2 March 2015

Study of atmospheric ‘froth’ may help GPS communications

Study of atmospheric 'froth' may help GPS communications

Irregularities in Earth’s upper atmosphere can distort GPS signals, Scientists are studying these irregularities to help overcome their effects on communications.

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25 February 2015

Drilling deep

Drilling deep

We’re in the Indian Ocean currently drilling the deepest of a six hole transect across the middle of the Bengal submarine fan. The fan covers the bottom of the Bay of Bengal with sediments eroded from the Himalayas. We’ll be devoting almost three weeks of our eight-week International Ocean Discovery Program expedition to drilling at this site. Our target: to reach 1,500 meters (about a mile) depth. Drilling this deep is a major challenge when you are drilling into the seafloor, which just so happens to be more than 3,600 meters (about two miles) below sea level.

But why so deep? And why here?

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24 February 2015

Massive amounts of Saharan dust fertilize Amazon rainforest

Massive amounts of Saharan dust fertilize Amazon rainforest

The Sahara Desert is a near-uninterrupted brown band of sand and scrub across the northern third of Africa. The Amazon rainforest is a dense green mass of humid jungle that covers northeast South America. But after strong winds sweep across the Sahara, a tan cloud rises in the air, stretches between the continents, and ties together the desert and the jungle. It’s dust. And lots of it.

Scientists have not only used a satellite to measure the volume of dust that makes this trans-Atlantic journey. They have also calculated how much phosphorus – remnant in Saharan sands from part of the desert’s past as a lake bed – gets carried across the ocean from one of the planet’s most desolate places to one of its most fertile.

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17 February 2015

Earthquake faults identified in surge of Oklahoma quakes

Earthquake faults identified in surge of Oklahoma quakes

New research has revealed the faults associated with more than 3,600 earthquakes that have been recorded in Oklahoma since 2009. The study also finds that recently reactivated ancient faults in the center of the state could generate higher-magnitude and more destructive earthquakes than the region has experienced since earthquake activity picked up there five years ago.

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5 February 2015

Shoving Off

Shoving Off

This is the first in a series of dispatches from Lisa Strong, a video producer and education officer aboard the JOIDES Resolution, a scientific ocean drilling ship currently on a two-month research expedition in the Bay of Bengal.

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2 February 2015

Wind pattern behind California’s drought also struck at ocean food chain

Wind pattern behind California’s drought also struck at ocean food chain

Unusual weather that contributed to the California drought also led to an unprecedented drop in small plant-like organisms in the northeastern Pacific Ocean that form the base of the ocean food chain, potentially affecting fish, birds and marine mammals, according to new research.

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26 January 2015

Distinctive sounds announce iceberg births

Distinctive sounds announce iceberg births

Underwater sounds can be used to detect different ways glaciers lose ice as they flow into the ocean, giving scientists new insight into these poorly understood events, according to new research.

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15 January 2015

New studies give clues where alien life may flourish

New studies give clues where alien life may flourish

Earth-like planets orbiting distant stars, but bigger and older than our home planet, stand out as prime candidates to harbor complex life, according to new research.

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14 January 2015

Mountain monitoring system artificially inflates temperature increases at higher elevations

Mountain monitoring system artificially inflates temperature increases at higher elevations

In a recent study, University of Montana and Montana Climate Office researcher Jared Oyler found that while the western U.S. has warmed, recently observed warming in the mountains of the western U.S. likely is not as large as previously supposed.

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9 January 2015

Not just rain: thunderstorms also pour down ozone

Not just rain: thunderstorms also pour down ozone

A new study in Geophysical Research Letters offers for the first time unequivocal evidence that large storms move significant amounts of ozone from the stratosphere down to the troposphere, the lowest part of the atmosphere.

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