There’s no known substitute for helium, so we must be very good stewards of this rare and powerful element. That’s why my lab—which uses the stuff to create a superconductive environment for powerful magnets—reuses it. We store liquid helium in oversize thermos bottles, like the ones you would use for coffee. But over time, just like a hot beverage making steam, some of the liquid escapes. So we attach a big balloon to the thermos and add a compressor that sucks out the gas, pressurizes it, and stores it. Then we purify the gas and condense it back into a liquid for future use—recycling more than 80 percent in total. Hopefully, as the technology becomes more accessible, more scientists will recycle their helium too.