Monthly Archives: December 2017

skeleton of Rhaeticosaurus

The oldest plesiosaur was a strong swimmer

Plesiosaurs were especially effective swimmer. These long extinct "paddle saurians" propelled themselves through the World's oceans by employing "underwater flight" -- similar to sea...
bubbly magma in laboratory

Chemical tipping point of magma determines explosive potential of volcanoes

Volcanic eruptions are the most spectacular expression of the processes acting in the interior of any active planet. Effusive eruptions consist of a gentle...
Pseudooides

Fossil orphans reunited with their parents after half a billion years

Everyone wants to be with their family over the holidays, but spare a thought for a group of orphan fossils that have been separated...
A joint research team from the United States and China ventured to the Guliya Ice Cap in Tibet in 2015

Oldest ice core ever drilled outside the polar regions

The oldest ice core ever drilled outside the polar regions may contain ice that formed during the Stone Age -- more than 600,000 years...
Hard tick grasping a dinosaur feather preserved in 99 million-year-old Burmese amber.

Dinosaur parasites trapped in 100-million-year-old amber tell blood-sucking story

Fossilised ticks discovered trapped and preserved in amber show that these parasites sucked the blood of feathered dinosaurs almost 100 million years ago, according...
Small earthquakes (yellow stars) can be induced during hydraulic fracturing when high-pressure fluid (blue arrows) is pumped into horizontal wells to crack rock layers containing natural gas.

Small earthquakes at fracking sites may be early indicators of bigger tremors to come

Stanford geoscientists have devised a way of detecting thousands of faint, previously missed earthquakes triggered by hydraulic fracturing, or "fracking." The technique can be used...
The Rio San Juan transports sediment from the High Andes

New research improves understanding of ancient landscapes

Geologists use zircon mineral grains to reconstruct what the Earth and its landscapes looked like in ancient times. These microscopic grains, commonly the width...
Distribution of intraplate earthquakes in central and eastern North America

Ancient weakening of Earth’s crust explains unusual intraplate earthquakes

New research reveals that mysterious pockets of earthquake activity in the middle of North America all have one thing in common: Earth's crust in...
This map of Pangea shows the distribution of life during the late Permian period

How much can 252-million-year-old ecosystems tell us about modern Earth? A lot

A whopping 252 million years ago, Earth was crawling with bizarre animals, including dinosaur cousins resembling Komodo dragons and bulky early mammal-relatives, a million...
Sample of amber

Nuclear technology unlocks 50-million-year-old time capsules

A scientific analysis of fossilised tree resin has caused a rethink of Australia's prehistoric ecosystem, and could pave the way to recovering more preserved...
Dramatic cliffs on the shores of Lake Superior.

What geologists got wrong about the world’s biggest failed rift

Geologists have corrected a mix-up that made an ancient geological structure in the central U.S. seem hundreds of miles shorter than it really is....
Reconstruction of Wakaleo schouteni

New species of extinct marsupial lion discovered in Australia

A team of Australian scientists has discovered a new species of marsupial lion which has been extinct for at least 19 million years. The...
Transparent skulls of an extinct plesiosaur (top) and a living crocodile (bottom).

It’s all in the ears: Inner ears of extinct sea monsters mirror those of...

A new study led by Oxford University Museum of Natural History has revealed that an extinct group of marine reptiles called sauropterygians evolved similar...
Map of sites and postulated migratory pathways associated with modern humans dispersing across Asia during the Late Pleistocene.

Revising the story of the dispersal of modern humans across Eurasia

Most people are now familiar with the traditional "Out of Africa" model: modern humans evolved in Africa and then dispersed across Asia and reached...
Trilobite

How the oldest compound eyes were constructed

Researchers from Cologne, Tallinn, and Edinburgh have found out that the compound eyes of today's arthropods are still constructed in much the same way...
Halszkaraptor escuilliei

Synchrotron sheds light on the amphibious lifestyle of a new raptorial dinosaur

An exceptionally well-preserved dinosaur skeleton from Mongolia unites an unexpected combination of features that defines a new group of semi-aquatic predators related to Velociraptor....
Vadasaurus herzogi fossil.

Recently discovered fossil shows transition of a reptile from life on land to life...

Using modern research tools on a 155-million-year-old reptile fossil, scientists at Johns Hopkins and the American Museum of Natural History report they have filled...
"Australopithecus skeleton" Little Foot Skull from the Sterkfontein Caves.

Litte Foot takes a bow: The world’s most complete Australopithecus skeleton ever found

South Africa's status as a major cradle in the African nursery of humankind has been reinforced with today's unveiling of "Little Foot," the country's...
The time variation of seismic velocity relative to the averaged pre-earthquake value are displayed.

Unearthing the underground effects of earthquakes and volcanoes

Most of what we know about earthquakes and volcanoes is based on what we can observe at the Earth's surface. However, most of the...
Earth from space

Discovery about rare nitrogen molecules offers clues to makeup of life-supporting planets

A team of scientists using a state-of-the-art UCLA instrument reports the discovery of a planetary-scale "tug-of-war" of life, deep Earth and the upper atmosphere...

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