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Where are the Heroes Anymore?...RIP John Glenn

Geotripper | 9 December, 2016
Hero: a person who is admired or idealized for courage, outstanding achievements, or noble qualities
Categories: astronomy; heroes; John Glenn;

Wooster’s Fossils of the Week: Ordovician bioerosion trace fossils

Wooster Geologists | 9 December, 2016
This week's post is a celebration of the appearance of a remarkable two-volume work on trace fossils and evolution. The editors and major authors are my friends Gabriela Mángano and Luis Buatois (University of Saskatchewan). They are extraordinary geologists, paleontologists and ichnologists (specialists on trace fossils). They led this massive effort of multiple authors and thousands of manuscript pages. Turns out they are inspiring scientific leaders as well as sharp-eyed editors.
Categories: Uncategorized; Fossil of the Week; fossils; ichnology; Ordovician;

the resilience of Las Vegas and water

Inkstain (John Fleck) | 9 December, 2016
When I was writing my book, I wanted to talk about water use in cities through the story of a single city, and I chose Las Vegas (Nevada, not the one in New Mexico) intentionally as a rhetorical device. One of the writer's tricks is to start readers on familiar terrain and lead them to a new and different place. Las Vegas and its reputation for profligate excess is familiar terrain for a lot of people. I wanted to start there and lead readers to rethink their ideas about what counts as resilience, to rethink Vegas.
Categories: Colorado River; water;

Chilly Field Days This Week

A bit work pressed. Had a few chilly days in the field this week trying to get a couple sites in before snow arrived. And I got a little taste of the Fraser outflow as well.
Categories: Field Work;

The DSN Superteam Just Got Bigger

Deep Sea News | 9 December, 2016
I am very excited to announce the addition of two new writers at DSN.  Both are excellent researchers with black belts in science-fu.  Their scicomm skills are on fleek.
Categories: Uncategorized;

High variation in postnatal development of Early Dinosaurs.

Letters from Gondwana | 9 December, 2016
Cleveland Museum of Natural History Coelophysis block, originally AMNH Block XII collected in 1948 (From Wikimedia Commons)
Categories: Uncategorized; birds; Coelophysis; Coelurosauria; Dinosaurs; Earth Sciences; ontogeny; paleontology;

Opportunity: Pancam views Blackbird Hill

Red Planet Report | 8 December, 2016
Sol 4576, December 7, 2016. Blackbird Hill is the name applied to this portion of Southwest Ridge. Easy to see why rover drivers would prefer to go upslope to get around the ridge. (False-color restorations by Holger Isenberg.) Click image ... Contin...
Categories: Reports; Bitterroot Valley; Blackbird Hill; Cape Tribulation; Endeavour Crater; Mars Exploration Rover; MER; NASA; Opportunity; Southwest Ridge;

Explosion kills 33 at Inner Mongolia coal mine.

Sciency Thoughts | 8 December, 2016
Thirty three miners have been confirmed dead following a gas explosion at a coal mine in Inner Mongolia, China, on Saturday 3 December 2016. The incident happened at about midday, local time, at the Chifeng Baoma mine in Chifeng (or Ullanhad) in the southeast of the province. Over a hundred and thirty men were bellow ground at the time of the incident, the majority of whom were able to escape. Thirty three miners were unaccounted for following this initial evacuation, all of whom were later found dead by rescue teams.
Categories: China; Coal Mining; Gas Explosion; Health and Safety; Inner Mongolia; Mining;

HiRISE: Coolest landscape on Mars or Earth

Red Planet Report | 8 December, 2016
Many Martian landscapes contain features that are familiar to ones we find on Earth, like river valleys, cliffs, glaciers and volcanos. However, Mars has an exotic side too, with landscapes that are alien to Earthlings. This image shows one of ... Co...
Categories: Reports; CO2 ice; High Resolution Imaging Science Experiment; HiRISE; Mars Reconnaissance Orbiter; MRO; NASA; south polar ice cap; University of Arizona;

A 100-year-old mystery blob solved

Deep Sea News | 8 December, 2016
First, let's be clear: in the ocean, mucous is king. On land, mucous is tragically confined to various animal orifices, unable to last long outside a moist environment. But in the ocean, slime is everywhere. And perhaps no animal has done more with 'snot' than the larvacean. Larvaceans are shaped like tadpoles, and most are pretty small, about as long as a rice grain. These tadpole-shaped animal have a big mucous complex: each larvacean lives inside its own little ball of goo (usually about as big as a marble), which it secrete from its skin like a disembodied nose with tail attached. The mucous "house" in which the larvacean resides captures particles much the way your nasal snot captures dust. And then the little larvacean slowly sucks in this snot, digests out the particles, and poops out little pellets. But just because an animal eats its own mucous for a living doesn't mean it lacks sophistication. And nothing illustrates this point better than a 100 year old snotty mystery, solved by modern science.
Categories: Abyss; Biology; New Research; Pelagic; Weird;

AGU Fall Meeting 2016: Social Media (and Communications) Roundup

Magma Cum Laude | 8 December, 2016
I've had to bow out of attending the Fall Meeting this year, but I didn't want  to abandon my yearly Social Media roundup even though I won't be joining in. It's been great over the years to watch the social media and science communication...
Categories: Research Blogging; Science communication; AGU2016; featured; meetings; science communication; social media;

THEMIS: ‘Channels’ in Icaria Fossae

Red Planet Report | 8 December, 2016
THEMIS Image of the Day, December 8, 2016. The channel-like features in this VIS image are tectonic graben. The graben (called Icaria Fossae) are located in Terra Sirenum. The graben are caused by tectonic forces that faulted the bedrock, allowing ...
Categories: Reports; Arizona State University; ASU; graben; Icaria Fossae; Mars Odyssey; NASA; teconics; Terra Sirenum; THEMIS; Themis Image of the Day; Thermal Emission Imaging System;

Countdown to the Next NASA Discovery Mission Selection

Planetary Society Weblog | 8 December, 2016
If NASA's managers hold to their schedule, we will learn sometime this month what NASA's next planetary mission will be....
Categories: None

HiRISE: Painting with frost

Red Planet Report | 8 December, 2016
Subtle variations in color look like brush strokes as the lightly frosted terrain reflects light. These variations provide a backdrop to some exotic features referred to colloquially as "spiders." The radial channels branching out from a central ...
Categories: Reports; CO2 frost; High Resolution Imaging Science Experiment; HiRISE; Mars Reconnaissance Orbiter; MRO; NASA; spiders; University of Arizona;

The tropical Pacific Ocean keeps it's cool as La Niña persists

ImaGeo | 8 December, 2016
Last month's forecast of a continuing La Niña has panned out, with cool sea surface temperatures persisting across most of the central and eastern equatorial Pacific Ocean. It's a weak La Niña, and in all likelihood it will peter out by March, if...
Categories: None

Curiosity update: Motor controller fault

Red Planet Report | 8 December, 2016
Sol 1543, December 7, 2016, update by USGS scientist Ken Herkenhoff: The Sol 1542 drill diagnostics did not complete as intended, and as a consequence, neither did some of the later science activities.  Therefore, those tests and activities from So...
Categories: Reports; Aeolis Mons; Bracy Cove; Curiosity; Gale Crater; Hunter's Beach; Mars Science Laboratory; Mount Sharp; MSL; Murray Formation; NASA; Squid Cove; Stimson Formation; The Anvil;

Science at Sea

EAG Blog | 8 December, 2016
Being on a ship for two months has its ups and downs. But when you're drilling and recovering sediments that haven't seen daylight for millions of years, you can bet both the ups and the downs are thrilling.
Categories: General; On the Rocks;

Learning Beyond the Classroom: Field Visit to the Rockefeller State Park

State of the Planet | 8 December, 2016
As part of the course on The Business and Ecology of Sustainable Forestry with Professor Ralph Schmidt, students from The Earth Institute and School of International and Public Affairs visited the Rockefeller State Park in October 2016....
Categories: Education; Sustainability; Agriculture; ecology; education; education news; forest ecology; forestry; Master of Science in Sustainability Management; MS in Sustainability Management News;

Where is the ground?

Agile Geoscience | 8 December, 2016
This is the upper portion of a land seismic profile in Alaska. Can you pick a horizon where the ground surface is? Have a go at
Categories: Science; Workflows;

Pemphix sueuri Lobster Fossil

This picture is of a Pemphix sueuri lobster fossil. It was found in Wurtemberg Germany. Fossil dates back to the Triassic Period. Fossil displayed at the Museum of Natural History in Paris France August 2016....
Categories: germany; lobster; Muséum National D'Historie Paris; triassic;

why would anyone not trust the author????

I have already shown that ordinations of the Lake Żabińskie fossil assemblages are weirder than you ever imagined possible. Now it is time to look at figure 2 of Larocque-Tobler et al (2015) which shows an ordination of the chironomid assemblages in the modern Polish-Canadian calibration set with lakes colour-coded by temperature. A number of lakes are marked as "misplaced", that is their temperature differs from neighbouring lakes in the ordination. This figure should be easy to replicate with the archived data.
Categories: Peer reviewed literature; transfer function; chironomids; Larocque-Tobler et al (2015);

EGU 2017: Registration open & townhall and splinter meeting requests

EGU Geolog | 8 December, 2016
The EGU General Assembly brings together geoscientists from all over the world to one meeting that covers all disciplines of the Earth, planetary and space sciences. The conference is taking place in Vienna on 23-28 April 2017, providing an opportunity for both established scientists and early career researchers to present their work and discuss their ideas with experts in all fields of the geosciences.
Categories: Conferences; EGU; EGU GA 2017; General Assembly; News; Sessions; #EGU17; EGU General Assembly 2017; registration; splinter meetings; townhall meetings; Vienna;

Photo of the Week – Salt Coral

Geosphere | 8 December, 2016
The photo posted below is a really cool one. Interestingly, enough I have been getting into podcasts lately. They are great during my bus ride to and from work every day. One of the podcasts that I like is Neil de Grasse Tyson's Star Talk Radio. Anyway, the other week Star Talk had a pretty good discussion about salt and the role it has played in developing human history. Check out the episode in two parts here. Arguably as one of the most important economic minerals of all time, although it may not seem so today.
Categories: Geochemistry; Photo of the Week; Mineralolgy; Ocean; salt; Water;