Posts

April 15, 2015

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7:35 AM | At the Assembly: Wednesday highlights
We’re halfway through the General Assembly already! Once again there is lots on offer at EGU 2015 and this is just a taster – be sure to complement this information with EGU Today, the daily newsletter of the General Assembly, available both in paper and for download here. Today features more Union-wide events which celebrate the conference theme: A Voyage through Scales. First up is a symposium on the geocomplexity of scales (US1): a series of talks which will explore the […]
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7:00 AM | Sol 957: Fine Views and Limited Downlink
  by Ken Herkenhoff MSL drove about 65 meters on Sol 956, then took some nice images of the path ahead.  As we continue to drive each sol, acquiring images of the terrain around us is important to the science team.  We don’t want to miss anything!  So the Sol 957 plan includes ChemCam RMI and Mastcam images of outcrops to the south and a Mastcam image of the windblown …
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5:53 AM | Price on carbon key to Canada tackling global warming, say researchers
65 researchers from provinces across Canada have published a report, Acting on Climate Change, that details how the country can successfully decarbonize its electric grid to slow global warming. Map of researchers contributing to the Acting on Climate Change report. The team unanimously endorsed putting a price on carbon pollution as a key strategy. Without a carbon fee, the price of electricity on the market doesn’t reflect its true costs to society. This is a market failure that […]
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5:30 AM | The Great Mantle Plume Debate
The Great Mantle Plume Debate has been simmering aggressively – in a similar fashion to soup on an unattended stove- throughout all facets of Earth Science since the 1960’s. Seismologists, geophysicists, experimental petrologists, and analytical geochemists alike have invested serious … Continue reading →
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4:07 AM | In situ melting by Madison Myers
Melt inclusions (the round circles in the video below) are little pockets of melt that are trapped in growing crystals during cooling of magma. If magma was erupted and cooled quickly, melt inclusions preserve the composition of the melt in which their host crystal formed. However, slow cooling will cause these melt inclusions to form daughter crystals (shown as the dark grains in the round circles) which change their original composition. In order to restore the pre-eruptive melt composition, […]

April 14, 2015

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11:03 PM | L is for Lager
L is for Lager The big American ‘macro’ brews all produce lager beers. They’re clean and crisp and taste great chilled. But what is a lager? Lagers can be contrasted with ales. Whereas ales are brewed at warm temperatures with … Continue reading →
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10:51 PM | Helping hands
Today we are continuing to deepen our drilling at Hole U1456C but in the meantime we should not forget some of the other people on the drilling ship who make our life easier and indeed pleasant. read more
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9:54 PM | Geo 1095: April 14, Day 834: Wayfinding
An important aspect of being a geologist, or an outdoors person of any type, is noting landmarks for navigating. For example, I know the turn-off for Hole-in-the-Ground is right near milepost 31 outside of La Pine. No sign indicates that turn until you reach the gravel road itself, so if you're zooming down the highway, and see milepost 29, you know it's time to slow down a bit and watch the east berm more carefully. In this case, the relevant sign is more prominent, and placed, helpfully, both […]
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8:53 PM | Dragon Launches to Station, but Falcon Doesn't Survive Landing
SpaceX's ISS-bound Dragon spacecraft is in orbit, but the drone ship landing of the company's Falcon 9 rocket was unsuccessful.
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8:08 PM | Incredible New Fossils Acquired for the Department! But...
During our field trip last weekend, we stopped briefly at a mineral show in the Sierra foothills. I wasn't going to buy anything, but then I saw some specimens that made my jaw drop, and they were available for an incredibly low price. I couldn't resist adding these beautiful pieces to my teaching collection at the college.The first was a giant trilobite fossil from Morocco. Trilobites were ancient arthropods, among the first of the complex lifeforms to inhabit the Paleozoic seas. They had […]
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7:23 PM | California hay acreage down
Almonds get all the attention, but hay, that most pedestrian of crops, still covers more acres of California farmland. But less than it used to. In the drought of 2015, California farmers are planning to plant and maintain past plantings of 1.23 million acres of hay, according to new USDA data published last week. That’s ...Continue reading ‘California hay acreage down’ »
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7:15 PM | Artist's Drive: A Sol 950 Colorized Postcard
Amateur image processor Damia Bouic shares the process behind creating stunning panoramas with Curiosity images.
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4:40 PM | Geocomplexity and scales: new worlds or scaling?
To celebrate this year’s General Assembly theme – A voyage through scales – Shaun Lovejoy, President of the Nonlinear Processes in Geosciences Division (NP), takes us on a tour of how scaling might change our view in a range of Earth science topics: from clouds through to geological surfaces. When van Leeuwenhoek peered through the first microscope, he was amazed at the new worlds lurking in a drop of water. That was the 17th century and today’s atom-imaging microscopes […]
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4:21 PM | Potholes: A cemetery in the desert
This cemetery, on the “banks” of the All-American Canal overlooking Bard on the California-Arizona desert, has no grass: Immediately behind me as I stood to take this picture last week was the All-American Canal, an artificial river built in the 1930s to carry Colorado River water to the Imperial Valley. A lot of water. The ...Continue reading ‘Potholes: A cemetery in the desert’ »
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4:15 PM | Scientists’ Conference to Address Global Food Security
Columbia University is teaming up with Cornell University to co-host the second International Global Food Security Conference to bring together 500-plus scientists to investigate the behavioral, biophysical, economic, institutional, political, social and technological drivers of current and future global food security.
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3:56 PM | Pacific Winds Tied to Warming Slowdown, Dry West
The global warming hiatus and western U.S. drought both have roots in the Pacific according to recent research. Continue reading →
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3:31 PM | Tree rings, telling another story
From the Newbury Daily News: In May, 2002, the Coffin House on High Road in Newbury was run through a battery of tests to determine its age. Dendrochronology, the science of dating timbers based on patterns of tree growth, was used to determine that the oldest portion of the house was built by trees cut ...Continue reading ‘Tree rings, telling another story’ »
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2:16 PM | Overuse of Water by Indian Farmers Threatens Supply
Convincing farmers that it's worth it to reduce their water consumption will rest on our ability to help develop local groups to manage aquifers at the community-level.
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2:00 PM | From the Corner: Winter's End
One only needed to walk along the snowy road leading into Wells Reserve to realize what a tough winter it was. The drifts were waist to shoulder high and John Speight, hard working Facility Manager and plow operator, had to be innovative in opening up places to put all of it. He kept the walkways open and lights on in the main building, enabling the staff and committees to continue their work. Smooth pillows of deep snow at the top of the hill were a hint of the benches waiting beneath. But the […]
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11:30 AM | Introducing the new EGU young scientist representatives at Union level
While each of the division young scientist representatives gather feedback from young scientists in their fields, the Union-level representative gathers information from each of the division reps and takes it to the EGU’s Programme Committee – the group responsible for organising the EGU’s annual General Assembly – and, from this year onwards, to the EGU Council as well. Following a two-year term, Sam Illingworth steps down as Programme Committee Representative […]
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10:54 AM | The desert and the Large Hadron Collider
The possibilities surrounding the re-start of the Large Hadron Collider are endless, but what, of course, intrigued me in a recent piece in the New Scientist was the imagery of the desert. One of the aspirations for my book was...
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10:45 AM | Explore the Exhibition at EGU 2015!
Don’t forget to visit the Exhibition at the European Geosciences Union General Assembly! Exhibition booths for companies, publishers, scientific societies and many more are scattered throughout the Blue (basement), Yellow (ground floor), and Green (first floor) Levels of the Austria Center Vienna. See the General Assembly website for a full list of who’s attending and where to find them. Make sure you don’t miss EGU and Friends in Hall X on the Blue Level, where you […]
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10:26 AM | Clash of the Titans: The Science behind the Iceberg that sank the Titanic
The tragedy of the “unsinkable” Titanic – lost in the cold water of the Atlantic – became part of history and pop culture, but the story of the main culprit that caused the disaster is mostly forgotten and only vague descriptions and some photos exists of the supposed iceberg(s). One famous photography taken from board of the cable ship “Minia“, one of the first ships to reach the area in search for debris and bodies, shows a tabular iceberg, an unusual […]
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10:21 AM | Compare and contrast: Two Chesapectens
Two new GIGAmacro images of fossil scallops from Virginia’s Coastal Plain - Chesapecten nefrens: link Chesapecten jeffersonius: link My vision is to get the opposite side of each of these samples as well as a half-dozen other species in this genus, perhaps even multiple individual specimens of each species, to allow students to do a lab where they plot morphological changes over geologic time as an example of what the …
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9:18 AM | Hungarian translation of The Debunking Handbook
This is a guest post by András G. Pintér who is the vice-president of the Hungarian Skeptic Society. Thanks to the co-operation of a few enthusiastic people, The Debunking Handbook is now available in Hungarian. Although, the translation project was initiated by the Hungarian Skeptic Society about a year ago, the job itself was completed by a supporter of our organization by the name Ilona L'Homme, leaving us with only some polishing work to do on the text before sending […]
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8:36 AM | EGU15 Feature: Equipping to Educate, Educating for Empowerment
Education empowers communities and enables effective accountability between individuals, scientists, government, business and the charity sector. Geo-education is no exception, and while natural hazards education is only one area of this, it demonstrates well the importance of knowledge exchange. In this first blog, from the EGU Press Office, I explore this theme further, reflecting on the role of organisations such as EGU in equipping geoscientists to educate and reporting back on a […]
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7:44 AM | Climate Denial Disappearing Among TV Weathercasters
A new study by George Mason University shows something that a lot of us who work in broadcast meteorology have noticed- the rapid disappearance of climate change deniers among TV weather casters, and I’m not the only one who has noticed it, because I frequently hear talk about it from colleagues at various conferences. It’s very rare to hear ridiculous pronouncements about climate change from TV weathercasters these days, but it was …
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7:17 AM | Yeager Airport landslide: on the move again
Over the weekend the Yeager Airport landslide went through another significant movement event, driven by detachment of a block from the rear scarp and subsequent deformation of the debris pile
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7:00 AM | Sol 956: Curiosity to Watch Mercury Transit
by Ryan Anderson With the last portion of the Telegraph Peak sample delivered to SAM and analyzed by APXS, we are ready to keep driving. In the sol 956 plan, there is a quick science block in the morning, to allow the rover to take a couple of Mastcam pictures of nearby boulders called “Waucoba” and Navcam pictures to complete the 360 degree panorama of the area. After that, we …
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6:30 AM | At the Assembly: Tuesday highlights
Welcome back to the second day of the 2015 General Assembly! Today is packed full of excellent sessions, and this list of highlights is by no means comprehensive! Make sure you complement this information with EGU Today, the General Assembly newsletter, to get the most out of the conference – grab a copy on your way in or download it here. This year, the General Assembly has a theme – A Voyage through Scales – and to celebrate it there will be Lectures for a general […]
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