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Best Earth Images of the Week Apr. 26, 2013

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Natural recycling

Credit: J.M.D. Day

The remains of a real-life journey to the center of the Earth are preserved in a South Pacific volcano, a new study suggests.

The lava that erupted from the Cook Islands volcano, called Mangaia, contains a few tiny grains of sulfide, a mineral, with a peculiar ratio of sulfur isotopes, according to research published in today's (April 24) issue of the journal Nature. The unusual ratio could only have formed before oxygen-breathing life appeared on Earth 2.45 billion years ago. Isotopes are versions of elements with different numbers of neutrons, giving them differing weights.

[Full Story: Extreme Green: Earth Recycles 2.5-Billion-Year-Old Ocean Crust]   Less «
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