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Scientists Pin Down When Earth’s Crust Cracked, Then Came to Life
New data indicating that Earth’s surface broke up about 3.2 billion years ago helps clarify how plate tectonics drove the evolution of complex life.
Rumbles on Mars Raise Hopes of Underground Magma Flows
Small and cold, Mars has long been considered a dead planet. But a series of recent discoveries has forced scientists to rethink how recently its insides stopped churning — if they ever stopped at all.
Scientists Uncover the Universal Geometry of Geology
An exercise in pure mathematics has led to a wide-ranging theory of how the world comes together.
New Earthquake Math Predicts How Destructive They’ll Be
The “pinball” model of a slipping fault line borrows from the mathematics of avalanches.
A Rapid End Strikes the Dinosaur Extinction Debate
The paleontologist Pincelli Hull has nailed down the timing and speed of the extinction that killed off the dinosaurs — details that carry ominous warnings for today.
Artificial Intelligence Takes On Earthquake Prediction
After successfully predicting laboratory earthquakes, a team of geophysicists has applied a machine learning algorithm to quakes in the Pacific Northwest.
How Nearby Stellar Explosions Could Have Killed Off Large Animals
Subatomic particles called muons are thought to have streamed through the atmosphere and irradiated megafauna like the monster shark megalodon.