Nell Greenfieldboyce Nell Greenfieldboyce is a NPR science correspondent.
Nell Greenfieldboyce 2010
Stories By

Nell Greenfieldboyce

Doby Photography /NPR
Nell Greenfieldboyce 2010
Doby Photography /NPR

Nell Greenfieldboyce

Correspondent, Science Desk

Nell Greenfieldboyce is a NPR science correspondent.

With reporting focused on general science, NASA, and the intersection between technology and society, Greenfieldboyce has been on the science desk's technology beat since she joined NPR in 2005.

In that time Greenfieldboyce has reported on topics including the narwhals in Greenland, the ending of the space shuttle program, and the reasons why independent truckers don't want electronic tracking in their cabs.

Much of Greenfieldboyce's reporting reflects an interest in discovering how applied science and technology connects with people and culture. She has worked on stories spanning issues such as pet cloning, gene therapy, ballistics, and federal regulation of new technology.

Prior to NPR, Greenfieldboyce spent a decade working in print, mostly magazines including U.S. News & World Report and New Scientist.

A graduate of Johns Hopkins, earning her Bachelor's of Arts degree in social sciences and a Master's of Arts degree in science writing, Greenfieldboyce taught science writing for four years at the university. She was honored for her talents with the Evert Clark/Seth Payne Award for Young Science Journalists.

[+] read more[-] less

Story Archive

Michigan State University doctoral student Mike Morrison has a redesign for scientific posters to spell out their main point in big, easy-to-read letters. Courtesy of Mike Morrison hide caption

toggle caption
Courtesy of Mike Morrison

To Save The Science Poster, Researchers Want To Kill It And Start Over

  • Download
  • <iframe src="https://www.npr.org/player/embed/729314248/731795210" width="100%" height="290" frameborder="0" scrolling="no" title="NPR embedded audio player">
  • Transcript

A California two-spot octopus extends a sucker-lined arm from its den. In 2015, this was the first octopus species to have its full genetic sequence published. Courtesy of Michael LaBarbera hide caption

toggle caption
Courtesy of Michael LaBarbera

Why Octopuses Might Be The Next Lab Rats

  • Download
  • <iframe src="https://www.npr.org/player/embed/727653152/729390585" width="100%" height="290" frameborder="0" scrolling="no" title="NPR embedded audio player">
  • Transcript

Rich Isaacson, seen in his backyard in Pentagon City, Va., wrote his thesis on gravitational waves and says he always thought their existence would be proved sometime during his career. But he didn't realize that trying to see them would become his career. Ryan Kellman/NPR hide caption

toggle caption
Ryan Kellman/NPR

Billion-Dollar Gamble: How A 'Singular Hero' Helped Start A New Field In Physics

  • Download
  • <iframe src="https://www.npr.org/player/embed/723326933/724747984" width="100%" height="290" frameborder="0" scrolling="no" title="NPR embedded audio player">
  • Transcript

Asteroid Simulation Reveals How Well Earth's Planetary Defenses Work

  • Download
  • <iframe src="https://www.npr.org/player/embed/720097363/720097364" width="100%" height="290" frameborder="0" scrolling="no" title="NPR embedded audio player">
  • Transcript

A stripe of red dots shows the risk corridor for a hypothetical asteroid strike, part of an exercise this week held by planetary defense experts in which they analyze data about a fictitious asteroid. Landsat/Copernicus/Google Earth/Dept. of State Geographer hide caption

toggle caption
Landsat/Copernicus/Google Earth/Dept. of State Geographer

This Week, NASA Is Pretending An Asteroid Is On Its Way To Smack The Earth

  • Download
  • <iframe src="https://www.npr.org/player/embed/718296681/718450995" width="100%" height="290" frameborder="0" scrolling="no" title="NPR embedded audio player">
  • Transcript

The image on the left shows the brains of pigs that were untreated for 10 hours after death, with neurons appearing as green, astrocytes as red and cell nuclei as blue. The image on the right shows cells in the same area of brains that, four hours after death, were hooked up to a system that the Yale University researchers call BrainEx. Stefano G. Daniele and Zvonimir Vrselja, Sestan Laboratory, Yale School of Medicine hide caption

toggle caption
Stefano G. Daniele and Zvonimir Vrselja, Sestan Laboratory, Yale School of Medicine

Scientists Restore Some Function In The Brains Of Dead Pigs

  • Download
  • <iframe src="https://www.npr.org/player/embed/714289322/714413456" width="100%" height="290" frameborder="0" scrolling="no" title="NPR embedded audio player">
  • Transcript

Scientists Have Taken The First Photo Of Something That's Invisible — A Black Hole

  • Download
  • <iframe src="https://www.npr.org/player/embed/711951875/711951885" width="100%" height="290" frameborder="0" scrolling="no" title="NPR embedded audio player">
  • Transcript

Scientist Corey Gray and his mother, Sharon Yellowfly, are pictured at one of the two massive detectors that make up the Laser Interferometer Gravitational-Wave Observatory. One facility, where Gray works, is in Washington state, and the other is in Louisiana. Courtesy of Russell Barber hide caption

toggle caption
Courtesy of Russell Barber

How A Cosmic Collision Sparked A Native American Translator's Labor Of Love

  • Download
  • <iframe src="https://www.npr.org/player/embed/706032203/708599988" width="100%" height="290" frameborder="0" scrolling="no" title="NPR embedded audio player">
  • Transcript

The Salt Institute spent decades questioning government efforts to limit Americans' sodium intake. Critics say the institute muddied the links between salt and health. Now it has shut its doors. ATU Images/Getty Images hide caption

toggle caption
ATU Images/Getty Images

After A Century, A Voice For The U.S. Salt Industry Goes Quiet

  • Download
  • <iframe src="https://www.npr.org/player/embed/707747077/708302468" width="100%" height="290" frameborder="0" scrolling="no" title="NPR embedded audio player">
  • Transcript

Female mosquitoes searching for a meal of blood detect people partly by using a special olfactory receptor to home in on our sweat. Luis Robayo/AFP/Getty Images hide caption

toggle caption
Luis Robayo/AFP/Getty Images

How Mosquitoes Sniff Out Human Sweat To Find Us

  • Download
  • <iframe src="https://www.npr.org/player/embed/706838786/707722650" width="100%" height="290" frameborder="0" scrolling="no" title="NPR embedded audio player">
  • Transcript

How The First All-Female Spacewalk Could Be Foiled By A Spacesuit

  • Download
  • <iframe src="https://www.npr.org/player/embed/706969363/706969364" width="100%" height="290" frameborder="0" scrolling="no" title="NPR embedded audio player">
  • Transcript

The Laser Interferometer Gravitational-Wave Observatory is made up of two detectors, this one in Livingston, La., and one near Hanford, Wash. The detectors use giant arms in the shape of an "L" to measure tiny ripples in the fabric of the universe. Caltech/MIT/LIGO Lab hide caption

toggle caption
Caltech/MIT/LIGO Lab

Massive U.S. Machines That Hunt For Ripples In Space-Time Just Got An Upgrade

  • Download
  • <iframe src="https://www.npr.org/player/embed/701498785/704700606" width="100%" height="290" frameborder="0" scrolling="no" title="NPR embedded audio player">
  • Transcript

In this illustration, SpaceX's Crew Dragon approaches the International Space Station for docking. The capsule has room to carry seven astronauts. SpaceX/NASA hide caption

toggle caption
SpaceX/NASA

SpaceX Readies For Key Test Of Capsule Built To Carry Astronauts Into Space

  • Download
  • <iframe src="https://www.npr.org/player/embed/698073318/699119078" width="100%" height="290" frameborder="0" scrolling="no" title="NPR embedded audio player">
  • Transcript

Astronaut Buzz Aldrin walks on the moon during the Apollo 11 mission in 1969. The landing site at Tranquility Base has remained mostly untouched — though that could change as more nations and even commercial companies start to explore the moon. NASA hide caption

toggle caption
NASA

How Do You Preserve History On The Moon?

  • Download
  • <iframe src="https://www.npr.org/player/embed/696129505/696532423" width="100%" height="290" frameborder="0" scrolling="no" title="NPR embedded audio player">
  • Transcript
William Lovelace/Getty Images

The Power Of Martin Luther King Jr.'s Anger

  • Download
  • <iframe src="https://www.npr.org/player/embed/691298594/696413704" width="100%" height="290" frameborder="0" scrolling="no" title="NPR embedded audio player">
  • Transcript