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This is an archive of AGU's GeoSpace blog through 1 July 2020. New content about AGU research can be found on Eos and the AGU newsroom.

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31 July 2017

Bacteria found near abandoned mines could shed light on early Earth

Acidified water draining from abandoned mines, studied primarily as a modern environmental hazard, may offer insight into the oxygenation of Earth’s early atmosphere and development of life on other planets, according to a new study.

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25 July 2017

Researchers uncover 200-year-old sunspot drawings in Maine

In April of 1815, the volcanic eruption of Mount Tambora in Indonesia caused a global decrease in temperatures for the following few years, and 1816 came to be known as the “year without a summer.” New England states were particularly hard hit by these temperature changes, which significantly affected agriculture production and quality of life. Alongside his journal entries, Reverend Jonathan Fisher of Blue Hill, Maine sketched the sunspots during the summer of 1816, thinking they might be responsible for the cold summer temperatures.

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21 July 2017

Mountain glaciers recharge vital aquifers

Small mountain glaciers play a big role in recharging vital aquifers and in keeping rivers flowing during the winter, according to a new study. It suggests that the accelerated melting of mountain glaciers in recent decades may explain why arctic and subarctic rivers have increased their water flow during the winter even without a correlative increase in rain or snowfall.

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7 June 2017

Offshore wind turbines vulnerable to Category 5 hurricane gusts

Offshore wind turbines built according to current standards may not be able to withstand the powerful gusts of a Category 5 hurricane, creating potential risk for any such turbines built in hurricane-prone areas, new University of Colorado Boulder-led research shows. The study, which was conducted in collaboration with the National Center for Atmospheric Research in Boulder, Colorado and the U.S. Department of Energy’s National Renewable Energy Laboratory in Golden, Colorado, highlights the limitations of current turbine design and could provide guidance for manufacturers and engineers looking to build more hurricane-resilient turbines in the future.

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5 June 2017

What caused the most toxic algal bloom ever observed in Monterey Bay?

In late spring 2015, the West Coast of North America experienced one of the most toxic algal blooms on record. A new study shows that, at least in Monterey Bay, California, the diatoms in this bloom became particularly toxic because of an unusually low ratio of silicate to nitrate in the waters of the bay.

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