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24 June 2022
For many of us, the word “extinctions” conjures up images of dinosaurs, asteroids, and (maybe?) volcanos. And while that last point did likely play a role in the demise of the dinosaurs, volcanos in their own right can go extinct. In this episode, we chatted with volcanologist Janine Krippner, Honorary Research Associate at the University of Waikato, about what exactly makes a volcano extinct, the difference between volcanic ash and smoke, …
10 June 2022
When you hear the word “extinction,” chances are you probably think of the extinction of the dinosaurs and a big rock. But did you know that there were other factors at play that lead to that extinction including volcanos and sea-level rise?
13 July 2020
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.
15 June 2020
Volcanic craters could be the largest musical instrument on Earth, producing unique sounds that tell scientists what is going on deep in a volcano’s belly.
18 May 2020
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.
9 December 2019
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.
25 September 2019
Seemingly low-hazard seismic regions in Mexico have experienced multiple, strong earthquakes since the 1500s, new research finds, suggesting the regions have many unmapped, active fault lines. The areas are inside the Trans-Mexican Volcanic Belt, home to roughly 40 percent of Mexico’s population, who may be unaware of the land’s seismic history.
30 July 2018
A new study finds that sand dunes act like seismic echo chambers and suggests new ways to filter out the noise they create in seismic surveys.
26 June 2018
The formation mechanism of the Adirondack Mountains in upstate New York has long posed a geologic mystery. A few mechanisms have been proposed, but until recently tools for evaluating them were not in place. Now, using an advanced seismic imaging method and data available only in the past five years, researchers have constructed a detailed model of the tectonic plate – the crust and the uppermost rigid mantle of the lithosphere under the northeast United States – down to about 62 miles (100 kilometers), in which they discovered a “pillow” of low-density, relatively light rock material. They say a column of this lighter material appears to have squeezed up under the Adirondacks, possibly expanded by heat, to form the dome-shaped mountains.
12 June 2018
A summertime expansion in the Earth’s crust caused by changes in groundwater may have triggered the magnitude-6.0 earthquake in California’s wine country in 2014, according to a new study.
30 May 2018
Instruments designed to record earthquakes revealed information about debris-ﬂow speed, the width of the ﬂow and the size of boulders carried by the January 2017 mudslide in Montecito, California, and the location of the event, suggesting that the current generation of seismometers in the ﬁeld could be used to provide an early warning of an incoming debris ﬂow to residents in mudslide-prone areas.
11 December 2017
New research reveals that mysterious intraplate seismic zones underwent significant deformation hundreds of millions of years ago.
5 December 2017
Dark fiber: Using sensors beneath our feet to tell us about earthquakes, water and other geophysical phenomena
Scientists have shown for the first time that dark fiber – the vast network of unused fiber-optic cables installed throughout the country and the world – can be used as sensors for detecting earthquakes, the presence of groundwater, changes in permafrost conditions, and a variety of other subsurface activity.