Planetary Science

A system of categorization that reflects not just a mineral's chemistry and crystalline structure, but also the physical, chemical, or biological processes by which it formed, would be capable of recognizing that nanodiamonds from space are fundamentally different from diamonds formed in Earth's depths.

Materials

Active materials can interchange types of energy. In a new cover article in the journal molecules, Geophysical Lab Staff Scientist Ronald Cohen and his colleague Haiwu Zhang report on predictions of a new class of polar metallocene crystals, which may be useful as active materials.

Department

The AGU Fall Meeting 2018 will take place in Washington, DC from December 10-14.  Many staff members and postdoctoral associates from the Geophysical Laboratory will attend this year.  

Check here daily for live updates on each day's science presentations; or follow along on FacebookTwitterYouTubeand Instagram. For a live stream of conference photos, click here or follow along below!

Mars’ organic carbon may have originated from a series of electrochemical reactions between briny liquids and volcanic minerals, according to new analyses of three Martian meteorites from a team led by the Geophysical Laboratory’s Andrew Steele published in Science Advances.

High Pressure, Matter at Extreme States

Lab-based mimicry allowed an international team of physicists including the Geophysical Laboratory’s Alexander Goncharov to probe hydrogen under the conditions found in the interiors of giant planets—where experts believe it gets squeezed until it becomes a liquid metal, capable of conducting electricity. Their work is published in Science.

Geochemistry, Matter at Extreme States, Mineralogy

Blue diamonds—like the world-famous Hope Diamond at the National Museum of Natural History—formed up to four times deeper in the Earth’s mantle than most other diamonds, according to new work by Carnegie’s Steven Shirey, Emma Bullock, and Jianhua Wang and published on the cover of Nature.

High Pressure, Materials, Matter at Extreme States

New work from a team led by the Geophysical Laboratory’s Alexander Goncharov confirms that nitrogen, the dominant gas in Earth’s atmosphere, becomes a metallic fluid when subjected to the extreme pressure and temperature conditions found deep inside the Earth and other planets. Their findings are published by Nature Communications.

Geochemistry, Mineralogy

A team of scientists including the Geophysical Laboratory’s Michael Ackerson and Bjørn Mysen revealed that granites from Yosemite National Park contain minerals that crystallized at much lower temperatures than previously thought possible. This finding upends scientific understanding of how granites form and what they can teach us about our planet’s geologic history.

Mineralogy

A team of scientists led by the Geophysical Laboratory’s Shaunna Morrison and including Bob Hazen have revealed the mineralogy of Mars at an unprecedented scale, which will help them understand the planet’s geologic history and habitability.

Astrobiology, Geochemistry

NASA’s Curiosity rover has discovered new “tough” organic molecules in three-billion-year-old sedimentary rocks on Mars, increasing the chances that the record of habitability and potential life could have been preserved on the Red Planet, despite extremely harsh conditions on the surface that can easily break down organic molecules.

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