Let’s All Calm Down and Make Sense of That Antarctic Mantle Plume

Three decades ago, scientists began to study the possibility that there was a plume of hot rock coming up from the mantle, heating parts of Western Antarctica. Back in September, researchers published results of a model showing how such a plume might affect the Antarctic ice sheet. Yesterday, these headlines started to appear: Read More >>

Indonesian Island Prepares for Devastating Volcanic Eruption

This month has been marked with a staggering number of geological and meteorological catastrophes. Powerful hurricanes have pummelled the Gulf of Mexico and the Caribbean, and a spate of earthquake events rocked Mexico. Now, geologists worry that seismic activity in Indonesia will lead to a powerful volcanic eruption. Read More >>

Quantum Mechanics Could Shake Up Our Understanding of Earth’s Magnetic Field

Earth’s magnetic field does way more than guide our compasses and cause occasional worry. It’s part of the reason there’s life at all on this planet—it protects us from harmful solar radiation that might otherwise blow our ozone layer away. Read More >>

Why Did Montana Experience a Powerful Earthquake Last Night?

Last night, planet Earth rumbled in a place where it usually doesn’t rumble: Montana, USA. But it also rumbled in the Philippines. Come to think of it, it rumbled in Vanuatu and Japan too. The Earth rumbles a lot. Read More >>

How Tiny Algae Helped Form the Famous White Cliffs of Dover

The White Cliffs of Dover were formed almost 100 million years ago from the crushed shells of tiny single-celled algae. Now a team of scientists has identified the specific ocean conditions necessary for these sea creatures to thrive. Read More >>

There’s Something Strange Happening at the Bottom of the Greenland Ice Sheet

For the first time, researchers have peered thousands of metres beneath Greenland’s glistening surface to map the bottom of the ice sheet. They were surprised to learn that it’s thawing all over the place. Read More >>

There’s a Secret Message Written Into the Sands of Mars

NASA has spotted something strange and beautiful in the sands of Mars—a remarkable dune field that looks eerily similar to Morse code. And it has a message for us. Read More >>

What Was Going On With Earth’s Magnetic Field A Billion Years Ago?

We know about our North and South poles, but what about an East, West, or slightly-to-the-left pole? According to new research published in Geophysical Research Letters, around 1 billion years ago, that might have been a possibility. Read More >>

An Unearthly Sound is Emanating From the Caribbean Sea

Beneath the hum of ship traffic and the chatter of marine life, another sound is emanating from the Caribbean Sea. It’s far too low pitched for humans to hear, but its signature can be detected from space. Scientists have never seen—or heard—anything like it. Read More >>

We Were Totally Wrong About What’s Happening Inside Earth’s Mantle

For the first time, geologists have compiled a global map of the wave-like motions called “convective currents” inside Earth’s mantle. They found that those convective currents are moving roughly ten times faster than previously thought. The discovery can help explain everything from how Earth’s surface changes over time to the formation of fossil fuel deposits to long-term climate change. Read More >>

Vibration of Small Particles Could Trigger Aftershocks of Earthquakes

Earthquakes can create copycat events up to 1,000 kilometres away — and this mimicked impact could be the result of the vibration of small particles, according to new computer simulations of seismic activity in the Earth. Read More >>

Glowing Antineutrino Map Shows How Radioactive the Earth Is

It’s often said that we know less about Earth’s deep interior than we do about the surface of Mars (or maybe even Pluto). A new global map of subatomic particles called antineutrinos is helping to change that. It’s showing scientists just how radioactive our little Blue Marble is. Read More >>

Ancient Roman Concrete Was Inspired By Volcanic Chemistry

In 1982, the ground beneath the historic port city of Pozzuoli began to rise like a cake in the oven. Within two years, the swell had exceeded 6 feet. Then the earth started shaking—first, a swarm of microquakes. When the first magnitude 4 quake hit, Pozzuoli became a ghost town overnight. Read More >>