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early Earth

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A neighborhood in space: finding the Moon’s age to understand Earth’s evolution

Understanding what made the Earth a habitable planet is an overarching goal of planetary sciences. Early events during the Earth's infancy set the initial conditions for its long-term evolution. The formation of its iron core and rocky mantle is one of those essential events. It... click to read more

  • Maxime Maurice | PhD student at German Aerospace Center (DLR), Rice University
Views 458
Reading time 3.5 min
published on Feb 1, 2021
What space dust could tell us about Earth’s past

Determining the composition of Earth's current atmosphere is relatively straightforward, using direct measurements, remote sensing via satellites, and sampling by aircraft. It is far more complicated to determine the composition of Earth's past atmosphere, going as far back as 4.6 billion years ago. Bubbles in... click to read more

Views 532
Reading time 3 min
published on Jan 5, 2021
A four-legged ancestor led the way for early whales dispersal

The whales, dolphins, and porpoises (generally called "cetaceans") that we know today are fully aquatic mammals, spending their entire life in the water. Whereas the forelimbs of these hydrodynamic animals are transformed into flippers, mostly used for steering, their hind limbs are highly reduced, and... click to read more

  • Olivier Lambert | Group leader at Institut royal des Sciences naturelles de Belgique, D.O. Terre et Histoire de la Vie, Brussels, Belgium
Views 1353
Reading time 4 min
published on Sep 16, 2019
A snapshot from the early Earth

The physical and chemical evolution of planets relies on certain volatile elements, such as Hydrogen (H), Carbon (C), and Nitrogen (N). For instance, on Earth volatile elements influence magma chemistry, volcanism and the evolution of our atmosphere and climate. Perhaps most important, the presence of... click to read more

  • Patricia Clay | Research Fellow at School of Earth & Environmental Science (SEES), Isotope Geochemistry & Cosmochemistry Group, The University of Manchester, Manchester, UK
Views 2202
Reading time 3 min
published on Jan 9, 2019