with the people who need these.

  8. Tech

    Prepping for drone exploration of Mars

    Twelve-year-old James Fagan, a budding engineer from Riverside, Calif., has built a wind tunnel. He uses it to test scale models of drones and other vehicles under Mars-like conditions.

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    The odd ways that weather can unfold in a warming world

    New analyses describe how global and regional weather may unfold in the coming decades as people release more planet-warming greenhouse gases.

  10. Tech

    Solar panels and more garner big prizes for middle-school researchers

    A motorized system for solar panels garnered Georgia Hutchinson, 13, of Woodside, Calif., the top $25,000 prize at the Broadcom MASTERS teen science competition.

  11. Environment

    People are changing which parts of Earth get more (or less) water

    Human activities have been reshaping the planet’s water map. Some changes created new lakes. Others caused lakes to disappear.

  12. Chemistry

    Bioplastics could put some shrimp in your Barbie

    Teen researchers are looking to natural materials like shrimp shells and banana peels to make plastics ecofriendly and biodegradable.