Author Archives: Metageologist

Tasting the earth: mantle geochemistry

If seismologists listen to the earth then geochemists taste it. Like experts blind-tasting a glass of wine and recognising where it came from, geochemists studying the deep earth aim to find out where a particular liquid came from. Their liquid – basaltic magma formed … Continue reading

Categories: Deep earth, geochemistry

Metamorphic petrology under stress: round 2

Back in August I wrote about an extremely important paper by John Wheeler of Liverpool University called “Dramatic effects of stress on metamorphic reactions”. This uses a theoretical approach to show that differential stress (squashing rocks) is a very important … Continue reading

Categories: metamorphism

Seismology in space

Seismology – using the propagation of waves through bodies to work out their internal structure – is extremely useful. You can use it to find oil, track active faults or understand what is at the centre of the earth. The principles … Continue reading

Categories: space

The Constitution of the Interior of Earth, as Revealed by Earthquakes

How to tell if the loaf of bread in your oven is cooked? You can see the outside is nicely browned, but you can’t see the middle – is it doughy still? Give it a tap and listen. If it sounds … Continue reading

Categories: Deep earth, history of science, subduction