27 August 2015

3-D maps illustrate formation of the Hangai Dome in central Mongolia

3-D maps illustrate formation of the Hangai Dome in central Mongolia

Researchers at Rice University, the University of Toronto, and Princeton University generated 3-D maps of the Earth under the Hangai Dome in central Mongolia from seismic data. The 3-D image below shows the earth under the dome. Colored yellow, warm rock rises up from the deep mantle toward the Earth’s surface. The pressure on the rock drops as it rises. When the rock reaches 150 kilometers (93 miles) below the surface, it starts to melt and form magma, illustrated in red. Heat released by the magma modifies the rigid outer layer of the Earth that becomes lighter and rises up, creating the Hangai Dome.

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26 August 2015

Terraced craters: Windows into Mars’ icy past

Terraced craters: Windows into Mars’ icy past

Scientists studied terraced craters on Mars and found an underground chunk of ice the size of California and Texas combined.

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19 August 2015

New study shows significant tsunami strength for parts of Southern California

New study shows significant tsunami strength for parts of Southern California

Tsunamis generated by earthquake faults off the Santa Barbara coast could pose a greater danger to the cites of Ventura and Oxnard than previously thought.

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13 August 2015

Scientists track air pollution by meal times

Scientists track air pollution by meal times

Cars and trucks shouldn’t take all of the blame for air pollution in Hong Kong. Smoke from cooking adds more of a specific type of pollution – organic aerosols – to the city’s air than traffic emissions, a new study finds.

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7 August 2015

Natural arches hum their health and scientists are listening

Natural arches hum their health and scientists are listening

Natural arches ring like guitar strings, plucked by seismic energy and the wind. New research shows how those seismic chords can be used to determine whether the arches are in danger of collapsing.

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6 August 2015

16th century Italian earthquake changed river’s course

16th century Italian earthquake changed river's course

In 1570, a 5.8-magnitude earthquake struck the northern Italian city of Ferrara, causing dozens of deaths, major damage to the city and thousands to flee. At the time, Pope Pius V said God sent the earthquake to punish the city’s duke who had given hospitality to Jews and Marranos who had escaped Spain.

Now, a new study finds that the 16th century earthquake and subsequent aftershocks were the last step in a tectonic process that occurred over thousands of years and changed the course of the Po River. The final rerouting of the river left Ferrara dry by the end of the 16th century, an event depicted in a painting that now hangs in the Vatican Museum.

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29 July 2015

Dusty comet releases mysterious clumps

Dusty comet releases mysterious clumps

Images of an unusually dusty comet have revealed strange streaming clumps that could hold the secrets to how comets create their beautiful, sweeping, striated tails.

Comet C/2011 L4 barged into the research of solar physicist Nour E. Raouafi when he was studying the sun using images from the SECCHI/HI-1 telescope aboard the solar-observing spacecraft STEREO-B.

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22 July 2015

Warmer air, less sea ice lead to mercury decline in Arctic Ocean

Warmer air, less sea ice lead to mercury decline in Arctic Ocean

The amount of mercury in the Arctic Ocean is declining as the region rapidly warms and loses sea ice, according to a new study.

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21 July 2015

Study: Most rain comes from ice clouds

Study: Most rain comes from ice clouds

Benjamin Franklin was the first to surmise that, even on a hot summer’s day, the raindrops falling on our heads might begin life as ice particles at high altitudes. In the centuries since 1780 it became possible to probe the atmosphere directly by balloon and by aircraft, and remotely from the ground and from satellites. These observations confirmed Franklin’s suspicion. However, two questions remain: how large are the fractions of rain produced by liquid clouds and by ice clouds? And how variable are they over the globe and over time?

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20 July 2015

Warming slow-down not the end of climate change, study shows

Warming slow-down not the end of climate change, study shows

A slow-down in global warming is not a sign that climate change is ending, but a natural blip in an otherwise long-term upwards trend, research shows.

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