Geology News

ASU Research Shows Gusev Crater on Mars Once Held a Lake

April 10, 2014

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New research from Arizona State University shows evidence that the Gusev Crater on Mars once held a lake. If desert mirages occur on Mars, “Lake Gusev” belongs among them. This come-and-go body of ancient water has come and gone more than once, at least in the eyes of Mars scientists. Now, however, it’s finally shifting […]

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Study Reveals Ancient Impact of Massive Asteroid

April 10, 2014

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A newly published study reveals an ancient asteroid impact that left a crater nearly 500 kilometers across: up to two and a half times larger in diameter than the crater formed by the dinosaur-killing asteroid. Washington, D.C. — Picture this: A massive asteroid almost as wide as Rhode Island and about three to five times […]

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Scientists Produce Geologic Map of Jupiter’s Moon Ganymede

February 13, 2014

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Using data from NASA’s Voyager 1 and 2 spacecraft and Galileo orbiter, scientists have produced the first global geologic map of Jupiter’s moon Ganymede. More than 400 years after its discovery by astronomer Galileo Galilei, the largest moon in the solar system – Jupiter’s moon Ganymede – has finally claimed a spot on the map. […]

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NASA Scientists Determine Europa Likely Spun on a Tilted Axis

September 19, 2013

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By using data from NASA’s Galileo spacecraft to analyze the distinctive cracks lining the surface of Europa, NASA scientists determined that Europa likely rotated around a tilted axis at some point. This tilt could influence calculations of how much of Europa’s history is recorded in its frozen shell, how much heat is generated by tides […]

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Scientists Detect Magmatic Water in Bullialdus Crater on the Moon

August 27, 2013

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A team of researchers has found evidence of water locked in mineral grains on the surface of the moon from an unknown source deep beneath the surface. Scientists have detected magmatic water — water that originates from deep within the Moon’s interior — on the surface of the Moon. These findings, published in the August […]

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Martian Meteorite Almost 4 Billion Years Younger Than Previously Thought

July 26, 2013

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A team of researchers has revealed that a common group of meteorites from Mars is almost 4 billion years younger than previously thought, providing scientists with a clearer picture of the Red Planet’s evolution. A team led by Western University’s Desmond Moser has solved a Martian meteorite age puzzle that paints a much clearer picture […]

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“Hidden Flux” of Material May Help Explain Earth’s Origins

July 17, 2013

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Scientists at MIT have discovered a “hidden flux” of material deep in the Earth’s mantle that would make the planet’s overall composition more similar to that of meteorites, supporting the theory that Earth arose from the collision of asteroids. It’s widely thought that the Earth arose from violent origins: Some 4.5 billion years ago, a […]

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Cosmic Impact Sparked Devastating Climate Change, Caused Mass Extinctions

May 21, 2013

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A newly published study reveals evidence of a major cosmic event near the end of the Ice Age, detailing how a cosmic impact sparked climate change that caused mass extinctions. Herds of wooly mammoths once shook the earth beneath their feet, sending humans scurrying across the landscape of prehistoric Ohio. But then something much larger […]

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Pre-existing Mineral Deposits on the Moon Can Survive Lunar Impacts

April 3, 2013

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New research led by Brown University suggests that pre-existing mineralogy on the Moon can survive large impacts and impact melts. Providence, Rhode Island (Brown University) — Despite the unimaginable energy produced during large impacts on the Moon, those impacts may not wipe the mineralogical slate clean, according to new research led by Brown University geoscientists. […]

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Volcanic Activity Triggered the End-Triassic Extinction

March 22, 2013

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In a new study, researchers from MIT provide evidence that volcanic activity did indeed trigger the end-Triassic extinction, killing off 76 percent of marine and terrestrial species on Earth. More than 200 million years ago, a massive extinction decimated 76 percent of marine and terrestrial species, marking the end of the Triassic period and the […]

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Fossilized Crinoids Yield the Oldest Biomolecules Found Inside a Fossil

February 19, 2013

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Researchers from Ohio State University have discovered the oldest example of biomarkers found inside a particular complete fossil. Columbus, Ohio—Though scientists have long believed that complex organic molecules couldn’t survive fossilization, some 350-million-year-old remains of aquatic sea creatures uncovered in Ohio, Indiana, and Iowa have challenged that assumption. The spindly animals with feathery arms—called crinoids, […]

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“Black Beauty” – Scientists Discover a Water-Rich Martian Meteorite

January 4, 2013

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Researchers discovered a new class of Martian meteorite in the Sahara Desert that contains 10 times more water than other Martian meteorites from unknown origins, possibly providing a glimpse of the ancient surface and environmental conditions on Mars. NASA-funded researchers analyzing a small meteorite that may be the first discovered from the Martian surface or […]

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