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Latest Crust Stories

2012-02-22 21:32:41

A mysterious cycle of booms and busts in marine biodiversity over the past 500 million years could be tied to a periodic uplifting of the world's continents, scientists report in the March issue of The Journal of Geology. The researchers discovered periodic increases in the amount of the isotope strontium-87 found in marine fossils. The timing of these increases corresponds to previously discovered low points in marine biodiversity that occur in the fossil record roughly every 60 million...

Image 1 - Building Blocks Of Early Earth Survived Collision That Created Moon
2012-02-18 06:32:01

Unexpected new findings by a University of Maryland team of geochemists show that some portions of the Earth's mantle (the rocky layer between Earth's metallic core and crust) formed when the planet was much smaller than it is now, and that some of this early-formed mantle survived Earth's turbulent formation, including a collision with another planet-sized body that many scientists believe led to the creation of the Moon. "It is believed that Earth grew to its current size by collisions...

2012-01-26 13:39:01

The new issue of LITHOSPHERE is online now. Papers present evidence for the on-going re-shaping of the Rocky-Mountain—Colorado Plateau region by young uplift driven from below (mantle buoyancy), research in the Aegean Sea that documents a newly defined extensional fault system, and study of the hydrologic heterogeneity of faulted and fractured sediment layers with implications for similar rocks to affect the flow of moisture downward toward the spent nuclear fuel geologic repository at...

Salty Water, Gas Sucked Into Earth's Interior Helps Unravel Planetary Evolution
2011-09-26 08:30:42

  An international team of scientists has provided new insights into the processes behind the evolution of the planet by demonstrating how salty water and gases transfer from the atmosphere into the Earth's interior. The paper was published in Nature Geoscience on Sept. 25. Scientists have long argued about how the Earth evolved from a primitive state in which it was covered by an ocean of molten rock, into the planet we live on today with a solid crust made of moving tectonic...

Diamonds Show Carbon Cycle May Reach Earth's Lower Mantle
2011-09-16 10:41:51

  By studying the chemistry of an unorthodox set of Brazilian diamonds, a team of researchers have discovered startling new information about the carbon cycle and the theory of plate tectonics. Researchers from the University of Bristol, Universidade de Brasilia, and the Carnegie Institution for Science studied what are known as "superdeep" diamonds, some of which originated from depths of 435 miles (700km) or more before erupting to the surface as volcanic rocks. Most diamonds...

The Cause Of Earth's Largest Environmental Catastrophe
2011-09-15 08:14:44

  Siberian traps and their relation to the mass extinction 250 million years ago The eruption of giant masses of magma in Siberia 250 million years ago led to the Permo-Triassic mass extinction when more than 90 % of all species became extinct. An international team including geodynamic modelers from the GFZ German Research Centre for Geosciences together with geochemists from the J. Fourier University of Grenoble, the Max Plank Institute in Mainz, and Vernadsky-, Schmidt- and...

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2011-08-17 13:50:00

According to new research, the Earth's moon could be younger than previously thought. The theory for lunar formation says that a rock known as ferroan anorthosite (FAN) is the oldest of the Moon's crustal rocks, but scientists have had difficulty dating FAN samples. Researchers used newly refined techniques to determine the age of a sample of FAN from the lunar rock collection at the NASA Johnson Space Center. They analyzed isotopes of the elements lead and neodymium to place the FAN...

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2011-08-03 15:20:00

Astronomers say that the Earth may have once had two moons, until the current moon devoured the other. A new study by planetary scientists at the University of California - Santa Cruz said that the far side of the moon, known as the lunar farside highlands, may be the remains of a collision with a similar companion moon. The near side of the moon is low and flat, while the far side is mountainous with a thicker crust.  The new study suggests that Earth's once second moon eventually...

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2011-07-28 07:55:00

Geological history has periodically featured giant lava eruptions that coat large swaths of land or ocean floor with basaltic lava, which hardens into rock formations called flood basalt. New research from Matthew Jackson and Richard Carlson proposes that the remnants of six of the largest volcanic events of the past 250 million years contain traces of the ancient Earth's primitive mantle"”which existed before the largely differentiated mantle of today"”offering clues to the...


Latest Crust Reference Libraries

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2004-10-19 04:45:40

Earth -- in geology and astronomy, fifth largest planet of the solar system and the only planet definitely known to support life. Gravitational forces have molded the earth, like all celestial bodies, into a spherical shape. However, the earth is not an exact sphere, being slightly flattened at the poles and bulging at the equator. The equatorial diameter is c.7,926 mi (12,760 km) and the polar diameter 7,900 mi (12,720 km); the circumference at the equator is c.24,830 mi (40,000 km)....

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Word of the Day
grass-comber
  • A landsman who is making his first voyage at sea; a novice who enters naval service from rural life.
According to the OED, a grass-comber is also 'a sailor's term for one who has been a farm-labourer.'