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Arrival

   2010    Science
Sir Attenborough's journey begins in a forest near his childhood home in Leicester, where a fossil discovery transformed our understanding of the evolution of complex life. Travelling to the fog bound coastline of Newfoundland and the Australian outback, Sir Attenborough unearths the earliest forms of animal life to exist on Earth. These bizarre and wonderful creatures are brought to life with the help of cutting edge scientific technology and photorealistic visual effects. From the first animal forms that moved to the first mouths that ate, these were creatures that evolved the traits and tools that allow all animals, including ourselves, to survive to this day.
Series: First Life

Are...We Alone

   2014    Science
Is mankind alone, or are there aliens out there, either waiting to be discovered, or on their way to find Earth? Professor Brian Cox spends this episode asking such questions, and what he discovers may raise a few eyebrows. He begins by exploring the human race's efforts to find neighbours in outer space, including the launch of two golden discs containing a greeting from Earth in the 1970s; they are still travelling and are now the most distant man-made objects from the planet. Brian also meets members of the Search for Extra-Terrestrial Intelligence, who have been monitoring radio signals for 50 years without success, before discussing the ingredients needed to make an intelligent civilisation with astrophysicist Dr Frank Drake.
Series: Human Universe

The Mastery of Flight

   1998    Nature
The second programme deals with the mechanics of flight. Getting into the air is by far the most exhausting of a bird's activities, and Sir Attenborough observes shearwaters in Japan that have taken to climbing trees to give them a good jumping-off point. The albatross is so large that it can only launch itself after a run-up to create a flow of air over its wings. A combination of aerodynamics and upward air currents (or thermals), together with the act of flapping or gliding is what keeps a bird aloft. Landing requires less energy but a greater degree of skill, particularly for a big bird, such as a swan. Weight is kept to a minimum by having a beak made of keratin instead of bone, a light frame, and a coat of feathers, which is maintained fastidiously. The peregrine falcon holds the record for being fastest in the air, diving at speeds of over 300 km/h. Conversely, the barn owl owes its predatory success to flying slowly, while the kestrel spots its quarry by hovering. However, the true specialists in this regard are the hummingbirds, whose wings beat at the rate of 25 times a second. The habits of migratory birds are explored. After stocking up with food during the brief summer of the north, such species will set off on huge journeys southwards. Some, such as snow geese, travel continuously, using both the stars and the sun for navigation. They are contrasted with hawks and vultures, which glide overland on warm air, and therefore have to stop overnight.
Series: The Life of Birds

Star

   2000    Science
Travel to heart of the Sun, our star, a cauldron of superheated gases that writhe and contort along immense magnetic field lines. Discover how even life itself is forged in the heart of stars. We are made of stardust.
Series: The Planets

When Did Time Begin

   2014    Science
We float along the river of time. But does that river have a source? Where did time come from? Some believe time and space are one thing, and the Big Bang started the cosmic clock. Others believe the universe existed for almost half a million "years" before light could move and time began. Still others say time is older than our universe. But what if time itself is an illusion? Incredible new experiments may hold the answer. One groundbreaking experiment gives us the power to punch holes in time…and another may create a machine that operates outside time’s boundaries!
Series: Through the Wormhole Season 5
Our Planet
Our Planet

   2019    Nature
Becoming Human
Becoming Human

   2010    History
How the Universe Works Series 9
How the Universe Works Series 9

   2021    Science
Planet Earth II
Planet Earth II

   2016    Nature
The Human Body
The Human Body

   1998    Medicine
The Green Planet
The Green Planet

   2022    Nature
In the Age of AI
In the Age of AI

   2019    Technology
The Truth About
The Truth About

   2018    Medicine