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Big volcanoes wake up fast
ScienceNews    Share    Share on FacebookTwitterShare on LinkedinE-mail article
Long-slumbering volcanoes can jolt to life faster than students drinking Red Bull, a new study suggests. Studies of millennia-old rocks that erupted at Santorini, Greece, show that the chemical composition of its magma changed just a few decades before the volcano blew its top around 1600 B.C. That blast came after 18,000 years of relative calm. More

 Society News

New directors named
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The GS Board of Directors is pleased to welcome as new directors from the Organic Geochemistry Division (OGD), Stuart Wakeham of the Skidaway Institute of Oceanography as OGD Chair and Gesine Mollenhauer of the Alfred Wegener Institute for Polar and Marine Research as OGD Secretary.

Montreal Goldschmidt Conference sets record
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The Montreal Goldschmidt Conference set a new record for most abstracts received for a North American Goldschmidt Conference. As of Feb. 3, 2,925 abstracts were submitted, more than 700 over any previous North American Goldschmidt. With this level of participation, early booking of accommodation is recommended. The deadline for student travel grant applications is Feb. 8. Early registration deadline is April 20.

New in GCA
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The relationship between silicon isotope fractionation in sponges and silicic acid concentration: Modern and core-top studies of biogenic opal, Hendry and Robinson.

Iron reduction in nontronite-type clay minerals: Modelling a complex system, Geatches et al.

Predicting CO2-water interfacial tension under pressure and temperature conditions of geologic CO2 storage, Nielsen et al.

Structural study of biotic and abiotic poorly-crystalline manganese oxides using atomic pair distribution function analysis, Zhu et al.

Atomic-scale structures of interfaces between phyllosilicate edges and water, Liu et al.

Pathways of ferrous iron mineral formation upon sulfidation of lepidocrocite surfaces, Hellige et al.

Halogen systematics (Cl, Br, I) in mid-ocean ridge basalts: A Macquarie Island case study, Kendrick et al.

Origin of felsic achondrites Graves Nunataks 06128 and 06129, and ultramafic brachinites and brachinite-like achondrites by partial melting of volatile-rich primitive parent bodies, Day et al.

CO2-water-basalt interaction. Low temperature experiments and implications for CO2 sequestration into basalts, Gysi and Stefansson

 Latest News

US Scientists call for integrated study of carbon cycle
United States Carbon Cycle Science Program    Share    Share on FacebookTwitterShare on LinkedinE-mail article
The carbon cycle science community in the United States has just finished its planning process for carbon cycle research for the upcoming decade. This reassessment of the U.S. carbon cycle science priorities was initiated by the U.S. Carbon Cycle Interagency Working Group and Carbon Cycle Science Steering Group in 2008. This planning process is culminating in the publication of the new U.S. Carbon Cycle Science Plan. The new Plan is intended to provide guidance for U.S. research efforts on the global carbon cycle for the next decade. Studies of the carbon cycle in the oceans and on land have long been an important aspect of research by many members of the Geochemical Society and researchers who publish in GCA. Please consult the Carbon Cycle Science Plan for further details about this planning document.

Electronic copies of "A U.S. Carbon Cycle Science Plan" are available at Printed copies or copies on CD can be requested from the U.S Carbon Cycle Science Program Office; contact Director Roger Hanson or Program Coordinator Gyami Shrestha.

450 million years ago, Hell's Kitchen earned its name
The New York Times    Share    Share on FacebookTwitterShare on LinkedinE-mail article
"That's ancestral North America out there," said Sidney Horenstein, the geologist and environmental educator emeritus of the American Museum of Natural History, gesturing broadly toward the towers of mid-Manhattan. "Here, we're on this exotic continent that collided with it." Exotic is the word. The rock outcrop that emerges like the tip of a geological iceberg from the children's playground in DeWitt Clinton Park, at West 52nd Street and 12th Avenue, is an astonishing work of natural sculpture; utterly sensuous — almost sensual in spots — with smooth curves and bubbly folds and veinous striations that look too organic to have been formed of schist, gneiss and amphibolite. More

Concerns grow over volcanic eruptions
USA Today    Share    Share on FacebookTwitterShare on LinkedinE-mail article
Scientists have known for decades that hidden under those impressive vistas at sites such as Death Valley and Yellowstone National Park are magma pools that under the right conditions can trigger explosive eruptions. Now, new research is changing scientists' understanding of the timing of those eruptions, and prompting them to call for greater monitoring of sites to help save lives when the next big volcano explodes. More

One and only Earth
Nature Geoscience    Share    Share on FacebookTwitterShare on LinkedinE-mail article
Reports from the Kepler mission have raised hopes for finding an Earth-like planet. Nevertheless, our Earth is probably unique — not just because of its distance from the Sun, but also because it has co-evolved with the life forms it has hosted. More

For scientists, Hope Diamond's blue may offer geology lesson
The New York Times    Share    Share on FacebookTwitterShare on LinkedinE-mail article
The Hope Diamond's 45.52 sparkling, steely blue carats make it the most famous diamond in the world — shrouded in mystery and intrigue since it was pulled out of the ground in 17th-century India. Scientists also look upon the diamond as a mysterious treasure, but for different reasons. Rather than a few centuries of legend and supposed curse, they would like to use it to study more than a billion years of the Earth's history. More

First land plants may have plunged the Earth into a series of ice ages
The Guardian    Share    Share on FacebookTwitterShare on LinkedinE-mail article
The first plants to take root on dry land may have cooled the Earth enough to bring on a series of ice ages, scientists claim. As plants spread across the continents, they extracted minerals from the rocks they clung to and drew down levels of atmospheric carbon, causing temperatures to drop markedly, the researchers say. More

Study: Tree rings may underestimate climate response to volcanic eruptions    Share    Share on FacebookTwitterShare on LinkedinE-mail article
Some climate cooling caused by past volcanic eruptions may not be evident in tree-ring reconstructions of temperature change because large enough temperature drops lead to greatly shortened or even absent growing seasons, according to climate researchers, who compared tree-ring temperature reconstructions with model simulations of past temperature changes. More

Caldera eruption "Early warning system?" Not so fast.
Wired    Share    Share on FacebookTwitterShare on LinkedinE-mail article
Erik Klemetti writes, "I discussed a study that claimed that volcanoes were the cause of the onset of the Little Ice Age. Now, we have a study in Nature that discusses the magmatic events that led up to the Minoan eruption at Santorini — a fairly timely topic considering the rumblings there — that has gotten the media's attention. Now, I'm not going to pick apart this paper by Timothy Druitt and others as such — the study, called "Decadal to monthly timescales of magma transfer and reservoir growth at a caldera volcano", is actually quite solid. The long and short of the study is that they examined plagioclase feldspar crystals looking at the zoning of different elements in these crystals." More

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