People around the world got to watch NASA's rover, Curiosity, land on Mars during a live broadcast in August. This image is one of the many that the rover beamed to Earth after landing on the Red Planet. The rover will collect essential data that will shed more light on Mars.
The European Organization for Nuclear Research (CERN) announced that evidence of the Higgs boson had been discovered. It is the smallest particle known, but since the 1960s its existence had only been theorized. That changed when the CERN scientists made the earth-shattering announcement in July.
A printer that lays plastic, ceramics, metal, and even cookie dough in layers may have sounded like science fiction ten years ago. But in 2012, 3D printers became available for as little as 250 euros ($320). Now there are concerns that people will be able to "print" guns or other weapons at home.
This is the deepest image of space. It shows how galaxies looked 13.2 billion years ago. The image was taken by NASA's Hubble Space Telescope. The exposure time was two million seconds, approximately 23 days. The faintest galaxies are one ten-billionth the brightness of what the human eye can see.
Researchers at the University of Kiel and the Technical University of Hamburg developed Aerographite. The material, which is about more than 70 times lighter than Styrofoam, is thought to be the world's lightest. Despite 99.9 percent of Aerographite being air, the material is super-strong thanks to a three-dimensional carbon network.
Ralf Marth was the first customer to buy an iPhone 5 at an Apple store in Munich. A year after the death of Steve Jobs, Apple's popularity continued to soar - especially in the tablet pc market. In August, it became the biggest company in US history when its stock reached $623 billion.
In 2012, more people started using cloud computing services, which allow users to store data in cyberspace. That makes data accessible via different devices from anywhere. But the growing significance of what is known as "the cloud" has brought digital rights issues and copyright to the forefront.
In the summer, at least 96 people were infected by the deadly Ebola virus during an outbreak in Uganda and the Democratic Republic of Congo. It was the worst outbreak since 2008, and more than half of the people who were infected died.
By medically controlling the ingestion of minute amounts of peanuts to gradually build up a patient's immunity, researchers at the Charité Hospital in Berlin hope that they will be able to "cure" the peanut allergy.
"Dear friends, I am pleased to get in touch with you through Twitter. Thank you for your generous response. I bless all of you from my heart." With that tweet, Pope Benedict XVI became the latest high-profile figure to join Twitter on December 12. Since then, he has garnered more than 1 million followers.
Science and technology stories gobbled up a fair amount of news coverage in 2012. DW takes a look at some of the biggest stories of the past year.