‘Nova’ returns this winter with new episodes Wednesday nights

From volcanoes to addiction to patients in need of an organ transplant, “Nova” explores all things science every Wednesday at 8 p.m. on Arizona PBS.

Sept. 26

“Transplanting Hope” – Follow the patients who desperately need transplants to save their lives, see the profound decisions families face in donating the organs of loved ones who die, and learn about the critical shortage of organs and new research into “organs by design.” Watch via Passport.

Oct. 3

“Operation Bridge Rescue” – Follow the rebuilding of the 19th century Blenheim Covered Bridge. Watch elite craftsmen raise this engineering icon under grueling time pressure and witness traditional artisans in China restoring ancient covered bridges to ensure their survival. Watch via Passport.

Oct. 10 (8 p.m.)

“Volatile Earth: Volcano on Fire” – Climb up the cone of Nyiragongo, one of the world’s least studied volcanoes, and join volcanologists as they descend into its crater, down towards its bubbling and seething lava lake, to discover when it will erupt next. Watch via Passport.

Oct. 10 (9 p.m.)

“Volatile Earth: Volcano on the Brink” – Join a team of volcanologists as they explore one of the world’s most active and mysterious volcanoes in central Africa: Nyamuragira. Learn what feeds it frequent eruptions and see the region’s other hidden, life-threatening volcanic dangers. Watch via Passport.

Oct. 17

“Addiction” – Delve into America’s opioid crisis – in a world in which many other diseases can be traced to addictive behavior, how do addictions work, and what can the science of addiction tell us about how we can resolve this dire social issue? Watch online.

Oct. 24

“Flying Supersonic” – A history of the legendary Concorde, the passenger plane that flew from the late 70s till 2003 at twice the speed of sound. Though ultimately not sustainable because of enormous fuel consumption and high ticket prices, NASA and start-up companies are trying to figure out ways to build a new generation of supersonic passenger planes that will be quieter, greener and cheaper. Watch via Passport.

Oct. 31

“Ghosts of Murdered Kings” – Follow archaeologists and forensic experts in Ireland’s County Tipperary as they hunt for clues to the identity and the circumstances of various violent deaths of bog body victims. A new theory emerges that they are those of ritually murdered kings, gruesomely slain to assure the fertility of land and people.

Nov. 7

“Last B-24” – In December of 1944, the Tulsamerican B-24 bomber disappeared off the coast of Croatia. The plane was a World War II icon – the last B-24 built in Tulsa, and paid for by the factory workers. Now, NOVA joins the daring mission to survey the wreckage and recover the lost airmen. Watch online.

Nov. 14

“Thai Cave Rescue” – Follow the remarkable story of how a Thai boys’ soccer team became trapped in a cave system, how they were located, and how rescuers worked against the clock to make a miraculous rescue of all 12 boys and their coach. Watch online.

Nov. 21

“World’s Fastest Animal” – The Peregrine Falcon is famously the fastest bird on earth, capable of reaching speeds of up to 242 mph in a dive. But bird specialist and trainer Lloyd Buck is convinced his peregrine Moses can go faster. Watch online.

Nov. 28

“Prediction by the Numbers” – Discover how predictions underpin nearly every aspect of our lives and why some succeed spectacularly while others fail. Explore entertaining real-world challenges and join experts as they tackle that age-old question: Can we forecast the future?

Dec. 19

“Ghosts of Stonehenge” – Who built Stonehenge and why? Discover how the last decade of groundbreaking archaeological digs has revealed major new clues to Britain’s enigmatic 5,000-year-old site and the people who constructed it.

Dec. 26

“Apollo’s Daring Mission” – The U.S. space program suffered a bitter setback when Apollo 1 ended in a deadly fire during a pre-launch run-through. In disarray, and threatened by the prospect of a Soviet Union victory in the space race, NASA decided upon a radical and risky change of plan: turn Apollo 8 from an earth-orbit mission into a daring sprint to the moon while relying on untried new technologies.

Jan. 2

“Beyond Pluto” – Join the mission as the New Horizons spacecraft attempts to fly by NASA’s most distant target yet. Since it explored Pluto in 2015, New Horizons is zooming toward Ultima Thule, an object four billion miles from Earth.

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