Understanding whether Mars was once able to support life has been a major driving force for Mars research over the past 50 years. To decipher the planet's ancient climate and habitability, researchers look to the rock record - a physical record of ancient surface processes which reflect the environment and the prevailing climate at the time the rocks were deposited.

The study was published by the team from Ruhr-Universität Bochum (RUB), the Max Planck Institutes of Biochemistry and Biophysics, the Center for Synthetic Microbiology (SYNMIKRO) and the Chemistry Department at Philipps Universität Marburg, the University of Illinois Urbana-Champaign, USA, and Université Paris-Saclay, France, online on 12 April 2021 in the journal Nature Plants.

Catalyst of life

A new study finds a naturally occurring “earthquake gate” that decides which earthquakes are allowed to grow into magnitude 8 or greater.

Sometimes, the “gate” stops earthquakes in the magnitude 7 range, while ones that pass through the gate grow to magnitude 8 or greater, releasing over 32 times as much energy as a magnitude 7.

Researchers from the Institute of Modern Physics (IMP) of the Chinese Academy of Sciences and their collaborators have recently made great progress in the study of the stellar beta-decay rate of 59Fe, which constitutes an important step towards understanding 60Fe nucleosynthesis in massive stars. The results were published in Physical Review Letters on April 12.

ITHACA, N.Y. - The muon is a tiny particle, but it has the giant potential to upend our understanding of the subatomic world and reveal an undiscovered type of fundamental physics.

That possibility is looking more and more likely, according to the initial results of an international collaboration - hosted by the U.S. Department of Energy's Fermi National Accelerator Laboratory - that involved key contributions by a Cornell team led by Lawrence Gibbons, professor of physics in the College of Arts and Sciences.

AMHERST Mass. - The long-awaited first results from the Muon g-2 experiment at the U.S. Department of Energy's Fermi National Accelerator Laboratory show fundamental particles called muons behaving in a way that is not predicted by scientists' best theory, the Standard Model of particle physics. This landmark result, made with unprecedented precision and to which UMass Amherst's David Kawall's research group made key contributions, confirms a discrepancy that has been gnawing at researchers for decades.

One day, humankind may step foot on another habitable planet. That planet may look very different from Earth, but one thing will feel familiar -- the rain.

In a recent paper, Harvard researchers found that raindrops are remarkably similar across different planetary environments, even planets as drastically different as Earth and Jupiter. Understanding the behavior of raindrops on other planets is key to not only revealing the ancient climate on planets like Mars but identifying potentially habitable planets outside our solar system.

Multilingual people have trained their brains to learn languages, making it easier to acquire more new languages after mastering a second or third. In addition to demystifying the seemingly herculean genius of multilinguals, researchers say these results provide some of the first neuroscientific evidence that language skills are additive, a theory known as the cumulative?enhancement model of language acquisition.

Astronomers have detected X-rays from Uranus for the first time, using NASA's Chandra X-ray Observatory. This result may help scientists learn more about this enigmatic ice giant planet in our solar system.

PROVIDENCE, R.I. [Brown University] -- Researchers from Brown University have discovered a previously unknown type of ancient crater lake on Mars that could reveal clues about the planet's early climate.

The high temperatures and pressures of the Earth's mantle forge carbon-rich minerals known as carbonates into diamond. But less is known about the fate of carbonates that travel even deeper underground -- depths from which no sample has ever been recovered.

Now, Michigan State University's Susannah Dorfman and her team are unearthing an answer with lab tools that mimic these extreme conditions.

WASHINGTON-- The stormy, centuries-old maelstrom of Jupiter's Great Red Spot was shaken but not destroyed by a series of anticyclones that crashed into it over the past few years.

The smaller storms cause chunks of red clouds to flake off, shrinking the larger storm in the process. But the new study found that these disruptions are "superficial." They are visible to us, but they are only skin deep on the Red Spot, not affecting its full depth.

What would a volcano - and its lava flows - look like on a planetary body made primarily of metal? A pilot study from North Carolina State University offers insights into ferrovolcanism that could help scientists interpret landscape features on other worlds.

Volcanoes form when magma, which consists of the partially molten solids beneath a planet's surface, erupts. On Earth, that magma is mostly molten rock, composed largely of silica. But not every planetary body is made of rock - some can be primarily icy or even metallic.

Brazilian researchers have published a systematic review of the scientific literature showing that some warm-up strategies such as dynamic stretching can effectively prepare soccer players to maintain kicking accuracy, whereas intense physical exercises have a negative effect on the velocity of the ball when kicked, and consumption of carbohydrate beverages during a match can enable players to maintain adequate kicking performance in the concluding moments of prolonged physical exercise such as a sudden-death playoff.

ITHACA, N.Y. - Using light from the Big Bang, an international team led by Cornell University and the U.S. Department of Energy's Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory has begun to unveil the material which fuels galaxy formation.