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30 August 2017

Computer earthquake prediction in lab shows promise

By listening to the acoustic signal emitted by a laboratory-created earthquake, a computer science approach using machine learning can predict the time remaining before the fault fails. Not only does the work have potential significance to earthquake forecasting, but the approach is far-reaching, applicable to potentially all failure scenarios, including avalanches and other events.

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23 August 2017

Researchers investigate the lighter side of Earth’s inner core

Researchers report in a new study that a carbon compound called iron carbide, combined with small amounts of silicon impurities, may be an important component of the inner core. The researchers performed computer simulations to model how an iron and nickel core containing either iron carbide, or iron carbide with some silicon, compares to the density and other known characteristics of the inner core.

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19 May 2017

High levels of radioactive material migrating down into soil around Fukushima

High levels of radioactive cesium remain in the soil near the Fukushima Daiichi nuclear power plant and these radionuclides have migrated at least 5 centimeters down into the ground at several areas since the nuclear accident five years ago, according to preliminary results of a massive sampling project being presented at the JpGU-AGU joint meeting in Chiba, Japan.

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24 April 2017

Study finds pond expansion a significant factor in loss of Mississippi delta land

Wind-driven expansion of marsh ponds on the Mississippi River Delta is a significant factor in the loss of crucial land in the Delta region, according to new research. The study found 17 percent of land loss in the area resulted from pond expansion, much of it caused by waves that eroded away the edges of the pond.

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2 March 2017

Historic earthquakes discovered along San Andreas Fault

A new U.S. Geological Survey study offers a view into the past behavior of large earthquakes along the southern San Andreas Fault. In the study, USGS geologist Kate Scharer and her team excavated trenches across the fault near Frazier Mountain in northeastern Ventura County. This section of the San Andreas previously had no long paleoearthquake record. The researchers found evidence of 10 ground-rupturing earthquakes on this section of the fault between 800 A.D. and the last rupture in 1857.

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29 December 2016

Scientists test less invasive methods of locating oil in deep sea

New techniques for finding oil beneath the seafloor could reduce the frequency of seismic testing or exploratory drilling, which is harmful to marine animals, according to new research.

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14 December 2016

Finger-like structures on Mars could be the result of ancient microbes

Finger-like rock structures on Mars could harbor potential evidence of past life on the Red Planet, according to new research. In 2007, NASA’s Spirit rover landed on Mars’ “Home Plate,” a flat 90-meter-long area within the Gusev crater. Since then, researchers have been trying to make sense of finger-like rock structures splayed across the landscape. The working hypothesis at the time was that these rocks started out as continuous layers but eroded into odd shapes by the touch of wind and sand over the years.

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15 November 2016

New maps reveal safe locations for wastewater injection

Geophysicists have compiled the most detailed maps yet of the geologic forces controlling the locations, types and magnitudes of earthquakes in Texas and Oklahoma. These new “stress maps” provide insight into the nature of the faults associated with recent temblors, many of which appear to have been triggered by the injection of wastewater deep underground.

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25 October 2016

Stone walls, railway lines and carbon fibers record Turkey’s westward drift

A new study finds movement of North Anatolian fault may provide clues to future earthquakes.

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11 October 2016

Large precipitation events critical in replenishing groundwater resources

Large precipitation events that occur about every 10 years are a critical source of recharge for replenishing groundwater resources, according to a new study. Groundwater is a vital source of water in the western United States and will be increasingly important with continued population growth and climate variability. Understanding the role of these large recharge events in replenishing aquifers and sustaining water supplies is crucial for long-term groundwater management.

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