About Miles @milesobrien
Miles O’Brien is veteran, independent journalist who focuses on science, technology and aerospace.
He is the science correspondent for the PBS NewsHour, a producer and director for the PBS science documentary series NOVA, and a correspondent for the PBS documentary series FRONTLINE and the National Science Foundation Science Nation series.
For nearly seventeen of his thirty-two years in the news business, he worked for CNN as the science, environment and aerospace space correspondent and the anchor of various programs, including American Morning.
While at CNN, he secured a deal with NASA to become the first journalist to fly on the space shuttle. The project ended with the loss of Columbia and her crew in 2003 – a story he told to the world in a critically acclaimed sixteen-hour marathon of live coverage.
Prior to joining CNN, he worked as a reporter at television stations in Boston, Tampa, Albany, NY and St. Joseph, MO. He began his television career as a desk assistant at WRC-TV in Washington, DC.
O’Brien is an accomplished aviator and aircraft owner who often pilots his airplane to assignments, and is frequently called upon to explain the world of aviation to a mass audience.
He has won numerous awards over the years, including a half-dozen Emmys, and a Peabody and DuPont for his coverage of Hurricane Katrina and its aftermath.
Born in Detroit and raised in Grosse Pointe Farms, MI, he is based in Washington, DC. He has a son at the US Naval Academy and a daughter at Davidson College in North Carolina. He was a history major at Georgetown University.
Miles’s Recent Stories
Science Apr 05Why finding a solution to control Lyme disease isn’t simple
Ticks are by far the biggest disease vector in the U.S., and Lyme disease is the most common tick-borne illness in the northern hemisphere, causing neurological problems and even permanent cognitive and sensory impairment if not treated. Science correspondent Miles…
Science Mar 08How scientists are tracking a massive iceberg in the making
Antarctica's Larsen Ice Shelf is disappearing section by section. A fast-growing rift, one of the largest ever seen, is now teetering on the edge of breaking away from the glacier. Science correspondent Miles O’Brien explores how scientists have tracked the…
Science Jan 25Why psychedelic drugs are having a medical renaissance
For C.J. Hardin, an Army veteran, dealing with post-traumatic stress disorder is an everyday feat. After years of pills and therapy failed to help his disorder, Hardin knew he needed an alternative. So he turned to a surprising substitute that's…
Science Oct 26Cracking the stealth political influence of bots
Among the millions of real people tweeting about the presidential race, there are also a lot accounts operated by fake people, or “bots.” Politicians and regular users alike use these accounts to increase their follower bases and push messages. Science…
Science Jun 14After life in captivity, dolphins to undergo sea change
Chesapeake, a 24-year-old bottlenose dolphin at the Baltimore National Aquarium, has always lived indoors in a concrete tank. But she and the seven others in her pod are destined for a sea change. The aquarium plans to build a natural…
Science Mar 13The heroes of Fukushima Dai-ichi, but don’t call them that
He was a shift supervisor on duty on March 11, 2011 when the earthquake and nuclear meltdown occurred in Japan, and by all accounts performed heroically inside a pitch dark control room at a nuclear power plant that was melting…
Science Jun 12The real killer in the Ebola epidemic
Some disasters are more transparent than others. As we departed JFK airport on our way to Brussels and ultimately Freetown, Sierra Leone, we flew right over the Rockaways and Broad Channel, NY. Photojournalist Cameron Hickey was sitting right beside me.
World Mar 27Is a 600-hour pilot too green to be safe?
The crash of Germanwings flight 9525 offers yet another example of how the layers of safety in aviation have been peeled away since deregulation 35 years ago.
Science Feb 12Miles O’Brien shows us how he adapts to living without his left arm
It's been a year since science correspondent Miles O'Brien lost his left arm in an accident. Since then, he's been learning how to live life "mono-mano." But can technology ever replace what he lost?…
Science Dec 05Can humans become a multi-planet species?
NASA astrobiologist Chris McKay travels the most remote parts of Earth to understand how life might survive on other planets. But he’s also investigating another potential life form in space: humans. Can humans become a multi-planet species, he asks. Can…