Meteor

Device may find Martians in us all

Publication: msnbc.com   Date: March 23, 2011   View Article

Life as we know it has a common ancestor— somewhere. Is it a Martian? A new device under development to fly on a future mission to Mars to find and sequence bits of genetic material could provide an answer, according to MIT and Harvard scientists.

“Given what we know about meteorite impacts and transfer of material between Earth and Mars, we are hoping that life may in fact exist on Mars and that it may in fact be related to us,” Christopher Carr, a MIT research scientist who is leading the project, told me today.

Comet “Shower” Killed Ice Age Mammals?

Publication: National Geographic News   Date: April 7, 2010   View Article

The comet that created the annual Taurid meteor shower was also responsible for snuffing out large mammals in North America 13,000 years ago, a controversial new study says.

The geologic record shows that global temperatures plummeted by as much as 14 degrees Fahrenheit (8 degrees Celsius) just as Earth was thawing out from the last ice age.

This cold snap probably led to the extinction in North America of large animals such as saber-toothed cats and wooly mammoths. But scientists have been unsure what triggered the abrupt change.

10 slices of summer science

Publication: MSNBC.com   Date: June 15, 2009   View Article

From “shooting stars” to the growth of dead zones in the Gulf of Mexico, there are several science-related things that occur in the summer. Check out ten.

Huge Impact Crater Uncovered in Canadian Forest

Publication: National Geographic News   Date: November 25, 2008   View Article

About 1,100 years ago a space rock the size of a big tree stump slammed into western Canada, carving an amphitheater-like crater into the ground and littering it with meteorites, a new study found.

The year’s biggest (and littlest) meteor showers

Publication: MSNBC.com   Date: August 11, 2008   View Article

Spend a night stargazing, and chances are that at least one “star” will appear to suddenly shoot across the sky. Shooting stars occur when tiny flecks of dust and debris – shed by comets during their trips through the inner solar system – burn up in Earth’s atmosphere, causing a streak of light. Learn about the Perseids as well as six other major showers, plus a handful of minor showers.

Giant Meteor Fireball Explodes over Northwest U.S.

Publication: Giant Meteor Fireball Explodes over Northwest U.S.   Date:   View Article

A meteor zipped across the U.S. Pacific Northwest sky early Tuesday morning before exploding, possibly littering eastern Oregon with marble- to basketball-size space rocks, an expert says.

Meteorite Impact Reformulated Earth’s Crust, Study Shows

Publication: National Geographic News   Date: January 12, 2006   View Article

About 1.8 billion years ago, a meteorite or comet the size of Mount Everest slammed into what is now Canada.

According to James Mungall, a University of Toronto geologist, the impact turned part of the Earth’s crust inside out and dusted the surface with a rare metal.

© 2008-2010 Collected Writings By John Roach