Geology

148: Solving an Apollo mystery with Dr. Curren

When taking a sample of the Moon's surface, the Apollo astronauts discovered a sharp transition from powdery soil to harder rock. This transition was entirely unexpected, and remained unexplained for decades.  Dr. Ivy Curren  talks about an experiment she designed to explain this phenomena. She also tells us about a type of lunar dust formation that scientists call "fairy castle structures."

When taking a sample of the Moon's surface, the Apollo astronauts discovered a sharp transition from powdery soil to harder rock. This transition was entirely unexpected, and remained unexplained for decades. Dr. Ivy Curren talks about an experiment she designed to explain this phenomena. She also tells us about a type of lunar dust formation that scientists call "fairy castle structures."

124: Searching Antarctica for meteorites with Dr. Cohen

Dr. Barbara Cohen  returns to the show to talk about meteorite collecting in Antarctica. These trips, which involve weeks of camping on the ice, provide invaluable scientific samples. She talks about what it's like to search for the rocks that "don't belong" in the frozen desert.  NASA put out a great article on her work as well, read it  here ! Also check out Dr. Cohen's  Wikipedia page .

Dr. Barbara Cohen returns to the show to talk about meteorite collecting in Antarctica. These trips, which involve weeks of camping on the ice, provide invaluable scientific samples. She talks about what it's like to search for the rocks that "don't belong" in the frozen desert.

NASA put out a great article on her work as well, read it here! Also check out Dr. Cohen's Wikipedia page.

105: Tectonic fabric with Dr. Donnellan

Dr. Andrea Donnellan  stops by the show to talk about  GeoGateway , a website that combines different datasets to help geologists. She explains how rocks move like silly putty, and recounts the time a lone cloud masqueraded as tectonic motion.  Bonus music at the end is “ Glorious Dawn ” by Colorpulse. Hear more rad science tunes at  www.symphonyofscience.com .  Image: Portion of  GeoGateway  data.

Dr. Andrea Donnellan stops by the show to talk about GeoGateway, a website that combines different datasets to help geologists. She explains how rocks move like silly putty, and recounts the time a lone cloud masqueraded as tectonic motion.

Bonus music at the end is “Glorious Dawn” by Colorpulse. Hear more rad science tunes at www.symphonyofscience.com.

Image: Portion of GeoGateway data.

91: Tectonic hazard on Phobos with Dr. Curren

Dr. Ivy Curren  talks about Mars’ moon Phobos, and how grooves on its surface indicate that the interior may be fractured. This small, mysterious moon is covered in faults, making it a dicey place for future missions to land.  Enhanced-color image of Phobos, taken by the Mars Reconnaissance Orbiter. Credit: NASA / JPL-Caltech / University of Arizona.

Dr. Ivy Curren talks about Mars’ moon Phobos, and how grooves on its surface indicate that the interior may be fractured. This small, mysterious moon is covered in faults, making it a dicey place for future missions to land.

Enhanced-color image of Phobos, taken by the Mars Reconnaissance Orbiter. Credit: NASA / JPL-Caltech / University of Arizona.