Artwork for Unexpected Elements

Unexpected Elements

BBC World Service

The news you know, the science you don’t. Unexpected Elements looks beyond everyday narratives to discover a goldmine of scientific stories and connections from around the globe. From Afronauts, to why we argue, to a deep dive on animal lifespans: see the world in a new way.


Do you want to know how many people listen to Unexpected Elements? Or perhaps how many downloads it gets? Rephonic has scanned the web and collated all the information we found in our podcast database.

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Latest Episodes

After 41 Indian miners were happily rescued last week, Unexpected Elements takes a look at how our futures might lie below the surface. more

4 days ago

This week on the show that brings you the science behind the news, inspired by COP28, we’re talking about meetings. Honestly, it’s way more interesting than it sounds. more

11 days ago

The cricket world cup has us looking at the science of spitting on cricket balls, particle accelerators, and insect sound engineers. more

18 days ago


4.4 out of 5 stars from 1k ratings
  • Unexpected Elements!

    Fav podcast to listen to before sleep. After each episode I learn many interesting facts on an assortment of topics after just 1 episode!

    Apple Podcasts
    United States2 months ago
  • Great insights. more

    Golibjon Burkhonov
    3 months ago
  • Unexpected Elements

    Good to hear Marnie Chesterton again, since years ago when she was with Radio Netherlands and then my favorite broadcaster. She seems to have found an even better niche now.

    Apple Podcasts
    South Africa4 months ago
  • Sound Levels

    Audio levels during the episode “on the seabed” made the episode unpleasant to listen to. One minute presenters are whispering, next they are shouting, then whispering, and so on. more

    Apple Podcasts
    United Kingdom5 months ago
  • The new format

    "Science in action" and "crowd science"were reasonably good programs. The new format is superficial and , quite frankly, trivial rubbish. It is not worth your time to listen to it.

    Apple Podcasts
    Australia6 months ago

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Chart Rankings

Apple Podcasts
#135 United States/Science
Apple Podcasts
#32 United Kingdom/Science
Apple Podcasts
#222 Canada/Science
Apple Podcasts
#85 Australia/Science
Apple Podcasts
#158 Germany/Science
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#210 Finland/Top Podcasts

Frequently Asked Questions About Unexpected Elements

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How many listeners does Unexpected Elements get?

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How many episodes of Unexpected Elements are there?

Unexpected Elements launched 11 years ago and published 198 episodes to date. You can find more information about this podcast including rankings, audience demographics and engagement in our podcast database.

How do I contact Unexpected Elements?

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View all the reviews in one place instead of visiting each platform individually and use this information to decide whether this podcast is worth pitching as a guest or sponsor.

How does Rephonic know which podcasts are like Unexpected Elements?

You can view podcasts similar to Unexpected Elements by exploring Rephonic's 3D interactive graph. This tool uses the data displayed on the 'Listeners Also Subscribed To' section of Apple Podcasts to visualise connections between shows.