An artist’s impression of Mars’ inner structure. The topmost layer is the crust, and beneath it is the mantle, which rests on a solid inner core. Credit: Image courtesy of NASA/JPL-Caltech) Using data from NASA’s InSight Lander on Mars, Rice University seismologists have made the first direct measurements of three subsurface boundaries […]

A new study shows that giant ore deposits are tightly distributed above where rigid rocks that comprise the nuclei of ancient continents begin to thin, far below the surface (white areas). Redder areas indicate the thinnest rocks beyond the boundary; bluer ones, the thickest. Circles, triangles and squares show known […]

The ancient philosopher Plato conjectured that the universe was composed of particular geometric shapes; the earth, of cubes. Findings from a multidisciplinary research team found truth in Plato’s belief. The ancient Greek philosopher was on to something, researchers found. Plato, the Greek philosopher who lived in the 5th century B.C.E., […]

Physicists Explain Why Changes to Earth’s Magnetic Field Are Weaker Over the Pacific A new study by University of Alberta physicists provides an explanation for why changes to Earth’s magnetic field over time are weaker over the Pacific region—a mystery scientists have been trying to solve for nearly a century. […]

Extensional faults (arrows) on the surface of Pluto indicate expansion of the dwarf planet’s icy crust, attributed to freezing of a subsurface ocean. Credit: NASA/Johns Hopkins University Applied Physics Laboratory/Southwest Research Institute/Alex Parker Evidence Supports ‘Hot Start’ Scenario and Early Ocean Formation on Pluto A new study suggests that Pluto and […]

Illustration of the natural fluid injection process that triggered the Cahuilla swarm. Credit: CalTech Natural Fluid Injections Triggered Cahuilla Earthquake Swarm Machine-learning algorithm helps geoscientists create a 3-D picture of a fault zone, generating new insight into seismic processes. A naturally occurring injection of underground fluids drove a four-year-long earthquake […]

Earthquakes send sound waves through the Earth. Seismograms record the echoes as those waves travel along the core-mantle boundary, diffracting and bending around dense rock structures. New research from University of Maryland provides the first broad view of these structures, revealing them to be much more widespread than previously known. […]

A hiker walks along a road near Manitou Springs, Colorado, where an exposed outcrop shows a feature known as the “Great Unconformity.” Credit: Rebecca Flowers A team of geologists led by CU Boulder is digging into what may be Earth’s most famous case of geologic amnesia. Researchers have spotted that phenomenon, […]

The crystal structure of the feldspar anorthite under normal conditions (left) and the newly discovered high-pressure variant (right). Under normal conditions, the silicon and aluminum atoms form tetrahedra (yellow and blue) with four oxygen atoms each (red). Under high pressure polyhedra with five and six oxygen atoms are formed. Calcium […]