An ancient forest has thawed from under a melting glacier in Alaska and is now exposed to the world for the first time in more than 1,000 years.
Stumps…Read More »
and logs have been popping out from under southern Alaska's Mendenhall Glacier — a 36.8-square-mile (95.3 square kilometers) river of ice flowing into a lake near Juneau — for nearly the past 50 years. However, just within the past year or so, researchers based at the University of Alaska Southeast in Juneau have noticed considerably more trees popping up, many in their original upright position and some still bearing roots and even a bit of bark, the Juneau Empire first reported last week.
Slimy brown algae not only survived a wild ride into the stratosphere via a volcanic ash cloud, they landed on distant islands looking flawless, a new…Read More »
"There's a crazy contrast between these delicate, glass-shelled organisms and one of the most powerful eruptions in Earth's history," said lead study author Alexa Van Eaton, a postdoctoral scholar at both the Cascades Volcano Observatory in Washington and Arizona State University.
High-speed streams of charged particles from the sun may be to blame for recent failures of satellites that people rely on to watch TV and use the Internet,…Read More »
a new study finds.
From 93 million miles away, the sun spawns solar flares, coronal mass ejections and other space weather events, which can send highly energized particles racing toward Earth. Some solar storms have been known to disrupt communications systems and damage satellites.
In 1976, two college students died while exploring the "Blue Hole," an underwater cave connected to a deep lake in Santa Rosa, N.M. Shortly thereafter,…Read More »
local officials poured rubble and boulders into the bottom of the pool and sealed it off with a grate to prevent any more amateur divers from entering the cave. The ploy worked — all too well.
Beginning this past Friday, a team of experienced divers attempted to enter the cave and map it for the first time, although rough sketches of the cave were made by police divers in the 1970s, said Walter Pickel, part of the current team.
Every year, New England and other northern regions reliably burst into a blaze of fall color. But this natural phenomenon will likely become less reliable…Read More »
as climate change disrupts the planet, experts say. Add those brilliant reds and oranges to the list of global warming victims.
Though climate effects are complicated, warmer weather will generally mean duller fall vistas in the United States, said Howie Neufeld, a professor of plant physiology at Appalachian State University in North Carolina. Climate change could dampen fall foliage by delaying the season, bleaching out red tones and ushering in invasive species, Neufeld told LiveScience.
A huge asteroid that wiped out the dinosaurs may not have been the only cosmic event to cause mass extinctions or change Earth’s climate. Tiny minerals…Read More »
leftover from many smaller meteorites could provide the geological evidence needed to show how rocks falling from the sky changed the course of life’s evolution on our planet more than just once.
The tiny minerals called spinels — about the size of a sand grain — can survive the harshest weather and chemical changes on Earth’s surface. Swedish researchers hope to collect enough of the spinels in different parts of the world to connect the dots between the breakup of huge asteroids in space and certain extinction or climate events during Earth’s history.
Credit: 1941 photo taken by Ulysses William O. Field; 2004 photo taken by Bruce F. Molnia. Courtesy of the Glacier Photograph Collection, National Snow and Ice Data Center/World Data Center for Glaciology
With 800 volunteer reviewers, the latest report from the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) — the international body that assesses the state…Read More »
of the science on climate change — was bound to leak.
The first full version of the draft report was posted online in December 2012 by a climate change skeptic who was part of the volunteer review army. Now, as the report's Sept. 27 release date nears, final drafts are circulating among journalists.
Credit: Bob Cowen / University of Miami & Oregon State University
This spindly, web-like creature is a tiny, ocean-dwelling organism. These microscopic organisms, known as …Read More »
plankton, are an important source of food for larger marine animals, including whales and fish.
A new online citizen science project, called "Plankton Portal," was created by researchers at the University of Miami's Rosenstiel School of Marine and Atmospheric Sciences, in collaboration with the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA), the National Science Foundation, and the developers of Zooniverse.org.
Plankton Portal enlists volunteers to classify millions of underwater images to study plankton diversity, distribution and their behavior and survival in the open ocean. The plankton photos were taken by the In Situ Ichthyoplankton Imaging System (ISIIS), an underwater robot equipped with an ocean-scanning digital sensor.
"A computer will probably be able to tell the difference between major classes of organisms, such as a shrimp versus a jellyfish, but to distinguish different species within an order or family, that is still best done by the human eye," Jessica Luo, a graduate student involved with the project, said in a statement. [Related Gallery: Creatures from the Census of Marine Life] Less «
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Northern lights shine over Denali
Credit: Daniel A. Leifheit/US Department of the Interior
Visitors to Denali National Park saw quite the light show this week as the northern lights glowed in the night.
northern lights form when charged particles flow from the sun in a kind of "solar wind" and enter Earth's magnetic field, revving up electrically charged particles trapped there.
By the second week of August, the night sky above Denali is dark enough to see the northern lights. As Denali turns farther and farther away from the sun, the amount of darkness increases each night. Denali loses daylight rapidly in late August and September, so that by late September you don't have to burn the midnight oil to enjoy the night sky.
The light show in the above photo was seen over Denali's Toklat River. Denali spans 6 million acres of land in the Alaskan wilderness. The park is home to the tallest peak in North America, Mount McKinley, also known as Denali, which has a height of 20,237 feet (6,168 meters). "Denali," or "High One," was given its name by Athabascan native people. The mountain is part of the Alaskan Range, which covers some 600 miles (966 kilometers).