What's up in
Fossil Discoveries Challenge Ideas About Earth’s Start
A series of fossil finds suggests that life on Earth started earlier than anyone thought, calling into question a widely held theory of the solar system’s beginnings.
Jason Morgan Recalls Discovering Earth’s Tectonic Plates
Jason Morgan developed the theory of plate tectonics in 1967 while working among a critical mass of talented geophysicists at Princeton University.
Explorers Find Passage to Earth’s Dark Age
Geochemical signals from deep inside Earth are beginning to shed light on the planet’s first 50 million years, a formative period long viewed as inaccessible to science.
A Quasicrystal’s Shocking Origin
By blasting a stack of minerals with a four-meter-long gun, scientists have found a new clue about the backstory of a very strange rock.
How Life and Luck Changed Earth’s Minerals
Did the minerals on our planet arise in a predictable fashion, or did they result from chance events? The answers could eventually help scientists identify planets likely to harbor life.
In a Grain, a Glimpse of the Cosmos
When scientists traced a museum rock back to its origins, they uncovered mysteries about the early solar system.
Early Life in Death Valley
Evidence from Southwestern deserts suggests that oxygen-breathing organisms arose on land rather than in the seas.