Recently in the Astrogeology Category


The diversity in mass and composition of planetary atmospheres stems from the different building blocks present in protoplanetary discs and from the different physical and chemical processes that these experience during the planetary assembly and evolution.

Subduction of hydrous materials imposes great influence on the structure, dynamics, and evolution of our planet. However, it is largely unclear how subducting slabs chemically interact with the middle mantle.

Carbon is an essential building block for all living things on Earth and plays a vital role in many of the geologic processes that shape life on the planet, including climate change and ocean acidification. But the total amount of carbon on Earth remains a mystery, because more than 90% of Earth's carbon is inaccessible to direct observation and measurement, deep within the planet at extreme temperature and pressure.

New research lends credence to an unorthodox retelling of the story of early Earth first proposed by a geophysicist at Scripps Institution of Oceanography at UC San Diego.

Spearheaded by earth scientists of the University of Cologne, an international team of geologists has found evidence that a large proportion of the elements that are important for the formation of oceans and life, such as water, carbon and nitrogen, were delivered to Earth very late in its history.

Flash Floods In The Mid-Archean

Scientists supported in part by the NASA Astrobiology Program have provided new details of how the Hooggeneoeg Formation in South Africa was formed. The Hooggeneoeg Formation is found in the Barberton Greenstone Belt, and holds some of the best-preserved examples of supracrustal rocks from the mid-Archean (3.5 to 3.2 billion years ago).

Every school child learns about the water cycle--evaporation, condensation, precipitation, and collection. But what if there were a deep Earth component of this process happening on geologic timescales that makes our planet ideal for sustaining life as we know it?

We carried out wind tunnel experiments on parabolic flights with 100 μm Mojave Mars simulant sand. The experiments result in shear stress thresholds and erosion rates for varying g-levels at 600 Pa pressure.

Oxygen fugacity is a measure of rock oxidation that influences planetary structure and evolution. Most rocky bodies in the Solar System formed at oxygen fugacities approximately five orders of magnitude higher than a hydrogen-rich gas of solar composition.

Volatile molecules are critical to habitability, yet difficult to observe directly at the optically thick midplanes of protoplanetary disks, where planets form.