Posts

November 24, 2014

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8:45 PM | Ancient Canyon Found Under a River in Tibet
A vast ancient canyon lies buried underneath a present-day river that cuts through the Himalayas in Tibet.
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8:42 PM | Close to the end for Venus Express
Venus Express is nearly out of fuel. Any day could be the last of its long mission to Venus.
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7:48 PM | In Pictures: Expedition 42 Crew Launches to Station
Three more humans are in space today following the launch of Soyuz TMA-15M from the chilly steppes of Kazakhstan.
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6:30 PM | Buffalo Digs Out From 7 Feet of Snow: Photos
Buffalo received a year's worth of snow over two days, and longtime residents recalled the blast of winter weather as the worst in memory.
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5:30 PM | Robot Sub Finds Surprisingly Thick Antarctic Sea Ice
Not only is the amount of Antarctic sea ice increasing each year, but the ice is also much thicker than previously thought.
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4:17 PM | Hypnopompic dunes
Between sleeping and awakening. We tend to think of the world’s dune fields as fearsomely awake, threatening and encroaching, creating vast sand and dust storms – and this is indeed the case for great stretches of our planet’s sand seas,...
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2:00 PM | Dr. Christina Viviano-Beck: “Be nice to people, and conduct yourself professionally and your science responsibly – it matters”.
Interview conducted by Dr. Lynnae Quick: Dr. Christina Viviano-Beck is a Staff Scientist in the Planetary Exploration Group at the Johns Hopkins Applied Physics Laboratory (APL).  I first met Dr. Christina Viviano-Beck while finishing up my dissertation at APL (she was gracious enough to share an office with a then-grad student! :).  She works on […]
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1:39 PM | A population of Shantungosaurus, the largest ornithischian
Sadly I have to report that after many years working on various diapsids and having published plenty of papers on dinosaurs generally and theropods specifically, and yes even sauropods, I’ve gone and published two papers on ornithischians. I hang my head in shame, obviously, and I hope too many readers won’t think too little of […]
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1:00 PM | More Dust Devils
I often have occasion to see dust devils while traveling through Nevada, especially in the dryer months, but any time of year can afford the right conditions: a dry playa or dirt road (and other surfaces, read more here) and thermally unstable air. And so, while driving through the Fortymile Desert and about to pass by the Nightingale Hot Springs exit on I-80 back in early October —  the exit name combines two locations into one: Nightingale is from an old mining […]
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1:00 PM | More Dust Devils
I often have occasion to see dust devils while traveling through Nevada, especially in the dryer months, but any time of year can afford the right conditions: a dry playa or dirt road (and other surfaces, read more here) and thermally unstable air. And so, while driving through the Fortymile Desert and about to pass by the Nightingale Hot Springs exit on I-80 back in early October —  the exit name combines two locations into one: Nightingale is from an old mining […]
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12:19 PM | Non-bedding-parallel stylolites in Helderberg limestones, Corridor H
Saturday I posted some images of bedding-parallel stylolites from one member of the Devonian-aged Helderberg Formation (or one formation in the Helderberg Group; I’m not sure whose stratigraphy is preferable in this case). Here we are, further up-section, and you can see both bedding-parallel and non-bedding-parallel stylolites overprinting the limestone: Bedding-parallel stylolites can be understood readily in terms of sedimentary loading (compression from above), but […]
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11:43 AM | Will New Climate Treaty Be a Thriller, or Shaggy Dog Story?
The following article is reprinted by permission of its author, Stephen Leahy, who writes for the Inter Press Service (IPS) News Agency. To access the article as posted on the IPS website, click here. The as-yet unfinished exhibit area which forms part of the temporary installations that the host country has built in Lima to hold the COP 20, which runs Dec. 1-12. Credit: COP20 Peru UXBRIDGE, Canada, Nov 17 2014 (IPS) - This December, 195 nations plus the European Union will meet in […]
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10:47 AM | Imaggeo on Mondays: Glarus Alps
Undoubtedly, the Alps are one of the best studied mountain ranges in the world. Appreciating their immense beauty and geological wealth can be difficult from the ground, given their vast scale and the inaccessibility of some of their more challenging peaks. Kurt Stüwe, along with alpine photographer Ruedi Homberger, set about changing this by undertaking […]
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8:48 AM | Beipiao Sturgeon Fish Fossil
I saw an interesting fish fossil for sale at the Arizona Historical Society Museum at Papago Park gift shop in October 2014. The label said, "The Beipiao sturgeon was discovered in the area of west Liaoning Province of China. It was formed in land facies layer of the Late Jurassic Period. It was about 130,000,000 years ago." If I recall correctly, the length was over 20 cm and the price was
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7:00 AM | 'Nerd royalty' has the answer to your question
An eccentric take on some of physics' and technology's trickiest conundrums.
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7:00 AM | In the blog this week
Highlights from this week's news blog.
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7:00 AM | How the Large Hadron Collider captured our imaginations
Inside the world's biggest physics experiment.
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7:00 AM | Lab Talk: Graphene goes ballistic, Marine reserves to the rescue
Two researchers discuss recent papers that excited their interest.
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7:00 AM | Printing the future
Today’s 3D printers make Star Trek gadgets look tame.
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6:54 AM | Carbon News 24/11/14: penny-pinching on climate funding
Govt slammed for weak climate fund contribution The Government is under fire for the size of its contribution to a global fund to help developing countries to combat climate change. New Zealand last week agreed to donate $3 million to the Green Climate Fund. That’s half the amount pledged by Luxembourg and the Czech Republic, […]
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6:52 AM | The Governor of New York Owes an Apology to a Bunch of Meteorologists
The Governor of New York, Andrew Cuomo, really stepped in it on Saturday. He’s now getting a firestorm of criticism, and he deserves every bit of it, but I want you to understand why before I go into what he said. There is an old rule among weather forecasters, and it goes like this- “Never forecast a record, you will probably be wrong!”. Now I, and many others, have broken …
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6:35 AM | Nuclear war: A forgotten threat to human sustainability
The possibility of a new Cold War between Russia and the United States and its NATO allies brings with it the spectre of nuclear war, an all-but-forgotten threat since the breakup of the Soviet Union in 1991.Even as the number of nuclear weapons has declined through mutually agreed reductions from a worldwide total of 68,000 in 1985 to an estimated 16,400 today, the destructive force of such weapons is so great that if the remaining ones were used, they might well spell the end of human […]
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1:53 AM | Primitive camping and serpentinite
There are field trips that make me very glad I drive a car with a reasonable amount of clearance, and my camping overnighter to the Los Padres National Forest south of Big Sur was no exception. Driving the Coast Ridge Road wasn't the most harrowing trip I've ever made, but it certainly merited the description of 'gnarly' that one of my camping buddies applied.

November 23, 2014

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11:37 PM | Aftershock felt in Duncan area
Local residents reported feeling an aftershock to the Duncan earthquake on at 7:38 a.m. on Friday, Nov. 21.    The USGS posted the location for the event today, with a magnitude of 2.8.  This is the first aftershock felt in the area for many weeks.  The M=5.3 Duncan earthquake hit the eastern Arizona locale on June 28.   [Right, orange star marks aftershock epicenter.  Credit, USGS]AZGS has posted an article online describing the main shock and our […]
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8:42 PM | Wetlands, Farmland and Drainage on the Nooksack Flood Plain
Before our November sunny break I headed north to Lynden and noted the water logged Nooksack River flood plain south of town.  Nooksack River flood plain south of river and south of Lynden The river was not flooding. The source of water standing over acres of land was the result of lots of local rain and poor drainage. The silty soils, high ground water and subtle topography cause water to accumulate in the fields. The DEM of the area shows the problem of drainage on […]
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6:46 AM | Caves in the Coast Ranges? Really? And a National Park? A Peek at Pinnacles
Bear Gulch Cave at Pinnacles National ParkCalifornia's Coast Ranges hide some real gems (literally: check out benitoite, for instance). One of my favorites is also the nation's newest national park: Pinnacles National Park. The park was first established as a national monument by Teddy Roosevelt in 1908, and given national park status in 2013.The park preserves the spire-like remains of a rhyolitic stratovolcano that erupted around 23 million years ago. Long after the monument was established, […]
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6:25 AM | 2014 SkS Weekly Digest #47
SkS Highlights President Obama's climate leadership faces the Keystone XL challenge by John Abraham attracted the highest number of comments of the articles posted on SkS during the past week. Coming in a close second was John Cook's Why we need to talk about the scientific consensus on climate change. Both articles were inititally posted on the blog, Climate Consensus - the 97% hosted on The Guardian.  El Niño Watch  Tropical Pacific Ocean moves closer to […]
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4:29 AM | Kelly Redmond to be honored for climate work
Kelly Redmond, deputy director of the Western Regional Climate Center in Reno, is being honored at next month’s AGU meeting in San Francisco for being generally awesome. Kelly’s one of the best climate scientists I’ve ever encountered at overcoming the “loading dock problem“, by which scientists do knowledge and leave it out there in a box for non-scientists ...Continue reading ‘Kelly Redmond to be honored for climate work’ »
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3:28 AM | Funny, Scary, Fascinating, and Geeky. What You Missed in Science This Week.
I am going to start doing a weekend post here with links and images from the world of geek that caught my eye this week. First up is Will Marshall and the TED talk below. Data is the fuel that science runs on, and he has figured out a way to harvest a LOT of it.   Guess what body of water is the 4th fastest warming on Earth? This …
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2:30 AM | Heavy Snow Boosts Flooding Risk for New York State
Record-breaking snowfall that buried towns near Buffalo, New York, and killed at least 14 people posed a major flooding threat Saturday with temperatures forecast to rise.
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