Kiona Smith

Kiona Smith is a space reporter at Inverse. Nothing brings them more joy than a gleefully morbid description of a black hole or a deep speculative dive into what aliens might be like, except maybe a great pun.

When Kiona isn't enthusiastically nerding out about space at Inverse, they also contribute freelance archaeology stories at Ars Technica. Over the last decade, Kiona has written online and in print at a number of other outlets. Their first book, an illustrated look at a weirdly niche bit of spaceflight history, will be out with Running Press in 2024.

Kiona studied anthropology at Texas A&M University and has spent the last decade telling people interesting stories about science.

Based in Tulsa, Oklahoma, Kiona shares their office with a scruffy little dog and a very jumpy gecko. When not writing, they're usually knitting, cross-stitching, tabletop gaming, or chasing Pokemon.

Find them on Twitter @KionaSmith07.


NASA's Ingenuity Mars Helicopter Left Engineers on Read for A Week

NASA's Mars helicopter is fine, but we can expect radio silence more often.


This Super-Hot Exoplanet Is Even Stranger Than We Thought

JWST observations just spotted traces of water vapor, along with clues that suggest a powerful magnetic field, on exoplanet WASP-18b.


You Need to See the Strawberry Moon in the Sky This Weekend

The June 2023 Full Moon is almost here.


Scientists X-ray a Single Atom for the First Time

It took quantum tunneling and a particle accelerator to get the job done


Aliens Could Reveal Their Location by Packing 24 Planets Into One Orbit

Simulation suggests up to 24 Earth-mass worlds could share an orbit, just like two of Saturn's moons.


A Star in a Nearby Galaxy Just Went Supernova — and You Might Be Able to See It

It's the closest look we're likely to get at such powerful cosmic mayhem.

space science

Volcanoes and Meteors Helped Produce the Building Blocks of Life on Early Earth

Iron from volcanic ash and dusty meteor debris may have played a role in building complex organic molecules that eventually became building blocks for life.


Hubble May Have Finally Found a Black Hole "Missing Link"

Astronomers claim they've made the most likely intermediate-mass black hole sighting yet.


Scientists Are As Bewildered About Unidentified Aerial Phenomena As the Rest of Us

UAP research could be going mainstream, a recent survey of academic researchers suggests.


This Volcanic Hellworld of an Exoplanet Might Be Habitable, Actually

The new exoplanet sounds like a horrible place, but it may be just what life needs to gain a foothold around a red dwarf star.


Betelgeuse is Getting Brighter Again — But It (Probably) Won’t Explode

The star is actually trying to get back to normal after an eventful 2020 — and isn’t that relatable?


Weird New Study Claims Aliens Could Pick Up Earth Cell Phone Signals

Can you hear me now?


Scientists Are On the Brink of Solving a 60-Year-Old Cosmic Mystery

Astronomers calculate yet another answer to the contentious question.


A Supermassive Black Hole Ripped Apart a Star and Wore Its Remains Like a Scarf

It's messy but very informative.


Look! New Hubble Image Shows Galaxies in a Gravitational Dance

Someday, these two galaxies may merge, and two supermassive black holes will become one.


The Webb Telescope Could Help Astronomers Finally Solve One of Space's Most Irritating Questions

The new telescope was expected to let us directly measure the atmospheres of rocky, Earth-like exoplanets, but so far, that’s proved very complicated.


Astronomers Caught The Exact Moment a Dying Star Swallowed an Entire Planet

Distant stars can offer a chilling preview of Earth's fate.


iSpace Crash Highlights Why Apollo Sites Need Protection, Say Archaeologists

As commercial missions to the Moon ramp up, historic landing sites are vulnerable to robotic tourism, crash landings, and other damage.


In Space, The Dead Scream — Now, Scientists Are Finally Listening

Most fast radio bursts are one-off events that never seem to repeat, but a recent study suggests astronomers just need to be patient.


Ultraviolet Light Produces A Toxic Gas in This Planet's Hellish Atmosphere

The gas giant's atmosphere is laced with sulfur dioxide.