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25 August 2016

Kronotsky Peninsula, Kamchatka Glacier Fragmentation/Retreat

The Kronotsky Peninsula is on the east coast of Kamchatka and has an small concentration of alpine glaciers.  A recent paper by Lynch et al (2016) indicates a significant recession during the start of the 21st century in Kamchatka.  They note a 24% loss in area, leading to fragmentation and an increase in the number of ice masses that could be considered glaciers.  Lynch et al (2016)  further note that the …

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Six stats tips for science communicators.

By Brendan Bane As a courtesy to Washington DC-based and visiting journalists, AGU recently invited reporters and researchers to gather, eat, drink, and discuss a sometimes daunting subject: statistics. On Thursday, August 11, AGU partnered with STATS.org, Sense About Science USA, and the DC Science Writers Association to host a workshop on interpreting data through statistics. Statisticians Regina Nuzzo of Gallaudet University and Jonathan Auerbach of Columbia University led the workshop, …

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176 Years of Global Temperatures in One Image

From Ed Hawkins at The Univ, of Reading. The visualisation technique of ‘small multiples’ is often used to communicate a simple message. The above example shows maps of temperature change from 1850-2016 – the overall warming trend is obvious even though the details are fuzzy. Technical details: The HadCRUT4.4 dataset is used with anomalies from a 1961-1990 baseline period. An annual average for a particular grid cell and year is …

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24 August 2016

Sols 1441-1442: Cruising through the Murray Buttes

Curiosity is making good progress through the Murray Buttes, and on Sol 1439 we drove another 34 m to the south.  Today’s two-sol plan fits our familiar routine: a pre-drive science block, drive, post-drive imaging for targeting, and an untargeted science block on the second sol.  The plan starts with Mastcam and ChemCam observations of the targets “Viana,” “Ukuma,” and “Waku Kungo” to assess the composition and sedimentary structures in …

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Big Trouble Brewing For Southeast U.S.??

Tropical Update : I’m not going to post any specific model data since there is still quite a bit of disagreement, and any individual run this far out is worthless, but that said: My concern that a tropical cyclone will threaten the SE U.S. in 5-7 days is growing rapidly. The system is looking much healthier on the satellite images tonight. Increased convection and shear seems less. The wind shear …

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23 August 2016

Kleine Gaisl: a large rockfall in the Italian Dolomites

Last weekend Kleine Gaisl, a mountain in the Italian Dolomites, suffered a series of large rockfalls with a combined volume of about 700,000 cubic metres

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The Tropical Atlantic is Starting Bubble

Tropical Storm Gaston formed late Monday evening in the Atlantic, and will likely become a hurricane in a few days. It will also likely stay far from land, and recurve into the North Atlantic. Another tropical disturbance in the western Caribbean does bear watching as it might move toward the Bahamas in about 5-7 days. There is a lot of uncertainty though with this system and a large disagreement among …

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22 August 2016

Sols 1439-1440: Target names that start with Q

Our weekend drive halted a little bit early, but everything is looking good and we will continue to drive in today’s plan. We will start off the Sol 1439 plan with ChemCam observations of the layered rock targets “Quibala” and “Quibaxe.” Mastcam will then image Quibala, followed by a whole bunch of mosaics documenting the stratigraphy in the nearby buttes as well as the locations called “Quibaxe,” “Quipungo” and “Quicombo.” …

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Looking Inside a Glacier

Here we provide a visual look inside a glacier in the North Cascades of Washington.  Glaciers are not all the same, but the key internal ingredients in summer typically are in varied ratios: ice, meltwater, sediment and biologic material.  In this case there are torrents of water pouring through the interior of the glacier, generated at the surface the day we are filming.  We do measure the discharge and velocity …

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20 August 2016

Sol 1436: Smooth sailing

We are making good progress with our drives (we’re already approaching our next drill site!) and the road in front of us is looking pretty smooth. As usual we have a busy weekend planned. Sol 1436 starts off with ChemCam and Mastcam of the layered rock targets “Conda” and “Savungo.” Mastcam then has a mosaic of one of the buttes, and another mosaic of an interesting feature within the Murray …

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Here Is How We Get More Women In Science

I ran across what I think is an important paper in PLOS One this week, and it involves women and STEM careers. Go to any science conference, and you see far fewer women than men, and this paper may have hit on why this is the case. In general, women do not seem to have the confidence that they can get through calculus, and make no mistake about it, it’s …

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19 August 2016

The Dzongu landslide dam: an update

Whilst at the moment the Dzongu landslide dam in Sikkim appears to be stable, the Indian authorities are starting to assess the long term hazards that it might pose to upstream and downstream communities

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Pacific sea level predicts global temperature changes

The amount of sea level rise in the Pacific Ocean can be used to estimate future global surface temperatures, according to a new study.

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18 August 2016

NOAA Data Confirms NASA and Japan: July 2016 was Hottest on Record.

From NOAA: For the 15th consecutive month, the global land and ocean temperature departure from average was the highest since global temperature records began in 1880. This marks the longest such streak in NOAA’s 137 years of record keeping. The July 2016 combined average temperature over global land and ocean surfaces was 0.87°C (1.57°F) above the 20th century average, besting the previous July record set in 2015 by 0.06°C (0.11°F). …

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Studying Earthquakes from England

I’m back at it! This blog has suffered a long hiatus for which I could prattle on with a multitude of excuses, but suffice it to say that the shift from U.S. PhD student life to European postdoc life resulted in a pretty vast rearrangement of my day-to-day activities, priorities, schedule, and habits, and I’ve struggled to carve the time for all the things I’m still even more excited to …

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PhD students should have science-communication committee members

“Ideally, of a five-member dissertation committee, three would be from the student’s institution, one from outside but in the same or similar field, and the final would be a non-research member of any sector.”

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17 August 2016

Sol 1433: Butte-iful scenery

Yestersol’s drive went nicely, so today the plan looks quite similar, with a remote sensing block followed by another 50 meters of driving! The Sol 1433 plan starts with ChemCam and Mastcam of the target “Klein Klipneus.” After that, Mastcam has a couple of mosaics to continue admiring the scenery (a.k.a. studying the stratigraphy of the Murray Buttes). Then Curiosity will drive and collect post-drive imaging, followed by an untargeted …

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The first day of class – what will you do?

There is no right or wrong way to conduct your first class meeting of the semester – but are you using your time wisely? Explore these ideas for how to kick off the first day and every class day in the academic year.

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You’ll See More and More About Climate on TV Weathercasts. Here’s Why.

I’ve written about this subject many times here, but here is a nice video (from Peter Sinclair, and Yale Climate connections) explaining why broadcast meteorologists around the country can no longer ignore the changing climate.   You may recognize a few of us, depending on where you live.

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16 August 2016

Northwest Highlands unconformities (1 of 3): Sub-Stoer Group

First in a series profiling the three unconformities to be found in the North-West Highlands of Scotland. Today: the sub-Stoer unconformity as exposed at Clachtoll. Explore a Proterozoic buried topography topped with coarse, angular breccia.

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