The Secret Science of Baby: The Surprising Physics of Creating a Human, from Conception to Birth--And Beyond

Michael George Banks, David Smith (Contributor)

Research output: Other contribution


What stops pregnant women from falling over all the time? What makes infant cries so captivating? How do sperm swim?

The Secret Science of Baby answers these questions and many more, revealing the fascinating physics behind conception, birth, and babyhood.

Parents and parents-to-be are bombarded with information, from what to expect to what to do (and not to do) when it happens. But what they may not realize is that from the chemistry of pregnancy tests to the vacuum physics of breastfeeding, there is fascinating science at the heart of every aspect of creating and raising a new human.

Written by science journalist Michael Banks, The Secret Science of Baby won't tell you how to raise a perfect violin-playing, mandarin-speaking toddler, but it will shed a new light on how and why things happen as they do--from conception and pregnancy to cooing and pooing.

Exploring the hidden physics behind uterine contractions, the fluid dynamics of diapers, and more, both parents and curious non-parents (who, after all, were once babies themselves) will gain a fresh perspective on the infant universe . . . and the thrilling science that makes it possible.

In these pages, readers will discover:
- The physics of the playground and common toys--from the swing to the Slinky
- What it really means to sleep like a baby
- The surprising shared vocal cord features of lions and (human) infants
- The miracle of a baby's first breath and how surface tension provided the key to helping preemies breathe

Banks draws from his own experience, interviews with scientists, and the latest research (including some involving conception inside an MRI machine) to offer a book that focuses on "how?" rather than "how-to." The result is an illuminating and hilarious journey through the everyday science of making, baking, and bringing up baby.
Original languageEnglish
TypeConsultant to author
Media of outputBook
PublisherBenBella Books
Number of pages304
ISBN (Print)9781637741467
ISBN (Electronic)9781637741474
Publication statusPublished - Dec 2022


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