Weekly News Round-Up 24.01.13

Hello readers! Welcome to this week’s Weekly News Round-up, a collection of the most interesting news articles our research group has been reading this week. To give a bit more information about how we are planning on running this segment – We will be releasing one of these articles every Friday morning on top of our regular weekly blog article. We hope you enjoy this new segment and if you find something interesting that we haven’t mentioned, why not share it with us by leaving a comment?

A Sign From The Desert

Recent collaborative efforts between a trio of European scientists have led to the discovery that Vesta (the suspected source of many of the stony meteorites Earth receives), may have a magma ocean underneath its crustal exterior. The analysis carried out on the internal structure of meteorite NWA 5480 may suggest it shares more in common with Earth than originally thought! Read more about the article here: Asteroid Vesta more like Earth than originally realized, study shows.

It’s Mining, But Not As We Know It!

You might remember the announcement made awhile back about a company daring to attempt the previously impossible, to mine rare metals and other minerals from asteroids. Well, this week the idea has resurfaced in the form of a second company going public with its proposals. Read more about it here: New venture ‘to mine asteroids’.

Unraveling The Mystery Of Cosmic Rays

Cosmic rays are a somewhat poorly understood phenomenon, particularly their sources. Theories behind them are constantly changing and the breakthrough recently made by the IceCube neutrino telescope may have changed everything again. One of the proposed sources of these particles are gamma ray bursts, one of the brightest phenomenon we observe in the universe, – read about the latest findings here: ‘Extreme Universe’ puzzle deepens.

Leaving A Mark In History

New evidence has been uncovered, due to a study of isotopic ratios, that Earth was hit by a gamma ray burst at some point in the 8th Century. The study used a combination of Carbon isotopes in ancient trees as well as Beryllium isotopes in ice combined with theoretical computer models to ascertain what caused the strange isotope irregularities. Research carried out by the Institute of Astrophysics at the University of Jena provided gamma ray bursts as a plausible source of these irregularities. The full article can be found here: Gamma-ray burst ‘hit Earth in 8th Century’.

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About Mark Nottingham

Mark is a PhD student in the Isotope Geochemistry and Cosmochemistry group at UoM. Primarily working on the RIMSKI and RELAX noble gas instruments.
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