Ancient zircon minerals from Mars reveal the elusive internal structure of the red planet — ScienceDaily

The uranium-bearing mineral zircon is an abundant constituent of Earth’s continental crust, providing information about the age and origin of the continents and large geological features such as mountain chains and giant volcanoes. But unlike Earth, Mars’s crust is not evolved and is compositionally similar to the crust found under the Earth’s oceans, where zircon is rare. Therefore, zircon is not expected to be a common mineral on Mars.

“We were quite surprised and excited when we found so many zircons in this martian meteorite. Zircon are incredible durable crystals that can be dated and preserve information that tell us about their origins. Having access to so many zircons is like opening a time window into the geologic history of planet,” describes Professor Martin Bizzarro from the GLOBE Institute, who led the study.

The team investigated the ancient Martian meteorite NWA 7533, dubbed “Black Beauty,” which was discovered in the

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Researchers trap electrons to create elusive crystal

Credit: Unsplash/CC0 Public Domain

Like restless children posing for a family portrait, electrons won’t hold still long enough to stay in any kind of fixed arrangement.

Cornell researchers stacked two-dimensional semiconductors to create a moiré superlattice structure that traps electrons in a repeating pattern, ultimately forming the long-hypothesized Wigner crystal.

Now, a Cornell-led collaboration has developed a way to stack two-dimensional semiconductors and trap electrons in a repeating pattern that forms a specific and long-hypothesized crystal.

The team’s paper, “Correlated Insulating States at Fractional Fillings of Moiré Superlattices,” published Nov. 11 in Nature. The paper’s lead author is postdoctoral researcher Yang Xu.

The project grew out of the shared lab of Kin Fai Mak, associate professor of physics in the College of Arts and Sciences, and Jie Shan, professor of applied and engineering physics in the College of Engineering, the paper’s co-senior authors. Both researchers are members of the

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Elusive, mysterious sighting of bigfin squid filmed by deep-sea explorers

The bigfin squid has tentacles that extend beyond 5 feet.

CSIRO/Osterhage et al.

At CNET Science, we tend to focus a lot on the worlds and life beyond Earth. We love space. The hellscape lava planets and the icy moons in our solar system are intriguing, unexplored places that hold a lot of secrets. That makes it easy to forget we’re hiding a vast, mysterious world beneath the surface of our oceans, fathoms below the waves. Every now and again, we’re reminded of the wonders (and nightmares) of the deep.

New sightings of the bigfin squid, a cephalopod with tentacles that can grow up to 26 feet long, roaming the ocean where sunlight can’t reach, provide one such reminder. 

In a study published Wednesday in

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Elusive and extremely rare catshark captured in amazing video

Great whites might be the jumbo stars of the shark world, but there are some equally fascinating members on the other side of the size spectrum. The crew of the research vessel Falkor experienced the wonders of the deep when it spotted “one of the rarest species of sharks in the world” during a recent Schmidt Ocean Institute mission.

a close up of a fish: This short-tail catshark (Parmaturus bigus), seen at the Great Barrier Reef off the coast of Australia, is a rare sight. Schmidt Ocean video screenshot by Amanda Kooser/CNET

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This short-tail catshark (Parmaturus bigus), seen at the Great Barrier Reef off the coast of Australia, is a rare sight. Schmidt Ocean video screenshot by Amanda Kooser/CNET

Shark expert Will White with the Commonwealth Scientific and Industrial Research Organisation, Australia’s national science research agency, identified the short-tail catshark Parmaturus bigus from footage captured during an exploration of the Great Barrier Reef on Oct. 17. Falkor’s remotely operated submersible SuBastian got a good look at the big-eyed creature. 

a close up of a fish: This short-tail catshark (Parmaturus Bigus) seen in the Great Barrier Reef off the coast of Australia is a rare sight.

© Schmidt Ocean video screenshot by Amanda Kooser/CNET

This short-tail

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