Science News

Q&A: What can we learn from the Icelandic eruption?

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Iceland’s Reykjanes peninsula exploded into the public spotlight after several weeks of seismic activity gave way to a brand new volcano late on March 16, 2021. We spoke with Carnegie volcanologist and geodesist Hélène Le Mével about what we can learn from eruptions like Geldingardalsgos and how this may be the start of a longer period of volcanic activity on the island.

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Martian Meteorite Mineral Named After Carnegie’s Yingwei Fei

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Carnegie's Yingwei Fei is the namesake of an iron-titanuim oxide mineral discovered in a meteorite that originated on Mars. Caltech’s Chi Ma announced the find this week at the Lunar and Planetary Science Conference.

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Our top 6 questions in astronomy and astrophysics

A closer look at astronomy and astrophysics

At the Earth and Planets Laboratory (EPL), the astronomy and astrophysics team explores space to find distant planets and understand their (and our!) origins. In this article, we’ve distilled this work into our top six research questions (with a couple of extras sprinkled in.) Each question is complex and connected to the others in a way that requires EPL scientists to collaborate across research interests to answer. 

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Earth and Planets Laboratory Goes to Mars Again

Carnegie on Mars Perseverance Touchdown

Last week, NASA’s Mars 2020 Perseverance rover made it safely to Mars. Now, the fun begins! 

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"FarFarOut" officially added to count of dwarf sized planets in distant Solar System

(Photo credit: Roberto Molar Candanosa, Scott S. Sheppard from Carnegie Institution for Science, and Brooks Bays from University of Hawaiʻi.)

A team of researchers including Carnegie astronomer Scott Sheppard discovered the most distant object ever observed in our Solar System. The object is officially named 2018 AG37 but is nicknamed "FarFarOut" for just how far away from the Sun it is orbiting—about 132 AU, where 1 AU is the distance between the Earth and Sun. At that distance, it takes an entire millennium to orbit the Sun.

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Can super-Earth interior dynamics set the table for habitability?

Illustration of mimicing planet formation in the lab

New research led by Carnegie’s Yingwei Fei provides a framework for understanding the interiors of super-Earths--rocky exoplanets between 1.5 and 2 times the size of our home planet--which is a prerequisite to assess their potential for habitability.  Planets of this size are among the most abundant in exoplanetary systems.  The paper is published in Nature Communications.

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