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You are browsing the archive for geology Archives - AGU Blogosphere.

22 July 2022

12.5-A podcast of ice and fire

Cool off from the summer heat with our next six-part miniseries all about ice – from those who call it home to its use as a tool in science.

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8 July 2022

11-Extinctions: Oddballs of the Triassic

Hans Sues is a fossil guy at the Smithsonian. Born in Germany, he has been all over the world finding and interpreting fossils for more than 40 years. His focus is on vertebrates – both in his professional work and his personal attachment to cats.

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1 July 2022

10-Extinctions: Showdown of the giant space rocks

Dani DellaGiustina is one of the youngest leaders of a NASA mission, and she was in charge of image processing for OSIRIS-REx before she even got her PhD. OSIRIS-REx is a spacecraft sent to study asteroid Bennu and scheduled to return a sample to Earth in 2023.

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17 June 2022

8-Extinctions: The (Maybe) Cambrian (Not Really) Explosion

The Cambrian explosion is commonly labelled as the time in Earth’s history when animals suddenly appear. But research from geoscientist Rachel Wood and her team turns this explanation on its head.

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16 August 2021

Staff Picks: Parking Lot Lava

In a parking lot behind the Comstock Art Facility at Syracuse University, geologist Jeff Karson and sculptor Bob Wysocki cook up something almost unimaginable – homemade lava. Using a gas furnace the size of a small truck, the two professors melt gravel typically used for roadbeds into hot molten rock that they pour onto sand to recreate natural lava flows seen in places like Hawaii, Iceland and Italy.

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4 May 2021

Interesting sedimentary basin structures in fold-thrust belt outcrop patterns

By Philip S. Prince Fold-thrust belts developed in sedimentary rock sequences produce interesting and complex patterns on Earth’s surface. These patterns become even more complex and intriguing when the folded and faulted sedimentary layer sequence contains internal structures that pre-date thrust belt development. A particularly outstanding example of this effect is the Talar Syncline of the Makran fold-thrust belt, in which an extensional growth fault depocenter has been folded, uplifted, …

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18 November 2020

Songs of the Arches (with Helicopters)

The wind that carved the sandstone of Arches National Park into spectacular arches and towers also plucks them, like giant guitar strings, making them ring at low frequencies. Geoscientist Riley Finnegan and her colleagues in the Geohazards research group at the University of Utah are recording these arch songs in the Park and around Utah with seismometers, the same basic technology geologists use to listen for earthquakes, to learn their characteristic vibration frequencies—and how human noise affects them.

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13 July 2020

Escape from Thera

About 3,600 years ago, a colossal volcanic eruption blew apart the Greek island Thera, now the popular tourist destination known as Santorini. Falling volcanic rock and dust buried the Bronze Age settlement Akrotiri, on the south side of the island, preserving multi-story buildings, frescoes, tools, furniture and food, until archaeological excavations uncovered them in the last century, much like the eruption of Vesuvius in 79 CE famously buried Pompeii and Herculaneum. But unlike the Roman cities, Akrotiri has a notable lack of bodies.

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18 May 2020

Mt. St. Helens: 40 Years Later

On May 18, 1980, Mt. St. Helens erupted in Washington state, capping off a series of volcanic events that began on March 27th of that year. The May 18th explosions is credited with causing 57 deaths, >$1 billion in property damage, and forever changed the surrounding landscape.

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30 March 2020

Stepping-Stones, by Katharine Fowler-Billings

This memoir by one of America’s earliest female geologists is an enjoyable read about adventure and professional working conditions in the 1920s and 1930s, and up though the 1950s and 1960s. Fowler-Billings (née Fowler) led an interesting life, ranging from growing up in an urban Boston that still had a significant horse population to post-retirement conservation and environmental activism. In between, Kay was a field geologist and an educator. She …

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13 December 2019

Redoubt’s big impact 30 years ago

On December 15, 1989, a pilot who had flown a 747 passenger jet all the way from Amsterdam was looking forward to landing in Anchorage. There, he would take a short break before continuing to Tokyo.

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9 December 2019

Third Pod Live: O-klahoma, Where There’s Fracking, Oil, Faults, and More!

What’s it like to be a seismologist who’s studied the Marcellus Shale and San Andreas Fault, worked around the world from Pennsylvania to Rome, and is now a professor at the University of Oklahoma? We found out at AAA’s annual meeting earlier this year when we talked to assistant professor Brett Carpenter.

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4 December 2019

E24 Part 2- A Walk in the Vault with Jeff Post

Mineralogist Jeff Post has a one-of-a-kind job: he’s curator of the National Gem and Mineral Collection, a collection of over 375,000 rock and mineral specimens housed at the National Museum of Natural History in Washington, D.C. In this episode, Jeff takes Third Pod producers on a tour of the vault, where the collection’s most valuable and rare specimens are kept. Jeff

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2 December 2019

E24 Part 1- (Hope) Diamonds are Forever

Mineralogist Jeff Post has a one-of-a-kind job: he’s curator of the National Gem and Mineral Collection, a collection of over 375,000 rock and mineral specimens housed at the National Museum of Natural History (NMNH) in Washington, D.C. In this episode, Jeff describes his day-to-day work of maintaining and growing this invaluable collection, which includes being personally responsible for the Hope Diamond and countless other treasures.

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25 November 2019

Special Release: Tribes, Trails, & Tailings

Mining is more than just harvesting natural resources – it’s about who owns those right and what the land that those mines are on mean to the people who live there.

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7 November 2019

E23 – Bonus Clip: Meteorite Hunting in Antarctica

Nina Lanza is a member of a research team hunts for meteorites in Antarctica. In this bonus clip from Episode 23, Between a Varnished Rock and a Hard Place, Nina describes the remote location where they set up camp, being holed up while the howling katabatic winds battered her tent and her brain, and explains the strategies and techniques for searching for and collecting space rocks that are lost bits of asteroids …

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4 November 2019

E23 – Between a Varnished Rock and a Hard Place

Scientists have been testing whether life exists on Mars for over 40 years, ever since the Viking 1 lander touched down on the Red Planet. Researchers often perform experiments on Earth to better understand the context of data collected by Viking 1 and subsequent landers – data that gives scientists tantalizing clues about the habitability of the Martian surface.

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21 October 2019

CE11 – Plate Tectonics: The Theory that Changed Earth Science

Xavier Le Pichon came to Lamont Geological Observatory in 1959 and spent four months aboard the R/V Vema as a physical oceanography technician. The research cruise set out to test the existence of the mid-ocean ridge system: a long chain of seismically active mountains running along the ocean floor.

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23 September 2019

Centennial E10 – Volcano Disaster Prepping

Many people have emergency kits packed to flee or survive forces of nature like floods, hurricanes, or wildfire. But what do you throw in your bag when you expect to rush toward a natural hazard? Geologist John Ewert has his go-kit packed with portable seismometers and gas-monitoring equipment, ready to mobilize when a volcano starts to rumble.

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3 September 2019

E21 – X-rays of the Earth’s Gooey Center

Much like x-rays can show broken bones (or noses), seismic equipment can show us what’s going on in Earth’s interior. While seismologists can’t take quick snapshots like medical doctors can, they can provide an image of tectonic plate movements over time to help the scientific community – and local communities – understand geophysical phenomena from mountain formations to volcanoes to the earthquakes that rock their world.

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