Posts

August 27, 2014

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3:33 PM | Magnitude 4,5 earthquake in Askja volcano
Today (27-August-2014) at 01:52 UTC a magnitude 4,5 earthquake took place in Askja volcano. This is the largest earthquake in Askja volcano since 1992 according to news in Iceland. There are currently some minor earthquake taking place in … Continue reading →
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3:02 PM | On the back of the beast
We’ve joined scientists atop a frozen debris lobe, a slow-moving landslide in permafrost. They say we’re ‘on the back of the beast’. In the heavy rain and among fog-shrouded mountains, the scientists are making these uphill treks to record how temperature, water pressure, and local geological properties determine the slope movement of the massive lobes. These repeat measurements obtained at incredible accuracy can one day help us decode the secrets of the many massive […]
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2:00 PM | Quiet Shifts, Crazy Crossovers…
This past week we completed drilling and geophysical logging of the hole at Site 1440B, and then we used the ship’s thruster system to slowly motor back the ~8 km to Site 1439, where at midnight we deployed a re-entry cone to set up for hard-rock drilling near Site A – first they quick-drill through the sediments, then they case the hole for stability before deploying their hard-rock RCB drill bit read more
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12:42 PM | Dinosaur bone
In July, I found a dinosaur bone in Dinosaur Provincial Park! It was lying in a wash coming off a small mesa, and sure enough, when the students and I walked up the little draw, we came to in situ bones poking out of the cliff above. After showing it to the students, I put it back down exactly where I had found it, of course.
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12:36 PM | Getting students to read the syllabus with a Syllabus Quiz
We spend much time writing a syllabus, including all the required information by our universities... and yet, we struggle getting the students to read our masterpiece! Perhaps a syllabus quiz can motivate our students to learn about our courses from Day 1.
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11:38 AM | Is 6.0 Calif. Quake Just a Preview of the Big One?
Researchers expect a big quake event to occur in the region sometime in the next couple of decades. Continue reading →
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10:30 AM | GeoCinema Online: The Geological Storage of CO2
 Welcome to week two of GeoCinema Screenings! In a time when we can’t escape the fact that anthropogenic emissions are contributing to the warming of the Earth, we must explore all the options to reduce the impact of releasing greenhouse gases into the atmosphere. The three films this week tackle the challenge of separating CO2 […]
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8:03 AM | International Postcards from Space
A collection of pretty pictures by cosmonaut Oleg Artemyev, who currently serves as a flight engineer aboard the International Space Station.
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6:50 AM | 3QD blogging contest metadata
The long-lived, old-school blogging site 3 quarks daily is holding its annual science blogging contest  They have nominated eighty-five blog posts upon which one can vote to advance it into the finals round.  In theory, this means that everyone voting should read all 85 posts, and make an honest choice.  If that doesn't work, then they should at least skim each post- OK, how about simply
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6:23 AM | Climate Change: the Terminological Timeline
It is often said that a picture speaks a thousand words. The run of pictures below, it is hoped, will do a little more. They exist as a counterpoint to that laziest of claims - that, a few years ago, "they (the IPCC, Greenpeace, the Committee for Compulsory Implementation of Agenda 21 - take your pick) changed 'global warming' to 'climate change' because (insert pet theory here)". Skeptical Science has of course published a detailed rebuttal to the talking-point here. But it's important to […]
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6:20 AM | The Competition for Dollars
We all know NASA needs more money to achieve its goals. But competition for money is intense within the U.S. federal government, and two trends have made it harder for NASA to get what it needs.
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12:32 AM | Bárðarbunga volcano update at 00:31 UTC
This information is going to get outdated quickly. This is the short update on status on the activity in Bárðarbungu volcano. Current activity is mostly unchanged. Earthquake activity remains high  and there are around 1000 earthquakes every 24 … Continue reading →
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12:00 AM | Not quite News yet – Part III
In this series we present fictive “News Articles” which some of us wrote when participating in a Science Communication Workshop at ANU. If you want to know more about the Why and How, please see this post here. While the … Continue reading →

August 26, 2014

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11:59 PM | Running Out of Ground - Trekking to the Roof of Africa on Mt. Kilimanjaro - Part 5 - Down From the Mountain - Days Eight and Nine
And so, after 16 months of planning, preparing, and participating, the Mt. Kilimanjaro adventure was almost complete. Surprisingly, I did not feel a great sense of personal accomplishment. My competitive days are long in the past and wasn't about to be disappointed if my body could not handle the thin air or the rigors of mountaineering. I considered this trip to be a success based only on my acceptance to undertake it and spending quality time with good friends in exotic places. Acheiving the […]
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11:55 PM | Europa: How Less Can Be More
Van Kane explains three factors that make exploring Europa hard—factors that can make a mission concept that seems like less actually be more.
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11:17 PM | TDB Today: Bought and paid for – the dirty politics of climate denial
It was always going to be difficult to avoid writing more about the impact of Nicky Hager’s Dirty Politics and what it tells us about the way the present government and its supporters have behaved, so in my post at The Daily Blog this week — Bought and paid for – the dirty politics of […]
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11:11 PM | Running Out of Ground - Trekking to the Roof of Africa on Mt. Kilimanjaro - Part 4 - To the Top of the Volcano - Days Six and Seven
There are shorter routes to the top of Kilimanjaro but I was not interested in a 'burn-run' to the top of a mountain - I was not interested in "bagging a peak." Some people here are there for that reason and their success rate is much lower because they sometimes climb too fast. The top of Kilimanjaro was never really a "goal" for me and I was happy just to be traversing day after day on such a grand edifice. With these thoughts in mind, I was surprised that learn that failure to reach the top […]
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11:08 PM | Geo 730: August 26, Day 603: The Heart of the District
In a very real sense, this spot is the heart of the Quartzville mining district. The most intense and valuable mineralization is still several miles away, around the historic town site, but the intrusive rock here, diorite, was the source of heat that created the hydrothermal system that mineralized the area in the first place. The rock is dated at about 18 million years, so that was when the alteration took place. I suspect a fault created a weak spot that allowed erosion along the fairly […]
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10:04 PM | GOES 14 Rapid Scan images of Hurricane Cristobal
This is the kind of satellite imagery we will see daily when GOES R launches in 2016, and it will be even higher resolution spatially and temporally. GOES 14 is a spare satellite that is turned on and checked out from time to time. It can take one minute rapid scan images. GOES R will be able to do this at two spots simultaneously.   Post by NOAA NWS Weather …
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9:11 PM | The fruitarians are lazy
No no don’t go away, there’s actually some science in this post, courtesy of the increasingly-heavyweight Nick Stokes. Or, perhaps more fairly, whatever science there is comes from NS. But there’s a lot of snark too, as I hope you’d expect. That comes from me. The title isn’t quite right; I could have tried anopsologists…
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5:38 PM | Heating up the fishbowl: Climate change threatens endangered Devils Hole pupfish
Climate change is hurting reproduction of the critically endangered Devils Hole pupfish, threatening the survival of the already small population, new research shows.
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4:52 PM | Athabasca Glacier: a tragic vanishing act
The Athabasca Glacier in the Canadian Rocky Mountains is probably the easiest glacier in the world to access by car. It's just a few hundred metres' stroll from the nearest parking lot on the magnificent Icefields Parkway in Alberta. The problem is, the stroll keeps getting longer by about 10 metres every year. Since 1992, the snout of the glacier has retreated about 200 metres, requiring tourists anxious to set foot on the glacier to walk a little further. The glacier has lost […]
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4:45 PM | Will Iconic Sequoias Fall to Climate Change?
Will sequoias still be around as California's climate shifts under the influence of global warming?
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2:59 PM | Rosetta identifies five possible landing sites for Philae
The Rosetta team has announced the selection of five regions on Churyumov-Gerasimenko that they will study as possible landing sites for little Philae. Now, as Rosetta surveys the comet from its second triangular "orbit" at an average distance of 60 kilometers, the mission will target these spots for extra attention.
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2:22 PM | Douglas Maple and few other plants
When I am out in the field with plant folks I try to learn a new plant per day. A picture and writing the name helps set the plant in memory. Drawings would be even better.  From a recent outing in Ross Lake National Recreation Area: Acer glagrum (Douglas maple)Adenocaulon bicolor (Pathfinder)Goodyera pubesceus (Rattlesnake plantain). This is a native orchid.Salix scouleriana (Scouler willow)The last one has some uncertainty as I did the identification myself.
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12:25 PM | The evolutionary history of walruses, part 2: the larger imagotariines: Pseudotaria, Pelagiarctos, Imagotaria, and Pontolis
The previous post dealt primarily with the […]
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11:00 AM | Quake vs. Volcano: Which One’s Worse?
Both can cause widespread human and ecological devastation. But picking a winner in a destruction derby is a tough call.
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10:57 AM | Invertebrate of the Week #8 – Golden Tortoise Beetle (Charidotella sexpunctata)
Today we are featuring the beautiful metallic beetle Charidotella sexpunctata, also known as the Golden tortoise beetle.  These North American beetles are small, measuring approximately 5 – 7 mm in length and are […]
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10:00 AM | Kanops reymondi Trilobite Fossils
These pictures depict the trilobite fossils Kanops reymondi. Fossils date to lower Devonian Period. They were found in Coal County, Oklahoma, USA. Thanks to Kenny for the images.
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8:32 AM | Announcement: Two New Categories on the Home Menu
Just a general announcement:  I’ve  cleaned up the blog a bit and added two new categories to the menu.  The Invertebrate of the Week and Weekly Wallpaper features are now filed under their own eponymous categories […]
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