Ingenuity – April 7, 2021

Ingenuity – April 7, 2021

It’s Science Wednesday – and it’s an exciting time in the realm of planetary science! On February 18, 2021, NASA’s Perseverance rover landed on Mars in order to explore the Jezero Crater. The primary mission is an astrobiological one: to identify environments capable...
The Science of Procrastination – March 31, 2021

The Science of Procrastination – March 31, 2021

So, I should probably be working right now….but….   What is it that makes us procrastinate? Is it because we’re lazy? Or does it have roots in our evolutionary development? As Dr. Tim Pychyl, a psychology professor states, procrastination “is not a time...
New (Volcanic) Life in Iceland – March 24, 2021

New (Volcanic) Life in Iceland – March 24, 2021

It’s Science Wednesday! For several weeks, Icelanders had been bracing themselves for a volcanic eruption of some sort, given the island recorded more than 50,000 recent earthquakes! A few days ago – on March 19 – a new fissure (linear volcanic vent through which lava...
AMOC Gone Amok? – March 17, 2021

AMOC Gone Amok? – March 17, 2021

When we think of climate change, often we think about how the atmosphere is changing – how it’s getting hotter. But there is also a story of change unfolding in the ocean, which absorbs some 90 percent of the excess heat from greenhouse gas emissions. A system of...
What Does Ice Have To Do With It? – March 10, 2021

What Does Ice Have To Do With It? – March 10, 2021

From 1914 – 1919, during which time World War I was being fought, an unusual weather pattern settled in over Northern Europe due to what’s called the North Atlantic Oscillation (NAO). This is a natural fluctuation that occurs in atmospheric pressure over the North...
Piecing it Together – March 3, 2021

Piecing it Together – March 3, 2021

Earlier in February, as the US was in the icy grip of an Arctic blast of cold air, a tragedy was unfolding on the other side of the planet, in northern India. On February 7, 2021, a large torrent of water and debris wiped out multiple hydroelectric power plants in the...
Alphabet Soup – February 24, 2021

Alphabet Soup – February 24, 2021

Back in January, I wrote about A-68a – the world’s largest iceberg – that was on a collision course with South Georgia Island, an island about 950 miles from the Antarctic Peninsula. The iceberg initially measured more than 2300 square miles (6000 square kilometers)!...
Frozen Texas – February 17, 2021

Frozen Texas – February 17, 2021

In this last week, parts of the US were hit with incredibly cold and deadly winter weather. Places where you typically see palm trees and cacti were covered in snow and ice instead. The state of Texas saw some of its coldest temperatures in more than 30 years, with...
Saharan Dust – February 10, 2021

Saharan Dust – February 10, 2021

It’s Science Wednesday! Back in June/July 2020, parts of the US and the Caribbean saw darker hazier skies due to large clouds of dust coming from the Sahara Desert in Africa. While the dust storm was a part of a regular meteorological phenomenon, the 2020 cloud of...
Dirty Snow – February 3, 2021

Dirty Snow – February 3, 2021

It’s Science Wednesday! Yesterday, Ricardo and I went up Colorado’s 5th highest mountain: La Plata Peak (14,336 ft./4370 m). The trail conditions were very challenging below treeline, as we had to break trail through very loose and unconsolidated dry snow with our...
Starlink Satellites – January 27, 2021

Starlink Satellites – January 27, 2021

Lately there’s been a lot of activity in the realm of space. SpaceX has been launching Starlink satellites in an effort to develop low-latency high-speed broadband internet connection for the entire globe in the next few years.  This effort began back in May 2019,...
The Science of Conspiracy – January 20, 2021

The Science of Conspiracy – January 20, 2021

It’s Science Wednesday. Today marks the start of a new administration in the US government. It also marks a much-needed shift to trusting in science again. Science is the best tool we have to combat the crises currently plaguing the US as well as the world: the...
Iceberg A68a – January 13, 2021

Iceberg A68a – January 13, 2021

Though most of my work is currently focused in the Arctic – with emphasis on Alaska – this time last year I was preparing to go to Antarctica with Aurora Expeditions. I have been thinking back to wonderful memories of an amazing land and oceanscape full of vibrant...
Vitamin D – January 6, 2021

Vitamin D – January 6, 2021

In 2020, our lives changed due to the COVID-19 pandemic. Thanks to science, multiple vaccines are out and showing good results (e.g., https://www.nejm.org/doi/full/10.1056/NEJMoa2034577). As it may be a while before the general population gets access, what can we do...
Geodes – December 30, 2020

Geodes – December 30, 2020

It’s the last Science Wednesday of 2020 – wishing all our readers a very Happy New Year! Last week, my nieces received some geodes for Christmas and they are the inspiration for this week’s post! It’s been fun breaking the rocks open (safely!) together and...
Santa’s Reindeer – December 23, 2020

Santa’s Reindeer – December 23, 2020

Did you know that reindeer and caribou are the only deer where both the male and female have antlers? Antlers grow each year from bony stubs on deer heads and are made of bone but covered by a furry skin called “velvet.” This skin is heavily concentrated in blood...
The Unicorn of the Sea – December 16, 2020

The Unicorn of the Sea – December 16, 2020

The Unicorn of the Sea – December 16, 2020   As the holidays approach, we’re focusing on the cold places of the planet – while harsh, these places are home to many incredible and resilient species. One that stands out for its uniqueness is the “unicorn of...
Reaching a New Height – December 9, 2020

Reaching a New Height – December 9, 2020

Reaching a New Height – December 9, 2020    Mt. Everest captures imaginations. Mountaineers come to scale the peak while trekkers come to marvel at the mountain from base camp (note: you can’t actually see much of Everest from the base camp but if you hike...
An Ancient World – December 2, 2020

An Ancient World – December 2, 2020

An Ancient World – December 2, 2020   A few weeks ago, we climbed Texas’ highpoint: Guadalupe Peak (8750 ft./2667 m). This is a very interesting state highpoint in that it is made up of the remains of creatures that inhabited an inland sea and built a reef...
The Carlsbad Caverns – November 24, 2020

The Carlsbad Caverns – November 24, 2020

The Carlsbad Caverns – November 24, 2020   A majority of the world’s limestone caves are created through carbonic acid in surface water flowing down through cracks in limestone rock, eroding and enlarging passageways. Carbonic acid is formed by rain and...