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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6 August 2012

As Curiosity’s wheels touch down, science gets rolling

As viewing parties celebrating the successful landing of the Mars Science Laboratory wound down early Monday morning, 400 scientists – many of them AGU members – were already using their newest tool for investigating the red planet.


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3 August 2012

Two Mars scientists prepare for Curiosity’s descent to the red planet

Two young AGU member-scientists balance nervousness with excitement over the imminent arrival of the Mars Science Laboratory, a.k.a. “Curiosity,” on the planet’s surface. For Ryan Anderson the journey beginning next week in Mars’ Gale Crater dates back several years when his graduate school advisor asked him, “Hey, you want to look at [Mars] landing sites? Here’s a cool one!” Building on other researchers’ previous studies, Anderson’s subsequent work at Cornell …


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2 July 2012

Scientists gauge carbon dioxide impact of suburban greenery

Despite having more carbon-dioxide-absorbing vegetation than cities, suburbs contribute to rising levels of carbon dioxide in the atmosphere. To find out how a suburb’s greenery influences its carbon dioxide emissions, two scientists have conducted continuous measurements of the uptake and release of carbon dioxide by the vegetation of a suburban landscape. They report that lawns and trees detectably reduce the carbon dioxide emissions of the area – in summer absorbing nearly all carbon dioxide released from fossil fuel use such as from traffic and natural gas consumption in homes.


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28 June 2012

Fracking in the United States: Scientists’ research addresses multiple concerns

From 2000 to 2010, improvements to a gas-drilling technology known as hydraulic fracturing have helped produce more domestic natural gas than in any other decade in U.S. history. While “fracking” has helped reduce natural gas prices and U.S. dependence on foreign supplies, the procedure is surrounded with contention concerning human and environmental health. “There are adverse environmental changes that occur with hydraulic fracturing,” said Richard Hammack who is the Coordinator of Natural Systems Monitoring for the Department of Energy’s National Energy Technology Laboratory (NETL) – a collaborator of the U.S Geological Survey (USGS). “And part of our job is to find ways to mitigate those either through different management techniques or through development of new and better technology.”


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5 June 2012

Volcanism & the thermal evolution of planets: An interview with Dr. Sue Smrekar

Dr. Sue Smrekar is the deputy project scientist for NASA’s Mars Reconnaissance Orbiter. At NASA’s Jet Propulsion Laboratory she helps coordinate the efforts of researchers working on the mission’s scientific investigations. Besides Mars, one of her principal topics of research has been the volcanism on Venus, based on data from NASA’s Magellan mission.


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5 October 2010

Climate Change Worsens Air Quality

Climate change will exacerbate air quality problems, says  Jeffrey Stehr, atmospheric scientist at the University of Maryland, by increasing heat that causes some pollutants to form, and changing air circulation patterns. He says researchers from different disciplines have begun collaborating more to understand better what these long-term changes will bring. Stehr spoke with AGU after a Congressional briefing co-hosted by the US EPA and AGU on Sept. 28, 2010 that …


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24 September 2010

Can we limit global warming to 2 degrees Celsius?

Members of the United Nations are in growing agreement that to avoid the worst affects of climate change, the world will need to limit the rise in global average temperature to 2 degrees Celsius. What will it take to meet that target? The AVOID Programme was started in the United Kingdom to provide policy-makers with answers to questions like this and others about climate change. Scientists from the Met Office …


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