NOVA: Season 23 (1996)

SEASON:

Season 23
NOVA

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Episodes

Air date: Oct 10, 1995

This program follows forensic testing of skeletons discovered in 1979 in the Ural Mountains to determine whether they are the remains of Czar Nicholas II. Deposed Czar Nicholas II and his family were awakened just after midnight on July 17, 1918, by Bolshevik guards, who forced them into the basement, then shot and clubbed them to death. The show also investigates the claim that Ann Anderson of Charlottesville, VA, was actually the long lost Anastasia.

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Air date: Oct 17, 1995

An hour exploring the mysteries of Venus considers the information provided by the Magellan spacecraft, which mapped the planet from 1990-94. Included: efforts to penetrate Venus's thick cloud covering by both American and Soviet probes.

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Air date: Oct 24, 1995

Exploring the Hawaiian Islands, where volcanic activity has created surprising geographical features and strange animal species. Included: the Mauna Loa volcano; "fishing" for lava samples; how life evolved on the island chain.

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Air date: Oct 31, 1995

While we sleep, a hidden predator prowls the night skies. Nova exposes the dangers of space debris in Nova: The Doomsday Asteroid. Hundreds of millions of asteroids pass by the Earth according to astronomer Steve Ostro and most have the potential to create serious damage. History teaches that the planet underwent a bombardment period three billion years ago. Since then, collisions have supposedly slowed down, but scientists are still worried. A crater found on the Yucatan Peninsula measured 100 miles across and was blamed for the extinction of the dinosaurs. Siberia hosted a meteor accident in 1908 that wrecked forests within 1,000 square miles. An asteroid that hit Jupiter left a mark visible from Earth. Nova reveals that the dangers posed by a potential run-in with a floating comet are significant. Star Wars is a possible defense mechanism because changing an asteroid's path by a mere millimeter could mean survival. But, is the planet prepared for a collision that could be a thousand times deadlier than Hiroshima? Nova goes high tech to find the answer.

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Air date: Nov 7, 1995

Behold the amazing power of nature in this Nova program. This video contains an interesting -- and at some points exhilarating -- study into the source of lightning. The program ends with an electrifying light show set to music. Quite a display. Perfect for anyone who can't seem to drag themselves off the front porch as they see a dangerous yet breathtakingly-beautiful thunderstorm fast approaching.

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Air date: Nov 14, 1995

In this video, Nova trails along with fire detectives as they try to crack the case of a serial arsonist setting fires in stores in L.A. The prime suspect will surprise you.

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Air date: Nov 28, 1995

This television documentary heads to the Great Barrier Reef. Located off the coast of Australia, it is the world's largest coral reef. In this Nova-produced program, viewers get a rare look at coral spawning, as well as various life forms that live on the reef.

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Air date: Dec 19, 1995

Following scientists' competitive search for a newly theorized stable form of pure carbon named after Buckminster Fuller for its structural similarity to Fuller's geodesic domes. Included: "buckyball" implications for superconductors and cleaner fuels; controversies concerning the theory.

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Air date: Dec 26, 1995

Poor air quality can be expected outside from time to time, but recent events show that the air indoors can be polluted as well. Symptoms caused by this problem can include fatigue, dizziness, dry eyes, headache, and scratchy throat. In Can Buildings Make You Sick, Nova tracks a group of environmental scientists and engineers who are investigating this phenomenon. Indoor air is affected by dust mites, fumes from toxic substances, and dirty air conditioner ducts. With further study, scientists hope to eliminate "sick building syndrome."

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Air date: Jan 9, 1996

Nova: Terror in the Minefields addresses the terrifying worldwide problem of landmines. 62 countries are known to have landmine issues. Shockingly, the southeast Asian country of Cambodia has as many unexploded mines as it does inhabitants. According to Nova, the solution is neither easy or inexpensive.

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