Turbulence in planetary cores excited by tides

Veritable shields against high-energy particles, planets' magnetic fields are produced by iron moving in their liquid core. Yet the dominant model for explaining this system does not fit the smallest celestial bodies. Researchers ...

Probing the possibility of life on super-Earths

Along with its aesthetic function of helping create the glorious Aurora Borealis, or Northern Lights, the powerful magnetic field surrounding our planet has a fairly important practical value as well: It makes life possible.

Coring Arctic lakes to study Vikings

Billy D'Andrea, a Lamont-Doherty Earth Observatory paleoclimatologist and Center for Climate and Life Fellow is currently doing fieldwork in Norway's Lofoten Islands. He's interested in the natural factors that may have ...

En route to better transformers

Researchers at the Paul Scherrer Institute PSI have found a way of looking inside the iron core of transformers. Transformers are indispensable in regulating electricity both in industry and in domestic households. The better ...

Just what sustains Earth's magnetic field anyway?

Earth's magnetic field shields us from deadly cosmic radiation, and without it, life as we know it could not exist here. The motion of liquid iron in the planet's outer core, a phenomenon called a "geodynamo," generates the ...

Geochemical detectives use lab mimicry to look back in time

New work from a research team led by Carnegie's Anat Shahar contains some unexpected findings about iron chemistry under high-pressure conditions, such as those likely found in the Earth's core, where iron predominates and ...

What is a terrestrial planet?

In studying our solar system over the course of many centuries, astronomers learned a great deal about the types of planets that exist in our universe. This knowledge has since expanded thanks to the discovery of extrasolar ...

Apollo-era lunar seismic data yields new lunar core model

(Phys.org)—Like the solar system's telluric planets, including Earth itself, the moon's internal structure is composed of geoochemically distinct mantle, crust and core layers. The core is mostly iron; much of our understanding ...

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