In the second episode of the fourth season of Through the Wormhole with Morgan Freeman we could see Ubuntu running in a machine of the Free University of Brussels. They use Ubuntu to run a "small program that in some way behaves like a real person" to "measure what the Internet is doing". "Their goal is to find out whether is becoming a global brain" .
GNU/Linux is becoming more and more popular among the scientific community. You can find this in the minute 39 aprox.