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Chlorate salts and solutions on Mars
Geophysical Research Letters    Share    Share on FacebookTwitterShare on LinkedinE-mail article
Chlorate (ClO3−) is an intermediate oxidation species between chloride (Cl−) and perchlorate (ClO4−), both of which were found at the landing site by the Wet Chemistry Lab (WCL). The chlorate ion is almost as stable as perchlorate, and appears to be associated with perchlorate in most terrestrial reservoirs (e.g. Atacama and Antarctica). More

 Society News

Goldschmidt2012: Student Activities
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More than ever, The V.M. Goldschmidt 2012 Conference is co-organized by and for students! The members of the Student Committee are currently working hard to prepare a series of social and scientific activities specifically tailored to the needs and expectations of students participating in the conference. In addition to coordinating student volunteers during the meeting, they will organize a student BBQ at UQAM's Coeur des Sciences followed by a night out at the Jazz Festival, lead geological excursions on beautiful Mount Royal, select microbreweries for pub crawls on the nearby cosmopolitan and trendy St-Laurent Boulevard and St-Denis Street, organize a food tasting tour in charming Old Montreal, as well as plan and manage the student oral and poster presentation competition, three short courses and a job fair. Make sure to consult the Montreal Student Survival Guide at the lounge, and take the occasion to meet the members of the V.M. Goldschmidt 2012 Student Committee!

Consult the preliminary Student Program (Excel file) for a schedule of the student activities planned during the Goldschmidt 2012! For questions on student activities, feel free to contact Mina Ibrahim at

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New in GCA (v85, 15 May 2012)
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Clay fractions from a soil chronosequence after glacier retreat reveal the initial evolution of organo–mineral associations

Very high-K KREEP-rich clasts in the impact melt breccia of the lunar meteorite SaU 169: New constraints on the last residue of the Lunar Magma Ocean

Determination of the decay-constant of 87Rb by laboratory accumulation of 87Sr

Metal–silicate partitioning of Mo and W at high pressures and temperatures: Evidence for late accretion of sulphur to the Earth

Towards the establishment of a general rate law for gypsum nucleation

An overview of the volatile systematics of the Lau Basin – Resolving the effects of source variation, magmatic degassing and crustal contamination

Refractory element fractionation in the Allende meteorite: Implications for solar nebula condensation and the chondritic composition of planetary bodies

The Tafassasset primitive achondrite: Insights into initial stages of planetary differentiation

Sulfur mass-independent fractionation in liquid phase chemistry: UV photolysis of phenacylphenylsulfone as a case study

Enhanced reductive degradation of carbon tetrachloride by biogenic vivianite and Fe(II)

The puzzling presence of calcite in skeletons of modern solitary corals from the Mediterranean Sea

Formation and exposure history of non-magmatic iron meteorites and winonaites: Clues from Sm and W isotopes

Inorganic chemistry, gas compositions and dissolved organic carbon in fluids from sedimented young basaltic crust on the Juan de Fuca Ridge flanks

 Latest News

The surprising truth about Antarctic biodiversity
Wired    Share    Share on FacebookTwitterShare on LinkedinE-mail article
The Dry Valleys of Antarctica don't sound like a particularly hospitable place: sub-zero temperatures, salty soil and less than 10 centimeters of water per year (mostly in the form of snow that sublimates upon groundfall). The region has earned its reputation as the coldest, driest desert on the planet. Which is why a recent study by Charles Lee and his group at New Zealand's University of Waikato is particularly surprising. In the most recent ISME Journal, the team not only shows that microbes are scattered around the valleys, but that their populations are surprisingly diverse. It's not just a few hardy species eking out a precarious existence at the bottom of the world. More

New research reveals deep-ocean impact of the Deepwater Horizon explosion
Penn State Science    Share    Share on FacebookTwitterShare on LinkedinE-mail article
Compelling evidence of the impact of the Deepwater Horizon oil spill on deep-sea corals will be published online in the Early Edition of the journal Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences during the week beginning March 26, 2012. The diverse team of researchers, led by Penn State University Professor of Biology Charles Fisher, used a wide range of underwater vehicles, including the research submarine Alvin, to investigate the corals. They also used comprehensive two-dimensional gas chromatography to determine precisely the source of the petroleum hydrocarbons they found. More

Messenger spacecraft lowers orbit around Mercury
Spaceflight Now    Share    Share on FacebookTwitterShare on LinkedinE-mail article
NASA's Messenger spacecraft maneuvered itself into an orbit closer to Mercury, putting the probe in position for more detailed measurements of the planet's surface composition, sharper images of its surface, and precise mapping of its terrain. More

Geologists uncover supervolcano's secrets
Auckland Now    Share    Share on FacebookTwitterShare on LinkedinE-mail article
One of the most intriguing unsolved cases for New Zealand geologists is the ancient Taupo super-eruption. Victoria University PhD student Aidan Allan has found new evidence that explains how and why the volcano blew. While the general public is fascinated by the magnitude — the event buried the North Island in debris, with the ash cloud all the way to the Chathams — geologists' interest lies elsewhere. More

Evidence for a geologic trigger of the Cambrian explosion
University of Wisconsin-Madison    Share    Share on FacebookTwitterShare on LinkedinE-mail article
The oceans teemed with life 600 million years ago, but the simple, soft-bodied creatures would have been hardly recognizable as the ancestors of nearly all animals on Earth today. More

Major volcanic eruptions could stymie hurricanes
Mother Nature Network    Share    Share on FacebookTwitterShare on LinkedinE-mail article
Eruptions of very large volcanoes can reduce the number and intensity of hurricanes in the Atlantic Ocean for as long as the next three years, a study suggests. The study, published last month in the Journal of Geophysical Research, looked at the impact of the 1982 eruption of El Chichon in Mexico and the 1991 eruption of Pinatubo in the Philippines. More

Is asteroid mining possible? Study says yes, for $2.6 billion
SPACE    Share    Share on FacebookTwitterShare on LinkedinE-mail article
The prospect of mining asteroids may sound like science fiction, but that's exactly what the ambitious new company Planetary Resources, Inc. plans to do — and a recent study by NASA, university and private groups says it's actually possible. More

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