Science.gov

Sample records for early earth processes

  1. Petrochronology in constraining early Archean Earth processes and environments: Barberton greenstone belt, South Africa

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Grosch, Eugene

    2017-04-01

    Analytical and petrological software developments over the past decade have seen rapid innovation in high-spatial resolution petrological techniques, for example, laser-ablation ICP-MS, secondary ion microprobe (SIMS, nano-SIMS), thermodynamic modelling and electron microprobe microscale mapping techniques (e.g. XMapTools). This presentation will focus on the application of petrochronology to ca. 3.55 to 3.33 billion-year-old metavolcanic and sedimentary rocks of the Onverwacht Group, shedding light on the earliest geologic evolution of the Paleoarchean Barberton greenstone belt (BGB) of South Africa. The field, scientific drilling and petrological research conducted over the past 8 years, aims to illustrate how: (a) LA-ICP-MS and SIMS U-Pb detrital zircon geochronology has helped identify the earliest tectono-sedimentary basin and sediment sources in the BGB, as well as reconstructing geodynamic processes as early as ca. 3.432 billion-years ago; (b) in-situ SIMS multiple sulphur isotope analysis of sulphides across various early Archean rock units help to reconstruct atmospheric, surface and subsurface environments on early Archean Earth and (c) the earliest candidate textural traces for subsurface microbial life can be investigated by in-situ LA-ICP-MS U-Pb dating of titanite, micro-XANES Fe-speciation analysis and metamorphic microscale mapping. Collectively, petrochronology combined with high-resolution field mapping studies, is a powerful multi-disciplinary approach towards deciphering petrogenetic and geodynamic processes preserved in the Paleoarchean Barberton greenstone belt of South Africa, with implications for early Archean Earth evolution.

  2. Early Earth slab stagnation

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Agrusta, R.; Van Hunen, J.

    2016-12-01

    At present day, the Earth's mantle exhibits a combination of stagnant and penetrating slabs within the transition zone, indicating a intermittent convection mode between layered and whole-mantle convection. Isoviscous thermal convection calculations show that in a hotter Earth, the natural mode of convection was dominated by double-layered convection, which may imply that slabs were more prone to stagnate in the transition zone. Today, slab penetration is to a large extent controlled by trench mobility for a plausible range of lower mantle viscosity and Clapeyron slope of the mantle phase transitions. Trench mobility is, in turn, governed by slab strength and density and upper plate forcing. In this study, we systematically investigate the slab-transition zone internation in the Early Earth, using 2D self-consistent numerical subduction models. Early Earth's higher mantle temperature facilitates decoupling between the plates and the underlying asthenosphere, and may result in slab sinking almost without trench retreat. Such behaviour together with a low resistance of a weak lower mantle may allow slabs to penetrate. The ability of slab to sink into the lower mantle throughout Earth's history may have important implications for Earth's evolution: it would provide efficient mass and heat flux through the transition zone therefore provide an efficient way to cool and mix the Earth's mantle.

  3. Biosignatures of early earths

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Pilcher, Carl B.

    2003-01-01

    A major goal of NASA's Origins Program is to find habitable planets around other stars and determine which might harbor life. Determining whether or not an extrasolar planet harbors life requires an understanding of what spectral features (i.e., biosignatures) might result from life's presence. Consideration of potential biosignatures has tended to focus on spectral features of gases in Earth's modern atmosphere, particularly ozone, the photolytic product of biogenically produced molecular oxygen. But life existed on Earth for about 1(1/2) billion years before the buildup of atmospheric oxygen. Inferred characteristics of Earth's earliest biosphere and studies of modern microbial ecosystems that share some of those characteristics suggest that organosulfur compounds, particularly methanethiol (CH(3)SH, the sulfur analog of methanol), may have been biogenic products on early Earth. Similar production could take place on extrasolar Earth-like planets whose biota share functional chemical characteristics with Earth life. Since methanethiol and related organosulfur compounds (as well as carbon dioxide) absorb at wavelengths near or overlapping the 9.6-microm band of ozone, there is potential ambiguity in interpreting a feature around this wavelength in an extrasolar planet spectrum.

  4. Biosignatures of early earths.

    PubMed

    Pilcher, Carl B

    2003-01-01

    A major goal of NASA's Origins Program is to find habitable planets around other stars and determine which might harbor life. Determining whether or not an extrasolar planet harbors life requires an understanding of what spectral features (i.e., biosignatures) might result from life's presence. Consideration of potential biosignatures has tended to focus on spectral features of gases in Earth's modern atmosphere, particularly ozone, the photolytic product of biogenically produced molecular oxygen. But life existed on Earth for about 1(1/2) billion years before the buildup of atmospheric oxygen. Inferred characteristics of Earth's earliest biosphere and studies of modern microbial ecosystems that share some of those characteristics suggest that organosulfur compounds, particularly methanethiol (CH(3)SH, the sulfur analog of methanol), may have been biogenic products on early Earth. Similar production could take place on extrasolar Earth-like planets whose biota share functional chemical characteristics with Earth life. Since methanethiol and related organosulfur compounds (as well as carbon dioxide) absorb at wavelengths near or overlapping the 9.6-microm band of ozone, there is potential ambiguity in interpreting a feature around this wavelength in an extrasolar planet spectrum.

  5. Earth's early biosphere

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Des Marais, D. J.

    1998-01-01

    Understanding our own early biosphere is essential to our search for life elsewhere, because life arose on Earth very early and rocky planets shared similar early histories. The biosphere arose before 3.8 Ga ago, was exclusively unicellular and was dominated by hyperthermophiles that utilized chemical sources of energy and employed a range of metabolic pathways for CO2 assimilation. Photosynthesis also arose very early. Oxygenic photosynthesis arose later but still prior to 2.7 Ga. The transition toward the modern global environment was paced by a decline in volcanic and hydrothermal activity. These developments allowed atmospheric O2 levels to increase. The O2 increase created new niches for aerobic life, most notably the more advanced Eukarya that eventually spawned the megascopic fauna and flora of our modern biosphere.

  6. Photosynthesis and early Earth.

    PubMed

    Shih, Patrick M

    2015-10-05

    Life has been built on the evolution and innovation of microbial metabolisms. Even with our scant understanding of the full diversity of microbial life, it is clear that microbes have become integral components of the biogeochemical cycles that drive our planet. The antiquity of life further suggests that various microbial metabolisms have been core and essential to global elemental cycling for a majority of Earth's history. Copyright © 2015 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  7. Physical conditions on the early Earth

    PubMed Central

    Lunine, Jonathan I

    2006-01-01

    The formation of the Earth as a planet was a large stochastic process in which the rapid assembly of asteroidal-to-Mars-sized bodies was followed by a more extended period of growth through collisions of these objects, facilitated by the gravitational perturbations associated with Jupiter. The Earth's inventory of water and organic molecules may have come from diverse sources, not more than 10% roughly from comets, the rest from asteroidal precursors to chondritic bodies and possibly objects near Earth's orbit for which no representative class of meteorites exists today in laboratory collections. The final assembly of the Earth included a catastrophic impact with a Mars-sized body, ejecting mantle and crustal material to form the Moon, and also devolatilizing part of the Earth. A magma ocean and steam atmosphere (possibly with silica vapour) existed briefly in this period, but terrestrial surface waters were below the critical point within 100 million years after Earth's formation, and liquid water existed continuously on the surface within a few hundred million years. Organic material delivered by comets and asteroids would have survived, in part, this violent early period, but frequent impacts of remaining debris probably prevented the continuous habitability of the Earth for one to several hundred million years. Planetary analogues to or records of this early time when life began include Io (heat flow), Titan (organic chemistry) and Venus (remnant early granites). PMID:17008213

  8. Physical conditions on the early Earth.

    PubMed

    Lunine, Jonathan I

    2006-10-29

    The formation of the Earth as a planet was a large stochastic process in which the rapid assembly of asteroidal-to-Mars-sized bodies was followed by a more extended period of growth through collisions of these objects, facilitated by the gravitational perturbations associated with Jupiter. The Earth's inventory of water and organic molecules may have come from diverse sources, not more than 10% roughly from comets, the rest from asteroidal precursors to chondritic bodies and possibly objects near Earth's orbit for which no representative class of meteorites exists today in laboratory collections. The final assembly of the Earth included a catastrophic impact with a Mars-sized body, ejecting mantle and crustal material to form the Moon, and also devolatilizing part of the Earth. A magma ocean and steam atmosphere (possibly with silica vapour) existed briefly in this period, but terrestrial surface waters were below the critical point within 100 million years after Earth's formation, and liquid water existed continuously on the surface within a few hundred million years. Organic material delivered by comets and asteroids would have survived, in part, this violent early period, but frequent impacts of remaining debris probably prevented the continuous habitability of the Earth for one to several hundred million years. Planetary analogues to or records of this early time when life began include Io (heat flow), Titan (organic chemistry) and Venus (remnant early granites).

  9. Rethinking early Earth phosphorus geochemistry

    PubMed Central

    Pasek, Matthew A.

    2008-01-01

    Phosphorus is a key biologic element, and a prebiotic pathway leading to its incorporation into biomolecules has been difficult to ascertain. Most potentially prebiotic phosphorylation reactions have relied on orthophosphate as the source of phosphorus. It is suggested here that the geochemistry of phosphorus on the early Earth was instead controlled by reduced oxidation state phosphorus compounds such as phosphite (HPO32−), which are more soluble and reactive than orthophosphates. This reduced oxidation state phosphorus originated from extraterrestrial material that fell during the heavy bombardment period or was produced during impacts, and persisted in the mildly reducing atmosphere. This alternate view of early Earth phosphorus geochemistry provides an unexplored route to the formation of pertinent prebiotic phosphorus compounds, suggests a facile reaction pathway to condensed phosphates, and is consistent with the biochemical usage of reduced oxidation state phosphorus compounds in life today. Possible studies are suggested that may detect reduced oxidation state phosphorus compounds in ancient Archean rocks. PMID:18195373

  10. Rethinking early Earth phosphorus geochemistry.

    PubMed

    Pasek, Matthew A

    2008-01-22

    Phosphorus is a key biologic element, and a prebiotic pathway leading to its incorporation into biomolecules has been difficult to ascertain. Most potentially prebiotic phosphorylation reactions have relied on orthophosphate as the source of phosphorus. It is suggested here that the geochemistry of phosphorus on the early Earth was instead controlled by reduced oxidation state phosphorus compounds such as phosphite (HPO(3)(2-)), which are more soluble and reactive than orthophosphates. This reduced oxidation state phosphorus originated from extraterrestrial material that fell during the heavy bombardment period or was produced during impacts, and persisted in the mildly reducing atmosphere. This alternate view of early Earth phosphorus geochemistry provides an unexplored route to the formation of pertinent prebiotic phosphorus compounds, suggests a facile reaction pathway to condensed phosphates, and is consistent with the biochemical usage of reduced oxidation state phosphorus compounds in life today. Possible studies are suggested that may detect reduced oxidation state phosphorus compounds in ancient Archean rocks.

  11. Early Earth differentiation [rapid communication

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Walter, Michael J.; Trønnes, Reidar G.

    2004-09-01

    The birth and infancy of Earth was a time of profound differentiation involving massive internal reorganization into core, mantle and proto-crust, all within a few hundred million years of solar system formation ( t0). Physical and isotopic evidence indicate that the formation of iron-rich cores generally occurred very early in planetesimals, the building blocks of proto-Earth, within about 3 million years of t0. The final stages of terrestrial planetary accretion involved violent and tremendously energetic giant impacts among core-segregated Mercury- to Mars-sized objects and planetary embryos. As a consequence of impact heating, the early Earth was at times partially or wholly molten, increasing the likelihood for high-pressure and high-temperature equilibration among core- and mantle-forming materials. The Earth's silicate mantle harmoniously possesses abundance levels of the siderophile elements Ni and Co that can be reconciled by equilibration between iron alloy and silicate at conditions comparable to those expected for a deep magma ocean. Solidification of a deep magma ocean possibly involved crystal-melt segregation at high pressures, but subsequent convective stirring of the mantle could have largely erased nascent layering. However, primitive upper mantle rocks apparently have some nonchondritic major and trace element refractory lithophile element ratios that can be plausibly linked to early mantle differentiation of ultra-high-pressure mantle phases. The geochemical effects of crystal fractionation in a deep magma ocean are partly constrained by high-pressure experimentation. Comparison between compositional models for the primitive convecting mantle and bulk silicate Earth generally allows, and possibly favors, 10-15% total fractionation of a deep mantle assemblage comprised predominantly of Mg-perovskite and with minor but geochemically important amounts of Ca-perovskite and ferropericlase. Long-term isolation of such a crystal pile is generally

  12. Simulation of Prebiotic Processing by Comet and Meteoroid Impact: Implications for Life on Early Earth and Other Planets

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Dateo, Christopher E.

    2003-01-01

    We develop a reacting flow model to simulate the shock induced chemistry of comets and meteoroids entering planetary atmospheres. Various atmospheric compositions comprising of simpler molecules (i.e., CH4, CO2, H2O, etc.) are investigated to determine the production efficiency of more complex prebiotic molecules as a function of composition, pressure, and entry velocity. The possible role of comets and meteoroids in creating the inventory of prebiotic material necessary for life on Early Earth is considered. Comets and meteoroids can also introduce new materials from the Interstellar Medium (ISM) to planetary atmospheres. The ablation of water from comets, introducing the element oxygen into Titan's atmosphere will also be considered and its implications for the formation of organic and prebiotic material.

  13. Early Earth(s) Across Time and Space

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Mojzsis, S.

    2014-04-01

    The geochemical and cosmochemical record of our solar system is the baseline for exploring the question: "when could life appear on a world similar to our own?" Data arising from direct analysis of the oldest terrestrial rocks and minerals from the first 500 Myr of Earth history - termed the Hadean Eon - inform us about the timing for the establishment of a habitable silicate world. Liquid water is the key medium for life. The origin of water, and its interaction with the crust as revealed in the geologic record, guides our exploration for a cosmochemically Earth-like planets. From the time of primary planetary accretion to the start of the continuous rock record on Earth at ca. 3850 million years ago, our planet experienced a waning bolide flux that partially or entirely wiped out surface rocks, vaporized oceans, and created transient serpentinizing atmospheres. Arguably, "Early Earths" across the galaxy may start off as ice planets due to feeble insolation from their young stars, occasionally punctuated by steam atmospheres generated by cataclysmic impacts. Alternatively, early global environments conducive to life spanned from a benign surface zone to deep into crustal rocks and sediments. In some scenarios, nascent biospheres benefit from the exogenous delivery of essential bio-elements via leftovers of accretion, and the subsequent establishment of planetary-scale hydrothermal systems. If what is now known about the early dynamical regime of the Earth serves as any measure of the potential habitability of worlds across space and time, several key boundary conditions emerge. These are: (i) availability and long-term stability of liquid water; (ii) presence of energy resources; (iii) accessibility of organic raw materials; (iv) adequate inventory of radioisotopes to drive internal heating; (v) gross compositional parameters such as mantle/core mass ratio, and (vi) P-T conditions at or near the surface suitable for sustaining biological activity. Life could

  14. An Impaired View of Earth's Early History

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Vervoort, J. D.; Kemp, A. I.; Bauer, A.; Bowring, S. A.; Fisher, C.

    2014-12-01

    The Hf and Nd isotope records of Earth's early history are sparse, difficult to interpret, and controversial, much like the few remnants of crust older than 4 Ga. New analytical techniques have been brought to bear on this problem but despite this recent work­-or, perhaps, because of it-the record is no clearer than it was 15 years ago. Several studies, based on highly variable calculated initial isotopic compositions, have argued for highly heterogeneous crust and mantle reservoirs in the early Earth1,2 and an ultra-depleted Eoarchean mantle3. These data come mostly from two sources: Hf-Nd isotope analyses of ultramafic rocks and Hf isotope analyses of zircons by solution or laser ablation. An important question for understanding the chemical evolution of the early Earth is: Do these data offer a unique window into the early Earth or are they artefacts not representative of crust/mantle evolution, giving an impaired view of the Earth's early history? In complex samples, measured isotopic compositions can result from open-system behavior in easily altered ultramafic compositions, in multicomponent, polymetamorphic gneisses, or in zircons with multiple generations of growth. Perhaps most importantly, accurate age assignment is often lacking, compromised, or impossible in these rocks, making calculation of initial epsilon Hf and Nd values ambiguous at best. In order to gain insight into crust mantle evolution in the early Earth we need, above all, a robust and unambiguous isotopic record to work with. This can be achieved by integrating zircon U-Pb and Hf and whole-rock Hf and Nd isotope compositions in relatively undisturbed igneous rocks with well-constrained ages. When this approach is used apparent isotopic heterogeneity decreases and a simpler model for crust-mantle evolution in the early Earth emerges. Careful screening of geological relationships, petrology, and geochemistry of samples from the early Earth should be done before interpreting isotopic data

  15. Carbon dioxide warming of the early Earth

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Arrhenius, G.

    1997-01-01

    Svante Arrhenius' research in atmospheric physics extended beyond the recent past and the near future states of the Earth, which today are at the center of sociopolitical attention. His plan encompassed all of the physical phenomena known at the time to relate to the formation and evolution of stars and planets. His two-volume textbook on cosmic physics is a comprehensive synopsis of the field. The inquiry into the possible cause of the ice ages and the theory of selective wavelength filter control led Arrhenius to consider the surface states of the other terrestrial planets, and of the ancient Earth before it had been modified by the emergence of life. The rapid escape of hydrogen and the equilibration with igneous rocks required that carbon in the early atmosphere prevailed mainly in oxidized form as carbon dioxide, together with other photoactive gases exerting a greenhouse effect orders of magnitude larger than in our present atmosphere. This effect, together with the ensuing chemical processes, would have set the conditions for life to evolve on our planet, seeded from spores spreading through an infinite Universe, and propelled, as Arrhenius thought, by stellar radiation pressure.

  16. Carbon dioxide warming of the early Earth.

    PubMed

    Arrhenius, G

    1997-02-01

    Svante Arrhenius' research in atmospheric physics extended beyond the recent past and the near future states of the Earth, which today are at the center of sociopolitical attention. His plan encompassed all of the physical phenomena known at the time to relate to the formation and evolution of stars and planets. His two-volume textbook on cosmic physics is a comprehensive synopsis of the field. The inquiry into the possible cause of the ice ages and the theory of selective wavelength filter control led Arrhenius to consider the surface states of the other terrestrial planets, and of the ancient Earth before it had been modified by the emergence of life. The rapid escape of hydrogen and the equilibration with igneous rocks required that carbon in the early atmosphere prevailed mainly in oxidized form as carbon dioxide, together with other photoactive gases exerting a greenhouse effect orders of magnitude larger than in our present atmosphere. This effect, together with the ensuing chemical processes, would have set the conditions for life to evolve on our planet, seeded from spores spreading through an infinite Universe, and propelled, as Arrhenius thought, by stellar radiation pressure.

  17. A hydrogen-rich early Earth atmosphere.

    PubMed

    Tian, Feng; Toon, Owen B; Pavlov, Alexander A; De Sterck, H

    2005-05-13

    We show that the escape of hydrogen from early Earth's atmosphere likely occurred at rates slower by two orders of magnitude than previously thought. The balance between slow hydrogen escape and volcanic outgassing could have maintained a hydrogen mixing ratio of more than 30%. The production of prebiotic organic compounds in such an atmosphere would have been more efficient than either exogenous delivery or synthesis in hydrothermal systems. The organic soup in the oceans and ponds on early Earth would have been a more favorable place for the origin of life than previously thought.

  18. Workshop on Early Crustal Genesis: Implications from Earth

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Phinney, W. C. (Compiler)

    1981-01-01

    Ways to foster increased study of the early evolution of the Earth, considering the planet as a whole, were explored and recommendations were made to NASA with the intent of exploring optimal ways for integrating Archean studies with problems of planetary evolution. Major themes addressed include: (1) Archean contribution to constraints for modeling planetary evolution; (2) Archean surface conditions and processes as clues to early planetary history; and (3) Archean evidence for physical, chemical and isotopic transfer processes in early planetary crusts. Ten early crustal evolution problems are outlined.

  19. Autotrophic Ecosystems on the Early Earth

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Schulte, M.

    2003-01-01

    Ophiolite sequences, sections of lower oceanic crust and upper mantle that have been thrust onto continental craton, are located in northern and central California and provide easily accessible areas that serve as good analogs for similar, more extensive areas of the early Earth. We have begun investigating and characterizing these sites in order to understand better the processes that may be responsible for the water chemistry, mineralogy and biology of similar environments on the early Earth. The geophysical and geochemical processes in these terranes provide niches for unique communities of extremeophiles and likely provide a good analog to the location that first gave rise to life on Earth. The ophiolites found in northern and central California include the Trinity, Josephine, Coast Range and Point Sal, all of which are approximately 160 million years old. Fluids from serpentinizing springs are generally alkaline with high pH and H2 contents, indicating that the mafic rock compositions control the fluid composition through water-rock reactions during relatively low-grade hydrothermal processes. There are significant amounts of primary mineralogy remaining in the rocks, meaning that substantial alteration processes are still occurring in these terranes. The general reaction for serpentinization of olivine is given by one of the authors. olivine + H2O = serpentine + brucite + magnetite + H2. We have analyzed the mineralogical composition of several rock samples collected from the Coast Range Ophiolite near Clear Lake, CA by electron microprobe. The remnant primary mineralogy is fairly urnform in composition, with an olivine composition of Fo(sub 90), and with pyroxene compositions of En(sub 90) for orthopyroxene and En(sub 49)Wo(sub 48)Fs(sub 03) for the clinopyroxene. Other primary phases observed include chromites and other spinels. Examination of petrographic thin sections reveals that serpentinization reactions have occurred in these locations. The serpentine

  20. Effects of primitive photosynthesis on Earth's early climate system

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Ozaki, Kazumi; Tajika, Eiichi; Hong, Peng K.; Nakagawa, Yusuke; Reinhard, Christopher T.

    2018-01-01

    The evolution of different forms of photosynthetic life has profoundly altered the activity level of the biosphere, radically reshaping the composition of Earth's oceans and atmosphere over time. However, the mechanistic impacts of a primitive photosynthetic biosphere on Earth's early atmospheric chemistry and climate are poorly understood. Here, we use a global redox balance model to explore the biogeochemical and climatological effects of different forms of primitive photosynthesis. We find that a hybrid ecosystem of H2-based and Fe2+-based anoxygenic photoautotrophs—organisms that perform photosynthesis without producing oxygen—gives rise to a strong nonlinear amplification of Earth's methane (CH4) cycle, and would thus have represented a critical component of Earth's early climate system before the advent of oxygenic photosynthesis. Using a Monte Carlo approach, we find that a hybrid photosynthetic biosphere widens the range of geochemical conditions that allow for warm climate states well beyond either of these metabolic processes acting in isolation. Our results imply that the Earth's early climate was governed by a novel and poorly explored set of regulatory feedbacks linking the anoxic biosphere and the coupled H, C and Fe cycles. We suggest that similar processes should be considered when assessing the potential for sustained habitability on Earth-like planets with reducing atmospheres.

  1. The origin and early evolution of life on earth

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Oro, J.; Miller, Stanley L.; Lazcano, Antonio

    1990-01-01

    Results of the studies that have provided insights into the cosmic and primitive earth environments are reviewed with emphasis on those environments in which life is thought to have originated. The evidence bearing on the antiquity of life on the earth and the prebiotic significance of organic compounds found in interstellar clouds and in primitive solar-system bodies such as comets, dark asteroids, and carbonaceous chondrites are assessed. The environmental models of the Hadean and early Archean earth are discussed, as well as the prebiotic formation of organic monomers and polymers essential to life. The processes that may have led to the appearance in the Archean of the first cells are considered, and possible effects of these processes on the early steps of biological evolution are analyzed. The significance of these results to the study of the distribution of life in the universe is evaluated.

  2. Siderophilic Cyanobacteria: Implications for Early Earth.

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Brown, I. I.; Mummey, D.; Sarkisova, S.; Shen, G.; Bryant, D. A.; Lindsay, J.; Garrison, D.; McKay, D. S.

    2006-01-01

    Of all extant environs, iron-depositing hot springs (IDHS) may exhibit the greatest similarity to late Precambrian shallow warm oceans in regards to temperature, O2 gradients and dissolved iron and H2S concentrations. Despite the insights into the ecology, evolutionary biology, paleogeobiochemistry, and astrobiology examination of IDHS could potentially provide, very few studies dedicated to the physiology and diversity of cyanobacteria (CB) inhabiting IDHS have been conducted. Results. Here we describe the phylogeny, physiology, ultrastructure and biogeochemical activity of several recent CB isolates from two different greater Yellowstone area IDHS, LaDuke and Chocolate Pots. Phylogenetic analysis of 16S rRNA genes indicated that 6 of 12 new isolates examined couldn't be placed within established CB genera. Some of the isolates exhibited pronounced requirements for elevated iron concentrations, with maximum growth rates observed when 0.4-1 mM Fe(3+) was present in the media. In light of "typical" CB iron requirements, our results indicate that elevated iron likely represents a salient factor selecting for "siderophilicM CB species in IDHS. A universal feature of our new isolates is their ability to produce thick EPS layers in which iron accumulates resulting in the generation of well preserved signatures. In parallel, siderophilic CB show enhanced ability to etch the analogs of iron-rich lunar regolith minerals and impact glasses. Despite that iron deposition by CB is not well understood mechanistically, we recently obtained evidence that the PS I:PS II ratio is higher in one of our isolates than for other CB. Although still preliminary, this finding is in direct support of the Y. Cohen hypothesis that PSI can directly oxidize Fe(2+). Conclusion. Our results may have implications for factors driving CB evolutionary relationships and biogeochemical processes on early Earth and probably Mars.

  3. Life Detection on the Early Earth

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Runnegar, B.

    2004-01-01

    Finding evidence for first the existence, and then the nature of life on the early Earth or early Mars requires both the recognition of subtle biosignatures and the elimination of false positives. The history of the search for fossils in increasingly older Precambrian strata illustrates these difficulties very clearly, and new observational and theoretical approaches are both needed and being developed. At the microscopic level of investigation, three-dimensional morphological characterization coupled with in situ chemical (isotopic, elemental, structural) analysis is the desirable first step. Geological context is paramount, as has been demonstrated by the controversies over AH84001, the Greenland graphites, and the Apex chert microfossils . At larger scales, the nature of sedimentary bedforms and the structures they display becomes crucial, and here the methods of condensed matter physics prove most useful in discriminating between biological and non-biological constructions. Ultimately, a combination of geochemical, morphological, and contextural evidence may be required for certain life detection on the early Earth or elsewhere.

  4. Identifying early Earth microfossils in unsilicified sediments

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Javaux, Emmanuelle J.; Asael, Dan; Bekker, Andrey; Debaille, Vinciane; Derenne, Sylvie; Hofmann, Axel; Mattielli, Nadine; Poulton, Simon

    2013-04-01

    The search for life on the early Earth or beyond Earth requires the definition of biosignatures, or "indices of life". These traditionally include fossil molecules, isotopic fractionations, biosedimentary structures and morphological fossils interpreted as remnants of life preserved in rocks. This research focuses on traces of life preserved in unsilicified siliciclastic sediments. Indeed, these deposits preserve well sedimentary structures indicative of past aqueous environments and organic matter, including the original organic walls of microscopic organisms. They also do not form in hydrothermal conditions which may be source of abiotic organics. At our knowledge, the only reported occurrence of microfossils preserved in unsilicified Archean sediments is a population of large organic-walled vesicles discovered in shales and siltstones of the 3.2 Ga Moodies Group, South Africa. (Javaux et al, Nature 2010). These have been interpreted as microfossils based on petrographic and geochemical evidence for their endogenicity and syngeneity, their carbonaceous composition, cellular morphology and ultrastructure, occurrence in populations, taphonomic features of soft wall deformation, and the geological context plausible for life, as well as lack of abiotic explanation falsifying a biological origin. Demonstrating that carbonaceous objects from Archaean rocks are truly old and truly biological is the subject of considerable debate. Abiotic processes are known to produce organics and isotopic signatures similar to life. Spheroidal pseudofossils may form as self-assembling vesicles from abiotic CM, e.g. in prebiotic chemistry experiments (Shoztak et al, 2001), from meteoritic lipids (Deamer et al, 2006), or hydrothermal fluids (Akashi et al, 1996); by artifact of maceration; by migration of abiotic or biotic CM along microfractures (VanZuilen et al, 2007) or along mineral casts (Brasier et al, 2005), or around silica spheres formed in silica-saturated water (Jones and

  5. Flash heating on the early Earth.

    PubMed

    Lyons, J R; Vasavada, A R

    1999-03-01

    It has been suggested that very large impact events (approximately 500 km diameter impactors) sterilized the surface of the young Earth by producing enough rock vapor to boil the oceans. Here, we consider surface heating due to smaller impactors, and demonstrate that surface temperatures conductive to organic synthesis resulted. In particular, we focus on the synthesis of thermal peptides. Previously, laboratory experiments have demonstrated that dry heating a mixture of amino acids containing excess Asp, Glu, or Lys to temperatures approximately 170 degrees C for approximately 2 hours yields polypeptides. It has been argued that such temperature conditions would not have been available on the early Earth. Here we demonstrate, by analogy with the K/T impact, that the requisite temperatures are achieved on sand surfaces during the atmospheric reentry of fine ejecta particles produced by impacts of bolides approximately 10-20 km in diameter, assuming approximately 1-100 PAL CO2. Impactors of this size struck the Earth with a frequency of approximately 1 per 10(4)-10(5) y at 4.2 Ga. Smaller bolides produced negligible global surface heating, whereas bolides > 30 km in diameter yielded solid surface temperatures > 1000 K, high enough to pyrolyze amino acids and other organic compounds. Thus, peptide formation would have occurred globally for a relatively narrow range of bolide sizes.

  6. Earth Surface Processes, Landforms and Sediment Deposits

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Bridge, John; Demicco, Robert

    Earth surface processes, landforms and sediment deposits are intimately related - involving erosion of rocks, generation of sediment, and transport and deposition of sediment through various Earth surface environments. These processes, and the landforms and deposits that they generate, have a fundamental bearing on engineering, environmental and public safety issues; on recovery of economic resources; and on our understanding of Earth history. This unique textbook brings together the traditional disciplines of sedimentology and geomorphology to explain Earth surface processes, landforms and sediment deposits in a comprehensive and integrated way. It is the ideal resource for a two-semester course in sedimentology, stratigraphy, geomorphology, and Earth surface processes from the intermediate undergraduate to beginning graduate level. The book is also accompanied by a website hosting illustrations and material on field and laboratory methods for measuring, describing and analyzing Earth surface processes, landforms and sediments.

  7. Development of the earth-moon system with implications for the geology of the early earth

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Smith, J. V.

    1976-01-01

    Established facts regarding the basic features of the earth and the moon are reviewed, and some important problems involving the moon are discussed (extent of melting, time of crustal differentiation and nature of bombardment, bulk chemical composition, and nature and source of mare basins), with attention given to the various existing theories concerning these problems. Models of the development of the earth-moon system from the solar nebula are examined, with particular attention focused on those that use the concept of capture with disintegration. Impact processes in the early crust of the earth are briefly considered, with attention paid to Green's (1972) suggestion that Archaean greenstone belts may be the terrestrial equivalent of lunar maria.

  8. Physical Processes Controlling Earth's Climate

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Genio, Anthony Del

    2013-01-01

    As background for consideration of the climates of the other terrestrial planets in our solar system and the potential habitability of rocky exoplanets, we discuss the basic physics that controls the Earths present climate, with particular emphasis on the energy and water cycles. We define several dimensionless parameters relevant to characterizing a planets general circulation, climate and hydrological cycle. We also consider issues associated with the use of past climate variations as indicators of future anthropogenically forced climate change, and recent advances in understanding projections of future climate that might have implications for Earth-like exoplanets.

  9. Earthing the Human Body Influences Physiologic Processes

    PubMed Central

    Sokal, Karol

    2011-01-01

    Abstract Objectives This study was designed to answer the question: Does the contact of the human organism with the Earth via a copper conductor affect physiologic processes? Subjects and experiments Five (5) experiments are presented: experiment 1—effect of earthing on calcium–phosphate homeostasis and serum concentrations of iron (N = 84 participants); experiment 2—effect of earthing on serum concentrations of electrolytes (N = 28); experiment 3—effect of earthing on thyroid function (N = 12); experiment 4—effect of earthing on glucose concentration (N = 12); experiment 5—effect of earthing on immune response to vaccine (N = 32). Subjects were divided into two groups. One (1) group of people was earthed, while the second group remained without contact with the Earth. Blood and urine samples were examined. Results Earthing of an electrically insulated human organism during night rest causes lowering of serum concentrations of iron, ionized calcium, inorganic phosphorus, and reduction of renal excretion of calcium and phosphorus. Earthing during night rest decreases free tri-iodothyronine and increases free thyroxine and thyroid-stimulating hormone. The continuous earthing of the human body decreases blood glucose in patients with diabetes. Earthing decreases sodium, potassium, magnesium, iron, total protein, and albumin concentrations while the levels of transferrin, ferritin, and globulins α1, α2, β, and γ increase. These results are statistically significant. Conclusions Earthing the human body influences human physiologic processes. This influence is observed during night relaxation and during physical activity. Effect of the earthing on calcium–phosphate homeostasis is the opposite of that which occurs in states of weightlessness. It also increases the activity of catabolic processes. It may be the primary factor regulating endocrine and nervous systems. PMID:21469913

  10. Earthing the human body influences physiologic processes.

    PubMed

    Sokal, Karol; Sokal, Pawel

    2011-04-01

    This study was designed to answer the question: Does the contact of the human organism with the Earth via a copper conductor affect physiologic processes? Subjects and experiments: Five (5) experiments are presented: experiment 1-effect of earthing on calcium-phosphate homeostasis and serum concentrations of iron (N = 84 participants); experiment 2-effect of earthing on serum concentrations of electrolytes (N = 28); experiment 3-effect of earthing on thyroid function (N = 12); experiment 4-effect of earthing on glucose concentration (N = 12); experiment 5-effect of earthing on immune response to vaccine (N = 32). Subjects were divided into two groups. One (1) group of people was earthed, while the second group remained without contact with the Earth. Blood and urine samples were examined. Earthing of an electrically insulated human organism during night rest causes lowering of serum concentrations of iron, ionized calcium, inorganic phosphorus, and reduction of renal excretion of calcium and phosphorus. Earthing during night rest decreases free tri-iodothyronine and increases free thyroxine and thyroid-stimulating hormone. The continuous earthing of the human body decreases blood glucose in patients with diabetes. Earthing decreases sodium, potassium, magnesium, iron, total protein, and albumin concentrations while the levels of transferrin, ferritin, and globulins α1, α2, β, and γ increase. These results are statistically significant. Earthing the human body influences human physiologic processes. This influence is observed during night relaxation and during physical activity. Effect of the earthing on calcium-phosphate homeostasis is the opposite of that which occurs in states of weightlessness. It also increases the activity of catabolic processes. It may be the primary factor regulating endocrine and nervous systems.

  11. The origin and early evolution of life on Earth.

    PubMed

    Oró, J; Miller, S L; Lazcano, A

    1990-01-01

    We do not have a detailed knowledge of the processes that led to the appearance of life on Earth. In this review we bring together some of the most important results that have provided insights into the cosmic and primitive Earth environments, particularly those environments in which life is thought to have originated. To do so, we first discuss the evidence bearing on the antiquity of life on our planet and the prebiotic significance of organic compounds found in interstellar clouds and in primitive solar system bodies such as comets, dark asteroids, and carbonaceous chondrites. This is followed by a discussion on the environmental models of the Hadean and early Archean Earth, as well as on the prebiotic formation of organic monomers and polymers essential to life. We then consider the processes that may have led to the appearance in the Archean of the first cells, and how these processes may have affected the early steps of biological evolution. Finally, the significance of these results to the study of the distribution of life in the Universe is discussed.

  12. Production and recycling of oceanic crust in the early Earth

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    van Thienen, P.; van den Berg, A. P.; Vlaar, N. J.

    2004-08-01

    Because of the strongly different conditions in the mantle of the early Earth regarding temperature and viscosity, present-day geodynamics cannot simply be extrapolated back to the early history of the Earth. We use numerical thermochemical convection models including partial melting and a simple mechanism for melt segregation and oceanic crust production to investigate an alternative suite of dynamics which may have been in operation in the early Earth. Our modelling results show three processes that may have played an important role in the production and recycling of oceanic crust: (1) Small-scale ( x×100 km) convection involving the lower crust and shallow upper mantle. Partial melting and thus crustal production takes place in the upwelling limb and delamination of the eclogitic lower crust in the downwelling limb. (2) Large-scale resurfacing events in which (nearly) the complete crust sinks into the (eventually lower) mantle, thereby forming a stable reservoir enriched in incompatible elements in the deep mantle. New crust is simultaneously formed at the surface from segregating melt. (3) Intrusion of lower mantle diapirs with a high excess temperature (about 250 K) into the upper mantle, causing massive melting and crustal growth. This allows for plumes in the Archean upper mantle with a much higher excess temperature than previously expected from theoretical considerations.

  13. The early Earth atmosphere and early life catalysts.

    PubMed

    Ramírez Jiménez, Sandra Ignacia

    2014-01-01

    Homochirality is a property of living systems on Earth. The time, the place, and the way in which it appeared are uncertain. In a prebiotic scenario two situations are of interest: either an initial small bias for handedness of some biomolecules arouse and progressed with life, or an initial slight excess led to the actual complete dominance of the known chiral molecules. A definitive answer can probably never be given, neither from the fields of physics and chemistry nor biology. Some arguments can be advanced to understand if homochirality is necessary for the initiation of a prebiotic homochiral polymer chemistry, if this homochirality is suggesting a unique origin of life, or if a chiral template such as a mineral surface is always required to result in an enantiomeric excess. A general description of the early Earth scenario will be presented in this chapter, followed by a general description of some clays, and their role as substrates to allow the concentration and amplification of some of the building blocks of life.

  14. Peptide synthesis in early earth hydrothermal systems

    Lemke, K.H.; Rosenbauer, R.J.; Bird, D.K.

    2009-01-01

    We report here results from experiments and thermodynamic calculations that demonstrate a rapid, temperature-enhanced synthesis of oligopeptides from the condensation of aqueous glycine. Experiments were conducted in custom-made hydrothermal reactors, and organic compounds were characterized with ultraviolet-visible procedures. A comparison of peptide yields at 260??C with those obtained at more moderate temperatures (160??C) gives evidence of a significant (13 kJ ?? mol-1) exergonic shift. In contrast to previous hydrothermal studies, we demonstrate that peptide synthesis is favored in hydrothermal fluids and that rates of peptide hydrolysis are controlled by the stability of the parent amino acid, with a critical dependence on reactor surface composition. From our study, we predict that rapid recycling of product peptides from cool into near-supercritical fluids in mid-ocean ridge hydrothermal systems will enhance peptide chain elongation. It is anticipated that the abundant hydrothermal systems on early Earth could have provided a substantial source of biomolecules required for the origin of life. Astrobiology 9, 141-146. ?? 2009 Mary Ann Liebert, Inc. 2009.

  15. Refractive indices of Early Earth organic aerosol analogs

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Gavilan, L.; Carrasco, N.; Fleury, B.; Vettier, L.

    2017-09-01

    Organic hazes in the early Earth atmosphere are hypothesized to provide additional shielding to solar radiation. We simulate the conditions of this primitive atmosphere by adding CO2 to a N2:CH4 gas mixture feeding a plasma. In this plasma, solid organic films were produced simulating early aerosols. We performed ellipsometry on these films from the visible to the near-ultraviolet range. Such measurements reveal how organic aerosols in the early Earth atmosphere preferentially absorb photons of shorter wavelengths than typical Titan tholins, suggesting a coolant role in the early Earth.

  16. Workshop on the Early Earth: The Interval from Accretion to the Older Archean

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Burke, K. (Editor); Ashwal, L. D. (Editor)

    1985-01-01

    Presentation abstracts are compiled which address various issues in Earth developmental processes in the first one hundred million years. The session topics included: accretion of the Earth (processes accompanying immediately following the accretion, including core formation); impact records and other information from planets and the Moon relevant to early Earth history; isotopic patterns of the oldest rocks; and igneous, sedimentary, and metamorphic petrology of the oldest rocks.

  17. Quantitative Modeling of Earth Surface Processes

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Pelletier, Jon D.

    This textbook describes some of the most effective and straightforward quantitative techniques for modeling Earth surface processes. By emphasizing a core set of equations and solution techniques, the book presents state-of-the-art models currently employed in Earth surface process research, as well as a set of simple but practical research tools. Detailed case studies demonstrate application of the methods to a wide variety of processes including hillslope, fluvial, aeolian, glacial, tectonic, and climatic systems. Exercises at the end of each chapter begin with simple calculations and then progress to more sophisticated problems that require computer programming. All the necessary computer codes are available online at www.cambridge.org/9780521855976. Assuming some knowledge of calculus and basic programming experience, this quantitative textbook is designed for advanced geomorphology courses and as a reference book for professional researchers in Earth and planetary science looking for a quantitative approach to Earth surface processes.

  18. More details...
  19. BENNU’S JOURNEY - Early Earth

    2017-12-08

    This is an artist's concept of the young Earth being bombarded by asteroids. Scientists think these impacts could have delivered significant amounts of organic matter and water to Earth. Image Credit: NASA's Goddard Space Flight Center Conceptual Image Lab The Origins Spectral Interpretation Resource Identification Security -- Regolith Explorer spacecraft (OSIRIS-REx) will travel to a near-Earth asteroid, called Bennu, and bring a sample back to Earth for study. The mission will help scientists investigate how planets formed and how life began, as well as improve our understanding of asteroids that could impact Earth. OSIRIS-REx is scheduled for launch in late 2016. As planned, the spacecraft will reach its asteroid target in 2018 and return a sample to Earth in 2023. Watch the full video: youtu.be/gtUgarROs08 Learn more about NASA’s OSIRIS-REx mission and the making of Bennu’s Journey: www.nasa.gov/content/goddard/bennus-journey/ More information on the OSIRIS-REx mission is available at: www.nasa.gov/mission_pages/osiris-rex/index.html www.asteroidmission.org NASA image use policy. NASA Goddard Space Flight Center enables NASA’s mission through four scientific endeavors: Earth Science, Heliophysics, Solar System Exploration, and Astrophysics. Goddard plays a leading role in NASA’s accomplishments by contributing compelling scientific knowledge to advance the Agency’s mission. Follow us on Twitter Like us on Facebook Find us on Instagram

  20. The Xenon record of Earth's early differentiaiton

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Peto, M. K.; Mukhopadhyay, S.; Kelley, K. A.

    2011-12-01

    Xenon isotopes in mantle derived rocks provide information on the early differentiation of the silicate mantle of our planet. {131,132 134,136}Xe isotopes are produced by the spontaneous fission of two different elements: the now extinct radionuclide 244Pu, and the long-lived 238U. These two parent nuclides, however, yield rather different proportion of fissiogenic Xenon isotopes. Hence, the proportion of Pu- to U-derived fission xenon is indicative of the degree and rate of outgassing of a mantle reservoir. Recent data obtained from Iceland in our lab confirm that the Xenon isotopic composition of the plume source(s) is characterized by lower 136Xe/130Xe ratios than the MORB source and the Iceland plume is more enriched in the Pu-derived Xenon component. These features are interpreted as reflecting different degrees of outgassing and appear not to be the result of preferential recycling of Xenon to the deep mantle. To further investigate how representative the Icelandic measurements might be of other mantle plumes, we measured noble gases (He, Ne, Ar, Xe) in gas-rich basalt glasses from the Rochambeau Ridge (RR) in the Northern Lau Basin. Recent work suggests the presence of a "Samoan-like" OIB source in the northern Lau Basin and our measurements were performed on samples with plume-like 3He/4He ratios (15-28 RA) [1]. The Xenon isotopic measurements indicate that the maximum measured 136Xe/130Xe ratios in the Rochambeau samples are similar to Iceland. In particular, for one of the gas rich samples we were able to obtain 77 different isotopic measurements through step-crushing. Preliminary investigation of this sample suggests higher Pu- to U-derived fission Xenon than in MORBs. To quantitatively evaluate the degree and rate of outgassing of the plume and MORB reservoirs, particularly during the first few hundred million years of Earth's history, we have modified a geochemical reservoir model that was previously developed to investigate mantle overturn and mixing

  21. Precambrian Time - The Story of the Early Earth

    Lindsey, D.A.

    2007-01-01

    The Precambrian is the least-understood part of Earth history, yet it is arguably the most important. Precambrian time spans almost nine-tenths of Earth history, from the formation of the Earth to the dawn of the Cambrian Period. It represents time so vast and long ago that it challenges all comprehension. The Precambrian is the time of big questions. How old is the Earth? How old are the oldest rocks and continents? What was the early Earth like? What was the early atmosphere like? When did life appear, and what did it look like? And, how do we know this? In recent years, remarkable progress has been made in understanding the early evolution of the Earth and life itself. Yet, the scientific story of the early Earth is still a work in progress, humankind's latest attempt to understand the planet. Like previous attempts, it too will change as we learn more about the Earth. Read on to discover what we know now, in the early 21st century.

  1. Evolution of U fractionation processes through geologic time : consequences for the variation of U deposit types from Early Earth to Present

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Cuney, M.

    2009-12-01

    U deposits are known at nearly all stages of the geological cycle, but are not known prior to 2.95 Ga. Also, U deposit types vary greatly from Mesoarchean to Present. Most of these changes through time can be attributed to major modifications in the geodynamic evolution of the Earth, in magmatic fractionation processes, in the composition of the Atmosphere and in the nature of life. The first U-rich granites able to crystallize uraninite, appeared at about 3.1 Ga. They correspond to the most fractionated terms of high-K calcalkaline suites, resulting from crystal fractionation of magmas possibly derived from melting of mantle wedges enriched in K, U, Th. Highly fractionated peraluminous leucogranites, able to crystallize uraninite, appeared at about 2.6 Ga. Erosion of these two granite types led to the detrital accumulation of uraninite that formed the first U deposits on Earth: the Quartz Pebble Conglomerates from 2.95 to 2.4 Ga. From 2.3 Ga onwards, uprise of oxygen level in the atmosphere led to the oxidation of U(IV) to U(VI), U transport in solution, and exuberant development of marine algae in epicontinental platform sediments. From 2.3 to 1.8 Ga large amounts of U, previously accumulated as U(IV) minerals, were dissolved and trapped preferentially in passive margin settings, in organic-rich sediments, and which led to the formation of the world’s largest Paleoproterozoic U provinces, e.g. : the Wollaston belt, Canada and the Cahill Formation, Australia. During and after the worldwide 2.1-1.75 Ga orogenic events, responsible for the formation of the Nuna supercontinent, U trapped in these formations was the source for several types of mineralization: (i) metamorphosed U-mineralized graphitic schists, calcsilicates and meta-arkoses, (ii) diagenetic-hydrothermal remobilization with the formation of the first deposits related to redox processes at 2.0 Ga (Oklo, Gabon), (iii) partial melting of U-rich metasediments forming the uraninite disseminations in

  2. Mother Earth, Earth Mother: Gabriela Mistral as an Early Ecofeminist

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Finzer, Erin

    2015-01-01

    Historians have noted that male bureaucrats and natural resource experts tended to dominate early twentieth-century national and hemispheric conservationist movements in Latin America, but a constellation of female activists, notable among them Gabriela Mistral, strengthened conservationism in the cultural sphere. Capitalizing on her leadership in…

  3. Hygroscopicity of Early Earth and Titan Laboratory Aerosol Analogs

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Hasenkopf, C. A.; Beaver, M. R.; Freedman, M. A.; Toon, O. B.; Tolbert, M. A.

    2009-12-01

    We have explored the ability of organic hazes, known to exist in the atmosphere of Titan and postulated to have existed in the Archean Earth atmosphere, to act as cloud condensation nuclei (CCN). These laboratory aerosol analogs are generated via UV-photolysis of early Earth and Titan analog gas mixtures and are designed to mimic the present day atmospheric conditions on Titan and the early Earth atmosphere before the rise of oxygen. Water uptake is observed to occur on the early Earth and Titan aerosol analogs at relative humidities of 80% - 90% via optical growth measurements using cavity ring-down aerosol extinction spectroscopy. We find the optical growth of these aerosols is similar to known slightly-soluble organic acids, such as phthalic and pyromellitic acids. On average, the optical growth of the early Earth analog is slightly larger than the Titan analog. In order to translate our measurements obtained in a subsaturated regime into the CCN ability of these particles, we rely on the hygroscopicity parameter κ, developed by Petters & Kreidenweis (2007). We retrieve κ = 0.17±0.03 and 0.06±0.01 for the early Earth and Titan analogs, respectively. This early Earth analog hygroscopicity value indicates that the aerosol could activate at reasonable water vapor supersaturations. We use previous aerosol mass spectrometry results to correlate the chemical structure of the two types of analog with their hygroscopicity. The hygroscopicity of the early Earth aerosol analog, coupled with the apparent lack of other good CCN during the Archean, helps explain the role of the organic haze in the indirect effect of clouds on the early Earth and indicates that it may have had a significant impact on the hydrological cycle.

  4. Acquisition of a Gas Chromatograph/Mass Spectrometer System for Laboratory Study of Prebiotic Organic Geochemical Processes on the Early Earth, Mars, and Meteorites

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    McCollom, Thomas

    2004-01-01

    This was a major equipment grant that provided funds ($72K) for purchase of a benchtop gas chromatograph-mass spectrometer (GC-MS) for use in experimental studies of prebiotic organic compounds. An Agilent model 689015973 GC-MS was purchased and installed in the PI's lab in August of 2003. The instrument is now being used for a variety of research projects. The primary use of the instrument is to analyze and quantify organic products of laboratory experiments conducted by the PI. One example is shown, which shows organic products (predominantly n-alkanes) formed during Fischer-Tropsch-type abiotic synthesis under hydrothermal conditions. The analytical capabilities of the GC- MS allowed identification of the numerous organic products of this as well as other laboratory experiments. A key use of the instrument in this research is that the mass spectrometer capabilities allow use of isotopically labeled reactants to trace the progress of reactions and evaluate background contaminants. collaborative projects with other scientists involved in exobiology & astrobiology research (e.g., Mitch Schulte, NASA Ames; Katrina Edwards, Woods Hole Oceanographic Institution). For instance, an analysis of membrane lipids of an lithoautotrophic iron-oxidizing bacteria being grown on basalt as a source of metabolic energy, a project where the instrument is being used to evaluate possible biomarker compounds from these organisms is shown. These iron oxidizers are thought to be similar to those living within the ocean crust, and are being investigated as possible analog organisms to those on the early Earth or crust of Mars. The instrument has also been used by an outside investigator (graduate student Brandon Canfeld, Arizona State University) for identification and isotopic characterization of experimental products of abiotic organic synthesis experiments he is conducting with Dr. John Holloway. analysis of quality control samples for other NASA-funded projects. For instance, an

  5. Prebiotic materials from on and off the early Earth

    PubMed Central

    Bernstein, Max

    2006-01-01

    One of the greatest puzzles of all time is how did life arise? It has been universally presumed that life arose in a soup rich in carbon compounds, but from where did these organic molecules come? In this article, I will review proposed terrestrial sources of prebiotic organic molecules, such as Miller–Urey synthesis (including how they would depend on the oxidation state of the atmosphere) and hydrothermal vents and also input from space. While the former is perhaps better known and more commonly taught in school, we now know that comet and asteroid dust deliver tons of organics to the Earth every day, therefore this flux of reduced carbon from space probably also played a role in making the Earth habitable. We will compare and contrast the types and abundances of organics from on and off the Earth given standard assumptions. Perhaps each process provided specific compounds (amino acids, sugars, amphiphiles) that were directly related to the origin or early evolution of life. In any case, whether planetary, nebular or interstellar, we will consider how one might attempt to distinguish between abiotic organic molecules from actual signs of life as part of a robotic search for life in the Solar System. PMID:17008210

  6. Prebiotic materials from on and off the early Earth.

    PubMed

    Bernstein, Max

    2006-10-29

    One of the greatest puzzles of all time is how did life arise? It has been universally presumed that life arose in a soup rich in carbon compounds, but from where did these organic molecules come? In this article, I will review proposed terrestrial sources of prebiotic organic molecules, such as Miller-Urey synthesis (including how they would depend on the oxidation state of the atmosphere) and hydrothermal vents and also input from space. While the former is perhaps better known and more commonly taught in school, we now know that comet and asteroid dust deliver tons of organics to the Earth every day, therefore this flux of reduced carbon from space probably also played a role in making the Earth habitable. We will compare and contrast the types and abundances of organics from on and off the Earth given standard assumptions. Perhaps each process provided specific compounds (amino acids, sugars, amphiphiles) that were directly related to the origin or early evolution of life. In any case, whether planetary, nebular or interstellar, we will consider how one might attempt to distinguish between abiotic organic molecules from actual signs of life as part of a robotic search for life in the Solar System.

  7. Life and the solar uv environment on the early Earth

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Bérces, A.; Kovács, G.; Rontó, G.; Lammer, H.; Kargl, G.; Kömle, N.; Bauer, S.

    2003-04-01

    The solar UV radiation environment on planetary surfaces and within their atmospheres is of importance in a wide range of scientific disciplines. Solar UV radiation is the driving force of chemical and organic evolution and serves also as a constraint in biological evolution. Studies of the solar UV environment of the early Earth 2.0 Gyr to 3.8 Gyr ago suggest that the terrestrial atmosphere was essentially anoxic, resulting in an ozone column abundance insufficient for protecting the planetary surface in the UV-B and the UV-C ranges. Since, short wavelength solar UV radiation in the UV-B ind UV-C range penetrated through the unprotected atmosphere to the surface on early Earth, associated biological consequences may be expected. For DNA-based terrestrial solar UV dosimetry, bacteriophage T7, isolated phage-DNA ind polycrystalline Uracil samples have been used. The effect of solar UV radiation can be measured by detecting the biological-structural consequences of the damage induced by UV photons. We show model calculations for the Biological Effective Dose (BED) rate of Uracil and bacteriophage T7, for various ozone concentrations representing early atmospheric conditions on Earth up to a UV protecting ozone layer comparable to present times. Further, we discuss experimental data which show the photo-reverse effect of Uracil molecules caused by short UV wavelengths. These photoreversion effect highly depend on the wavelength of the radiation. Shorter wavelength UV radiation of about 200 nm is strongly effective in monomerisation, while the longer wavelengths prefer the production of dimerisation. We could demonstrate experimentally, for the case of an Uracil thin-layer that the photo-reaction process of the nucleotides can be both, dimerization and the reverse process: monomerization. These results are important for the study of solar UV exposure on organisms in the terrestrial environment more than 2 Gyr ago where Earth had no UV protecting ozone layer as well as

  8. Potential climatic impact of organic haze on early Earth.

    PubMed

    Hasenkopf, Christa A; Freedman, Miriam A; Beaver, Melinda R; Toon, Owen B; Tolbert, Margaret A

    2011-03-01

    We have explored the direct and indirect radiative effects on climate of organic particles likely to have been present on early Earth by measuring their hygroscopicity and cloud nucleating ability. The early Earth analog aerosol particles were generated via ultraviolet photolysis of an early Earth analog gas mixture, which was designed to mimic possible atmospheric conditions before the rise of oxygen. An analog aerosol for the present-day atmosphere of Saturn's moon Titan was tested for comparison. We exposed the early Earth aerosol to a range of relative humidities (RHs). Water uptake onto the aerosol was observed to occur over the entire RH range tested (RH=80-87%). To translate our measurements of hygroscopicity over a specific range of RHs into their water uptake ability at any RH < 100% and into their ability to act as cloud condensation nuclei (CCN) at RH > 100%, we relied on the hygroscopicity parameter κ, developed by Petters and Kreidenweis. We retrieved κ=0.22 ±0.12 for the early Earth aerosol, which indicates that the humidified aerosol (RH < 100 %) could have contributed to a larger antigreenhouse effect on the early Earth atmosphere than previously modeled with dry aerosol. Such effects would have been of significance in regions where the humidity was larger than 50%, because such high humidities are needed for significant amounts of water to be on the aerosol. Additionally, Earth organic aerosol particles could have activated into CCN at reasonable-and even low-water-vapor supersaturations (RH > 100%). In regions where the haze was dominant, it is expected that low particle concentrations, once activated into cloud droplets, would have created short-lived, optically thin clouds. Such clouds, if predominant on early Earth, would have had a lower albedo than clouds today, thereby warming the planet relative to current-day clouds. © Mary Ann Liebert, Inc.

  9. Early Life on Earth: the Ancient Fossil Record

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Westall, F.

    2004-07-01

    The evidence for early life and its initial evolution on Earth is lin= ked intimately with the geological evolution of the early Earth. The environment of the early Earth would be considered extreme by modern standards: hot (50-80=B0C), volcanically and hydrothermally active, a= noxic, high UV flux, and a high flux of extraterrestrial impacts. Habitats = for life were more limited until continent-building processes resulted in= the formation of stable cratons with wide, shallow, continental platforms= in the Mid-Late Archaean. Unfortunately there are no records of the first appearance of life and the earliest isotopic indications of the exist= ence of organisms fractionating carbon in ~3.8 Ga rocks from the Isua greenst= one belt in Greenland are tenuous. Well-preserved microfossils and micro= bial mats (in the form of tabular and domical stromatolites) occur in 3.5-= 3.3 Ga, Early Archaean, sedimentary formations from the Barberton (South Afri= ca) and Pilbara (Australia) greenstone belts. They document life forms that = show a relatively advanced level of evolution. Microfossil morphology inclu= des filamentous, coccoid, rod and vibroid shapes. Colonial microorganism= s formed biofilms and microbial mats at the surfaces of volcaniclastic = and chemical sediments, some of which created (small) macroscopic microbi= alites such as stromatolites. Anoxygenic photosynthesis may already have developed. Carbon, nitrogen and sulphur isotopes ratios are in the r= ange of those for organisms with anaerobic metabolisms, such as methanogenesi= s, sulphate reduction and photosynthesis. Life was apparently distribute= d widely in shallow-water to littoral environments, including exposed, evaporitic basins and regions of hydrothermal activity. Biomass in t= he early Archaean was restricted owing to the limited amount of energy t= hat could be produced by anaerobic metabolisms. Microfossils resembling o= xygenic photosynthesisers, such as cyanobacteria, probably first occurred in

  10. Continental crust formation on early Earth controlled by intrusive magmatism

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Rozel, A. B.; Golabek, G. J.; Jain, C.; Tackley, P. J.; Gerya, T.

    2017-05-01

    The global geodynamic regime of early Earth, which operated before the onset of plate tectonics, remains contentious. As geological and geochemical data suggest hotter Archean mantle temperature and more intense juvenile magmatism than in the present-day Earth, two crust-mantle interaction modes differing in melt eruption efficiency have been proposed: the Io-like heat-pipe tectonics regime dominated by volcanism and the “Plutonic squishy lid” tectonics regime governed by intrusive magmatism, which is thought to apply to the dynamics of Venus. Both tectonics regimes are capable of producing primordial tonalite-trondhjemite-granodiorite (TTG) continental crust but lithospheric geotherms and crust production rates as well as proportions of various TTG compositions differ greatly, which implies that the heat-pipe and Plutonic squishy lid hypotheses can be tested using natural data. Here we investigate the creation of primordial TTG-like continental crust using self-consistent numerical models of global thermochemical convection associated with magmatic processes. We show that the volcanism-dominated heat-pipe tectonics model results in cold crustal geotherms and is not able to produce Earth-like primordial continental crust. In contrast, the Plutonic squishy lid tectonics regime dominated by intrusive magmatism results in hotter crustal geotherms and is capable of reproducing the observed proportions of various TTG rocks. Using a systematic parameter study, we show that the typical modern eruption efficiency of less than 40 per cent leads to the production of the expected amounts of the three main primordial crustal compositions previously reported from field data (low-, medium- and high-pressure TTG). Our study thus suggests that the pre-plate-tectonics Archean Earth operated globally in the Plutonic squishy lid regime rather than in an Io-like heat-pipe regime.

  11. Continental crust formation on early Earth controlled by intrusive magmatism.

    PubMed

    Rozel, A B; Golabek, G J; Jain, C; Tackley, P J; Gerya, T

    2017-05-18

    The global geodynamic regime of early Earth, which operated before the onset of plate tectonics, remains contentious. As geological and geochemical data suggest hotter Archean mantle temperature and more intense juvenile magmatism than in the present-day Earth, two crust-mantle interaction modes differing in melt eruption efficiency have been proposed: the Io-like heat-pipe tectonics regime dominated by volcanism and the "Plutonic squishy lid" tectonics regime governed by intrusive magmatism, which is thought to apply to the dynamics of Venus. Both tectonics regimes are capable of producing primordial tonalite-trondhjemite-granodiorite (TTG) continental crust but lithospheric geotherms and crust production rates as well as proportions of various TTG compositions differ greatly, which implies that the heat-pipe and Plutonic squishy lid hypotheses can be tested using natural data. Here we investigate the creation of primordial TTG-like continental crust using self-consistent numerical models of global thermochemical convection associated with magmatic processes. We show that the volcanism-dominated heat-pipe tectonics model results in cold crustal geotherms and is not able to produce Earth-like primordial continental crust. In contrast, the Plutonic squishy lid tectonics regime dominated by intrusive magmatism results in hotter crustal geotherms and is capable of reproducing the observed proportions of various TTG rocks. Using a systematic parameter study, we show that the typical modern eruption efficiency of less than 40 per cent leads to the production of the expected amounts of the three main primordial crustal compositions previously reported from field data (low-, medium- and high-pressure TTG). Our study thus suggests that the pre-plate-tectonics Archean Earth operated globally in the Plutonic squishy lid regime rather than in an Io-like heat-pipe regime.

  12. Physical state of the very early Earth

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Abe, Yutaka

    1993-09-01

    The earliest surface environment of the Earth is reconstructed in accordance with the planetary formation theory. Formation of an atmosphere is an inevitable consequence of Earth's formation. The atmosphere near the close of accretion is composed of 200 ˜ 300 bars of H 2 and H 2O, and several tens of bars of CO and CO 2. Either by the blanketing effect of the proto-atmosphere or heating by large planetesimal impacts a magma ocean is formed during accretion. We can distinguish three stages for the thermal evolution of the magma ocean and proto-crust. Stage 0 is characterized by a super-liquidus (or completely molten) regime near the surface. At this stage the surface of the Earth is covered by a super-liquidus magma ocean. No chemical differentiation is expected during this stage. Once the energy flux released by planet formation decreases to the 200 W/m 2 level the super-liquidus magma ocean then disappears within a time interval of 1 m.y. This is the transition from stage 0 to 1. Stage 1 is characterized by a partially molten magma ocean. In the magma ocean consisting of 20 ˜ 30% partial melt, heat transport is controlled by melt-solid separation (a type of compositional convection) rather than thermal convection. Chemical differentiation of the mantle mainly occurs in this stage. Once the energy flux drops to the 160 W/m 2 level, more than 90% of water vapor in the proto-atmosphere condense to form the proto-oceans. Several tens of bars of CO and CO 2 remain in the atmosphere just after formation of the oceans. Water oceans are occasionally evaporated by large impacts. After each such event, recondensation of the ocean takes several hundred years. Although the surface is covered by a chilled proto-crust, it is short-lived because of extensive volcanic resurfacing activity as well as meteorite impacts resurfacing. This stage ends when the energy flux drops to 0.1 ˜ 1 W/m 2 level. The duration time of stage 1 is estimated to be several hundred million years (the

  13. Self-consistent formation of continents on early Earth

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Noack, Lena; Van Hoolst, Tim; Breuer, Doris; Dehant, Véronique

    2013-04-01

    In our study we want to understand how Earth evolved with time and examine the initiation of plate tectonics and the possible formation of continents on Earth. Plate tectonics and continents seem to influence the likelihood of a planet to harbour life [1], and both are strongly influenced by the planetary interior (e.g. mantle temperature and rheology) and surface conditions (e.g. stabilizing effect of continents, atmospheric temperature), and may also depend on the biosphere. Earth is the only terrestrial planet (i.e. with a rocky mantle and iron core) in the solar system where long-term plate tectonics evolved. Knowing the factors that have a strong influence on the occurrence of plate tectonics allows for prognoses about plate tectonics on terrestrial exoplanets that have been detected in the past decade, and about the likelihood of these planets to harbour Earth-like life. For this purpose, planetary interior and surface processes are coupled via 'particles' as computational tracers in the 3D code GAIA [2,3]. These particles are dispersed in the mantle and crust of the modelled planet and can track the relevant rock properties (e.g. density or water content) over time. During the thermal evolution of the planet, the particles are advected due to mantle convection and along melt paths towards the surface and help to gain information about the thermo-chemical system. This way basaltic crust that is subducted into the silicate mantle is traced in our model. It is treated differently than mantle silicates when re-molten, such that granitic (felsic) crust is produced (similar to the evolution of continental crust on early Earth [4]), which is stored in the particle properties. We apply a pseudo-plastic rheology and use small friction coefficients (since an increased reference viscosity is used in our model). We obtain initiation of plate tectonics and self-consistent formation of pre-continents after a few Myr up to several Gyr - depending on the initial conditions

  14. Global-scale water circulation in the Earth's mantle: Implications for the mantle water budget in the early Earth

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Nakagawa, Takashi; Spiegelman, Marc W.

    2017-04-01

    We investigate the influence of the mantle water content in the early Earth on that in the present mantle using numerical convection simulations that include three processes for redistribution of water: dehydration, partitioning of water into partially molten mantle, and regassing assuming an infinite water reservoir at the surface. These models suggest that the water content of the present mantle is insensitive to that of the early Earth. The initial water stored during planetary formation is regulated up to 1.2 OMs (OM = Ocean Mass; 1.4 ×1021 kg), which is reasonable for early Earth. However, the mantle water content is sensitive to the rheological dependence on the water content and can range from 1.2 to 3 OMs at the present day. To explain the evolution of mantle water content, we computed water fluxes due to subducting plates (regassing), degassing and dehydration. For weakly water dependent viscosity, the net water flux is almost balanced with those three fluxes but, for strongly water dependent viscosity, the regassing dominates the water cycle system because the surface plate activity is more vigorous. The increased convection is due to enhanced lubrication of the plates caused by a weak hydrous crust for strongly water dependent viscosity. The degassing history is insensitive to the initial water content of the early Earth as well as rheological strength. The degassing flux from Earth's surface is calculated to be approximately O (1013) kg /yr, consistent with a coupled model of climate evolution and mantle thermal evolution.

  15. Automating the Processing of Earth Observation Data

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Golden, Keith; Pang, Wan-Lin; Nemani, Ramakrishna; Votava, Petr

    2003-01-01

    NASA s vision for Earth science is to build a "sensor web": an adaptive array of heterogeneous satellites and other sensors that will track important events, such as storms, and provide real-time information about the state of the Earth to a wide variety of customers. Achieving this vision will require automation not only in the scheduling of the observations but also in the processing of the resulting data. To address this need, we are developing a planner-based agent to automatically generate and execute data-flow programs to produce the requested data products.

  16. Biomarkers as tracers for life on early earth and Mars

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Simoneit, B. R.; Summons, R. E.; Jahnke, L. L.

    1998-01-01

    Biomarkers in geological samples are products derived from biochemical (natural product) precursors by reductive and oxidative processes (e.g., cholestanes from cholesterol). Generally, lipids, pigments and biomembranes are preserved best over longer geological times and labile compounds such as amino acids, sugars, etc. are useful biomarkers for recent times. Thus, the detailed characterization of biomarker compositions permits the assessment of the major contributing species of extinct and/or extant life. In the case of the early Earth, work has progressed to elucidate molecular structure and carbon isotropic signals preserved in ancient sedimentary rocks. In addition, the combination of bacterial biochemistry with the organic geochemistry of contemporary and ancient hydrothermal ecosystems permits the modeling of the nature, behavior and preservation potential of primitive microbial communities. This approach uses combined molecular and isotopic analyses to characterize lipids produced by cultured bacteria (representative of ancient strains) and to test a variety of culture conditions which affect their biosynthesis. On considering Mars, the biomarkers from lipids and biopolymers would be expected to be preserved best if life flourished there during its early history (3.5-4 x 10(9) yr ago). Both oxidized and reduced products would be expected. This is based on the inferred occurrence of hydrothermal activity during that time with the concomitant preservation of biochemically-derived organic matter. Both known biomarkers (i.e., as elucidated for early terrestrial samples and for primitive terrestrial microbiota) and novel, potentially unknown compounds should be characterized.

  17. Organic chemistry in a CO2 rich early Earth atmosphere

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Fleury, Benjamin; Carrasco, Nathalie; Millan, Maëva; Vettier, Ludovic; Szopa, Cyril

    2017-12-01

    The emergence of life on the Earth has required a prior organic chemistry leading to the formation of prebiotic molecules. The origin and the evolution of the organic matter on the early Earth is not yet firmly understood. Several hypothesis, possibly complementary, are considered. They can be divided in two categories: endogenous and exogenous sources. In this work we investigate the contribution of a specific endogenous source: the organic chemistry occurring in the ionosphere of the early Earth where the significant VUV contribution of the young Sun involved an efficient formation of reactive species. We address the issue whether this chemistry can lead to the formation of complex organic compounds with CO2 as only source of carbon in an early atmosphere made of N2, CO2 and H2, by mimicking experimentally this type of chemistry using a low pressure plasma reactor. By analyzing the gaseous phase composition, we strictly identified the formation of H2O, NH3, N2O and C2N2. The formation of a solid organic phase is also observed, confirming the possibility to trigger organic chemistry in the upper atmosphere of the early Earth. The identification of Nitrogen-bearing chemical functions in the solid highlights the possibility for an efficient ionospheric chemistry to provide prebiotic material on the early Earth.

  18. Organic haze on Titan and the early Earth

    PubMed Central

    Trainer, Melissa G.; Pavlov, Alexander A.; DeWitt, H. Langley; Jimenez, Jose L.; McKay, Christopher P.; Toon, Owen B.; Tolbert, Margaret A.

    2006-01-01

    Recent exploration by the Cassini/Huygens mission has stimulated a great deal of interest in Saturn's moon, Titan. One of Titan's most captivating features is the thick organic haze layer surrounding the moon, believed to be formed from photochemistry high in the CH4/N2 atmosphere. It has been suggested that a similar haze layer may have formed on the early Earth. Here we report laboratory experiments that demonstrate the properties of haze likely to form through photochemistry on Titan and early Earth. We have used a deuterium lamp to initiate particle production in these simulated atmospheres from UV photolysis. Using a unique analysis technique, the aerosol mass spectrometer, we have studied the chemical composition, size, and shape of the particles produced as a function of initial trace gas composition. Our results show that the aerosols produced in the laboratory can serve as analogs for the observed haze in Titan's atmosphere. Experiments performed under possible conditions for early Earth suggest a significant optical depth of haze may have dominated the early Earth's atmosphere. Aerosol size measurements are presented, and implications for the haze layer properties are discussed. We estimate that aerosol production on the early Earth may have been on the order of 1014 g·year−1 and thus could have served as a primary source of organic material to the surface. PMID:17101962

  19. Earth's early O2 cycle suppressed by primitive continents

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Smit, Matthijs A.; Mezger, Klaus

    2017-10-01

    Free oxygen began to accumulate in Earth's surface environments between 3.0 and 2.4 billion years ago. Links between oxygenation and changes in the composition of continental crust during this time are suspected, but have been difficult to demonstrate. Here we constrain the average composition of the exposed continental crust since 3.7 billion years ago by compiling records of the Cr/U ratio of terrigenous sediments. The resulting record is consistent with a predominantly mafic crust prior to 3.0 billion years ago, followed by a 500- to 700-million-year transition to a crust of modern andesitic composition. Olivine and other Mg-rich minerals in the mafic Archaean crust formed serpentine minerals upon hydration, continuously releasing O2-scavenging agents such as dihydrogen, hydrogen sulfide and methane to the environment. Temporally, the decline in mafic crust capable of such process coincides with the first accumulation of O2 in the oceans, and subsequently the atmosphere. We therefore suggest that Earth's early O2 cycle was ultimately limited by the composition of the exposed upper crust, and remained underdeveloped until modern andesitic continents emerged.

  20. WATER FORMATION IN THE UPPER ATMOSPHERE OF THE EARLY EARTH

    SciT

    Fleury, Benjamin; Carrasco, Nathalie; Marcq, Emmanuel

    2015-07-10

    The water concentration and distribution in the early Earth's atmosphere are important parameters that contribute to the chemistry and the radiative budget of the atmosphere. If the atmosphere above the troposphere is generally considered as dry, photochemistry is known to be responsible for the production of numerous minor species. Here we used an experimental setup to study the production of water in conditions simulating the chemistry above the troposphere of the early Earth with an atmospheric composition based on three major molecules: N{sub 2}, CO{sub 2}, and H{sub 2}. The formation of gaseous products was monitored using infrared spectroscopy. Watermore » was found as the major product, with approximately 10% of the gas products detected. This important water formation is discussed in the context of the early Earth.« less

  1. Prebiotic Lipidic Amphiphiles and Condensing Agents on the Early Earth

    PubMed Central

    Fiore, Michele; Strazewski, Peter

    2016-01-01

    It is still uncertain how the first minimal cellular systems evolved to the complexity required for life to begin, but it is obvious that the role of amphiphilic compounds in the origin of life is one of huge relevance. Over the last four decades a number of studies have demonstrated how amphiphilic molecules can be synthesized under plausibly prebiotic conditions. The majority of these experiments also gave evidence for the ability of so formed amphiphiles to assemble in closed membranes of vesicles that, in principle, could have compartmented first biological processes on early Earth, including the emergence of self-replicating systems. For a competitive selection of the best performing molecular replicators to become operative, some kind of bounded units capable of harboring them are indispensable. Without the competition between dynamic populations of different compartments, life itself could not be distinguished from an otherwise disparate array or network of molecular interactions. In this review, we describe experiments that demonstrate how different prebiotically-available building blocks can become precursors of phospholipids that form vesicles. We discuss the experimental conditions that resemble plausibly those of the early Earth (or elsewhere) and consider the analytical methods that were used to characterize synthetic products. Two brief sections focus on phosphorylating agents, catalysts and coupling agents with particular attention given to their geochemical context. In Section 5, we describe how condensing agents such as cyanamide and urea can promote the abiotic synthesis of phospholipids. We conclude the review by reflecting on future studies of phospholipid compartments, particularly, on evolvable chemical systems that include giant vesicles composed of different lipidic amphiphiles. PMID:27043635

  2. Massive impact-induced release of carbon and sulfur gases in the early Earth's atmosphere

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Marchi, S.; Black, B. A.; Elkins-Tanton, L. T.; Bottke, W. F.

    2016-09-01

    Recent revisions to our understanding of the collisional history of the Hadean and early-Archean Earth indicate that large collisions may have been an important geophysical process. In this work we show that the early bombardment flux of large impactors (>100 km) facilitated the atmospheric release of greenhouse gases (particularly CO2) from Earth's mantle. Depending on the timescale for the drawdown of atmospheric CO2, the Earth's surface could have been subject to prolonged clement surface conditions or multiple freeze-thaw cycles. The bombardment also delivered and redistributed to the surface large quantities of sulfur, one of the most important elements for life. The stochastic occurrence of large collisions could provide insights on why the Earth and Venus, considered Earth's twin planet, exhibit radically different atmospheres.

  3. Earth Observation Services (Image Processing Software)

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    1992-01-01

    San Diego State University and Environmental Systems Research Institute, with other agencies, have applied satellite imaging and image processing techniques to geographic information systems (GIS) updating. The resulting images display land use and are used by a regional planning agency for applications like mapping vegetation distribution and preserving wildlife habitats. The EOCAP program provides government co-funding to encourage private investment in, and to broaden the use of NASA-developed technology for analyzing information about Earth and ocean resources.

  4. Satellite probes plasma processes in earth orbit

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Christensen, Andrew B.; Reasoner, David L.

    1992-01-01

    The mission of the DOD/NASA Combined Release and Radiation Effects Satellite (CRRES) is to deepen understanding of the earth's near-space environment, including the radiation belts and the ionosphere; this will help spacecraft designers protect against radiation-belt particles that affect onboard electronics, solar panel arrays, and crewmembers. Attention is presently given to CRRES's study of ionospheric plasma processes through releases of Ba, Ca, Sr, and Li at altitudes of 400-36,000 km.

  5. Online Student Learning and Earth System Processes

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Mackay, R. M.

    2002-12-01

    Many students have difficulty understanding dynamical processes related to Earth's climate system. This is particularly true in Earth System Science courses designed for non-majors. It is often tempting to gloss over these conceptually difficult topics and have students spend more study time learning factual information or ideas that require rather simple linear thought processes. Even when the professor is ambitious and tackles the more difficult ideas of system dynamics in such courses, they are typically greeted with frustration and limited success. However, an understanding of generic system concepts and processes is quite arguably an essential component of any quality liberal arts education. We present online student-centered learning modules that are designed to help students explore different aspects of Earth's climate system (see http://www.cs.clark.edu/mac/physlets/GlobalPollution/maintrace.htm for a sample activity). The JAVA based learning activities are designed to: be assessable to anyone with Web access; be self-paced, engaging, and hands-on; and make use of past results from science education research. Professors can use module activities to supplement lecture, as controlled-learning-lab activities, or as stand-alone homework assignments. Acknowledgement This work was supported by NASA Office of Space Science contract NASW-98037, Atmospheric and Environmental Research Inc. of Lexington, MA., and Clark College.

  6. A petrological view of early Earth geodynamics

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Herzberg, C.

    2003-04-01

    primary magmas contained 14 to 22% MgO, similar to Reykjanes MORB, Gorgona, Hawaii, and the early Icelandic plume in the model of Herzberg & O'Hara (2002). However, a few xenoliths record T_P as low as 1300oC. Two geodynamic interpretations follow: 1) Archean cratonic mantle formed as residues below ridges and hotspots similar to those of today, except the lithosphere was somewhat thinner in some cases, 2) Archean cratonic mantle formed as residues below hot ridges in most cases. Early Proterozoic sheeted dikes and eruptives from the Cape Smith Belt in Canada are consistent with the hot ridge interpretation. Ridge potential temperatures could have been 1520-1570oC, higher than modern ridges (1300-1450oC) but similar to those for the Gorgona and early Tertiary Icelandic plumes.

  7. 3D climate-carbon modelling of the early Earth

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Charnay, B.; Le Hir, G.; Fluteau, F.; Forget, F.; Catling, D.

    2017-09-01

    We revisit the climate and carbon cycle of the early Earth at 3.8 Ga using a 3D climate-carbon model. Our resultsfavor cold or temperate climates with global mean temperatures between around 8°C (281 K) and 30°C (303 K) and with 0.1-0.36 bar of CO2 for the late Hadean and early Archean.

  8. Early Life on Earth and the Search for Extraterrestrial Biosignatures

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Oehler, Dorothy Z.; House, Christopher

    2014-01-01

    In the last 2 years, scientists within the ARES Directorate at JSC have applied the technology of Secondary Ion Mass Spectrometry (SIMS) to individual organic structures preserved in Archean (approximately 3 billion years old) sediments on Earth. These organic structures are among the oldest on Earth that may be microfossils - structurally preserved remnants of ancient microbes. The SIMS work was done to determine the microfossils' stable carbon isotopic composition (delta C-13 values). This is the first time that such ancient, potential microfossils have been successfully analyzed for their individual delta C-13 values. The results support the interpretation that these structures are remnants of early life on Earth and that they may represent planktonic organisms that were widely distributed in the Earth's earliest oceans. This study has been accepted for publication in the journal Geology.

  9. Comment on "A hydrogen-rich early Earth atmosphere".

    PubMed

    Catling, David C

    2006-01-06

    Tian et al. (Reports, 13 May 2005, p. 1014) proposed a hydrogen-rich early atmosphere with slow hydrogen escape from a cold thermosphere. However, their model neglects the ultraviolet absorption of all gases other than H2. The model also neglects Earth's magnetic field, which affects the temperature and density of ions and promotes nonthermal escape of neutral hydrogen.

  10. Early differentiation of the Earth and the Moon.

    PubMed

    Bourdon, Bernard; Touboul, Mathieu; Caro, Guillaume; Kleine, Thorsten

    2008-11-28

    We examine the implications of new 182W and 142Nd data for Mars and the Moon for the early evolution of the Earth. The similarity of 182W in the terrestrial and lunar mantles and their apparently differing Hf/W ratios indicate that the Moon-forming giant impact most probably took place more than 60Ma after the formation of calcium-aluminium-rich inclusions (4.568Gyr). This is not inconsistent with the apparent U-Pb age of the Earth. The new 142Nd data for Martian meteorites show that Mars probably has a super-chondritic Sm/Nd that could coincide with that of the Earth and the Moon. If this is interpreted by an early mantle differentiation event, this requires a buried enriched reservoir for the three objects. This is highly unlikely. For the Earth, we show, based on new mass-balance calculations for Nd isotopes, that the presence of a hidden reservoir is difficult to reconcile with the combined 142Nd-143Nd systematics of the Earth's mantle. We argue that a likely possibility is that the missing component was lost during or prior to accretion. Furthermore, the 142Nd data for the Moon that were used to argue for the solidification of the magma ocean at ca 200Myr are reinterpreted. Cumulate overturn, magma mixing and melting following lunar magma ocean crystallization at 50-100Myr could have yielded the 200Myr model age.

  11. The rise of oxygen in Earth's early ocean and atmosphere.

    PubMed

    Lyons, Timothy W; Reinhard, Christopher T; Planavsky, Noah J

    2014-02-20

    The rapid increase of carbon dioxide concentration in Earth's modern atmosphere is a matter of major concern. But for the atmosphere of roughly two-and-half billion years ago, interest centres on a different gas: free oxygen (O2) spawned by early biological production. The initial increase of O2 in the atmosphere, its delayed build-up in the ocean, its increase to near-modern levels in the sea and air two billion years later, and its cause-and-effect relationship with life are among the most compelling stories in Earth's history.

  12. Mineral remains of early life on Earth? On Mars?

    Iberall, Robbins E.; Iberall, A.S.

    1991-01-01

    The oldest sedimentary rocks on Earth, the 3.8-Ga Isua Iron-Formation in southwestern Greenland, are metamorphosed past the point where organic-walled fossils would remain. Acid residues and thin sections of these rocks reveal ferric microstructures that have filamentous, hollow rod, and spherical shapes not characteristic of crystalline minerals. Instead, they resemble ferric-coated remains of bacteria. Because there are no earlier sedimentary rocks to study on Earth, it may be necessary to expand the search elsewhere in the solar system for clues to any biotic precursors or other types of early life. A study of morphologies of iron oxide minerals collected in the southern highlands during a Mars sample return mission may therefore help to fill in important gaps in the history of Earth's earliest biosphere. -from Authors

  13. Electrical energy sources for organic synthesis on the early earth

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Chyba, Christopher; Sagan, Carl

    1991-01-01

    It is pointed out that much of the contemporary origin-of-life research uses the original estimates of Miller and Urey (1959) for terrestrial energy dissipation by lightning and coronal discharges being equal to 2 x 10 to the 19th J/yr and 6 x 10 to the 19th J/yr, respectively. However, data from experiments that provide analogues to naturally-occurring lightning and coronal discharges indicate that lightning energy yields for organic synthesis (nmole/J) are about one order of magnitude higher than the coronal discharge yields. This suggests that, on early earth, organic production by lightning may have dominated that due to coronal emission. New values are recommended for lightning and coronal discharge dissipation rates on the early earth, 1 x 10 to the 18th J/yr and 5 x 10 to the 17th J/yr, respectively.

  14. Hydrogen-nitrogen greenhouse warming in Earth's early atmosphere.

    PubMed

    Wordsworth, Robin; Pierrehumbert, Raymond

    2013-01-04

    Understanding how Earth has sustained surface liquid water throughout its history remains a key challenge, given that the Sun's luminosity was much lower in the past. Here we show that with an atmospheric composition consistent with the most recent constraints, the early Earth would have been significantly warmed by H(2)-N(2) collision-induced absorption. With two to three times the present-day atmospheric mass of N(2) and a H(2) mixing ratio of 0.1, H(2)-N(2) warming would be sufficient to raise global mean surface temperatures above 0°C under 75% of present-day solar flux, with CO(2) levels only 2 to 25 times the present-day values. Depending on their time of emergence and diversification, early methanogens may have caused global cooling via the conversion of H(2) and CO(2) to CH(4), with potentially observable consequences in the geological record.

  15. Follow the Carbon: Isotopic Labeling Studies of Early Earth Aerosol.

    PubMed

    Hicks, Raea K; Day, Douglas A; Jimenez, Jose L; Tolbert, Margaret A

    2016-11-01

    Despite the faint young Sun, early Earth might have been kept warm by an atmosphere containing the greenhouse gases CH 4 and CO 2 in mixing ratios higher than those found on Earth today. Laboratory and modeling studies suggest that an atmosphere containing these trace gases could lead to the formation of organic aerosol haze due to UV photochemistry. Chemical mechanisms proposed to explain haze formation rely on CH 4 as the source of carbon and treat CO 2 as a source of oxygen only, but this has not previously been verified experimentally. In the present work, we use isotopically labeled precursor gases and unit-mass resolution (UMR) and high-resolution (HR) aerosol mass spectrometry to examine the sources of carbon and oxygen to photochemical aerosol formed in a CH 4 /CO 2 /N 2 atmosphere. UMR results suggest that CH 4 contributes 70-100% of carbon in the aerosol, while HR results constrain the value from 94% to 100%. We also confirm that CO 2 contributes approximately 10% of the total mass to the aerosol as oxygen. These results have implications for the geochemical interpretations of inclusions found in Archean rocks on Earth and for the astrobiological potential of other planetary atmospheres. Key Words: Atmosphere-Early Earth-Planetary atmospheres-Carbon dioxide-Methane. Astrobiology 16, 822-830.

  16. Electrochemistry of Prebiotic Early Earth Hydrothermal Chimney Systems

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Hermis, N.; Barge, L. M.; Chin, K. B.; LeBlanc, G.; Cameron, R.

    2017-12-01

    Hydrothermal chimneys are self-organizing chemical garden precipitates generated from geochemical disequilibria within sea-vent environments, and have been proposed as a possible setting for the emergence of life because they contain mineral catalysts and transect ambient pH / Eh / chemical gradients [1]. We simulated the growth of hydrothermal chimneys in early Earth vent systems by using different hydrothermal simulants such as sodium sulfide (optionally doped with organic molecules) which were injected into an early Earth ocean simulant containing dissolved ferrous iron, nickel, and bicarbonate [2]. Chimneys on the early Earth would have constituted flow-through reactors, likely containing Fe/Ni-sulfide catalysts that could have driven proto-metabolic electrochemical reactions. The electrochemical activity of the chimney system was characterized non-invasively by placing electrodes at different locations across the chimney wall and in the ocean to analyze the bulk properties of surface charge potential in the chimney / ocean / hydrothermal fluid system. We performed in-situ characterization of the chimney using electrochemical impedance spectroscopy (EIS) which allowed us to observe the changes in physio-chemical behavior of the system through electrical spectra of capacitance and impedance over a wide range of frequencies during the metal sulfide chimney growth. The electrochemical properties of hydrothermal chimneys in natural systems persist due to the disequilibria maintained between the ocean and hydrothermal fluid. When the injection in our experiment (analogous to fluid flow in a vent) stopped, we observed a corresponding decline in open circuit voltage across the chimney wall, though the impedance of the precipitate remained lor. Further work is needed to characterize the electrochemistry of simulated chimney systems by controlling response factors such as electrode geometry and environmental conditions, in order to simulate electrochemical reactions

  17. Isotope composition and volume of Earth's early oceans.

    PubMed

    Pope, Emily C; Bird, Dennis K; Rosing, Minik T

    2012-03-20

    Oxygen and hydrogen isotope compositions of Earth's seawater are controlled by volatile fluxes among mantle, lithospheric (oceanic and continental crust), and atmospheric reservoirs. Throughout geologic time the oxygen mass budget was likely conserved within these Earth system reservoirs, but hydrogen's was not, as it can escape to space. Isotopic properties of serpentine from the approximately 3.8 Ga Isua Supracrustal Belt in West Greenland are used to characterize hydrogen and oxygen isotope compositions of ancient seawater. Archaean oceans were depleted in deuterium [expressed as δD relative to Vienna standard mean ocean water (VSMOW)] by at most 25 ± 5‰, but oxygen isotope ratios were comparable to modern oceans. Mass balance of the global hydrogen budget constrains the contribution of continental growth and planetary hydrogen loss to the secular evolution of hydrogen isotope ratios in Earth's oceans. Our calculations predict that the oceans of early Earth were up to 26% more voluminous, and atmospheric CH(4) and CO(2) concentrations determined from limits on hydrogen escape to space are consistent with clement conditions on Archaean Earth.

  18. Earth Science: It's All about the Processes

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    King, Chris

    2013-01-01

    Readers of the draft new English primary science curriculum (DfE, 2012) might be concerned to see that there is much more detail on the Earth science content than previously in the United Kingdom. In this article, Chris King, a professor of Earth Science Education at Keele University and Director of the Earth Science Education Unit (ESEU),…

  19. Archean Pb Isotope Evolution: Implications for the Early Earth.

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Vervoort, J. D.; Thorpe, R.; Albarede, F.; Blichert-Toft, J.

    2008-12-01

    The U-Pb isotope system provides us with a powerful tool for understanding the chemical evolution of the Earth. Pb isotopes in Archean rocks, however, have not been widely utilized because U mobility makes initial Pb isotope ratios from old silicate rocks difficult, if not impossible, to determine. Galenas in syngenetic volcanogenic massive sulfide (VMS) deposits, however, provide snapshots of initial Pb ratios because their Pb isotopic composition is time invariant at their formation (U/Pb=0). The Pb isotopic record from galenas from rocks of all age have been utilized for over 70 years to answer a wide range of scientific problems beginning with Al Nier's pioneering work analyzing Pb isotopes in the 1930's but are no longer widely used by the isotopic community because they have been produced by older TIMS techniques. We have begun a re-examination of Archean Pb by an extensive analysis of over 100 galena samples from Archean VMS deposits throughout the Superior and Slave Provinces in Canada as well as from other VMS deposits in Finland, South Africa and Western Australia. The goal of this work is to provide modern, high precision measurements and update an old, but venerable, Pb isotopic data set. We feel these data provide important constraints on not only the Pb isotopic evolution of the Earth, but planetary differentiation and recycling processes operating in the first 2 b.y. of Earth's history. Our analytical techniques include dissolving the Pb sulfide minerals, purifying them with ion chromatography, and analyzing them using MC-ICPMS at both Washington State University (Neptune) and Ecole Normale Superieure in Lyon, France (Nu). All Pb solutions are doped with Tl in order to correct for mass fractionation. In this abstract we report preliminary galena Pb isotope data from 6 VMS deposits in the Abitibi greenstone belt: Chibougamu, Matagami, Noranda, Normetal, Timmins, and Val d"Or. These deposits are all approximately 2.7 Ga in age but in detail vary from 2

  20. A new model for early Earth: heat-pipe cooling

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Webb, A. G.; Moore, W. B.

    2013-12-01

    In the study of heat transport and lithospheric dynamics of early Earth, current models depend upon plate tectonic and vertical tectonic concepts. Plate tectonic models adequately account for regions with diverse lithologies juxtaposed along ancient shear zones, as seen at the famous Eoarchean Isua supracrustal belt of West Greenland. Vertical tectonic models to date have involved volcanism, sub- and intra-lithospheric diapirism, and sagduction, and can explain the geology of the best-preserved low-grade ancient terranes, such as the Paleoarchean Barberton and Pilbara greenstone belts. However, these models do not offer a globally-complete framework consistent with the geologic record. Plate tectonics models suggest that paired metamorphic belts and passive margins are among the most likely features to be preserved, but the early rock record shows no evidence of these terranes. Existing vertical tectonics models account for the >300 million years of semi-continuous volcanism and diapirism at Barberton and Pilbara, but when they explain the shearing record at Isua, they typically invoke some horizontal motion that cannot be differentiated from plate motion and is not a salient feature of the lengthy Barberton and Pilbara records. Despite the strengths of these models, substantial uncertainty remains about how early Earth evolved from magma ocean to plate tectonics. We have developed a new model, based on numerical simulations and analysis of the geologic record, that provides a coherent, global geodynamic framework for Earth's evolution from magma ocean to subduction tectonics. We hypothesize that heat-pipe cooling offers a viable mechanism for the lithospheric dynamics of early Earth. Our numerical simulations of heat-pipe cooling on early Earth indicate that a cold, thick, single-plate lithosphere developed as a result of frequent volcanic eruptions that advected surface materials downward. The constant resurfacing and downward advection caused compression as the

  1. Argon isotopic composition of Archaean atmosphere probes early Earth geodynamics.

    PubMed

    Pujol, Magali; Marty, Bernard; Burgess, Ray; Turner, Grenville; Philippot, Pascal

    2013-06-06

    Understanding the growth rate of the continental crust through time is a fundamental issue in Earth sciences. The isotopic signatures of noble gases in the silicate Earth (mantle, crust) and in the atmosphere afford exceptional insight into the evolution through time of these geochemical reservoirs. However, no data for the compositions of these reservoirs exists for the distant past, and temporal exchange rates between Earth's interior and its surface are severely under-constrained owing to a lack of samples preserving the original signature of the atmosphere at the time of their formation. Here, we report the analysis of argon in Archaean (3.5-billion-year-old) hydrothermal quartz. Noble gases are hosted in primary fluid inclusions containing a mixture of Archaean freshwater and hydrothermal fluid. Our analysis reveals Archaean atmospheric argon with a (40)Ar/(36)Ar value of 143 ± 24, lower than the present-day value of 298.6 (for which (40)Ar has been produced by the radioactive decay of the potassium isotope (40)K, with a half-life of 1.25 billion years; (36)Ar is primordial in origin). This ratio is consistent with an early development of the felsic crust, which might have had an important role in climate variability during the first half of Earth's history.

  2. Effects of differentiation on the geodynamics of the early Earth

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Piccolo, Andrea; Kaus, Boris; White, Richard; Johnson, Tim

    2016-04-01

    Archean geodynamic processes are not well understood, but there is general agreement that the mantle potential temperature was higher than present, and that as a consequence significant amounts of melt were produced both in the mantle and any overlying crust. This has likely resulted in crustal differentiation. An early attempt to model the geodynamic effects of differentiation was made by Johnson et al. (2014), who used numerical modeling to investigate the crust production and recycling in conjunction with representative phase diagrams (based on the inferred chemical composition of the primary melt in accordance with the Archean temperature field). The results of the simulations show that the base of the over-thickened primary basaltic crust becomes gravitational unstable due to the mineral assemblage changes. This instability leads to the dripping of dense material into the mantle, which causes an asthenospheric return flow, local partial melting and new primary crust generation that is rapidly recycled in to mantle. Whereas they gave important insights, the previous simulations were simplified in a number of aspects: 1) the rheology employed was viscous, and both elasticity and pressure-dependent plasticity were not considered; 2) extracted mantle melts were 100% transformed into volcanic rocks, whereas on the present day Earth only about 20-30% are volcanic and the remainder is plutonic; 3) the effect of a free surface was not studied in a systematic manner. In order to better understand how these simplifications affect the geodynamic models, we here present additional simulations to study the effects of each of these parameters. Johnson, T.E., Brown, M., Kaus, B., and VanTongeren, J.A., 2014, Delamination and recycling of Archaean crust caused by gravitational instabilities: Nature Geoscience, v. 7, no. 1, p. 47-52, doi: 10.1038/NGEO2019.

  3. Atmospheric Expression of Seasonality on the Early Earth and Earth-like Exoplanets

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Olson, S. L.; Schwieterman, E. W.; Reinhard, C. T.; Ridgwell, A.; Lyons, T. W.

    2017-12-01

    Biologically modulated seasonality impacts nearly every chemical constituent of Earth's atmosphere. For example, seasonal shifts in the balance of photosynthesis and respiration manifest as striking oscillation in the atmospheric abundance of CO2 and O2. Similar temporal variability is likely on other inhabited worlds, and seasonality is often regarded as a potential exoplanetary biosignature. Seasonality is a particularly intriguing biosignature because it may allow us to identify life through the abundance of spectrally active gases that are not uniquely biological in origin (e.g., CO2 or CH4). To date, however, the discussion of seasonality as a biosignature has been exclusively qualitative. We lack both quantitative constraints on the likelihood of spectrally detectable seasonality elsewhere and a framework for evaluating potential false positive scenarios (e.g., seasonal CO2 ice sublimation). That is, we do not yet know for which gases, and under which conditions, we could expect to detect seasonality and reliably infer the presence of an active biosphere. The composition of Earth's atmosphere has changed dramatically through time, and consequently, the atmospheric expression of seasonality has necessarily changed throughout Earth history as well. Thus, Earth offers several case studies for examining the potential for observable seasonality on chemically and tectonically diverse exoplanets. We outline an approach for exploring the history of seasonality on Earth via coupled biogeochemical and photochemical models, with particular emphasis on the seasonal cycles of CO2, CH4, and O2/O3. We also discuss the remote detectability of these seasonal signals on directly imaged exoplanets via reflectance and emission spectra. We suggest that seasonality in O2 on the early Earth was biogeochemically significant—and that seasonal cycles in O3, an indirect biological product coupled to biogenic O2, may be a readily detectable fingerprint of life in the absence of

  4. Hydrogen Fluxes from Photosynthetic Communities: Implications for Early Earth Biogeochemistry

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Hoehler, Tori M.; Bebout, Brad M.; DesMarais, David J.; DeVincenzi, Donald L. (Technical Monitor)

    2000-01-01

    More than half the history of life on Earth was dominated by photosynthetic microbial mats, which must have represented the preeminent biological influence on global geochemical cycling during that time. In modem analogs of then ancient communities, hypersaline microbial mats from Guerrero Negro, Mexico, we have observed a large flux of molecular hydrogen originating in the cyanobacteria-dominated surface layers. Hydrogen production follows a distinct diel pattern and is sensitive to both oxygen tension and microbial species composition within the mat. On an early Earth dominated by microbial mats, the observed H2 fluxes would scale to global levels far in excess of geothermal emissions. A hydrogen flux of this magnitude represents a profound transmission of reducing power from oxygenic photosynthesis, both to the anaerobic biosphere, where H2 is an almost universally-utilized substrate and regulator of microbial redox chemistry, and to the atmosphere, where subsequent escape to space could provide an important mechanism for the net oxidation of Earth's surface.

  5. The carbon cycle on early Earth--and on Mars?

    PubMed

    Grady, Monica M; Wright, Ian

    2006-10-29

    One of the goals of the present Martian exploration is to search for evidence of extinct (or even extant) life. This could be redefined as a search for carbon. The carbon cycle (or, more properly, cycles) on Earth is a complex interaction among three reservoirs: the atmosphere; the hydrosphere; and the lithosphere. Superimposed on this is the biosphere, and its presence influences the fixing and release of carbon in these reservoirs over different time-scales. The overall carbon balance is kept at equilibrium on the surface by a combination of tectonic processes (which bury carbon), volcanism (which releases it) and biology (which mediates it). In contrast to Earth, Mars presently has no active tectonic system; neither does it possess a significant biosphere. However, these observations might not necessarily have held in the past. By looking at how Earth's carbon cycles have changed with time, as both the Earth's tectonic structure and a more sophisticated biology have evolved, and also by constructing a carbon cycle for Mars based on the carbon chemistry of Martian meteorites, we investigate whether or not there is evidence for a Martian biosphere.

  6. Biological modulation of planetary atmospheres: The early Earth scenario

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Schidlowski, M.

    1985-01-01

    The establishment and subsequent evolution of life on Earth had a profound impact on the chemical regime at the planet's surface and its atmosphere. A thermodynamic gradient was imposed on near-surface environments that served as the driving force for a number on important geochemical transformations. An example is the redox imbalance between the modern atmosphere and the material of the Earth's crust. Current photochemical models predict extremely low partial pressures of oxygen in the Earth's prebiological atmosphere. There is widespread consensus that any large-scale oxygenation of the primitive atmosphere was contingent on the advent of biological (autotrophic) carbon fixation. It is suggested that photoautotrophy existed both as a biochemical process and as a geochemical agent since at least 3.8 Ga ago. Combining the stoichiometry of the photosynthesis reaction with a carbon isotope mass balance and current concepts for the evolution of the stationary sedimentary mass as a funion of time, it is possible to quantify, the accumulation of oxygen and its photosynthetic oxidation equivalents through Earth history.

  7. What do we really know about Earth's early crust?

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Rudnick, R. L.; Tang, M.

    2016-12-01

    The oldest minerals on Earth, the detrital Hadean Jack Hills zircons from western Australia, show evidence for their crystallization from hydrous, low temperature, granitic magmas. However, considerable debate centers on whether the parental melts are minimum-melt granites formed in subduction zone settings and implying widespread, evolved continental crust (e.g., Harrison, 2009, AREPS), or crystallized from the last differentiates of mafic magmas (Darling et al., 2009, Geology), or even late differentiates of impact melt sheets on a largely water-covered Earth (Kenny et al., 2016, Geology). Another means by which to interrogate the nature of Earth's early crust is through analyses of ancient fine-grained terrigenous sedimentary rocks such as shales or glacial diamictites, which provide averages of the surface of the Earth that is exposed to chemical weathering and erosion. From these studies it has long been known that Archean crust contained a higher proportion of mafic rocks. However, only recently has that proportion been constrained based on a change in the average MgO content of the upper continental crust from 15 wt.% at 3.2 Ga, to 4 wt.% at 2.6 Ga (Tang et al., 2016, Science). These data for terrigeneous sediments require the pre 3.2 Ga crust to be dominated by mafic rocks (only 10-40% `granite' s.l.) and to be high-standing and susceptible to subareal weathering and erosion, implying the mafic crust was thick (see Tang and Rudnick, this meeting). The dramatic transition that occurred in upper crustal composition between 3.2 and 2.6 Ga likely marks the onset of widespread subduction as a means of generating voluminous granite.

  8. Large-Scale Impact Cratering and Early Earth Evolution

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Grieve, R. A. F.; Cintala, M. J.

    1997-01-01

    The surface of the Moon attests to the importance of large-scale impact in its early crustal evolution. Previous models of the effects of a massive bombardment on terrestrial crustal evolution have relied on analogies with the Moon, with allowances for the presence of water and a thinner lithosphere. It is now apparent that strict lunar-terrestrial analogies are incorrect because of the "differential scaling" of crater dimensions and melt volumes with event size and planetary gravity. Impact melt volumes and "ancient cavity dimensions for specific impacts were modeled according to previous procedures. In the terrestrial case, the melt volume (V(sub m)) exceeds that of the transient cavity (V(sub tc)) at diameters > or = 400 km. This condition is reached on the Moon only with transient cavity diameters > or = 3000 km, equivalent to whole Moon melting. The melt volumes in these large impact events are minimum estimates, since, at these sizes, the higher temperature of the target rocks at depth will increase melt production. Using the modification-scaling relation of Croft, a transient cavity diameter of about 400 km in the terrestrial environment corresponds to an expected final impact "basin" diameter of about 900 km. Such a "basin" would be comparable in dimensions to the lunar basin Orientale. This 900-km "basin" on the early Earth, however, would not have had the appearance of Orientale. It would have been essentially a melt pool, and, morphologically, would have had more in common with the palimpsests structures on Callisto and Ganymede. With the terrestrial equivalents to the large multiring basins of the Moon being manifested as muted palimpsest-like structures filled with impact melt, it is unlikely they played a role in establishing the freeboard on the early Earth. The composition of the massive impact melt sheets (> 10 (exp 7) cu km) produced in "basin-forming" events on the early Earth would have most likely ranged from basaltic to more mafic for the

  9. Origin and evolution of the atmospheres of early Venus, Earth and Mars

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Lammer, Helmut; Zerkle, Aubrey L.; Gebauer, Stefanie; Tosi, Nicola; Noack, Lena; Scherf, Manuel; Pilat-Lohinger, Elke; Güdel, Manuel; Grenfell, John Lee; Godolt, Mareike; Nikolaou, Athanasia

    2018-05-01

    We review the origin and evolution of the atmospheres of Earth, Venus and Mars from the time when their accreting bodies were released from the protoplanetary disk a few million years after the origin of the Sun. If the accreting planetary cores reached masses ≥ 0.5 M_Earth before the gas in the disk disappeared, primordial atmospheres consisting mainly of H_2 form around the young planetary body, contrary to late-stage planet formation, where terrestrial planets accrete material after the nebula phase of the disk. The differences between these two scenarios are explored by investigating non-radiogenic atmospheric noble gas isotope anomalies observed on the three terrestrial planets. The role of the young Sun's more efficient EUV radiation and of the plasma environment into the escape of early atmospheres is also addressed. We discuss the catastrophic outgassing of volatiles and the formation and cooling of steam atmospheres after the solidification of magma oceans and we describe the geochemical evidence for additional delivery of volatile-rich chondritic materials during the main stages of terrestrial planet formation. The evolution scenario of early Earth is then compared with the atmospheric evolution of planets where no active plate tectonics emerged like on Venus and Mars. We look at the diversity between early Earth, Venus and Mars, which is found to be related to their differing geochemical, geodynamical and geophysical conditions, including plate tectonics, crust and mantle oxidation processes and their involvement in degassing processes of secondary N_2 atmospheres. The buildup of atmospheric N_2, O_2, and the role of greenhouse gases such as CO_2 and CH_4 to counter the Faint Young Sun Paradox (FYSP), when the earliest life forms on Earth originated until the Great Oxidation Event ≈ 2.3 Gyr ago, are addressed. This review concludes with a discussion on the implications of understanding Earth's geophysical and related atmospheric evolution in relation

  10. Prebiotic materials from on and off the early Earth

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Bernstein, Max

    2006-01-01

    One of the great puzzles of all time is how did life arise? It has been universally presumed that life arose in a soup rich in compounds made mostly of carbon, the kind of which we are currently composed. Where did these organic molecules come from? In this talk I will review proposed contributions to pre-biotic organic chemistry from both terrestrial processes (i.e., hydrothermal vents, Miller-Urey syntheses) and also from space. While the former is perhaps better known and more commonly taught in school, we now know that comet and asteroid dust deliver tons of organics to the Earth every day, and there is a growing consensus among scientists that molecules from space played an important role in making the Earth habitable, and perhaps even provided specific compounds that were directly related to the origin of life.

  11. Earth Processes: Reading the Isotopic Code

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Basu, Asish; Hart, Stan

    Publication of this monograph will coincide, to a precision of a few per mil, with the centenary of Henri Becquerel's discovery of "radiations actives" (C. R. Acad. Sci., Feb. 24, 1896). In 1896 the Earth was only 40 million years old according to Lord Kelvin. Eleven years later, Boltwood had pushed the Earth's age past 2000 million years, based on the first U/Pb chemical dating results. In exciting progression came discovery of isotopes by J. J. Thomson in 1912, invention of the mass spectrometer by Dempster (1918) and Aston (1919), the first measurement of the isotopic composition of Pb (Aston, 1927) and the final approach, using Pb-Pb isotopic dating, to the correct age of the Earth: close—2.9 Ga (Gerling, 1942), closer—3.0 Ga (Holmes, 1949) and closest—4.50 Ga (Patterson, Tilton and Inghram, 1953).

  12. Ultraviolet radiation and the photobiology of earth's early oceans.

    PubMed

    Cockell, C S

    2000-10-01

    During the Archean era (3.9-2.5 Ga ago) the earth was dominated by an oceanic lithosphere. Thus, understanding how life arose and persisted in the Archean oceans constitutes a major challenge in understanding early life on earth. Using a radiative transfer model of the late Archean oceans, the photobiological environment of the photic zone and the surface microlayer is explored at the time before the formation of a significant ozone column. DNA damage rates might have been approximately three orders of magnitude higher in the surface layer of the Archean oceans than on the present-day oceans, but at 30 m depth, damage may have been similar to the surface of the present-day oceans. However at this depth the risk of being transported to surface waters in the mixed layer was high. The mixed layer may have been inhabited by a low diversity UV-resistant biota. But it could have been numerically abundant. Repair capabilities similar to Deinococcus radiodurans would be sufficient to survive in the mixed layer. Diversity may have been greater in the region below the mixed layer and above the light compensation point corresponding to today's 'deep chlorophyll maximum'. During much of the Archean the air-water interface was probably an uninhabitable extreme environment for neuston. The habitability of some regions of the photic zone is consistent with the evidence embodied in the geologic record, which suggests an oxygenated upper layer in the Archean oceans. During the early Proterozoic, as ozone concentrations increased to a column abundance above 1 x 10(17) cm-2, UV stress would have been reduced and possibly a greater diversity of organisms could have inhabited the mixed layer. However, nutrient upwelling from newly emergent continental crusts may have been more significant in increasing total planktonic abundance in the open oceans and coastal regions than photobiological factors. The phohobiological environment of the Archean oceans has implications for the potential

  13. Cometary delivery of organic molecules to the early earth

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Chyba, Christopher F.; Thomas, Paul J.; Sagan, Carl; Brookshaw, Leigh

    1990-01-01

    It has long been speculated that earth accreted prebiotic organic molecules important for the origins of life from impacts of carbonaceous asteroids and comets during the period of heavy bombardment 4.5 x 10 to the 9th to 3.8 x 10 to the 9th years ago. A comprehensive treatment of comet-asteroid interaction with the atmosphere, surface impact, and resulting organic pyrolysis demonstrates that organics will not survive impacts at velocities greater than about 10 kilometers per second and that even comets and asteroids as small as 100 meters in radius cannot be aerobraked to below this velocity in 1-bar atmospheres. However, for plausible dense (10-bar carbon dioxide) early atmospheres, it is found that 4.5 x 10 to the 9th years ago earth was accreting intact cometary organics at a rate of at least about 10 to the 6th to 10 to the 7th kilograms per year, a flux that thereafter declined with a half-life of about 10 to the 8th years. These results may be put in context by comparison with terrestrial oceanic and total biomasses, about 3 x 10 to the 12th kilograms and about 6 x 10 to the 14th kilograms, respectively.

  14. Meteors as a Delivery Vehicle for Organic Matter to the Early Earth

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Jenniskens, Peter; DeVincenzi, D. (Technical Monitor)

    2001-01-01

    Only in recent years has a concerted effort been made to study the circumstances under which extraterrestrial organic matter is accreted on Earth by way of meteors. Meteors are the luminous phenomena associated with the (partial) ablation of meteoric matter and represent the dominant pathway from space to Earth, with the possible exception of rare giant impacts of asteroids and comets. Meteors dominated the supply of organics to the early Earth if organic matter survived this pathway efficiently. Moreover, meteors are a source of kinetic energy that can convert inert atmospheric gases such as CO, N, and H2O into useful compounds, such as HCN and NO. Understanding these processes relies heavily on empirical evidence that is still very limited. Here I report on the observations in hand and discuss their relevance in the context of the origin of life.

  15. Peroxy defects in Rocks and H2O2 formation on the early Earth

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Gray, A.; Balk, M.; Mason, P.; Freund, F.; Rothschild, L.

    2013-12-01

    An oxygen-rich atmosphere appears to have been a prerequisite for complex life to evolve on Earth and possibly elsewhere in the Universe. The question is still shrouded in uncertainty how free oxygen became available on the early Earth. Here we study processes of peroxy defects in silicate minerals which, upon weathering, generate mobilized electronic charge carriers resulting in oxygen formation in an initially anoxic subsurface environment. Reactive Oxygen Species (ROS) are precursors to molecular oxygen during this process. Due to their toxicity they may have strongly influenced the evolution of life. ROS are generated during hydrolysis of peroxy defects, which consist of pairs of oxygen anions. A second pathway for formation occurs during (bio) transformations of iron sulphide minerals. ROS are produced and consumed by intracellular and extracellular reactions of Fe, Mn, C, N, and S species. We propose that despite an overall reducing or neutral oxidation state of the macroenvironment and the absence of free O2 in the atmosphere, microorganisms on the early Earth had to cope with ROS in their microenvironments. They were thus under evolutionary pressure to develop enzymatic and other defenses against the potentially dangerous, even lethal effects of ROS and oxygen. We have investigated how oxygen might be released through weathering and test microorganisms in contact with rock surfaces. Our results show how early Life might have adapted to oxygen. Early microorganisms must have "trained" to detoxify ROS prior to the evolution of aerobic metabolism and oxygenic photosynthesis. A possible way out of this dilemma comes from a study of igneous and high-grade metamorphic rocks, whose minerals contain a small but significant fraction of oxygen anions in the valence state 1- , forming peroxy links of the type O3Si-OO-SiO3 [1, 2]. As water hydrolyzes the peroxy links hydrogen peroxide, H2O2, forms. Continued experimental discovery of H2O2 formation at rock

  16. On biogenicity criteria for endolithic microborings on early Earth and beyond.

    PubMed

    McLoughlin, Nicola; Brasier, Martin D; Wacey, David; Green, Owen R; Perry, Randall S

    2007-02-01

    Micron-sized cavities created by the actions of rock-etching microorganisms known as euendoliths are explored as a biosignature for life on early Earth and perhaps Mars. Rock-dwelling organisms can tolerate extreme environmental stresses and are excellent candidates for the colonization of early Earth and planetary surfaces. Here, we give a brief overview of the fossil record of euendoliths in both sedimentary and volcanic rocks. We then review the current understanding of the controls upon the distribution of euendolithic microborings and use these to propose three lines of approach for testing their biogenicity: first, a geological setting that demonstrates a syngenetic origin for the euendolithic microborings; second, microboring morphologies and distributions that are suggestive of biogenic behavior and distinct from ambient inclusion trails; and third, elemental and isotopic evidence suggestive of biological processing. We use these criteria and the fossil record of terrestrial euendoliths to outline potential environments and techniques to search for endolithic microborings on Mars.

  17. A Model of Volcanic Outgassing for Earth's Early Atmosphere

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Dhaliwal, J. K.; Kasting, J. F.; Zhang, Z.

    2017-12-01

    We build on historical paradigms of volcanic degassing [1] to account for non-linear relations among C-O-H-S volatiles, their speciation, solubility and concentrations in magmatic melts, and the resulting contribution to atmospheric volatile inventories. We focus on the build-up of greenhouse-relevant carbon species (CO2 and CH4) and molecular oxygen to better understand the environments of early life and the Great Oxygenation Event [2,3,4]. The mantle is an important reservoir of C-O-H-S volatiles [5], and melt concentrations depend on temperature, pressure and oxygen fugacity. We present a preliminary chemical model that simulates volatile concentrations released into the Earth's atmosphere at 1 bar, or pressures corresponding to the early Earth prior to 2.4 Ga. We maintain redox balance in the system using H+ [2, 6] because the melt oxidation state evolves with volatile melt concentrations [7] and affects the composition of degassed compounds. For example, low fO2 in the melt degasses CO, CH4, H2S and H2 while high fO2 yields CO2, SO2 and H2O [1,8,9]. Our calculations incorporate empirical relations from experimental petrology studies [e.g., 10, 11] to account for inter-dependencies among volatile element solubility trends. This model has implications for exploring planetary atmospheric evolution and potential greenhouse effects on Venus and Mars [12]­, and possibly exoplanets. A future direction of this work would be to link this chemical degassing model with different tectonic regimes [13] to account for degassing and ingassing, such as during subduction. References: [1] Holland, H. D. (1984) The chemical evolution of the atmosphere and oceans [2] Kasting, J. F. (2013) Chem. Geo. 362, 13-25 [3] Kasting, J.F. (1993) Sci. 259, 920-926 [4] Duncan, M.S. & Dasgupta, R. (2017) Nat. Geoscience 10, 387-392. [5] Hier-Majumder, S. & Hirschmann, M.M. (2017) G3, doi: 10.1002/2017GC006937 [6] Gaillard, F. et al. (2003) GCA 67, 2427- 2441 [7] Moussalam, Y. et al. (2014

  18. Planetary Perspective on Life on Early Mars and the Early Earth

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Sleep, Norman H.; Zahnle, Kevin

    1996-01-01

    Impacts of asteroids and comets posed a major hazard to the continuous existence of early life on Mars as on the Earth. The chief danger was presented by globally distributed ejecta, which for very large impacts takes the form of transient thick rock vapor atmospheres; both planets suffered such impacts repeatedly. The exposed surface on both planets was sterilized when it was quickly heated to the temperature of condensed rock vapor by radiation and rock rain. Shallow water bodies were quickly evaporated and sterilized. Any surviving life must have been either in deep water or well below the surface.

  19. Alternative Earths: The Diverse Chapters of Sustained Habitability on a Dynamic Early Earth and Their Astrobiological Significance

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Lyons, T. W.

    2015-12-01

    The oldest signs of animal life appear in the geologic record 600 to 700 million years ago. For the four billion years prior, our planet experienced dramatic changes that paved the way for this milestone. Beyond the establishment of Earth's earliest oceans 4.3 billion years ago (Ga), the single most important environmental transformation in history may have been the first permanent rise of atmospheric oxygen around 2.3 Ga. Before this Great Oxidation Event (GOE), Earth's atmosphere and oceans were virtually devoid of this gas, which forms the basis for all macroscopic life. Yet full oxygenation was a long, drawn out process. This talk will lay out the state-of-the-art in our understanding of Earth's early oxygenation, with an emphasis on the delay between the first biological oxygen production, tentatively placed at 3 Ga, and the appearance of animals almost 2.5 billion years later. Recent work suggests transient oxygenation episodes occurred prior to the GOE. Once permanently present in the atmosphere, oxygen may have risen to very high levels and then nose-dived. Then, at least a billion years of dominantly oxygen-free conditions in the deep ocean followed, beneath an atmosphere and shallow oceans much leaner in oxygen than previous estimates indicated. Deficiencies in oxygen and associated nutrients may have, in turn, set a challenging course for many of the oceans' inhabitants, explaining persistently low populations and diversities of eukaryotes. The latest data suggest these billion-plus years of intermediate oxygen were followed by increases in both ocean and atmosphere oxygen contents and eukaryotic diversity 750 to 800 million years ago. Novel, rock-bound proxies and complementary numerical models are now steering our views of co-evolving life and marine and atmospheric chemistry, including greenhouse gas controls on climate. New findings are revealing various states of planetary habitability that differ greatly from the Earth we know today. These

  20. The (146,147)Sm-(142,143)Nd systematics of early terrestrial differentiation and the lost continents of the early Earth

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Harper, Charles L., Jr.; Jacobsen, Stein B.

    1992-01-01

    The very early history of the Earth has been one of the great enduring puzzles in the history of geology. We report evidence which clearly can be described as a vestige of a beginning, because the evidence that we report cannot be interpreted in any other way except as a geochemical signal of processes active in the very early history of the Earth. The evidence itself is a very small anomaly in the abundance of SM-146. The primary aims of this study were to: (1) verify the existence of the 'lost continents' of the Hadean era; and (2) determine their mean age.

  1. Accretion and differentiation of carbon in the early Earth.

    PubMed

    Tingle, T N

    1998-05-15

    The abundance of C in carbonaceous and ordinary chondrites decreases exponentially with increasing shock pressure as inferred from the petrologic shock classification of Scott et al. [Scott, E.R.D., Keil, K., Stoffler, D., 1992. Shock metamorphism of carbonaceous chondrites. Geochim. Cosmochim. Acta 56, 4281-4293] and Stoffler et al. [Stoffler, D., Keil, K., Scott, E.R.D., 1991. Shock metamorphism of ordinary chondrites. Geochim. Cosmochim. Acta 55, 3845-3867]. This confirms the experimental results of Tyburczy et al. [Tyburczy, J.A., Frisch, B., Ahrens, T.J., 1986. Shock-induced volatile loss from a carbonaceous chondrite: implications for planetary accretion. Earth Planet. Sci. Lett. 80, 201-207] on shock-induced devolatization of the Murchison meteorite showing that carbonaceous chondrites appear to be completely devolatilized at impact velocities greater than 2 km s-1. Both of these results suggest that C incorporation would have been most efficient in the early stages of accretion, and that the primordial C content of the Earth was between 10(24) and 10(25) g C (1-10% efficiency of incorporation). This estimate agrees well with the value of 3-7 x 10(24) g C based on the atmospheric abundance of 36Ar and the chondritic C/36Ar (Marty and Jambon, 1987). Several observations suggest that C likely was incorporated into the Earth's core during accretion. (1) Graphite and carbides are commonly present in iron meteorites, and those iron meteorites with Widmanstatten patterns reflecting the slowest cooling rates (mostly Group I and IIIb) contain the highest C abundances. The C abundance-cooling rate correlation is consistent with dissolution of C into Fe-Ni liquids that segregated to form the cores of the iron meteorite parent bodies. (2) The carbon isotopic composition of graphite in iron meteorites exhibits a uniform value of -5% [Deines, P., Wickman, F.E. 1973. The isotopic composition of 'graphitic' carbon from iron meteorites and some remarks on the troilitic

  2. The Atmospheres of the Terrestrial Planets:Clues to the Origins and Early Evolution of Venus, Earth, and Mars

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Baines, Kevin H.; Atreya, Sushil K.; Bullock, Mark A.; Grinspoon, David H,; Mahaffy, Paul; Russell, Christopher T.; Schubert, Gerald; Zahnle, Kevin

    2015-01-01

    We review the current state of knowledge of the origin and early evolution of the three largest terrestrial planets - Venus, Earth, and Mars - setting the stage for the chapters on comparative climatological processes to follow. We summarize current models of planetary formation, as revealed by studies of solid materials from Earth and meteorites from Mars. For Venus, we emphasize the known differences and similarities in planetary bulk properties and composition with Earth and Mars, focusing on key properties indicative of planetary formation and early evolution, particularly of the atmospheres of all three planets. We review the need for future in situ measurements for improving our understanding of the origin and evolution of the atmospheres of our planetary neighbors and Earth, and suggest the accuracies required of such new in situ data. Finally, we discuss the role new measurements of Mars and Venus have in understanding the state and evolution of planets found in the habitable zones of other stars.

  3. Process to remove rare earth from IFR electrolyte

    DOEpatents

    Ackerman, John P.; Johnson, Terry R.

    1994-01-01

    The invention is a process for the removal of rare earths from molten chloride electrolyte salts used in the reprocessing of integrated fast reactor fuel (IFR). The process can be used either continuously during normal operation of the electrorefiner or as a batch process. The process consists of first separating the actinide values from the salt before purification by removal of the rare earths. After replacement of the actinides removed in the first step, the now-purified salt electrolyte has the same uranium and plutonium concentration and ratio as when the salt was removed from the electrorefiner.

  4. Process to remove rare earth from IFR electrolyte

    DOEpatents

    Ackerman, J.P.; Johnson, T.R.

    1992-01-01

    The invention is a process for the removal of rare earths from molten chloride electrolyte salts used in the reprocessing of integrated fast reactor fuel (IFR). The process can be used either continuously during normal operation of the electrorefiner or as a batch process. The process consists of first separating the actinide values from the salt before purification by removal of the rare earths. After replacement of the actinides removed in the first step, the now-purified salt electrolyte has the same uranium and plutonium concentration and ratio as when the salt was removed from the electrorefiner.

  5. Process to remove rare earth from IFR electrolyte

    DOEpatents

    Ackerman, J.P.; Johnson, T.R.

    1994-08-09

    The invention is a process for the removal of rare earths from molten chloride electrolyte salts used in the reprocessing of integrated fast reactor fuel (IFR). The process can be used either continuously during normal operation of the electrorefiner or as a batch process. The process consists of first separating the actinide values from the salt before purification by removal of the rare earths. After replacement of the actinides removed in the first step, the now-purified salt electrolyte has the same uranium and plutonium concentration and ratio as when the salt was removed from the electrorefiner. 1 fig.

  6. Publications of the Western Earth Surface Processes Team 2006

    Powell, Charles L.; Stone, Paul

    2007-01-01

    The Western Earth Surface Processes Team (WESPT) of the U.S. Geological Survey (USGS) conducts geologic mapping, earth-surface process investigations, and related topical earth science studies in the western United States. This work is focused on areas where modern geologic maps and associated earth-science data are needed to address key societal and environmental issues such as ground-water quality, landslides and other potential geologic hazards, and land-use decisions. Areas of primary emphasis in 2006 included southern California, the San Francisco Bay region, the Mojave Desert, the Colorado Plateau region of northern Arizona, and the Pacific Northwest. The team has its headquarters in Menlo Park, California, and maintains smaller field offices at several other locations in the western United States. This compilation gives the bibliographical citations for 123 new publications, most of which are available online using the hyperlinks provided.

  7. Carbonaceous meteorites as a source of sugar-related organic compounds for the early Earth

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Cooper, G.; Kimmich, N.; Belisle, W.; Sarinana, J.; Brabham, K.; Garrel, L.

    2001-01-01

    The much-studied Murchison meteorite is generally used as the standard reference for organic compounds in extraterrestrial material. Amino acids and other organic compounds important in contemporary biochemistry are thought to have been delivered to the early Earth by asteroids and comets, where they may have played a role in the origin of life. Polyhydroxylated compounds (polyols) such as sugars, sugar alcohols and sugar acids are vital to all known lifeforms-they are components of nucleic acids (RNA, DNA), cell membranes and also act as energy sources. But there has hitherto been no conclusive evidence for the existence of polyols in meteorites, leaving a gap in our understanding of the origins of biologically important organic compounds on Earth. Here we report that a variety of polyols are present in, and indigenous to, the Murchison and Murray meteorites in amounts comparable to amino acids. Analyses of water extracts indicate that extraterrestrial processes including photolysis and formaldehyde chemistry could account for the observed compounds. We conclude from this that polyols were present on the early Earth and therefore at least available for incorporation into the first forms of life.

  8. Effects of Earth's rotation on the early differentiation of a terrestrial magma ocean

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Maas, Christian; Hansen, Ulrich

    2015-11-01

    Similar to other terrestrial planets like Moon and Mars, Earth experienced a magma ocean period about 4.5 billion years ago. On Earth differentiation processes in the magma ocean set the initial conditions for core formation and mantle evolution. During the magma ocean period Earth was rotating significantly faster than today. Further, the viscosity of the magma was low, thus that planetary rotation potentially played an important role for differentiation. However, nearly all previous studies neglect rotational effects. All in all, our results suggest that planetary rotation plays an important role for magma ocean crystallization. We employ a 3-D numerical model to study crystal settling in a rotating and vigorously convecting early magma ocean. We show that crystal settling in a terrestrial magma ocean is crucially affected by latitude as well as by rotational strength and crystal density. Due to rotation an inhomogeneous accumulation of crystals during magma ocean solidification with a distinct crystal settling between pole and equator could occur. One could speculate that this may have potentially strong effects on the magma ocean solidification time and the early mantle composition. It could support the development of a basal magma ocean and the formation of anomalies at the core-mantle boundary in the equatorial region, reaching back to the time of magma ocean solidification.

  9. Were micrometeorites a source of prebiotic molecules on the early Earth?

    PubMed

    Maurette, M; Brack, A; Kurat, G; Perreau, M; Engrand, C

    1995-03-01

    "Interplanetary Dust Particles" with sizes approximately 10 micrometers collected in the stratosphere (IDPs), as well as much larger "giant" micrometeorites retrieved from Antarctic ice melt water (AMMs), are mostly composed of unequilibrated assemblages of minerals, thus being related to primitive unequilibrated meteorites. Two independent evaluations of the mass flux of micrometeorites measuring approximately 50 micrometers to approximately 200 micrometers, recovered from either the Greenland or the Antarctic ice sheets have been reported (approximately 20,000 tons/a). A comparison with recent evaluation of the flux of meteorites reaching the Earth's surface (up to masses of 10,000 tons), indicates that micrometeorites represent about 99.5% of the extraterrestrial material falling on the Earth's surface each year. As they show carbon concentrations exceeding that of the most C-rich meteorite (Orgueil), they are the major contributors of extraterrestrial C-rich matter accreting to the Earth today. Moreover they are complex microstructured aggregates of grains. They contain not only a variety of C-rich matter, such as a new "dirty" magnetite phase enriched in P, S, and minor elements, but also a diversity of potential catalysts (hydrous silicates, oxides, sulfides and metal grains of Fe/Ni composition, etc.). They could have individually functioned on the early Earth, as "micro-chondritic-reactors" for the processing of prebiotic organic molecules in liquid water. Future progress requires the challenging development of meaningful laboratory simulation experiments, and a better understanding of the partial reprocessing of micrometeorites in the atmosphere.

  10. Evolution of Earth-like Extrasolar Planetary Atmospheres: Assessing the Atmospheres and Biospheres of Early Earth Analog Planets with a Coupled Atmosphere Biogeochemical Model

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Gebauer, S.; Grenfell, J. L.; Stock, J. W.; Lehmann, R.; Godolt, M.; von Paris, P.; Rauer, H.

    2017-01-01

    Understanding the evolution of Earth and potentially habitable Earth-like worlds is essential to fathom our origin in the Universe. The search for Earth-like planets in the habitable zone and investigation of their atmospheres with climate and photochemical models is a central focus in exoplanetary science. Taking the evolution of Earth as a reference for Earth-like planets, a central scientific goal is to understand what the interactions were between atmosphere, geology, and biology on early Earth. The Great Oxidation Event in Earth's history was certainly caused by their interplay, but the origin and controlling processes of this occurrence are not well understood, the study of which will require interdisciplinary, coupled models. In this work, we present results from our newly developed Coupled Atmosphere Biogeochemistry model in which atmospheric O2 concentrations are fixed to values inferred by geological evidence. Applying a unique tool (Pathway Analysis Program), ours is the first quantitative analysis of catalytic cycles that governed O2 in early Earth's atmosphere near the Great Oxidation Event. Complicated oxidation pathways play a key role in destroying O2, whereas in the upper atmosphere, most O2 is formed abiotically via CO2 photolysis. The O2 bistability found by Goldblatt et al. (2006) is not observed in our calculations likely due to our detailed CH4 oxidation scheme. We calculate increased CH4 with increasing O2 during the Great Oxidation Event. For a given atmospheric surface flux, different atmospheric states are possible; however, the net primary productivity of the biosphere that produces O2 is unique. Mixing, CH4 fluxes, ocean solubility, and mantle/crust properties strongly affect net primary productivity and surface O2 fluxes. Regarding exoplanets, different "states" of O2 could exist for similar biomass output. Strong geological activity could lead to false negatives for life (since our analysis suggests that reducing gases remove O2 that

  11. The Early Years: The Earth-Sun System

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Ashbrook, Peggy

    2015-01-01

    We all experience firsthand many of the phenomena caused by Earth's Place in the Universe (Next Generation Science Standard 5-ESS1; NGSS Lead States 2013) and the relative motion of the Earth, Sun, and Moon. Young children can investigate phenomena such as changes in times of sunrise and sunset (number of daylight hours), Moon phases, seasonal…

  12. Information processing of earth resources data

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Zobrist, A. L.; Bryant, N. A.

    1982-01-01

    Current trends in the use of remotely sensed data include integration of multiple data sources of various formats and use of complex models. These trends have placed a strain on information processing systems because an enormous number of capabilities are needed to perform a single application. A solution to this problem is to create a general set of capabilities which can perform a wide variety of applications. General capabilities for the Image-Based Information System (IBIS) are outlined in this report. They are then cross-referenced for a set of applications performed at JPL.

  13. The early Earth Observing System reference handbook: Earth Science and Applications Division missions, 1990-1997

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    1990-01-01

    Prior to the launch of the Earth Observing System (EOS) series, NASA will launch and operate a wide variety of new earth science satellites and instruments, as well as undertake several efforts collecting and using the data from existing and planned satellites from other agencies and nations. These initiatives will augment the knowledge base gained from ongoing Earth Science and Applications Division (ESAD) programs. This volume describes three sets of ESAD activities -- ongoing exploitation of operational satellite data, research missions with upcoming launches between now and the first launch of EOS, and candidate earth probes.

  14. Design requirements for operational earth resources ground data processing

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Baldwin, C. J.; Bradford, L. H.; Burnett, E. S.; Hutson, D. E.; Kinsler, B. A.; Kugle, D. R.; Webber, D. S.

    1972-01-01

    Realistic tradeoff data and evaluation techniques were studied that permit conceptual design of operational earth resources ground processing systems. Methodology for determining user requirements that utilize the limited information available from users is presented along with definitions of sensor capabilities projected into the shuttle/station era. A tentative method is presented for synthesizing candidate ground processing concepts.

  15. Earth's Early Biosphere and the Biogeochemical Carbon Cycle

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    DesMarais, David

    2004-01-01

    Our biosphere has altered the global environment principally by influencing the chemistry of those elements most important for life, e g., C, N, S, O, P and transition metals (e.g., Fe and Mn). The coupling of oxygenic photosynthesis with the burial in sediments of photosynthetic organic matter, and with the escape of H2 to space, has increased the state of oxidation of the Oceans and atmosphere. It has also created highly reduced conditions within sedimentary rocks that have also extensively affected the geochemistry of several elements. The decline of volcanism during Earth's history reduced the flow of reduced chemical species that reacted with photosynthetically produced O2. The long-term net accumulation of photosynthetic O2 via biogeochemical processes has profoundly influenced our atmosphere and biosphere, as evidenced by the O2 levels required for algae, multicellular life and certain modem aerobic bacteria to exist. When our biosphere developed photosynthesis, it tapped into an energy resource that was much larger than the energy available from oxidation-reduction reactions associated with weathering and hydrothermal activity. Today, hydrothermal sources deliver globally (0.13-1.1)x10(exp l2) mol yr(sup -1) of reduced S, Fe(2+), Mn(2+), H2 and CH4; this is estimated to sustain at most about (0.2-2)xl0(exp 12)mol C yr(sup -1) of organic carbon production by chemautotrophic microorganisms. In contrast, global photosynthetic productivity is estimated to be 9000x10(exp 12) mol C yr(sup -1). Thus, even though global thermal fluxes were greater in the distant geologic past than today, the onset of oxygenic photosynthesis probably increased global organic productivity by some two or more orders of magnitude. This enormous productivity materialized principally because oxygenic photosynthesizers unleashed a virtually unlimited supply of reduced H that forever freed life from its sole dependence upon abiotic sources of reducing power such as hydrothermal emanations

  16. Reduced Gas Cycling in Microbial Mats: Implications for Early Earth

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Hoehler, Tori M.; Bebout, Brad M.; DesMarais, David J.; DeVincenzi, Donald L. (Technical Monitor)

    2000-01-01

    For more than half the history of life on Earth, biological productivity was dominated by photosynthetic microbial mats. During this time, mats served as the preeminent biological influence on earth's surface and atmospheric chemistry and also as the primary crucible for microbial evolution. We find that modern analogs of these ancient mat communities generate substantial quantities of hydrogen, carbon monoxide, and methane. Escape of these gases from the biosphere would contribute strongly to atmospheric evolution and potentially to the net oxidation of earth's surface; sequestration within the biosphere carries equally important implications for the structure, function, and evolution of anaerobic microbial communities within the context of mat biology.

  17. Aeolian Slipface Processes on Earth and Mars

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Cornwall, Carin; Jackson, Derek; Bourke, Mary; Cooper, Andrew

    2016-04-01

    The surface of Mars is dominated by aeolian features and many locations show ripple and dune migration over the past decade with some sediment fluxes comparable to terrestrial dunes. One of the leading goals in investigating aeolian processes on Mars is to explore the boundary conditions of sediment transport, accumulation, and dune mor-phology in relation to wind regime as well as to quantify migration rates and sediment flux. We combine terrestrial field observations, 3D computational fluid dynamics (CFD) modeling and remote sensing data to investigate com-plex, small scale wind patterns and grainflow processes on terrestrial and martian dunes. We aim to constrain grain flow magnitudes and frequencies that occur on slipface slopes of dunes in order to improve estimates of martian dune field migration and sediment flux related to wind velocity and flow patterns. A series of ground-based, high resolution laser scans have been collected in the Maspalomas dune field in Gran Canaria, Spain to investigate grainflow frequency, morphology and slipface advancement. Analysis of these laser scans and simultaneous video recordings have revealed a variety of slipface activity. We identify 6 different grain-flow morphologies including, hourglass shape (classic alcove formation with deposit fan below), superficial flow (thin lenses), narrow trough (vertical lines cm in width), sheet, column (vertical alcove walls), and complex (combi-nation of morphologies triggered simultaneously in the same location). Hourglass grainflow morphologies were the most common and occurred regularly. The superficial and narrow trough morphologies were the second most com-mon and frequently occurred in between large grain flows. Sheet grainflows were rare and unpredictable. These flows involved large portions of the slipface (metres across) and mobilized a substantial amount of sediment in one event. We have compared these grainflow morphologies from Maspalomas to those in martian dune fields and

  18. NASA's Earth Science Data Systems Standards Process Experiences

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Ullman, Richard E.; Enloe, Yonsook

    2007-01-01

    NASA has impaneled several internal working groups to provide recommendations to NASA management on ways to evolve and improve Earth Science Data Systems. One of these working groups is the Standards Process Group (SPC). The SPG is drawn from NASA-funded Earth Science Data Systems stakeholders, and it directs a process of community review and evaluation of proposed NASA standards. The working group's goal is to promote interoperability and interuse of NASA Earth Science data through broader use of standards that have proven implementation and operational benefit to NASA Earth science by facilitating the NASA management endorsement of proposed standards. The SPC now has two years of experience with this approach to identification of standards. We will discuss real examples of the different types of candidate standards that have been proposed to NASA's Standards Process Group such as OPeNDAP's Data Access Protocol, the Hierarchical Data Format, and Open Geospatial Consortium's Web Map Server. Each of the three types of proposals requires a different sort of criteria for understanding the broad concepts of "proven implementation" and "operational benefit" in the context of NASA Earth Science data systems. We will discuss how our Standards Process has evolved with our experiences with the three candidate standards.

  19. Lipid biomarker production and preservation in acidic ecosystems: Relevance to early Earth and Mars

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Jahnke, L. L.; Parenteau, M. N.; Harris, R.; Bristow, T.; Farmer, J. D.; Des Marais, D. J.

    2013-12-01

    Compared to relatively benign carbonate buffered marine environments, terrestrial Archean and Paleoproterozoic life was forced to cope with a broader range of pH values. In particular, acidic terrestrial ecosystems arose from the oxidation of reduced species in hydrothermal settings and crustal reservoirs of metal sulfides, creating acid sulfate conditions. While oxidation of reduced species is facilitated by reactions with molecular oxygen, acidic conditions also arose in Archean hydrothermal systems before the rise of oxygen (Van Kranendonk, 2006), expanding the range of time over which acidophiles could have existed on the early Earth. Acidic terrestrial habitats would have included acidic hydrothermal springs, acid sulfate soils, and possibly lakes and streams lacking substantial buffering capacity with sources of acidity in their catchments. Although acidic hot springs are considered extreme environments on Earth, robust and diverse microbial communities thrive in these habitats. Such acidophiles are found across all three domains of life and include both phototrophic and chemotrophic members. In this presentation, we examine hopanes and sterols that are characteristic of microbial communities living in acidic hydrothermal environments. Moreover we discuss taphonomic processes governing the capture and preservation of these biosignatures in acid environments. In particular, we discuss the production and early preservation of hopanoids and sterols in the following geological/mineralogical settings: 1) rapid entombment of microbes and organic matter by predominantly fine-grained silica; 2) rapid burial of organic matter by clay-rich, silica poor sediments; 3) and the survival of organics in iron oxide and sulfate rich sediments. We discovered and isolated an acid-tolerant purple non-sulfur anoxygenic phototroph from Lassen Volcanic National Park that synthesizes 3methyl-bacteriohopanepolyols. These compounds were previously thought to be exclusively made by

  20. Evolution of Earth-like Extrasolar Planetary Atmospheres: Assessing the Atmospheres and Biospheres of Early Earth Analog Planets with a Coupled Atmosphere Biogeochemical Model.

    PubMed

    Gebauer, S; Grenfell, J L; Stock, J W; Lehmann, R; Godolt, M; von Paris, P; Rauer, H

    2017-01-01

    Understanding the evolution of Earth and potentially habitable Earth-like worlds is essential to fathom our origin in the Universe. The search for Earth-like planets in the habitable zone and investigation of their atmospheres with climate and photochemical models is a central focus in exoplanetary science. Taking the evolution of Earth as a reference for Earth-like planets, a central scientific goal is to understand what the interactions were between atmosphere, geology, and biology on early Earth. The Great Oxidation Event in Earth's history was certainly caused by their interplay, but the origin and controlling processes of this occurrence are not well understood, the study of which will require interdisciplinary, coupled models. In this work, we present results from our newly developed Coupled Atmosphere Biogeochemistry model in which atmospheric O 2 concentrations are fixed to values inferred by geological evidence. Applying a unique tool (Pathway Analysis Program), ours is the first quantitative analysis of catalytic cycles that governed O 2 in early Earth's atmosphere near the Great Oxidation Event. Complicated oxidation pathways play a key role in destroying O 2 , whereas in the upper atmosphere, most O 2 is formed abiotically via CO 2 photolysis. The O 2 bistability found by Goldblatt et al. ( 2006 ) is not observed in our calculations likely due to our detailed CH 4 oxidation scheme. We calculate increased CH 4 with increasing O 2 during the Great Oxidation Event. For a given atmospheric surface flux, different atmospheric states are possible; however, the net primary productivity of the biosphere that produces O 2 is unique. Mixing, CH 4 fluxes, ocean solubility, and mantle/crust properties strongly affect net primary productivity and surface O 2 fluxes. Regarding exoplanets, different "states" of O 2 could exist for similar biomass output. Strong geological activity could lead to false negatives for life (since our analysis suggests that reducing gases

  1. Noble gas Records of Early Evolution of the Earth

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Ozima, M.; Podoesk, F. A.

    2001-12-01

    Comparison between atmospheric noble gases (except for He) and solar (or meteoritic) noble gases clearly suggests that the Earth should have much more Xe than is present in air, and thus that up to about 90 percent of terrestrial Xe is missing from the Earth (1). In this report, we discuss implications of these observations on I-Pu chronology of the Earth and on the origin of terrestrial He3. Whetherill (2) first noted that an estimated I129/I127 ratio (3x10-6) in the proto-Earth was about two orders of magnitude smaller than values commonly observed in meteorites (10-4), and pointed out the possibility that Earth formation postdated meteorites by about 100Ma. Ozima and Podosek (1999) came to a similar conclusion on the basis of I129/I127-Pu244/U238 systematics (1). In this report, we reexamine I-Pu systematics with new data for crustal I content (295 ppb for a bulk crust, (3)). With imposition of an estimated value of 86 percent missing Xe as a constraint on terrestrial Xe inventory, we conclude that the best estimate for a formation age of the Earth is about 28Ma after the initial condensation of the solar nebula (at 4.57Ga). The formation age thus estimated is significantly later than the generally assumed age of meteorites. We also argue from the I-Pu systematics that the missing Xe became missing place about 120Ma after Earth formation. Assuming that the Earth is mostly degassed, the I-Pu formation age of the Earth can be reasonably assumed to represent a whole Earth event. Therefore, we interpret that the I-Pu age of the Earth represents the time when the Earth started to retain noble gases. More specifically, this may correspond to the time when the proto-Earth attained a sufficient size to exert the necessary gravitational force. A giant impact could be another possibility, but it remains to be seen whether or not a giant impact could quantitatively remove heavier noble gases from the Earth. It is interesting to speculate that missing Xe was sequestered in

  2. Ocean Fertilization from Giant Icebergs on Earth and Early Mars

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Uceda, E. R.; Fairen, A. G.; Rodriguez, J. A. P.; Woodworth-Lynas, C.

    2016-05-01

    Assuming that life existed on Mars coeval to glacial activity, enhanced concentrations of organic carbon could be anticipated near iceberg trails, analogous to what is observed in polar oceans on Earth.

  3. Flexible Description and Adaptive Processing of Earth Observation Data through the BigEarth Platform

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Gorgan, Dorian; Bacu, Victor; Stefanut, Teodor; Nandra, Cosmin; Mihon, Danut

    2016-04-01

    The Earth Observation data repositories extending periodically by several terabytes become a critical issue for organizations. The management of the storage capacity of such big datasets, accessing policy, data protection, searching, and complex processing require high costs that impose efficient solutions to balance the cost and value of data. Data can create value only when it is used, and the data protection has to be oriented toward allowing innovation that sometimes depends on creative people, which achieve unexpected valuable results through a flexible and adaptive manner. The users need to describe and experiment themselves different complex algorithms through analytics in order to valorize data. The analytics uses descriptive and predictive models to gain valuable knowledge and information from data analysis. Possible solutions for advanced processing of big Earth Observation data are given by the HPC platforms such as cloud. With platforms becoming more complex and heterogeneous, the developing of applications is even harder and the efficient mapping of these applications to a suitable and optimum platform, working on huge distributed data repositories, is challenging and complex as well, even by using specialized software services. From the user point of view, an optimum environment gives acceptable execution times, offers a high level of usability by hiding the complexity of computing infrastructure, and supports an open accessibility and control to application entities and functionality. The BigEarth platform [1] supports the entire flow of flexible description of processing by basic operators and adaptive execution over cloud infrastructure [2]. The basic modules of the pipeline such as the KEOPS [3] set of basic operators, the WorDeL language [4], the Planner for sequential and parallel processing, and the Executor through virtual machines, are detailed as the main components of the BigEarth platform [5]. The presentation exemplifies the development

  4. The esa earth explorer land surface processes and interactions mission

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Labandibar, Jean-Yves; Jubineau, Franck; Silvestrin, Pierluigi; Del Bello, Umberto

    2017-11-01

    The European Space Agency (ESA) is defining candidate missions for Earth Observation. In the class of the Earth Explorer missions, dedicated to research and pre-operational demonstration, the Land Surface Processes and Interactions Mission (LSPIM) will acquire the accurate quantitative measurements needed to improve our understanding of the nature and evolution of biosphere-atmosphere interactions and to contribute significantly to a solution of the scaling problems for energy, water and carbon fluxes at the Earth's surface. The mission is intended to provide detailed observations of the surface of the Earth and to collect data related to ecosystem processes and radiation balance. It is also intended to address a range of issues important for environmental monitoring, renewable resources assessment and climate models. The mission involves a dedicated maneuvering satellite which provides multi-directional observations for systematic measurement of Land Surface BRDF (BiDirectional Reflectance Distribution Function) of selected sites on Earth. The satellite carries an optical payload : PRISM (Processes Research by an Imaging Space Mission), a multispectral imager providing reasonably high spatial resolution images (50 m over 50 km swath) in the whole optical spectral domain (from 450 nm to 2.35 μm with a resolution close to 10 nm, and two thermal bands from 8.1 to 9.1 μm). This paper presents the results of the Phase A study awarded by ESA, led by ALCATEL Space Industries and concerning the design of LSPIM.

  5. Reactive Oxygen Species on the Early Earth and Survival of Bacteria

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Balk, Melikea; Mason, Paul; Stams, Alfons J. M.; Smidt, Hauke; Freund, Friedemann; Rothschild, Lynn

    2011-01-01

    An oxygen-rich atmosphere appears to have been a prerequisite for complex, multicellular life to evolve on Earth and possibly elsewhere in the Universe. However it remains unclear how free oxygen first became available on the early Earth. A potentially important, and as yet poorly constrained pathway, is the production of oxygen through the weathering of rocks and release into the near-surface environment. Reactive Oxygen Species (ROS), as precursors to molecular oxygen, are a key step in this process, and may have had a decisive impact on the evolution of life, present and past. ROS are generated from minerals in igneous rocks during hydrolysis of peroxy defects, which consist of pairs of oxygen anions oxidized to the valence state -1 and during (bio) transformations of iron sulphide minerals. ROS are produced and consumed by intracellular and extracellular reactions of Fe, Mn, C, N, and S species. We propose that, despite an overall reducing or neutral oxidation state of the macroenvironment and the absence of free O2 in the atmosphere, organisms on the early Earth had to cope with ROS in their microenvironments. They were thus under evolutionary pressure to develop enzymatic and other defences against the potentially dangerous, even lethal effects of oxygen and its derived ROS. Conversely it appears that microorganisms learned to take advantage of the enormous reactive potential and energy gain provided by nascent oxygen. We investigate how oxygen might be released through weathering. We test microorganisms in contact with rock surfaces and iron sulphides. We model bacteria such as Deionococcus radiodurans and Desulfotomaculum, Moorella and Bacillus species for their ability to grow or survive in the presence of ROS. We examine how early Life might have adapted to oxygen.

  6. The development of machine technology processing for earth resource survey

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Landgrebe, D. A.

    1970-01-01

    The following technologies are considered for automatic processing of earth resources data: (1) registration of multispectral and multitemporal images, (2) digital image display systems, (3) data system parameter effects on satellite remote sensing systems, and (4) data compression techniques based on spectral redundancy. The importance of proper spectral band and compression algorithm selections is pointed out.

  7. On the management and processing of earth resources information

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Skinner, C. W.; Gonzalez, R. C.

    1973-01-01

    The basic concepts of a recently completed large-scale earth resources information system plan are reported. Attention is focused throughout the paper on the information management and processing requirements. After the development of the principal system concepts, a model system for implementation at the state level is discussed.

  8. Parabolic flights as Earth analogue for surface processes on Mars

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Kuhn, Nikolaus J.

    2017-04-01

    The interpretation of landforms and environmental archives on Mars with regards to habitability and preservation of traces of life requires a quantitative understanding of the processes that shaped them. Commonly, qualitative similarities in sedimentary rocks between Earth and Mars are used as an analogue to reconstruct the environments in which they formed on Mars. However, flow hydraulics and sedimentation differ between Earth and Mars, requiring a recalibration of models describing runoff, erosion, transport and deposition. Simulation of these processes on Earth is limited because gravity cannot be changed and the trade-off between adjusting e.g. fluid or particle density generates other mismatches, such as fluid viscosity. Computational Fluid Dynamics offer an alternative, but would also require a certain degree of calibration or testing. Parabolic flights offer a possibility to amend the shortcomings of these approaches. Parabolas with reduced gravity last up to 30 seconds, which allows the simulation of sedimentation processes and the measurement of flow hydraulics. This study summarizes the experience gathered during four campaigns of parabolic flights, aimed at identifying potential and limitations of their use as an Earth analogue for surface processes on Mars.

  9. Democratic Group Process in Early Childhood Curriculum.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Wolf, Lois C.

    This paper examines ways in which early childhood education can provide the vital foundation for lifelong attitudes and values toward the democratic process. One goal of early childhood education is to empower the social bonding which brings collaborative relationships to their full potential and gives the child a sense of connectedness to others.…

  10. Climatic consequences of very high CO2 levels in Earth's early atmosphere

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Kasting, J. F.

    1985-01-01

    Earth has approximately 60 bars of carbon dioxide tied up in carbonate rocks, or roughly 2/3 the amount of CO2 of Venus' atmosphere. Two different lines of evidence, one based on thermodynamics and the other on geochemical cycles, indicate that a substantial fraction of this CO2 may have resulted in the atmosphere during the first few hundred million years of the Earth's history. A natural question which arises concerning this hypothesis is whether this would have resulted in a runaway greenhouse affect. One-dimensional radiative/convective model calculations show that the surface temperature of a hypothetical primitive atmosphere containing 20 bars of CO2 would have been less than 100C and no runaway greenhouse should have occurred. The climatic stability of the early atmosphere is a consequence of three factors: (1) reduced solar luminosity at that time; (2) an increase in planetary albedo caused by Rayleigh scattering by CO2; and (3) the stabilizing effects of moist convection. The latter two factors are sufficient to prevent a CO2-induced runaway greenhouse on the present Earth and for CO2 levels up to 100 bars. It is determined whether a runaway greenhouse could have occurred during the latter stages of the accretion process and, if so, whether it would have collapsed once the influx of material slowed down.

  11. Electrophysiological Evidence of Automatic Early Semantic Processing

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Hinojosa, Jose A.; Martin-Loeches, Manuel; Munoz, Francisco; Casado, Pilar; Pozo, Miguel A.

    2004-01-01

    This study investigates the automatic-controlled nature of early semantic processing by means of the Recognition Potential (RP), an event-related potential response that reflects lexical selection processes. For this purpose tasks differing in their processing requirements were used. Half of the participants performed a physical task involving a…

  12. The early Earth -- A perspective on the Archean

    SciT

    Hamilton, W.B.

    1993-04-01

    Dominant models of Archean tectonics and magmatism involve plate-tectonic mechanisms. Common tenets of geochemistry (e.g., model ages) and petrology visualize a cold-accreted Earth in which primitive mantle gradually fractionated to produce crust during and since Archean time. These popular assumptions appear to be incompatible with cosmologic and planetologic evidence and with Archean geology. All current quantitative and semiquantitative theories agree that the Earth was largely or entirely melted (likely superheated) by giant impacts, including the Mars-size impact which splashed out the Moon, and by separation of the core. The Earth at [approximately]4.5 Ga was a violently convecting anhydrous molten ball.more » Both this history and solar-system position indicate the bulk Earth to be more refractory than chondrite. The outer part of whatever sold shell developed was repeatedly recycled by impacts before 3.9 Ga. Water and CO[sub 2] were added by impactors after the Moon-forming event; the mantle is not a source of primordial volatiles, but rather is a sink that has depleted the hydrosphere. Voluminous liquidus ultramafic lava (komatiite) indicates that much Archean upper mantle was above its solidus. Only komatiitic and basaltic magma entered Archean crust from the mantle. Variably hydrous contamination, secondary melting, and fractionation in the crust produced intermediate and felsic melts. Magmatism was concurrent over vast tracts. Within at least the small sample of Archean crust that has not been recycled into the mantle, heat loss was primarily by voluminous, dispersed magmatism, not, as in the modern Earth, primarily through spreading windows through the crust. Only in Proterozoic time did plate-tectonic mechanisms become prevalent.« less

  13. Early Earth plume-lid tectonics: A high-resolution 3D numerical modelling approach

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Fischer, R.; Gerya, T.

    2016-10-01

    Geological-geochemical evidence point towards higher mantle potential temperature and a different type of tectonics (global plume-lid tectonics) in the early Earth (>3.2 Ga) compared to the present day (global plate tectonics). In order to investigate tectono-magmatic processes associated with plume-lid tectonics and crustal growth under hotter mantle temperature conditions, we conduct a series of 3D high-resolution magmatic-thermomechanical models with the finite-difference code I3ELVIS. No external plate tectonic forces are applied to isolate 3D effects of various plume-lithosphere and crust-mantle interactions. Results of the numerical experiments show two distinct phases in coupled crust-mantle evolution: (1) a longer (80-100 Myr) and relatively quiet 'growth phase' which is marked by growth of crust and lithosphere, followed by (2) a short (∼20 Myr) and catastrophic 'removal phase', where unstable parts of the crust and mantle lithosphere are removed by eclogitic dripping and later delamination. This modelling suggests that the early Earth plume-lid tectonic regime followed a pattern of episodic growth and removal also called episodic overturn with a periodicity of ∼100 Myr.

  14. Chemical evolution of the Earth: Equilibrium or disequilibrium process?

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Sato, M.

    1985-01-01

    To explain the apparent chemical incompatibility of the Earth's core and mantle or the disequilibrium process, various core forming mechanisms have been proposed, i.e., rapid disequilibrium sinking of molten iron, an oxidized core or protocore materials, and meteorite contamination of the upper mantle after separation from the core. Adopting concepts used in steady state thermodynamics, a method is devised for evaluating how elements should distribute stable in the Earth's interior for the present gradients of temperature, pressure, and gravitational acceleration. Thermochemical modeling gives useful insights into the nature of chemical evolution of the Earth without overly speculative assumptions. Further work must be done to reconcile siderophile elements, rare gases, and possible light elements in the outer core.

  15. Sedimentary Processes on Earth, Mars, Titan, and Venus

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Grotzinger, J. P.; Hayes, A. G.; Lamb, M. P.; McLennan, S. M.

    The production, transport and deposition of sediment occur to varying degrees on Earth, Mars, Venus, and Titan. These sedimentary processes are significantly influenced by climate that affects production of sediment in source regions (weathering), and the mode by which that sediment is transported (wind vs. water). Other, more geological, factors determine where sediments are deposited (topography and tectonics). Fluvial and marine processes dominate Earth both today and in its geologic past, aeolian processes dominate modern Mars although in its past fluvial processes also were important, Venus knows only aeolian processes, and Titan shows evidence of both fluvial and aeolian processes. Earth and Mars also feature vast deposits of sedimentary rocks, spanning billions of years of planetary history. These ancient rocks preserve the long-term record of the evolution of surface environments, including variations in climate state. On Mars, sedimentary rocks record the transition from wetter, neutral-pH weathering, to brine-dominated low-pH weathering, to its dry current state.

  16. 21st century early mission concepts for Mars delivery and earth return

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Cruz, Manuel I.; Ilgen, Marc R.

    1990-01-01

    In the 21st century, the early missions to Mars will entail unmanned Rover and Sample Return reconnaissance missions to be followed by manned exploration missions. High performance leverage technologies will be required to reach Mars and return to earth. This paper describes the mission concepts currently identified for these early Mars missions. These concepts include requirements and capabilities for Mars and earth aerocapture, Mars surface operations and ascent, and Mars and earth rendezvous. Although the focus is on the unmanned missions, synergism with the manned missions is also discussed.

  17. Formation of the Lunar Fossil Bulges and its Implication for the Early Earth and Moon

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Qin, C.; Zhong, S.; Phillips, R. J.

    2017-12-01

    First recognized by Laplace more than two centuries ago, the lunar gravitational and shape anomalies associated with rotational and tidal bulges are significantly larger than predicted from the hydrostatic theory. The harmonic degree-2 gravitational coefficients of the Moon, C20 and C22 (measuring the size of the rotational and tidal bulges), are 17 and 14 times of their hydrostatic counterparts, respectively, after removal of the effect from large impact basins. The bulges are commonly considered as remnant hydrostatic features, "frozen-in" when the Moon was closer to the Earth, experiencing larger tidal-rotational forces. The extant hypothesis is that as the Moon cooled and migrated outwards, a strong outer layer (lithosphere) thickened and reached a stress state that supported the bulges, which no longer tracked the hydrostatic ellipticity. However, this process is poorly understood and an appropriate dynamical model has not been engaged. Here we present the first dynamically self-consistent model of lunar bulge formation that couples a lunar interior thermal evolution model to the tidal-rotational forcing of the Moon. The forcing magnitude decreases with time as the Moon despins on the receding orbit, while the recession rate is controlled by the Earth's tidal dissipation factor Q. Assuming a viscoelastic rheology, the cooling of the Moon is described by a model with high viscosity lithosphere thickening with time. While conventional methods are not suitable for models with time-dependent viscoelastic structure, a semi-analytical method has been developed to address this problem. We show that the bulge formation is controlled by the relative timing of lithosphere thickening and lunar orbit recession. Based on our calculations, we conclude that the development of the fossil bulges may have taken as long as 400 million years after the formation of lunar lithosphere and was complete when the lunar orbit semi-major axis, a, was 32 Earth's radius, RE. We find a

  18. The Contribution of GGOS to Understanding Dynamic Earth Processes

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Gross, Richard

    2017-04-01

    Geodesy is the science of the Earth's shape, size, gravity and rotation, including their evolution in time. Geodetic observations play a major role in the solid Earth sciences because they are fundamental for the understanding and modeling of Earth system processes. Changes in the Earth's shape, its gravitational field, and its rotation are caused by external forces acting on the Earth system and internal processes involving mass transfer and exchange of angular and linear momentum. Thus, variations in these geodetic quantities of the Earth reflect and constrain mechanical and thermo-dynamic processes in the Earth system. Mitigating the impact on human life and property of natural hazards such as earthquakes, volcanic eruptions, debris flows, landslides, land subsidence, sea level change, tsunamis, floods, storm surges, hurricanes and extreme weather is an important scientific task to which geodetic observations make fundamental contributions. Geodetic observations can be used to monitor the pre-eruptive deformation of volcanoes and the pre-seismic deformation of earthquake fault zones, aiding in the issuance of volcanic eruption and earthquake warnings. They can also be used to rapidly estimate earthquake fault motion, aiding in the modeling of tsunami genesis and the issuance of tsunami warnings. Geodetic observations are also used in other areas of the Earth sciences, not just the solid Earth sciences. For example, geodesy contributes to atmospheric science by supporting both observation and prediction of the weather by geo-referencing meteorological observing data and by globally tracking change in stratospheric mass and lower tropospheric water vapor fields. Geodetic measurements of refraction profiles derived from satellite occultation data are routinely assimilated into numerical weather prediction models. Geodesy contributes to hydrologic studies by providing a unique global reference system for measurements of: sub-seasonal, seasonal and secular movements

  19. Magma Ocean Depth and Oxygen Fugacity in the Early Earth--Implications for Biochemistry.

    PubMed

    Righter, Kevin

    2015-09-01

    A large class of elements, referred to as the siderophile (iron-loving) elements, in the Earth's mantle can be explained by an early deep magma ocean on the early Earth in which the mantle equilibrated with metallic liquid (core liquid). This stage would have affected the distribution of some of the classic volatile elements that are also essential ingredients for life and biochemistry - H, C, S, and N. Estimates are made of the H, C, S, and N contents of Earth's early mantle after core formation, considering the effects of variable temperature, pressure, oxygen fugacity, and composition on their partitioning. Assessment is made of whether additional, exogenous, sources are required to explain the observed mantle concentrations, and areas are identified where additional data and experimentation would lead to an improved understanding of this phase of Earth's history.

  20. What Do We Really Know About Early Earth? Less Than We Claim.

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Harrison, M.; Bell, E. A.; Boehnke, P.

    2016-12-01

    The ubiquity of origin myths suggests that our species has an innate need to explain how Earth formed and evolved. Myth fabrication is in part controlled by limitations of the available historical record. When our community encountered its limit - there are no known rocks older than 4.02 Ga - it chose the paradigm of a desiccated, molten, continent-free wasteland and called it the Hadean. Over the past 15 years, motivated largely by study of >4 Ga zircons, aspects of this story have been displaced to include granite weathering and sediment cycling in the presence of H2O. While encouraging that observational data now informs at least part of our early Earth paradigm, other elements appear unchanged. For example, the view that significant continental crust or plate interactions didn't emerge until 3 Ga are argued on the basis of changes at that time in diamond inclusions, shale composition, zircon age spectra, and arc rock associations. However, they share 3 flawed, interrelated assumptions (lithospheric thermal structure and zircon productivity are time independent and the Archean rock record is unbiased) that greatly weaken their evidentiary value. It is axiomatic that we cannot know if earliest Earth was similar to present day or more akin to our longstanding myth from rocks given their >4.02 Ga absence. However, we are not without a lithic record and data from zircons as old as 4.38 Ga are decidedly more consistent with the former view than the latter. What compelled us to create an origin myth in the absence of empirical evidence? While science is distinguished from mythology by its emphasis on verification, its practitioners may be as subject to the same existential needs as any primitive society. Given high expected early radioactivity and impact flux, it was irresistible to explain the lack of Hadean continental crust by its non-existence rather than the equally plausible notion that it was consumed by the same processes operating on the planet today. If

  1. Quantifying Atmospheric Moist Processes from Earth Observations. Really?

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Shepson, P. B.; Cambaliza, M. O. L.; Salmon, O. E.; Heimburger, A. M. F.; Davis, K. J.; Lauvaux, T.; McGowan, L. E.; Miles, N.; Richardson, S.; Sarmiento, D. P.; Hardesty, M.; Karion, A.; Sweeney, C.; Iraci, L. T.; Hillyard, P. W.; Podolske, J. R.; Gurney, K. R.; Patarasuk, R.; Razlivanov, I. N.; Song, Y.; O'Keeffe, D.; Turnbull, J. C.; Vimont, I.; Whetstone, J. R.; Possolo, A.; Prasad, K.; Lopez-Coto, I.

    2014-12-01

    The amount of water in the Earth's atmosphere is tiny compared to all other sources of water on our planet, fresh or otherwise. However, this tiny amount of water is fundamental to most aspects of human life. The tiny amount of water that cycles from the Earth's surface, through condensation into clouds in the atmosphere returning as precipitation falling is not only natures way of delivering fresh water to land-locked human societies but it also exerts a fundamental control on our climate system producing the most important feedbacks in the system. The representation of these processes in Earth system models contain many errors that produce well now biases in the hydrological cycle. Surprisingly the parameterizations of these important processes are not well validated with observations. Part of the reason for this situation stems from the fact that process evaluation is difficult to achieve on the global scale since it has commonly been assumed that the static observations available from snap-shots of individual parameters contain little information on processes. One of the successes of the A-Train has been the development of multi-parameter analysis based on the multi-sensor data produced by the satellite constellation. This has led to new insights on how water cycles through the Earth's atmosphere. Examples of these insights will be highlighted. It will be described how the rain formation process has been observed and how this has been used to constrain this process in models, with a huge impact. How these observations are beginning to reveal insights on deep convection and examples of the use these observations applied to models will also be highlighted as will the effects of aerosol on clouds on radiation.

  2. Quantifying Atmospheric Moist Processes from Earth Observations. Really?

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Stephens, G. L.

    2015-12-01

    The amount of water in the Earth's atmosphere is tiny compared to all other sources of water on our planet, fresh or otherwise. However, this tiny amount of water is fundamental to most aspects of human life. The tiny amount of water that cycles from the Earth's surface, through condensation into clouds in the atmosphere returning as precipitation falling is not only natures way of delivering fresh water to land-locked human societies but it also exerts a fundamental control on our climate system producing the most important feedbacks in the system. The representation of these processes in Earth system models contain many errors that produce well now biases in the hydrological cycle. Surprisingly the parameterizations of these important processes are not well validated with observations. Part of the reason for this situation stems from the fact that process evaluation is difficult to achieve on the global scale since it has commonly been assumed that the static observations available from snap-shots of individual parameters contain little information on processes. One of the successes of the A-Train has been the development of multi-parameter analysis based on the multi-sensor data produced by the satellite constellation. This has led to new insights on how water cycles through the Earth's atmosphere. Examples of these insights will be highlighted. It will be described how the rain formation process has been observed and how this has been used to constrain this process in models, with a huge impact. How these observations are beginning to reveal insights on deep convection and examples of the use these observations applied to models will also be highlighted as will the effects of aerosol on clouds on radiation.

  3. The Earth System Documentation (ES-DOC) Software Process

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Greenslade, M. A.; Murphy, S.; Treshansky, A.; DeLuca, C.; Guilyardi, E.; Denvil, S.

    2013-12-01

    Earth System Documentation (ES-DOC) is an international project supplying high-quality tools & services in support of earth system documentation creation, analysis and dissemination. It is nurturing a sustainable standards based documentation eco-system that aims to become an integral part of the next generation of exa-scale dataset archives. ES-DOC leverages open source software, and applies a software development methodology that places end-user narratives at the heart of all it does. ES-DOC has initially focused upon nurturing the Earth System Model (ESM) documentation eco-system and currently supporting the following projects: * Coupled Model Inter-comparison Project Phase 5 (CMIP5); * Dynamical Core Model Inter-comparison Project (DCMIP); * National Climate Predictions and Projections Platforms Quantitative Evaluation of Downscaling Workshop. This talk will demonstrate that ES-DOC implements a relatively mature software development process. Taking a pragmatic Agile process as inspiration, ES-DOC: * Iteratively develops and releases working software; * Captures user requirements via a narrative based approach; * Uses online collaboration tools (e.g. Earth System CoG) to manage progress; * Prototypes applications to validate their feasibility; * Leverages meta-programming techniques where appropriate; * Automates testing whenever sensibly feasible; * Streamlines complex deployments to a single command; * Extensively leverages GitHub and Pivotal Tracker; * Enforces strict separation of the UI from underlying API's; * Conducts code reviews.

  4. Potential synergy: the thorium fuel cycle and rare earths processing

    SciT

    Ault, T.; Wymer, R.; Croff, A.

    2013-07-01

    The use of thorium in nuclear power programs has been evaluated on a recurring basis. A concern often raised is the lack of 'thorium infrastructure'; however, for at least a part of a potential thorium fuel cycle, this may less of a problem than previously thought. Thorium is frequently encountered in association with rare earth elements and, since the U.S. last systematically evaluated the large-scale use of thorium (the 1970's,) the use of rare earth elements has increased ten-fold to approximately 200,000 metric tons per year. Integration of thorium extraction with rare earth processing has been previously described and top-levelmore » estimates have been done on thorium resource availability; however, since ores and mining operations differ markedly, what is needed is process flowsheet analysis to determine whether a specific mining operation can feasibly produce thorium as a by-product. Also, the collocation of thorium with rare earths means that, even if a thorium product stream is not developed, its presence in mining waste streams needs to be addressed and there are previous instances where this has caused issues. This study analyzes several operational mines, estimates the mines' ability to produce a thorium by-product stream, and discusses some waste management implications of recovering thorium. (authors)« less

  5. Environmental Consequences of Big Nasty Impacts on the Early Earth

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Zahnle, Kevin

    2015-01-01

    The geological record of the Archean Earth is spattered with impact spherules from a dozen or so major cosmic collisions involving Earth and asteroids or comets (Lowe, Byerly 1986, 2015). Extrapolation of the documented deposits suggests that most of these impacts were as big or bigger than the Chicxulub event that famously ended the reign of the thunder lizards. As the Archean impacts were greater, the environmental effects were also greater. The number and magnitude of the impacts is bounded by the lunar record. There are no lunar craters bigger than Chicxulub that date to Earth's mid-to-late Archean. Chance dictates that Earth experienced no more than approximately 10 impacts bigger than Chicxulub between 2.5 billion years and 3.5 billion years, the biggest of which were approximately 30-100 times more energetic, comparable to the Orientale impact on the Moon (1x10 (sup 26) joules). To quantify the thermal consequences of big impacts on old Earth, we model the global flow of energy from the impact into the environment. The model presumes that a significant fraction of the impact energy goes into ejecta that interact with the atmosphere. Much of this energy is initially in rock vapor, melt, and high speed particles. (i) The upper atmosphere is heated by ejecta as they reenter the atmosphere. The mix of hot air, rock vapor, and hot silicates cools by thermal radiation. Rock raindrops fall out as the upper atmosphere cools. (ii) The energy balance of the lower atmosphere is set by radiative exchange with the upper atmosphere and with the surface, and by evaporation of seawater. Susequent cooling is governed by condensation of water vapor. (iii) The oceans are heated by thermal radiation and rock rain and cooled by evaporation. Surface waters become hot and salty; if a deep ocean remains it is relatively cool. Subsequently water vapor condenses to replenish the oceans with hot fresh water (how fresh depending on continental weathering, which might be rather rapid

  6. Environmental Consequences of Big Nasty Impacts on the Early Earth

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Zahnle, Kevin

    2015-01-01

    The geological record of the Archean Earth is spattered with impact spherules from a dozen or so major cosmic collisions involving Earth and asteroids or comets (Lowe, Byerly 1986, 2015). Extrapolation of the documented deposits suggests that most of these impacts were as big or bigger than the Chicxulub event that famously ended the reign of the thunder lizards. As the Archean impacts were greater, the environmental effects were also greater. The number and magnitude of the impacts is bounded by the lunar record. There are no lunar craters bigger than Chicxulub that date to Earth's mid-to-late Archean. Chance dictates that Earth experienced no more than approximately 10 impacts bigger than Chicxulub between 2.5 billion years and 3.5 2.5 billion years, the biggest of which were approximately30-100 times more energetic, comparable to the Orientale impact on the Moon (1x10 (sup 26) joules). To quantify the thermal consequences of big impacts on old Earth, we model the global flow of energy from the impact into the environment. The model presumes that a significant fraction of the impact energy goes into ejecta that interact with the atmosphere. Much of this energy is initially in rock vapor, melt, and high speed particles. (i) The upper atmosphere is heated by ejecta as they reenter the atmosphere. The mix of hot air, rock vapor, and hot silicates cools by thermal radiation. Rock raindrops fall out as the upper atmosphere cools. (ii) The energy balance of the lower atmosphere is set by radiative exchange with the upper atmosphere and with the surface, and by evaporation of seawater. Susequent cooling is governed by condensation of water vapor. (iii) The oceans are heated by thermal radiation and rock rain and cooled by evaporation. Surface waters become hot and salty; if a deep ocean remains it is relatively cool. Subsequently water vapor condenses to replenish the oceans with hot fresh water (how fresh depending on continental weathering, which might be rather rapid

  7. Environmental Consequences of Big Nasty Impacts on the Early Earth

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Zahnle, K. J.

    2015-12-01

    The geological record of the Archean Earth is spattered with impact spherules from a dozen or so major cosmic collisions involving Earth and asteroids or comets (Lowe, Byerly 1986, 2015). Extrapolation of the documented deposits suggests that most of these impacts were as big or bigger than the Chicxulub event that famously ended the reign of the thunder lizards. As the Archean impacts were greater, the environmental effects were also greater. The number and magnitude of the impacts is bounded by the lunar record. There are no lunar craters bigger than Chicxulub that date to Earth's mid-to-late Archean. Chance dictates that Earth experienced ~10 impacts bigger than Chicxulub between 2.5 Ga and 3.5 Ga, the biggest of which were ~30-100X more energetic than Chicxulub. To quantify the thermal consequences of big impacts on old Earth, we model the global flow of energy from the impact into the environment. The model presumes that a significant fraction of the impact energy goes into ejecta that interact with the atmosphere. Much of this energy is initially in rock vapor, melt, and high speed particles. (i) The upper atmosphere is heated by ejecta as they reenter the atmosphere. The mix of hot air, rock vapor, and hot silicates cools by thermal radiation. Rock raindrops fall out as the upper atmosphere cools. (ii) The energy balance of the lower atmosphere is set by radiative exchange with the upper atmosphere and with the surface, and by evaporation of seawater. Susequent cooling is governed by condensation of water vapor. (iii) The oceans are heated by thermal radiation and rock rain and cooled by evaporation. Surface waters become hot and salty; if a deep ocean remains it is relatively cool. Subsequently water vapor condenses to replenish the oceans with hot fresh water (how fresh depending on continental weathering, which might be rather rapid under the circumstances). (iv) The surface temperature of dry land is presumed to be the same as the lower atmosphere. A

  8. Early Earth evolution: new insight from Sm and Nd isotopes in meteoritic inclusions

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Bouvier, A.; Boyet, M.

    2014-12-01

    The interpretation of Sm-Nd systematics for the early Earth relies on knowing the composition of the silicate Earth and the 146Sm decay constant. We have measured both 146Sm-142Nd and 147Sm-143Nd internal systematics of four individual Calcium, Aluminum-rich Inclusions (CAIs), the first solids formed in the Solar System [1], from 3 different carbonaceous chondrites from the CV3 group: Allende, Northwest Africa (NWA) 2364 and NWA 6991. Results obtained on NWA 6991 plot on a well-defined mineral and bulk isochron with a Solar System initial 146Sm/144Sm ratio of 0.0070 ±0.0024. This ratio is more consistent with the ratio defined from internal isochrons of differentiated meteorites using the half-life of 103 Ma for 146Sm [2], instead of the value obtained considering the half-life of 68 Ma [3]. On the basis of nucleosynthethic anomalies in Sm and Nd isotopes [4], the ordinary (O) and enstatite (E) chondrites remain potential candidates for the Earth's building blocks. OC have an average deficit of -18±3 ppm relative to modern terrestrial 142Nd/144Nd, whereas EC range from the OC to the terrestrial values [4-6]. Sm stable isotope compositions of the analyzed CAIs indicate that galactic cosmic rays did not affect the 142Nd/144Nd compositions, but deficits are found in the pure p-process 144Sm nuclide (-240 to -290 ppm/ standard). These deficits may translate to 142Nd deficits of a few ppm. NWA 6991 CAI 146Sm-142Nd internal isochron passes through a 142Nd/144Nd ratio of -6 ±6 ppm relative to the terrestrial standard at a chondritic 147Sm/144Nd of 0.1960. We note that this value is identical to the enstatite chondrite average and the 142Nd/144Nd ratio of the lunar mantle, as defined recently by [7] using a chondritic Sm/Nd and Lu/Hf for the bulk Moon. While the determination of the Sm-Nd reference parameters for the bulk Earth is still contentious, the difference in 142Nd/144Nd between modern terrestrial rocks and meteorites analyzed so far is <10ppm. [1] Bouvier and

  9. Earth Science. Developing an Early Interest in Science: A Preschool Science Curriculum. (4-Year-Olds).

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Summer, Gail L.; Giovannini, Kathleen

    This teaching guide on earth sciences for 4-year-olds is based on a modification of the "Plan, Do, Review" approach to education devised by High Scope in Ypsilanti, Michigan. First implemented as an outreach early childhood program in North Carolina, the science activities described in this guide can be adapted to various early childhood…

  10. Earth Science. Developing an Early Interest in Science: A Preschool Science Curriculum. (3-Year-Olds).

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Summer, Gail L.; Giovannini, Kathleen

    This teaching guide on earth sciences for 3-year-old children is based on a modification of the "Plan, Do, Review" approach to education devised by High Scope in Ypsilanti, Michigan. First implemented as an outreach early childhood program in North Carolina, the science activities described in this guide can be adapted to various early childhood…

  11. Meteors: A Delivery Mechanism of Organic Matter to The Early Earth

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Jenniskens, Peter; Wilson, Mike A.; Packan, Dennis; Laux, Christophe O.; Krueger, Charles H.; Boyd, Iain, D.; Popova, Olga P.; Fonda, Mark; DeVincenzi, Donald L. (Technical Monitor)

    2000-01-01

    All potential exogenous pre-biotic matter arrived to Earth by ways of our atmosphere, where much material was ablated during a luminous phase called 1. meteors" in rarefied flows of high (up to 270) Mach number. The recent Leonid showers offered a first glimpse into the elusive physical conditions of the ablation process and atmospheric chemistry associated with high-speed meteors. Molecular emissions were detected that trace a meteor's brilliant light to a 4,300 K warm wake rather than to the meteor's head. A new theoretical approach using the direct simulation by Monte Carlo technique identified the source-region and demonstrated that the ablation process is critical in the heating of the meteor's wake. In the head of the meteor, organic carbon appears to survive flash heating and rapid cooling. The temperatures in the wake of the meteor are just right for dissociation of CO and the formation of more complex organic compounds. The resulting materials could account for the bulk of pre-biotic organic carbon on the early Earth at the time of the origin of life.

  12. Early stages in the evolution of the atmosphere and climate on the Earth-group planets

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Moroz, V. I.; Mukhin, L. M.

    1977-01-01

    The early evolution of the atmospheres and climate of the Earth, Mars and Venus is discussed, based on a concept of common initial conditions and main processes (besides known differences in chemical composition and outgassing rate). It is concluded that: (1) liquid water appeared on the surface of the earth in the first few hundred million years; the average surface temperature was near the melting point for about the first two eons; CO2 was the main component of the atmosphere in the first 100-500 million years; (2) much more temperate outgassing and low solar heating led to the much later appearance of liquid water on the Martian surface, only one to two billion years ago; the Martian era of rivers, relatively dense atmosphere and warm climate ended as a result of irreversible chemical bonding of CO2 by Urey equilibrium processes; (3) a great lack of water in the primordial material of Venus is proposed; liquid water never was present on the surface of the planet, and there was practically no chemical bonding of CO2; the surface temperature was over 600 K four billion years ago.

  13. Coupled 182W-142Nd constraint for early Earth differentiation

    PubMed Central

    Moynier, Frederic; Yin, Qing-Zhu; Irisawa, Keita; Boyet, Maud; Jacobsen, Benjamin; Rosing, Minik T.

    2010-01-01

    Recent high precision 142Nd isotope measurements showed that global silicate differentiation may have occurred as early as 30–75 Myr after the Solar System formation [Bennett V, et al. (2007) Science 318:1907–1910]. This time scale is almost contemporaneous with Earth’s core formation at ∼30 Myr [Yin Q, et al. (2002) Nature 418:949–952]. The 182Hf-182W system provides a powerful complement to the 142Nd results for early silicate differentiation, because both core formation and silicate differentiation fractionate Hf from W. Here we show that eleven terrestrial samples from diverse tectonic settings, including five early Archean samples from Isua, Greenland, of which three have been previously shown with 142Nd anomalies, all have a homogeneous W isotopic composition, which is ∼2ε-unit more radiogenic than the chondritic value. By using a 3-stage model calculation that describes the isotopic evolution in chondritic reservoir and core segregation, as well as silicate differentiation, we show that the W isotopic composition of terrestrial samples provides the most stringent time constraint for early core formation (27.5–38 Myr) followed by early terrestrial silicate differentiation (38–75 Myr) that is consistent with the terrestrial 142Nd anomalies. PMID:20534492

  14. Catalytic processes in the atmospheres of earth and Venus

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Demore, W. B.; Yung, Y. L.

    1982-01-01

    Photochemical processes in planetary atmospheres are strongly influenced by catalytic effects of minor constituents. Catalytic cycles in the atmospheres of Earth and Venus are closely related. For example, chlorine oxides (ClOx) act as catalysts in the two atmospheres. On earth, they serve to convert odd oxygen (atomic oxygen and ozone) to molecular oxygen. On Venus they have a similar effect, but in addition they accelerate the reactions of atomic and molecular oxygen with carbon monoxide. The latter process occurs by a unique combination of ClOx catalysis and sulful dioxide photosensitization. The mechanism provides an explanation for the very low extent of carbon dioxide decomposition by sunlight in the Venus atmosphere.

  15. Auroral Phenomenology and Magnetospheric Processes: Earth and Other Planets

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Schultz, Colin

    2013-07-01

    The dancing glow of the aurorae, the long tendrils of light that seem to reach up into space, has mesmerized scientists for centuries. More than a beautiful display, the aurorae tell us about the Earth—about its atmosphere, its magnetic field, and its relationship with the Sun. As technology developed, researchers looking beyond Earth's borders discovered an array of auroral processes on planets throughout the solar system. In the AGU monograph Auroral Phenomenology and Magnetospheric Processes: Earth and Other Planets, editors Andreas Keiling, Eric Donovan, Fran Bagenal, and Tomas Karlsson explore the many open questions that permeate the science of auroral physics and the relatively recent field of extraterrestrial aurorae. In this interview, Eos talks to Karlsson about extraterrestrial aurorae, Alfvén waves, and the sounds of the northern lights.

  16. Virtual Earth System Laboratory (VESL): Effective Visualization of Earth System Data and Process Simulations

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Quinn, J. D.; Larour, E. Y.; Cheng, D. L. C.; Halkides, D. J.

    2016-12-01

    The Virtual Earth System Laboratory (VESL) is a Web-based tool, under development at the Jet Propulsion Laboratory and UC Irvine, for the visualization of Earth System data and process simulations. It contains features geared toward a range of applications, spanning research and outreach. It offers an intuitive user interface, in which model inputs are changed using sliders and other interactive components. Current capabilities include simulation of polar ice sheet responses to climate forcing, based on NASA's Ice Sheet System Model (ISSM). We believe that the visualization of data is most effective when tailored to the target audience, and that many of the best practices for modern Web design/development can be applied directly to the visualization of data: use of negative space, color schemes, typography, accessibility standards, tooltips, etc cetera. We present our prototype website, and invite input from potential users, including researchers, educators, and students.

  17. Space Shuttle earth observations photography - Data listing process

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Lulla, Kamlesh

    1992-01-01

    The data listing process of the electronic data base of the Catalogs of Space Shuttle Earth Observations Photography is described. Similar data are recorded for each frame in each role from the mission. At the end of each roll, a computer printout is checked for mistakes, glitches, and typographical errors. After the roll and frames have been corrected, the data listings are ready for transfer to the data base and for development of the catalog.

  18. Geophysical Monitoring of Geodynamic Processes of Central Armenia Earth Crust

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Avetyan, R.; Pashayan, R.

    2016-12-01

    The method of geophysical monitoring of earth crust was introduced. It allows by continuous supervision to track modern geodynamic processes of Armenia. Methodological practices of monitoring come down to allocation of a signal which reflects deformation of rocks. The indicators of deformations are not only deviations of geophysical indicators from certain background values, but also parameters of variations of these indicators. Data on changes of parameters of barometric efficiency and saw tooth oscillations of underground water level before seismic events were received. Low-amplitude periodic fluctuations of water level are the reflection of geodynamic processes taking place in upper levels of earth crust. There were recorded fluctuations of underground water level resulting from luni-solar tides and enabling to control the systems of borehole-bed in changes of voluminous deformations. The slow lowering (raising) of underground water level in the form of trend reflects long-period changes of stress-deformative state of environment. Application of method promotes identification of medium-term precursors on anomalous events of variations of geomagnetic field, change of content of subsoil radon, dynamics of level of underground water, geochemistry and water temperature. Increase of activity of geodynamic processes in Central Armenian tectonic complex is observed to change macro component Na+, Ca2+, Mg2-, CL-, SO42-, HCO3-, H4SiO4, pH and gas - CO2 structure of mineral water. Modern geodynamic movements of earth crust of Armenia are the result of seismic processes and active geodynamics of deep faults of longitudinal and transversal stretching. Key Words: monitoring, hydrogeodynamics, geomagnetic field, seismicity, deformation, earth crust

  19. Bayesian analysis of the astrobiological implications of life's early emergence on Earth.

    PubMed

    Spiegel, David S; Turner, Edwin L

    2012-01-10

    Life arose on Earth sometime in the first few hundred million years after the young planet had cooled to the point that it could support water-based organisms on its surface. The early emergence of life on Earth has been taken as evidence that the probability of abiogenesis is high, if starting from young Earth-like conditions. We revisit this argument quantitatively in a bayesian statistical framework. By constructing a simple model of the probability of abiogenesis, we calculate a bayesian estimate of its posterior probability, given the data that life emerged fairly early in Earth's history and that, billions of years later, curious creatures noted this fact and considered its implications. We find that, given only this very limited empirical information, the choice of bayesian prior for the abiogenesis probability parameter has a dominant influence on the computed posterior probability. Although terrestrial life's early emergence provides evidence that life might be abundant in the universe if early-Earth-like conditions are common, the evidence is inconclusive and indeed is consistent with an arbitrarily low intrinsic probability of abiogenesis for plausible uninformative priors. Finding a single case of life arising independently of our lineage (on Earth, elsewhere in the solar system, or on an extrasolar planet) would provide much stronger evidence that abiogenesis is not extremely rare in the universe.

  20. Electrophysiological evidence of automatic early semantic processing.

    PubMed

    Hinojosa, José A; Martín-Loeches, Manuel; Muñoz, Francisco; Casado, Pilar; Pozo, Miguel A

    2004-01-01

    This study investigates the automatic-controlled nature of early semantic processing by means of the Recognition Potential (RP), an event-related potential response that reflects lexical selection processes. For this purpose tasks differing in their processing requirements were used. Half of the participants performed a physical task involving a lower-upper case discrimination judgement (shallow processing requirements), whereas the other half carried out a semantic task, consisting in detecting animal names (deep processing requirements). Stimuli were identical in the two tasks. Reaction time measures revealed that the physical task was easier to perform than the semantic task. However, RP effects elicited by the physical and semantic tasks did not differ in either latency, amplitude, or topographic distribution. Thus, the results from the present study suggest that early semantic processing is automatically triggered whenever a linguistic stimulus enters the language processor.

  1. Searching for Life: Early Earth, Mars and Beyond

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    DesMarais, David J.; Chang, Sherwood (Technical Monitor)

    1996-01-01

    We might be entering a golden age for exploring life throughout time and space. Rapid gene sequencing will better define our most distant ancestors. The earliest geologic evidence of life is now 3.8 billion years old. Organic matter and submicron-sized morphologies have been preserved in the martian crust for billions of years. Several new missions to Mars are planned, with a high priority on the search for life, past or present. The recent discovery of large extrasolar planets has heightened interest in spacecraft to detect small, earth-like planets. A recent workshop discussed strategies for life detection on such planets. There is much to anticipate in the near future.

  2. Large impacts and climatic catastrophes on the early Earth

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Melosh, H. J.

    1991-01-01

    Radiometric data of cratered lunar surfaces suggest that the cratering rate on the ancient Moon was substantially larger than the present rate before about 3.2 Gyr. Since the cratering rate was higher than present on the Moon, it seems likely that is was similarly higher on the Earth. Recently the occurrence of beds of spherules up to 2m thick was reported in 3.2 to 3.5 Gyr old Archean rocks. These spherule beds closely resemble the 3 mm thick spherule beds associated with the K/T boundary (including elevated iridium abundances), widely believed to have been deposited in association of a 10 km diameter comet or asteroid.

  3. Archean microfossils: a reappraisal of early life on Earth.

    PubMed

    Altermann, Wladyslaw; Kazmierczak, Józef

    2003-11-01

    The oldest fossils found thus far on Earth are c. 3.49- and 3.46-billion-year-old filamentous and coccoidal microbial remains in rocks of the Pilbara craton, Western Australia, and c. 3.4-billion-year-old rocks from the Barberton region, South Africa. Their biogenicity was recently questioned and they were reinterpreted as contaminants, mineral artefacts or inorganic carbon aggregates. Morphological, geochemical and isotopic data imply, however, that life was relatively widespread and advanced in the Archean, between 3.5 and 2.5 billion years ago, with metabolic pathways analogous to those of recent prokaryotic organisms, including cyanobacteria, and probably even eukaryotes at the terminal Archean.

  4. The earth radiation budget experiment: Early validation results

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Smith, G. Louis; Barkstrom, Bruce R.; Harrison, Edwin F.

    The Earth Radiation Budget Experiment (ERBE) consists of radiometers on a dedicated spacecraft in a 57° inclination orbit, which has a precessional period of 2 months, and on two NOAA operational meteorological spacecraft in near polar orbits. The radiometers include scanning narrow field-of-view (FOV) and nadir-looking wide and medium FOV radiometers covering the ranges 0.2 to 5 μm and 5 to 50 μm and a solar monitoring channel. This paper describes the validation procedures and preliminary results. Each of the radiometer channels underwent extensive ground calibration, and the instrument packages include in-flight calibration facilities which, to date, show negligible changes of the instruments in orbit, except for gradual degradation of the suprasil dome of the shortwave wide FOV (about 4% per year). Measurements of the solar constant by the solar monitors, wide FOV, and medium FOV radiometers of two spacecraft agree to a fraction of a percent. Intercomparisons of the wide and medium FOV radiometers with the scanning radiometers show agreement of 1 to 4%. The multiple ERBE satellites are acquiring the first global measurements of regional scale diurnal variations in the Earth's radiation budget. These diurnal variations are verified by comparison with high temporal resolution geostationary satellite data. Other principal investigators of the ERBE Science Team are: R. Cess, SUNY, Stoneybrook; J. Coakley, NCAR; C. Duncan, M. King and A Mecherikunnel, Goddard Space Flight Center, NASA; A. Gruber and A.J. Miller, NOAA; D. Hartmann, U. Washington; F.B. House, Drexel U.; F.O. Huck, Langley Research Center, NASA; G. Hunt, Imperial College, London U.; R. Kandel and A. Berroir, Laboratory of Dynamic Meteorology, Ecole Polytechique; V. Ramanathan, U. Chicago; E. Raschke, U. of Cologne; W.L. Smith, U. of Wisconsin and T.H. Vonder Haar, Colorado State U.

  5. Abstracts for the International Workshop on Meteorite Impact on the Early Earth

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    1990-01-01

    This volume contains abstracts that were accepted for presentation at the International Workshop on Meteorite Impact on the Early Earth, September 21-22, 1990, in Perth, Western Australia. The effects these impacts had on the young Earth are emphasized and a few of the topics covered are as follows: impact induced hot atmosphere, crater size and distribution, late heavy bombardment, terrestrial mantle and crust, impact damage, continental growth, volcanism, climate catastrophes, shocked quartz, and others.

  6. Crustal evolution of the early earth: The role of major impacts

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Frey, H.

    1979-01-01

    The role of major impact basins (such as those which formed on the moon before 4 billion years ago) is examined to determine the effects of such impacts on the early crustal evolution of the earth. Specifically addressed is the fundamental problem of what is the origin of the earth's fundamental crustal dichotomy of low density continental and high density oceanic crust and its relationship to the superficially similar highlands/maria crustal dichotomies of the moon, Mercury and Mars.

  7. Quasi-static MHD processes in earth's magnetosphere

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Voigt, Gerd-Hannes

    1988-01-01

    An attempt is made to use the MHD equilibrium theory to describe the global magnetic field configuration of earth's magnetosphere and its time evolution under the influence of magnetospheric convection. To circumvent the difficulties inherent in today's MHD codes, use is made of a restriction to slowly time-dependent convection processes with convective velocities well below the typical Alfven speed. This restriction leads to a quasi-static MHD theory. The two-dimensional theory is outlined, and it is shown how sequences of two-dimensional equilibria evolve into a steady state configuration that is likely to become tearing mode unstable. It is then concluded that magnetospheric substorms occur periodically in earth's magnetosphere, thus being an integral part of the entire convection cycle.

  8. Satellite on-board processing for earth resources data

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Bodenheimer, R. E.; Gonzalez, R. C.; Gupta, J. N.; Hwang, K.; Rochelle, R. W.; Wilson, J. B.; Wintz, P. A.

    1975-01-01

    Results of a survey of earth resources user applications and their data requirements, earth resources multispectral scanner sensor technology, and preprocessing algorithms for correcting the sensor outputs and for data bulk reduction are presented along with a candidate data format. Computational requirements required to implement the data analysis algorithms are included along with a review of computer architectures and organizations. Computer architectures capable of handling the algorithm computational requirements are suggested and the environmental effects of an on-board processor discussed. By relating performance parameters to the system requirements of each of the user requirements the feasibility of on-board processing is determined for each user. A tradeoff analysis is performed to determine the sensitivity of results to each of the system parameters. Significant results and conclusions are discussed, and recommendations are presented.

  9. Investigating the Early Atmospheres of Earth and Mars through Rivers, Raindrops, and Lava Flows

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Som, Sanjoy M.

    2010-11-01

    The discovery of a habitable Earth-like planet beyond our solar-system will be remembered as one of the major breakthroughs of 21st century science, and of the same magnitude as Copernicus' heliocentric model dating from the mid 16th century. The real astrobiological breakthrough will be the added results from atmospheric remote sensing of such planets to determine habitability. Atmospheres, in both concentration and composition are suggestive of processes occurring at the planetary surface and upper crust. Unfortunately, only the modern Earth's atmosphere is known to be habitable. I investigate the density and pressure of our planet's early atmosphere before the rise of oxygen 2.5 billion years ago, because our planet was very much alive microbially. Such knowledge gives us another example of a habitable atmosphere. I also investigates the atmosphere of early Mars, as geomorphic signatures on its surface are suggestive of a past where liquid water may have present in a warmer climate, conditions suitable for the emergence of life, compared with today's 6 mbar CO2-dominated atmosphere. Using tools of fluvial geomorphology, I find that the largest river-valleys on Mars do not record a signature of a sustained hydrological cycle, in which precipitation onto a drainage basin induces many cycles of water flow, substrate incision, water ponding, and return to the atmosphere via evaporation. Rather, I conclude that while episodes of flow did occur in perhaps warmer environments, those periods were short-lived and overprinted onto a dominantly cold and dry planet. For Earth, I develop a new method of investigating atmospheric density and pressure using the size of raindrop imprints, and find that raindrop imprints preserved in the 2.7 billion year old Ventersdorp Supergroup of South Africa are consistent with precipitation falling in an atmosphere of near-surface density < 2 kg/m3 and probably > 0.1 kg/m3, compared to a modern value of 1.2 kg/m3, further suggesting a

  10. Crustal formation and recycling in an oceanic environment in the early Earth

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    van Thienen, P.; van den Berg, A. P.; Vlaar, N. J.

    2003-04-01

    Several lines of evidence indicate higher mantle temperatures (by some hundreds of degrees) during the early history of the Earth. Due to the strong effect of temperature on viscosity as well as on the degree of melting, this enforces a geodynamic regime which is different from the present plate tectonics, and in which smaller scale processes play a more important role. Upwelling of a hotter mantle produces a thicker oceanic crust, of which the lower part may reside in the eclogite stability field. This facilitates delamination, making room for fresh mantle material which may partly melt and add new material to the crust (Vlaar et al., 1994). We present results of numerical thermo-chemical convection models including a simple approximate melt segregation mechanism in which we investigate this alternative geodynamic regime, and its effect on the cooling history and chemical evolution of the mantle. Our results show that the mechanism is capable of working on two scales. On a small scale, involving the lower boundary of the crust, delaminations and downward transport of eclogite into the upper mantle takes place. On a larger scale, involving the entire crustal column, (parts of) the crust may episodically sink into the mantle and be replaced by a fresh crust. Both are capable of significantly and rapidly cooling a hot upper mantle by driving partial melting and thus the generation of new crust. After some hundreds of millions of years, as the temperature drops, the mechanism shuts itself off, and the cooling rate significantly decreases. Vlaar, N.J., P.E. van Keken and A.P. van den Berg (1994), Cooling of the Earth in the Archaean: consequences of pressure-release melting in a hotter mantle, Earth and Planetary Science Letters, vol 121, pp. 1-18

  11. Evidence for early life in Earth's oldest hydrothermal vent precipitates.

    PubMed

    Dodd, Matthew S; Papineau, Dominic; Grenne, Tor; Slack, John F; Rittner, Martin; Pirajno, Franco; O'Neil, Jonathan; Little, Crispin T S

    2017-03-01

    Although it is not known when or where life on Earth began, some of the earliest habitable environments may have been submarine-hydrothermal vents. Here we describe putative fossilized microorganisms that are at least 3,770 million and possibly 4,280 million years old in ferruginous sedimentary rocks, interpreted as seafloor-hydrothermal vent-related precipitates, from the Nuvvuagittuq belt in Quebec, Canada. These structures occur as micrometre-scale haematite tubes and filaments with morphologies and mineral assemblages similar to those of filamentous microorganisms from modern hydrothermal vent precipitates and analogous microfossils in younger rocks. The Nuvvuagittuq rocks contain isotopically light carbon in carbonate and carbonaceous material, which occurs as graphitic inclusions in diagenetic carbonate rosettes, apatite blades intergrown among carbonate rosettes and magnetite-haematite granules, and is associated with carbonate in direct contact with the putative microfossils. Collectively, these observations are consistent with an oxidized biomass and provide evidence for biological activity in submarine-hydrothermal environments more than 3,770 million years ago.

  12. Biospheric-atmospheric coupling on the early Earth

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Levine, J. S.

    1991-01-01

    Theoretical calculations performed with a one-dimensional photochemical model have been performed to assess the biospheric-atmospheric transfer of gases. Ozone reached levels to shield the Earth from biologically lethal solar ultraviolet radiation (220-300 nm) when atmospheric oxygen reached about 1/10 of its present atmospheric level. In the present atmosphere, about 90 percent of atmospheric nitrous oxide is destroyed via solar photolysis in the stratosphere with about 10 percent destroyed via reaction with excited oxygen atoms. The reaction between nitrous oxide and excited oxygen atoms leads to the production of nitric oxide in the stratosphere, which is responsible for about 70 percent of the global destruction of oxygen in the stratosphere. In the oxygen/ozone deficient atmosphere, solar photolysis destroyed about 100 percent of the atmospheric nitrous oxide, relegating the production of nitric oxide via reaction with excited oxygen to zero. Our laboratory and field measurements indicate that atmospheric oxygen promotes the biogenic production of N2O and NO via denitrification and the biogenic production of methane by methanogenesis.

  13. Bayesian analysis of the astrobiological implications of life’s early emergence on Earth

    PubMed Central

    Spiegel, David S.; Turner, Edwin L.

    2012-01-01

    Life arose on Earth sometime in the first few hundred million years after the young planet had cooled to the point that it could support water-based organisms on its surface. The early emergence of life on Earth has been taken as evidence that the probability of abiogenesis is high, if starting from young Earth-like conditions. We revisit this argument quantitatively in a Bayesian statistical framework. By constructing a simple model of the probability of abiogenesis, we calculate a Bayesian estimate of its posterior probability, given the data that life emerged fairly early in Earth’s history and that, billions of years later, curious creatures noted this fact and considered its implications. We find that, given only this very limited empirical information, the choice of Bayesian prior for the abiogenesis probability parameter has a dominant influence on the computed posterior probability. Although terrestrial life's early emergence provides evidence that life might be abundant in the universe if early-Earth-like conditions are common, the evidence is inconclusive and indeed is consistent with an arbitrarily low intrinsic probability of abiogenesis for plausible uninformative priors. Finding a single case of life arising independently of our lineage (on Earth, elsewhere in the solar system, or on an extrasolar planet) would provide much stronger evidence that abiogenesis is not extremely rare in the universe. PMID:22198766

  14. Nonlinear dynamics of global atmospheric and Earth system processes

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Saltzman, Barry

    1993-01-01

    During the past eight years, we have been engaged in a NASA-supported program of research aimed at establishing the connection between satellite signatures of the earth's environmental state and the nonlinear dynamics of the global weather and climate system. Thirty-five publications and four theses have resulted from this work, which included contributions in five main areas of study: (1) cloud and latent heat processes in finite-amplitude baroclinic waves; (2) application of satellite radiation data in global weather analysis; (3) studies of planetary waves and low-frequency weather variability; (4) GCM studies of the atmospheric response to variable boundary conditions measurable from satellites; and (5) dynamics of long-term earth system changes. Significant accomplishments from the three main lines of investigation pursued during the past year are presented and include the following: (1) planetary atmospheric waves and low frequency variability; (2) GCM studies of the atmospheric response to changed boundary conditions; and (3) dynamics of long-term changes in the global earth system.

  15. Publications of the Western Earth Surface Processes Team, 1999

    Stone, Paul; Powell, Charles L.

    2000-01-01

    The Western Earth Surfaces Processes Team (WESPT) of the U.S. Geological Survey, Geologic Division (USGS, GD), conducts geologic mapping and related topical earth- science studies in the western United States. This work is focused on areas where modern geologic maps and associated earth-science data are needed to address key societal and environmental issues such as ground-water quality, potential geologic hazards, and land-use decisions. Areas of primary emphasis currently include southern California, the San Francisco Bay region, and the Pacific Northwest. The team has its headquarters in Menlo Park, California, and maintains field offices at several other locations in the western United States. The results of research conducted by the WESPT are released to the public as a variety of databases, maps, text reports, and abstracts, both through the internal publication system of the USGS and in diverse external publications such as scientific journals and books. This report lists publications of the WESPT released in 1999 as well as additional 1997 and 1998 publications that were not included in the previous list (USGS Open-file Report 99-302). Most of the publications listed were authored or coauthored by WESPT staff. The list also includes some publications authored by non-USGS cooperators with the WESPT, as well as some authored by USGS staff outside the WESPT in cooperation with WESPT projects.

  16. HCN production from impact ejecta on the early Earth

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Parkos, Devon; Pikus, Aaron; Alexeenko, Alina; Melosh, H. J.

    2016-11-01

    Major impact events have drastically altered the evolution of life on Earth. The reentry of ejecta formed from these events can trigger widespread chemical changes to the atmosphere on a global scale. This mechanism was proposed as a source of HCN during the Late Heavy Bombardment (LHB), 4.1 to 3.8 billion years ago. Significant concentrations of HCN in surface water could directly lead to adenine formation, a precursor for RNA. This work uses the Direct Simulation Monte Carlo (DSMC) method to examine the production of CN and HCN due to the reentry of impact ejecta. We use the Statistical Modeling in Low-Density Environment (SMILE) code, which utilizes the Total Collisional Energy (TCE) model for reactions. The collisions are described by the Variable Soft Sphere (VSS) and Larsen-Borgnakke (LB) models. We compare this nonequilibrium production to equilibrium concentrations from bulk atmospheric heating. The equilibrium HCN yield for a 1023 J impact is 7.0×104 moles, corresponding to a 2.5×1014 molecules per m2 surface deposition. We find that additional CN and HCN is produced under thermochemical nonequilibrium, particularly at higher altitudes. The total nonequilibrium yield for a 1023 J impact is 1.2×106 moles of HCN, a value 17 times the equilibrium result. This corresponds to a surface deposition of 1.4×1015 molecules per m2. This increase in production indicates that thermochemical nonequilibrium effects play a strong role in HCN from impact ejecta, and must be considered when investigating impacts as a plausible mechanism for significant adenine production during the LHB.

  17. Microbes, Mineral Evolution, and the Rise of Microcontinents-Origin and Coevolution of Life with Early Earth.

    PubMed

    Grosch, Eugene G; Hazen, Robert M

    2015-10-01

    Earth is the most mineralogically diverse planet in our solar system, the direct consequence of a coevolving geosphere and biosphere. We consider the possibility that a microbial biosphere originated and thrived in the early Hadean-Archean Earth subseafloor environment, with fundamental consequences for the complex evolution and habitability of our planet. In this hypothesis paper, we explore possible venues for the origin of life and the direct consequences of microbially mediated, low-temperature hydrothermal alteration of the early oceanic lithosphere. We hypothesize that subsurface fluid-rock-microbe interactions resulted in more efficient hydration of the early oceanic crust, which in turn promoted bulk melting to produce the first evolved fragments of felsic crust. These evolved magmas most likely included sialic or tonalitic sheets, felsic volcaniclastics, and minor rhyolitic intrusions emplaced in an Iceland-type extensional setting as the earliest microcontinents. With the further development of proto-tectonic processes, these buoyant felsic crustal fragments formed the nucleus of intra-oceanic tonalite-trondhjemite-granitoid (TTG) island arcs. Thus microbes, by facilitating extensive hydrothermal alteration of the earliest oceanic crust through bioalteration, promoted mineral diversification and may have been early architects of surface environments and microcontinents on young Earth. We explore how the possible onset of subseafloor fluid-rock-microbe interactions on early Earth accelerated metavolcanic clay mineral formation, crustal melting, and subsequent metamorphic mineral evolution. We also consider environmental factors supporting this earliest step in geosphere-biosphere coevolution and the implications for habitability and mineral evolution on other rocky planets, such as Mars.

  18. Prebiotic Chemistry and Atmospheric Warming of Early Earth by an Active Young Sun

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Airapetian, V. S.; Glocer, A.; Gronoff, G.; Hebrard, E.; Danchi, W.

    2016-01-01

    Nitrogen is a critical ingredient of complex biological molecules. Molecular nitrogen, however, which was outgassed Into the Earth's early atmosphere, is relatively chemically inert and nitrogen fixation into more chemically reactive compounds requires high temperatures. Possible mechanisms of nitrogen fixation include lightning, atmospheric shock heating by meteorites, and solar ultraviolet radiation. Here we show that nitrogen fixation in the early terrestrial atmosphere can be explained by frequent and powerful coronal mass ejection events from the young Sun -- so-called superflares. Using magnetohydrodynamic simulations constrained by Kepler Space Telescope observations, we find that successive superflare ejections produce shocks that accelerate energetic particles, which would have compressed the early Earth's magnetosphere. The resulting extended polar cap openings provide pathways for energetic particles to penetrate into the atmosphere and, according to our atmospheric chemistry simulations, initiate reactions converting molecular nitrogen, carbon dioxide and methane to the potent greenhouse gas nitrous oxide as well as hydrogen cyanide, an essential compound for life. Furthermore, the destruction of N2, C02 and CH, suggests that these greenhouse gases cannot explain the stability of liquid water on the early Earth. Instead, we propose that the efficient formation of nitrous oxide could explain a warm early Earth.

  19. Non-linear processes in the Earth atmosphere boundary layer

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Grunskaya, Lubov; Valery, Isakevich; Dmitry, Rubay

    2013-04-01

    The work is connected with studying electromagnetic fields in the resonator Earth-Ionosphere. There is studied the interconnection of tide processes of geophysical and astrophysical origin with the Earth electromagnetic fields. On account of non-linear property of the resonator Earth-Ionosphere the tides (moon and astrophysical tides) in the electromagnetic Earth fields are kinds of polyharmonic nature. It is impossible to detect such non-linear processes with the help of the classical spectral analysis. Therefore to extract tide processes in the electromagnetic fields, the method of covariance matrix eigen vectors is used. Experimental investigations of electromagnetic fields in the atmosphere boundary layer are done at the distance spaced stations, situated on Vladimir State University test ground, at Main Geophysical Observatory (St. Petersburg), on Kamchatka pen., on Lake Baikal. In 2012 there was continued to operate the multichannel synchronic monitoring system of electrical and geomagnetic fields at the spaced apart stations: VSU physical experimental proving ground; the station of the Institute of Solar and Terrestrial Physics of Russian Academy of Science (RAS) at Lake Baikal; the station of the Institute of volcanology and seismology of RAS in Paratunka; the station in Obninsk on the base of the scientific and production society "Typhoon". Such investigations turned out to be possible after developing the method of scanning experimental signal of electromagnetic field into non- correlated components. There was used a method of the analysis of the eigen vectors ofthe time series covariance matrix for exposing influence of the moon tides on Ez. The method allows to distribute an experimental signal into non-correlated periodicities. The present method is effective just in the situation when energetical deposit because of possible influence of moon tides upon the electromagnetic fields is little. There have been developed and realized in program components

  20. Early Evolution of Earth's Geochemical Cycle and Biosphere: Implications for Mars Exobiology

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    DesMarais, David J.; Chang, Sherwood (Technical Monitor)

    1997-01-01

    Carbon (C) has played multiple key roles for life and its environment. C has formed organics, greenhouse gases, aquatic pH buffers, redox buffers, and magmatic constituents affecting plutonism and volcanism. These roles interacted across a network of reservoirs and processes known as the biogeochemical C cycle. Changes in the cycle over geologic time were driven by increasing solar luminosity, declining planetary heat flow, and continental and biological evolution. The early Archean C cycle was dominated by hydrothermal alteration of crustal rocks and by thermal emanations of CO2 and reduced species (eg., H2, Fe(2+) and sulfides). Bioorganic synthesis was achieved by nonphotosynthetic CO2-fixing bacteria (chemoautotrophs) and, possibly, bacteria (organotrophs) utilizing any available nonbiological organic C. Responding both to abundant solar energy and to a longterm decline in thermal sources of chemical energy and reducing power, the blaspheme first developed anoxygenic photosynthesis, then, ultimately, oxygenic photosynthesis. O2-photosynthesis played a central role in transforming the ancient environment and blaspheme to the modem world. The geochemical C cycles of early Earth and Mars were quite similar. The principal differences between the modem C cycles of these planets arose during the later evolution of their heat flows, crusts, atmospheres and, perhaps, their blasphemes.

  1. Biogenesis and early life on Earth and Europa: favored by an alkaline ocean?

    PubMed

    Kempe, Stephan; Kazmierczak, Jozef

    2002-01-01

    Recent discoveries about Europa--the probable existence of a sizeable ocean below its ice crust; the detection of hydrated sodium carbonates, among other salts; and the calculation of a net loss of sodium from the subsurface--suggest the existence of an alkaline ocean. Alkaline oceans (nicknamed "soda oceans" in analogy to terrestrial soda lakes) have been hypothesized also for early Earth and Mars on the basis of mass balance considerations involving total amounts of acids available for weathering and the composition of the early crust. Such an environment could be favorable to biogenesis since it may have provided for very low Ca2+ concentrations mandatory for the biochemical function of proteins. A rapid loss of CO2 from Europa's atmosphere may have led to freezing oceans. Alkaline brine bubbles embedded in ice in freezing and impact-thawing oceans could have provided a suitable environment for protocell formation and the large number of trials needed for biogenesis. Understanding these processes could be central to assessing the probability of life on Europa.

  2. What Do We Really Know About the Earth's Early Atmosphere?

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Catling, D. C.; Krissansen-Totton, J.; Zahnle, K. J.

    2016-12-01

    ) Elements 2, 223. [3] Ohtomo Y. et al. (2014) Nat Geosci 7, 25. [4] Kanzaki Y., Murakami T. (2015) Geochim. Cosmochim. Acta 159, 190. [5] Som S. M. et al. (2016) Nature Geosc. 9, 448. [6] Zahnle K. et al. (2006) Geobiology 4, 271. [7] Pope E. C. et al. (2012) P. Natl. Acad. Sci. USA 109, 4371. [8] Pujol M. et al. (2011) Earth Planet Sc Lett 308, 298. [9] Catling D. C. et al. (2001) Science 293, 839.

  3. Facilitating NASA Earth Science Data Processing Using Nebula Cloud Computing

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Chen, A.; Pham, L.; Kempler, S.; Theobald, M.; Esfandiari, A.; Campino, J.; Vollmer, B.; Lynnes, C.

    2011-12-01

    Cloud Computing technology has been used to offer high-performance and low-cost computing and storage resources for both scientific problems and business services. Several cloud computing services have been implemented in the commercial arena, e.g. Amazon's EC2 & S3, Microsoft's Azure, and Google App Engine. There are also some research and application programs being launched in academia and governments to utilize Cloud Computing. NASA launched the Nebula Cloud Computing platform in 2008, which is an Infrastructure as a Service (IaaS) to deliver on-demand distributed virtual computers. Nebula users can receive required computing resources as a fully outsourced service. NASA Goddard Earth Science Data and Information Service Center (GES DISC) migrated several GES DISC's applications to the Nebula as a proof of concept, including: a) The Simple, Scalable, Script-based Science Processor for Measurements (S4PM) for processing scientific data; b) the Atmospheric Infrared Sounder (AIRS) data process workflow for processing AIRS raw data; and c) the GES-DISC Interactive Online Visualization ANd aNalysis Infrastructure (GIOVANNI) for online access to, analysis, and visualization of Earth science data. This work aims to evaluate the practicability and adaptability of the Nebula. The initial work focused on the AIRS data process workflow to evaluate the Nebula. The AIRS data process workflow consists of a series of algorithms being used to process raw AIRS level 0 data and output AIRS level 2 geophysical retrievals. Migrating the entire workflow to the Nebula platform is challenging, but practicable. After installing several supporting libraries and the processing code itself, the workflow is able to process AIRS data in a similar fashion to its current (non-cloud) configuration. We compared the performance of processing 2 days of AIRS level 0 data through level 2 using a Nebula virtual computer and a local Linux computer. The result shows that Nebula has significantly

  4. Naval EarthMap Observer: overview and data processing

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Bowles, Jeffrey H.; Davis, Curtiss O.; Carney, Megan; Clamons, Dean; Gao, Bo-Cai; Gillis, David; Kappus, Mary E.; Lamela, G.; Montes, Marcos J.; Palmadesso, Peter J.; Rhea, J.; Snyder, William A.

    1999-12-01

    We present an overview of the Naval EarthMap Observer (NEMO) spacecraft and then focus on the processing of NEMO data both on-board the spacecraft and on the ground. The NEMO spacecraft provides for Joint Naval needs and demonstrates the use of hyperspectral imagery for the characterization of the littoral environment and for littoral ocean model development. NEMO is being funded jointly by the U.S. government and commercial partners. The Coastal Ocean Imaging Spectrometer (COIS) is the primary instrument on the NEMO and covers the spectral range from 400 to 2500 nm at 10-nm resolution with either 30 or 60 m work GSD. The hyperspectral data is processed on-board the NEMO using NRL's Optical Real-time Automated Spectral Identification System (ORASIS) algorithm that provides for real time analysis, feature extraction and greater than 10:1 data compression. The high compression factor allows for ground coverage of greater than 106 km2/day. Calibration of the sensor is done with a combination of moon imaging, using an onboard light source and vicarious calibration using a number of earth sites being monitored for that purpose. The data will be atmospherically corrected using ATREM. Algorithms will also be available to determine water clarity, bathymetry and bottom type.

  5. Rare Earth Elements in Alberta Oil Sand Process Streams

    DOE PAGES

    Roth, Elliot; Bank, Tracy; Howard, Bret; ...

    2017-04-05

    The concentrations of rare earth elements in Alberta, Canada oil sands and six oil sand waste streams were determined using inductively coupled plasma mass spectrometry (ICP–MS). The results indicate that the rare earth elements (REEs) are largely concentrated in the tailings solvent recovery unit (TSRU) sample compared to the oil sand itself. The concentration of lanthanide elements is ~1100 mg/kg (1100 ppm or 0.11 weight %), which represents a >20× increase in the concentration compared to the oil sand itself and a >7× increase compared to the North American Shale Composite (NASC). The process water, which is used to extractmore » the oil from oil sands, and the water fraction associated with the different waste streams had very low concentrations of REEs that were near or below the detection limits of the instrument, with the highest total concentration of REEs in the water fraction being less than 10 μg/L (ppb). Size and density separations were completed, and the REEs and other potentially interesting and valuable metals, such as Ti and Zr, were concentrated in different fractions. These results give insights into the possibility of recovering REEs from waste streams generated from oil sand processing.« less

  6. Rare Earth Elements in Alberta Oil Sand Process Streams

    SciT

    Roth, Elliot; Bank, Tracy; Howard, Bret

    The concentrations of rare earth elements in Alberta, Canada oil sands and six oil sand waste streams were determined using inductively coupled plasma mass spectrometry (ICP–MS). The results indicate that the rare earth elements (REEs) are largely concentrated in the tailings solvent recovery unit (TSRU) sample compared to the oil sand itself. The concentration of lanthanide elements is ~1100 mg/kg (1100 ppm or 0.11 weight %), which represents a >20× increase in the concentration compared to the oil sand itself and a >7× increase compared to the North American Shale Composite (NASC). The process water, which is used to extractmore » the oil from oil sands, and the water fraction associated with the different waste streams had very low concentrations of REEs that were near or below the detection limits of the instrument, with the highest total concentration of REEs in the water fraction being less than 10 μg/L (ppb). Size and density separations were completed, and the REEs and other potentially interesting and valuable metals, such as Ti and Zr, were concentrated in different fractions. These results give insights into the possibility of recovering REEs from waste streams generated from oil sand processing.« less

  7. Revisiting the Swaziland Supergroup: New Approaches to Examining Evidence for Early Life on Earth

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Walsh, M. M.; Westall, F.

    2000-01-01

    The re-examination by SEM of 3.4 Ga fossiliferous carbonaceous cherts reveals fungal contaminants in addition to indigenous microfossils. Weathered volcanic flows associated with fossiliferous chert layers offer a promising area for further study of early life on Earth.

  8. Conditions for the emergence of life on the early Earth: summary and reflections

    PubMed Central

    Jortner, Joshua

    2006-01-01

    This review attempts to situate the emergence of life on the early Earth within the scientific issues of the operational and mechanistic description of life, the conditions and constraints of prebiotic chemistry, together with bottom-up molecular fabrication and biomolecular nanofabrication and top-down miniaturization approaches to the origin of terrestrial life. PMID:17008225

  9. Hf and Nd Isotope Evidence for Production of an Incompatible Trace Element Enriched Crustal Reservoir in Early Earth (Invited)

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Brandon, A. D.; Debaille, V.; Lapen, T. J.

    2010-12-01

    The final significant stage of accretion of the Earth was likely a collision between proto-Earth and a Mars sized impactor that formed the Moon. This event is thought to have produced enough thermal energy to melt all or most of the Earth, with a consequent magma ocean (MO). During subsequent cooling, the Earth would have formed its protocrust and corresponding mantle lithosphere, consisting of solidified basalt-komatiitic melt, in combination with buoyant cumulates and late stage residual melts from the MO. Relative to the convecting mantle, portions of this protolithosphere are likely to have been enriched in incompatible trace elements (ITE) in sufficient quantities to contain a significant amount of the bulk Earth’s budget for rare earth elements, U, Th, and Hf. If the protolithosphere was negatively buoyant, it may have overturned at or near the final stages of MO crystallization and a significant portion of that material may have been transported into the deep mantle where it resided and remixed into the convecting mantle over Earth history [1,2]. If the protolithosphere remained positively buoyant, its crust would have likely begun to erode from surface processes, and subsequently recycled back into the mantle over time as sediment and altered crust, once a subduction mechanism arose. The Nd and Hf isotopic compositions of Earth’s earliest rocks support the idea that an early-formed ITE-enriched reservoir was produced. The maxima in 142Nd/144Nd for 3.85 to 3.64 Ga rocks from Isua, Greenland decreases from +20 ppm to +12 ppm relative to the present day mantle value, respectively [3]. This indicates mixing of an early-formed ITE enriched reservoir back into the convecting mantle. In addition, zircons from the 3.1 Ga Jack Hills conglomerate indicate that material with an enriched 176Lu/177Hf of ~0.02 and an age of 4.4 Ga or greater was present at the Earth’s surface over the first 2 Ga of Earth history, supporting the scenario of a positively buoyant

  10. Publications of the Western Earth Surfaces Processes Team 2005

    Powell, Charles; Stone, Paul

    2007-01-01

    Introduction The Western Earth Surface Processes Team (WESPT) of the U.S. Geological Survey (USGS) conducts geologic mapping, earth-surface process investigations, and related topical earth science studies in the western United States. This work is focused on areas where modern geologic maps and associated earth-science data are needed to address key societal and environmental issues such as ground-water quality, landslides and other potential geologic hazards, and land-use decisions. Areas of primary emphasis in 2005 included southern California, the San Francisco Bay region, the Mojave Desert, the Colorado Plateau region of northern Arizona, and the Pacific Northwest. The team has its headquarters in Menlo Park, California, and maintains smaller field offices at several other locations in the western United States. The results of research conducted by the WESPT are released to the public as a variety of databases, maps, text reports, and abstracts, both through the internal publication system of the USGS and in diverse external publications such as scientific journals and books. This report lists publications of the WESPT released in 2005 as well as additional 2002, 2003, and 2004 publications that were not included in the previous lists (USGS Open-File Reports 03-363, 2004- 1267, 2005-1362). Most of the publications listed were authored or coauthored by WESPT staff. The list also includes some publications authored by non-USGS cooperators with the WESPT, as well as some authored by USGS staff outside the WESPT in cooperation with WESPT projects. Several of the publications listed are available on the World Wide Web; for these, URL addresses are provided. Many of these web publications are USGS Open-File reports that contain large digital databases of geologic map and related information. Information on ordering USGS publications can be found on the World Wide Web at http://www.usgs.gov/pubprod/, or by calling 1-888-ASK-USGS. The U.S. Geological Survey's web

  11. A warm or a cold early Earth? New insights from a 3-D climate-carbon model

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Charnay, Benjamin; Le Hir, Guillaume; Fluteau, Frédéric; Forget, François; Catling, David C.

    2017-09-01

    Oxygen isotopes in marine cherts have been used to infer hot oceans during the Archean with temperatures between 60 °C (333 K) and 80 °C (353 K). Such climates are challenging for the early Earth warmed by the faint young Sun. The interpretation of the data has therefore been controversial. 1D climate modeling inferred that such hot climates would require very high levels of CO2 (2-6 bars). Previous carbon cycle modeling concluded that such stable hot climates were impossible and that the carbon cycle should lead to cold climates during the Hadean and the Archean. Here, we revisit the climate and carbon cycle of the early Earth at 3.8 Ga using a 3D climate-carbon model. We find that CO2 partial pressures of around 1 bar could have produced hot climates given a low land fraction and cloud feedback effects. However, such high CO2 partial pressures should not have been stable because of the weathering of terrestrial and oceanic basalts, producing an efficient stabilizing feedback. Moreover, the weathering of impact ejecta during the Late Heavy Bombardment (LHB) would have strongly reduced the CO2 partial pressure leading to cold climates and potentially snowball Earth events after large impacts. Our results therefore favor cold or temperate climates with global mean temperatures between around 8 °C (281 K) and 30 °C (303 K) and with 0.1-0.36 bar of CO2 for the late Hadean and early Archean. Finally, our model suggests that the carbon cycle was efficient for preserving clement conditions on the early Earth without necessarily requiring any other greenhouse gas or warming process.

  12. Two-way feedback between biology and deep Earth processes

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Sleep, N. H.; Pope, E.; Bird, D.

    2012-12-01

    The presence of the metamorphic products of banded iron formation and black shale indicate that the Earth teemed with life by the time of the earliest preserved rocks, ca. 3.85 Ga. Iron and sulfur-based anoxygenic photosynthesis with full carbon cycles was present by this time. The pH of the ocean was ~8. The lack of older rock record cloaks pre-biotic evolution and the origin of life. Nascent and early life obtained energy from chemical disequilibria in rocks rather than sunlight. Appraising putative rock pre-biological environments is difficult in that life has modified the composition of the atmosphere, the hydrosphere, and sedimentary rocks. It has greatly affected the composition of crystalline crustal rocks and measurably modified the mantle. Conversely, hard crustal rocks and the mantle likely sequester a very ancient record of last resort. Theory provides additional insight. The Earth's surface and interior cooled following the moon-forming impact. The oceans passed through conditions favored by thermophile organisms before becoming clement. Ocean pH was ~6 and bars of CO2 existed in the atmosphere. Subduction removed the CO2 into the mantle before the time of rock record. Serpentinite likely existed in land, tidal, and marine environments as it does today. Seafloor spreading and arc volcanism likely drove hydrothermal circulation. The late heavy bombardment occurred after ca. 4.1 Ga; low heat flow environments and hence habitable subsurface refugia existed. It is conceivable that one or a few ocean-boiling impacts left thermophile survivors in their wake. Overall, the molecular biology of extant life likely conserves features that relate to its earliest abodes.

  13. Publications of Western Earth Surface Processes Team 2001

    Powell, II; Graymer, R.W.

    2002-01-01

    The Western Earth Surface Processes Team (WESPT) of the U.S. Geological Survey (USGS) conducts geologic mapping and related topical earth-science studies in the Western United States. This work is focused on areas where modern geologic maps and associated earth-science data are needed to address key societal and environmental issues, such as ground-water quality, landslides and other potential geologic hazards, and land-use decisions. Areas of primary emphasis in 2001 included southern California, the San Francisco Bay region, the Pacific Northwest, and the Las Vegas urban corridor. The team has its headquarters in Menlo Park, California, and maintains smaller field offices at several other locations in the Western United States. The results of research conducted by the WESPT are released to the public as a variety of databases, maps, text reports, and abstracts, both through the internal publication system of the USGS and in diverse external publications such as scientific journals and books. This report lists publications of the WESPT released in 2001, as well as additional 1999 and 2000 publications that were not included in the previous list (USGS Open-File Report 00–215 and USGS Open-File Report 01–198). Most of the publications listed were authored or coauthored by WESPT staff. The list also includes some publications authored by non-USGS cooperators with the WESPT, as well as some authored by USGS staff outside the WESPT in cooperation with WESPT projects. Several of the publications listed are available on the World Wide Web; for these, URL addresses are provided. Many of these web publications are USGS Open-File Reports that contain large digital databases of geologic map and related information.

  14. Publications of the Western Earth Surface Processes Team 2000

    Powell, Charles L.; Stone, Paul

    2001-01-01

    The Western Earth Surface Processes Team (WESP) of the U.S. Geological Survey (USGS) conducts geologic mapping and related topical earth science studies in the western United States. This work is focused on areas where modern geologic maps and associated earth-science data are needed to address key societal and environmental issues such as ground-water quality, potential geologic hazards, and land-use decisions. Areas of primary emphasis in 2000 included southern California, the San Francisco Bay region, the Pacific Northwest, the Las Vegas urban corridor, and selected National Park lands. The team has its headquarters in Menlo Park, California, and maintains smaller field offices at several other locations in the western United States. The results of research conducted by the WESPT are released to the public as a variety of databases, maps, text reports, and abstracts, both through the internal publication system of the USGS and in diverse external publications such as scientific journals and books. This report lists publications of the WESPT released in 2000 as well as additional 1999 publications that were not included in the previous list (USGS Open-file Report 00-215). Most of the publications listed were authored or coauthored by WESPT staff. The list also includes some publications authored by non-USGS cooperators with the WESPT, as well as some authored by USGS staff outside the WESPT in cooperation with WESPT projects. Several of the publications listed are available on the World Wide Web; for these, URL addresses are provided. Many of these Web publications are USGS open-file reports that contain large digital databases of geologic map and related information.

  15. Formation of the Lunar Fossil Bulges and Its Implication for the Early Earth and Moon

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Qin, Chuan; Zhong, Shijie; Phillips, Roger

    2018-02-01

    First recognized by Laplace over two centuries ago, the Moon's present tidal-rotational bulges are significantly larger than hydrostatic predictions. They are likely relics of a former hydrostatic state when the Moon was closer to the Earth and had larger bulges, and they were established when stresses in a thickening lunar lithosphere could maintain the bulges against hydrostatic adjustment. We formulate the first dynamically self-consistent model of this process and show that bulge formation is controlled by the relative timing of lithosphere thickening and lunar orbit recession. Viable solutions indicate that lunar bulge formation was a geologically slow process lasting several hundred million years, that the process was complete about 4 Ga when the Moon-Earth distance was less than 32 Earth radii, and that the Earth in Hadean was significantly less dissipative to lunar tides than during the last 4 Gyr, possibly implying a frozen hydrosphere due to the fainter young Sun.

  16. Subduction on Venus and Implications for Volatile Cycling, Early Earth and Exoplanets

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Smrekar, S. E.; Davaille, A.; Mueller, N. T.; Dyar, M. D.; Helbert, J.; Barnes, H.

    2017-12-01

    it a good analog of Earth's Archean. There is increasing evidence that Venus is a dynamic planet with possible active and/or recent volcanism and subduction. Studying these processes on Venus provides a window into both early Earth and offers constraints on the conditions needed to initiate plate tectonics on exoplanets.

  17. Gestalt perception modulates early visual processing.

    PubMed

    Herrmann, C S; Bosch, V

    2001-04-17

    We examined whether early visual processing reflects perceptual properties of a stimulus in addition to physical features. We recorded event-related potentials (ERPs) of 13 subjects in a visual classification task. We used four different stimuli which were all composed of four identical elements. One of the stimuli constituted an illusory Kanizsa square, another was composed of the same number of collinear line segments but the elements did not form a Gestalt. In addition, a target and a control stimulus were used which were arranged differently. These stimuli allow us to differentiate the processing of colinear line elements (stimulus features) and illusory figures (perceptual properties). The visual N170 in response to the illusory figure was significantly larger as compared to the other collinear stimulus. This is taken to indicate that the visual N170 reflects cognitive processes of Gestalt perception in addition to attentional processes and physical stimulus properties.

  18. Numerosity processing in early visual cortex.

    PubMed

    Fornaciai, Michele; Brannon, Elizabeth M; Woldorff, Marty G; Park, Joonkoo

    2017-08-15

    While parietal cortex is thought to be critical for representing numerical magnitudes, we recently reported an event-related potential (ERP) study demonstrating selective neural sensitivity to numerosity over midline occipital sites very early in the time course, suggesting the involvement of early visual cortex in numerosity processing. However, which specific brain area underlies such early activation is not known. Here, we tested whether numerosity-sensitive neural signatures arise specifically from the initial stages of visual cortex, aiming to localize the generator of these signals by taking advantage of the distinctive folding pattern of early occipital cortices around the calcarine sulcus, which predicts an inversion of polarity of ERPs arising from these areas when stimuli are presented in the upper versus lower visual field. Dot arrays, including 8-32dots constructed systematically across various numerical and non-numerical visual attributes, were presented randomly in either the upper or lower visual hemifields. Our results show that neural responses at about 90ms post-stimulus were robustly sensitive to numerosity. Moreover, the peculiar pattern of polarity inversion of numerosity-sensitive activity at this stage suggested its generation primarily in V2 and V3. In contrast, numerosity-sensitive ERP activity at occipito-parietal channels later in the time course (210-230ms) did not show polarity inversion, indicating a subsequent processing stage in the dorsal stream. Overall, these results demonstrate that numerosity processing begins in one of the earliest stages of the cortical visual stream. Copyright © 2017 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  19. EAG Eminent Speaker: Two types of Archean continental crust: plume and plate tectonics on early Earth

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Van Kranendonk, M. J.

    2012-04-01

    Over 4.5 billion years, Earth has evolved from a molten ball to a cooler planet with large continental plates, but how and when continents grew and plate tectonics started remain poorly understood. In this paper, I review the evidence that 3.5-3.2 Ga continental nuclei of the Pilbara (Australia) and Kaapvaal (southern Africa) cratons formed as thick volcanic plateaux over hot, upwelling mantle and survived due to contemporaneous development of highly depleted, buoyant, unsubductable mantle roots. This type of crust is distinct from, but complimentary to, high-grade gneiss terranes, as exemplified by the North Atlantic Craton of West Greenland, which formed through subduction-accretion tectonics on what is envisaged as a vigorously convecting early Earth with small plates. Thus, it is proposed that two types of crust formed on early Earth, in much the same way as in modern Earth, but with distinct differences resulting from a hotter Archean mantle. Volcanic plateaux provided a variety of stable habitats for early life, including chemical nutrient rich, shallow-water hydrothermal systems and shallow marine carbonate platforms.

  20. The role of impacting processes in the chemical evolution of the atmosphere of primordial Earth

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Mukhin, Lev M.; Gerasimov, M. V.

    1991-01-01

    The role of impacting processes in the chemical evolution of the atmosphere of primordial Earth is discussed. The following subject areas are covered: (1) Earth's initial atmosphere; (2) continuous degassing; (3) impact processes and the Earth's protoatmosphere; and (4) the evolution of an impact-generated atmosphere.

  1. Biological effects of high ultraviolet radiation on early earth--a theoretical evaluation.

    PubMed

    Cockell, C S

    1998-08-21

    The surface of early Earth was exposed to both UVC radiation (< 280 nm) and higher doses of UVB (280-315 nm) compared with the surface of present day Earth. The degree to which this radiation environment acted as a selection pressure on organisms and biological systems has rarely been theoretically examined with respect to the biologically effective irradiances that ancient organisms would receive. Here action spectra for DNA inactivation and isolated chloroplast inhibition are used to estimate biologically effective irradiances on archean Earth. Comparisons are made with present day Earth. The theoretical estimations on the UV radiation screening required to protect DNA on archean Earth compare well with field and laboratory observations on protection strategies found in present day microbial communities. They suggest that many physical and biological methods may have been effective and would have allowed for the radiation of life even under the high UV radiation regimes of archean Earth. Such strategies would also have provided effective reduction of photoinhibition by UV radiation. The data also suggest that the UV regime on the surface of Mars is not a life limiting factor per se, although other environmental factors such as desiccation and low temperatures may contribute towards the apparent lack of a surface biota.

  2. Possible tidal resonance of the early Earth's ocean due to the lunar orbit evolution

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Motoyama, M.; Tsunakawa, H.; Takahashi, F.

    2016-12-01

    The ocean tide is one of the most important factors affecting the Earth's surface environment and the evolution of the Earth-Moon system (e.g. Goldreich, 1966). According to the Giant Impact hypothesis, the Moon was formed very near the Earth 4.6 billion years ago (Hartmann and Davis, 1979). At that time, the tidal force would be about several thousand times as strong as the present. However previous studies pointed out that significant attenuation of tidal waves might have occurred due to mechanical response of water motion (e.g. Hansen, 1982; Abe and Ooe, 2001), resulting in relatively calm state like the present ocean.In the present study, we analyze tidal response of the ocean on the early Earth using a model of constant-depth ocean covering all the surface of the rigid Earth. The examined modes of response are not only M2 corresponding to spherical harmonics Y22 but also others such as Y21, since the lunar orbital plane would be inclined.First, estimated is an ocean depth for possible resonance of the individual mode. Eigen frequencies of the fluid on a rotating sphere with no friction are calculated on the basis of previous study (Longuet-Higgins, 1968). These frequencies depend on the Earth's rotation rate and the ocean depth. The Earth's rotation period is assumed to have changed from 5 hours to 24 hours for the past 4.6 billion years (e.g. Mignard, 1980; Stacey and Davis, 2008). It is found that resonance could occur for diurnal modes of Y21 and Y31 with reasonable depths of the ancient ocean (1300 - 5200 m).Then we obtain a 2D response function on a sphere with friction in order to estimate the tidal amplitude of the ocean for main modes . The response function in the present study shows good agreement with the numerical simulation result of the tidal torque response of M2 (Abe et al., 1997). The calculation results suggest that diurnal modes of Y21 and Y31 would grown on the early Earth, while the other modes would fairly be attenuated. In particular

  3. Earth observations satellite data policy: Process and outcome

    SciT

    Shaffer, L.R.

    1994-12-31

    The National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA) develops, launches, and operates satellites to observe and monitor the Earth and its environment. This study categorizes each program based on the relationship between NASA and external organizations. A program can be an autonomous mission undertaken for NASA`s own constituency, or it can involve a client agency or a partner. These relationships affect how data policy decisions are made and implemented, and how the valuable output of NASA`s Earth observations satellites is managed. The process in NASA for determining which programs will be approved is very informal. Ideas and concepts surface and reachmore » the consciousness of NASA management; if sufficient support is achieved, a proposal can move to the feasibility study phase and from there become an approved and funded mission. The handling of data can be an important consideration in generating political support for program approval. Autonomous programs tend to have decisions made at lower levels and documented informally or not at all. Data policy is part of routine implementation of programs and does not generally rise to the visibility of the agency head or congressional staff or the Executive Office of the President. Responsibility for data management for autonomous missions is retained at NASA centers. Client programs involve higher level decision makers, and are the subject of political interest because they cross agency boundaries. The data policy process includes presidential statements on data access. As part of the client relationship, NASA often provides resources to the client for data handling and analysis, and shares these responsibilities. Data policy for partner programs is the result of bargaining between the partners, either foreign government agencies or private companies.« less

  4. Exposure of phototrophs to 548 days in low Earth orbit: microbial selection pressures in outer space and on early earth.

    PubMed

    Cockell, Charles S; Rettberg, Petra; Rabbow, Elke; Olsson-Francis, Karen

    2011-10-01

    An epilithic microbial community was launched into low Earth orbit, and exposed to conditions in outer space for 548 days on the European Space Agency EXPOSE-E facility outside the International Space Station. The natural phototroph biofilm was augmented with akinetes of Anabaena cylindrica and vegetative cells of Nostoc commune and Chroococcidiopsis. In space-exposed dark controls, two algae (Chlorella and Rosenvingiella spp.), a cyanobacterium (Gloeocapsa sp.) and two bacteria associated with the natural community survived. Of the augmented organisms, cells of A. cylindrica and Chroococcidiopsis survived, but no cells of N. commune. Only cells of Chroococcidiopsis were cultured from samples exposed to the unattenuated extraterrestrial ultraviolet (UV) spectrum (>110 nm or 200 nm). Raman spectroscopy and bright-field microscopy showed that under these conditions the surface cells were bleached and their carotenoids were destroyed, although cell morphology was preserved. These experiments demonstrate that outer space can act as a selection pressure on the composition of microbial communities. The results obtained from samples exposed to >200 nm UV (simulating the putative worst-case UV exposure on the early Earth) demonstrate the potential for epilithic colonization of land masses during that time, but that UV radiation on anoxic planets can act as a strong selection pressure on surface-dwelling organisms. Finally, these experiments have yielded new phototrophic organisms of potential use in biomass and oxygen production in space exploration.

  5. Exposure of phototrophs to 548 days in low Earth orbit: microbial selection pressures in outer space and on early earth

    PubMed Central

    Cockell, Charles S; Rettberg, Petra; Rabbow, Elke; Olsson-Francis, Karen

    2011-01-01

    An epilithic microbial community was launched into low Earth orbit, and exposed to conditions in outer space for 548 days on the European Space Agency EXPOSE-E facility outside the International Space Station. The natural phototroph biofilm was augmented with akinetes of Anabaena cylindrica and vegetative cells of Nostoc commune and Chroococcidiopsis. In space-exposed dark controls, two algae (Chlorella and Rosenvingiella spp.), a cyanobacterium (Gloeocapsa sp.) and two bacteria associated with the natural community survived. Of the augmented organisms, cells of A. cylindrica and Chroococcidiopsis survived, but no cells of N. commune. Only cells of Chroococcidiopsis were cultured from samples exposed to the unattenuated extraterrestrial ultraviolet (UV) spectrum (>110 nm or 200 nm). Raman spectroscopy and bright-field microscopy showed that under these conditions the surface cells were bleached and their carotenoids were destroyed, although cell morphology was preserved. These experiments demonstrate that outer space can act as a selection pressure on the composition of microbial communities. The results obtained from samples exposed to >200 nm UV (simulating the putative worst-case UV exposure on the early Earth) demonstrate the potential for epilithic colonization of land masses during that time, but that UV radiation on anoxic planets can act as a strong selection pressure on surface-dwelling organisms. Finally, these experiments have yielded new phototrophic organisms of potential use in biomass and oxygen production in space exploration. PMID:21593797

  6. A novel sequential process for remediating rare-earth wastewater.

    PubMed

    Cui, Mingcan; Jang, Min; Kang, Kyounglim; Kim, Dukmin; Snyder, Shane A; Khim, Jeehyeong

    2016-02-01

    A novel and economic sequential process consisting of precipitation, adsorption, and oxidation was developed to remediate actual rare-earth (RE) wastewater containing various toxic pollutants, including radioactive species. In the precipitation step, porous air stones (PAS) containing waste oyster shell (WOS), PASWOS, was prepared and used to precipitate most heavy metals with >97% removal efficiencies. The SEM-EDS analysis revealed that PAS plays a key role in preventing the surface coating of precipitants on the surface of WOS and in releasing the dissolved species of WOS successively. For the adsorption step, a polyurethane (PU) impregnated by coal mine drainage sludge (CMDS), PUCMDS, was synthesized and applied to deplete fluoride (F), arsenic (As), uranium (U), and thorium (Th) that remained after precipitation. The continuous-mode sequential process using PAS(WOS), PU(CMDS), and ozone (O3) had 99.9-100% removal efficiencies of heavy metals, 99.3-99.9% of F and As, 95.8-99.4% of U and Th, and 92.4% of COD(Cr) for 100 days. The sequential process can treat RE wastewater economically and effectively without stirred-tank reactors, pH controller, continuous injection of chemicals, and significant sludge generation, as well as the quality of the outlet met the EPA recommended limits. Copyright © 2015 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  7. Nitrogen Oxides in Early Earth's Atmosphere as Electron Acceptors for Life's Emergence

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Wong, Michael L.; Charnay, Benjamin D.; Gao, Peter; Yung, Yuk L.; Russell, Michael J.

    2017-10-01

    We quantify the amount of nitrogen oxides (NOx) produced through lightning and photochemical processes in the Hadean atmosphere to be available in the Hadean ocean for the emergence of life. Atmospherically generated nitrate (NO3-) and nitrite (NO2-) are the most attractive high-potential electron acceptors for pulling and enabling crucial redox reactions of autotrophic metabolic pathways at submarine alkaline hydrothermal vents. The Hadean atmosphere, dominated by CO2 and N2, will produce nitric oxide (NO) when shocked by lightning. Photochemical reactions involving NO and H2O vapor will then produce acids such as HNO, HNO2, HNO3, and HO2NO2 that rain into the ocean. There, they dissociate into or react to form nitrate and nitrite. We present new calculations based on a novel combination of early-Earth global climate model and photochemical modeling, and we predict the flux of NOx to the Hadean ocean. In our 0.1-, 1-, and 10-bar pCO2 models, we calculate the NOx delivery to be 2.4 × 105, 6.5 × 108, and 1.9 × 108 molecules cm-2 s-1. After only tens of thousands to tens of millions of years, these NOx fluxes are expected to produce sufficient (micromolar) ocean concentrations of high-potential electron acceptors for the emergence of life.

  8. Meteorite Impact-Induced Rapid NH3 Production on Early Earth: Ab Initio Molecular Dynamics Simulation.

    PubMed

    Shimamura, Kohei; Shimojo, Fuyuki; Nakano, Aiichiro; Tanaka, Shigenori

    2016-12-14

    NH 3 is an essential molecule as a nitrogen source for prebiotic amino acid syntheses such as the Strecker reaction. Previous shock experiments demonstrated that meteorite impacts on ancient oceans would have provided a considerable amount of NH 3 from atmospheric N 2 and oceanic H 2 O through reduction by meteoritic iron. However, specific production mechanisms remain unclear, and impact velocities employed in the experiments were substantially lower than typical impact velocities of meteorites on the early Earth. Here, to investigate the issues from the atomistic viewpoint, we performed multi-scale shock technique-based ab initio molecular dynamics simulations. The results revealed a rapid production of NH 3 within several picoseconds after the shock, indicating that shocks with greater impact velocities would provide further increase in the yield of NH 3 . Meanwhile, the picosecond-order production makes one expect that the important nitrogen source precursors of amino acids were obtained immediately after the impact. It was also observed that the reduction of N 2 proceeded according to an associative mechanism, rather than a dissociative mechanism as in the Haber-Bosch process.

  9. Serpentinization and Its Implications for Life on the Early Earth and Mars

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Schulte, Mitch; Blake, David; Hoehler, Tori; McCollom, Thomas

    2006-04-01

    Ophiolites, sections of ocean crust tectonically displaced onto land, offer significant potential to support chemolithoautotrophic life through the provision of energy and reducing power during aqueous alteration of their highly reduced mineralogies. There is substantial chemical disequilibrium between the primary olivine and pyroxene mineralogy of these ophiolites and the fluids circulating through them. This disequilibrium represents a potential source of chemical energy that could sustain life. Moreover, E h-pH conditions resulting from rock- water interactions in ultrabasic rocks are conducive to important abiotic processes antecedent to the origin of life. Serpentinization-the reaction of olivine- and pyroxene-rich rocks with water-produces magnetite, hydroxide, and serpentine minerals, and liberates molecular hydrogen, a source of energy and electrons that can be readily utilized by a broad array of chemosynthetic organisms. These systems are viewed as important analogs for potential early ecosystems on both Earth and Mars, where highly reducing mineralogy was likely widespread in an undifferentiated crust. Secondary phases precipitated during serpentinization have the capability to preserve organic or mineral biosignatures. We describe the petrology and mineral chemistry of an ophiolite-hosted cold spring in northern California and propose criteria to aid in the identification of serpentinizing terranes on Mars that have the potential to harbor chemosynthetic life.

  10. Serpentinization and its implications for life on the early Earth and Mars.

    PubMed

    Schulte, Mitch; Blake, David; Hoehler, Tori; McCollom, Thomas

    2006-04-01

    Ophiolites, sections of ocean crust tectonically displaced onto land, offer significant potential to support chemolithoautotrophic life through the provision of energy and reducing power during aqueous alteration of their highly reduced mineralogies. There is substantial chemical disequilibrium between the primary olivine and pyroxene mineralogy of these ophiolites and the fluids circulating through them. This disequilibrium represents a potential source of chemical energy that could sustain life. Moreover, E (h)-pH conditions resulting from rock- water interactions in ultrabasic rocks are conducive to important abiotic processes antecedent to the origin of life. Serpentinization--the reaction of olivine- and pyroxene-rich rocks with water--produces magnetite, hydroxide, and serpentine minerals, and liberates molecular hydrogen, a source of energy and electrons that can be readily utilized by a broad array of chemosynthetic organisms. These systems are viewed as important analogs for potential early ecosystems on both Earth and Mars, where highly reducing mineralogy was likely widespread in an undifferentiated crust. Secondary phases precipitated during serpentinization have the capability to preserve organic or mineral biosignatures. We describe the petrology and mineral chemistry of an ophiolite-hosted cold spring in northern California and propose criteria to aid in the identification of serpentinizing terranes on Mars that have the potential to harbor chemosynthetic life.

  11. Aqueous magnesium as an environmental selection pressure in the evolution of phospholipid membranes on early earth

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Dalai, Punam; Ustriyana, Putu; Sahai, Nita

    2018-02-01

    Early compartmentalization of simple biomolecules by membrane bilayers was, presumably, a critical step in the emergence of the first cell-like entities, protocells. Their membranes were likely composed of single chain amphiphiles (SCAs), but pure SCA membranes especially those with short-chains are highly unstable towards divalent cations, which are ubiquitous in aqueous environments. The prebiotic synthesis of phospholipids (PLs), even in only trace amounts, may also have been possible. PL membranes are much more stable towards divalent cations. Here, we show the transition of fatty acid membranes to mixed fatty acid-PL and, finally, to PL membranes in the presence of Mg2+, which acts as an environmental selection pressure, and we propose different mechanisms for the observed increased Mg2+-immunity. The "fatal" concentration ([Mg2+]fatal) at which vesicles are disrupted increased dramatically by an order of magnitude from OA to mixed to POPC vesicles. Two mechanisms for the increasing immunity were determined. The negative charge density of the vesicles decreased with increasing POPC content, so more Mg2+ was required for disruption. More interestingly, Mg2+ preferentially bound to and abstracted OA from mixed lipid membranes, resulting in relatively POPC-enriched vesicles compared to the initial ratio. The effect was the most dramatic for the largest initial OA-POPC ratio representing the most primitive protocells. Thus, Mg2+ acted to evolve the mixed membrane composition towards PL enrichment. To the best of our knowledge, this is the first report of selective lipid abstraction from mixed SCA-PL vesicles. These results may hold implications for accommodating prebiotic Mg2+-promoted processes such as non-enzymatic RNA polymerization on early Earth.

  12. Publications of the Western Earth Surface Processes Team 2002

    Powell, Charles; Graymer, R.W.

    2003-01-01

    The Western Earth Surface Processes Team (WESPT) of the U.S. Geological Survey (USGS) conducts geologic mapping and related topical earth science studies in the western United States. This work is focused on areas where modern geologic maps and associated earth-science data are needed to address key societal and environmental issues such as ground-water quality, landslides and other potential geologic hazards, and land-use decisions. Areas of primary emphasis in 2001 included southern California, the San Francisco Bay region, the Pacific Northwest, and the Las Vegas urban corridor. The team has its headquarters in Menlo Park, California, and maintains smaller field offices at several other locations in the western United States. The results of research conducted by the WESPT are released to the public as a variety of databases, maps, text reports, and abstracts, both through the internal publication system of the USGS and in diverse external publications such as scientific journals and books. This report lists publications of the WESPT released in 2002 as well as additional 1998 and 2001 publications that were not included in the previous list (USGS Open-File Report 00-215, USGS Open-File Report 01-198, and USGS Open-File Report 02-269). Most of the publications listed were authored or coauthored by WESPT staff. The list also includes some publications authored by non-USGS cooperators with the WESPT, as well as some authored by USGS staff outside the WESPT in cooperation with WESPT projects. Several of the publications listed are available on the World Wide Web; for these, URL addresses are provided. Many of these web publications are USGS open-file reports that contain large digital databases of geologic map and related information. Information on ordering USGS publications can be found on the World Wide Web or by calling 1-888-ASK-USGS. The U.S. Geological Survey’s web server for geologic information in the western United States is located at http

  13. Exposing earth surface process model simulations to a large audience

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Overeem, I.; Kettner, A. J.; Borkowski, L.; Russell, E. L.; Peddicord, H.

    2015-12-01

    The Community Surface Dynamics Modeling System (CSDMS) represents a diverse group of >1300 scientists who develop and apply numerical models to better understand the Earth's surface. CSDMS has a mandate to make the public more aware of model capabilities and therefore started sharing state-of-the-art surface process modeling results with large audiences. One platform to reach audiences outside the science community is through museum displays on 'Science on a Sphere' (SOS). Developed by NOAA, SOS is a giant globe, linked with computers and multiple projectors and can display data and animations on a sphere. CSDMS has developed and contributed model simulation datasets for the SOS system since 2014, including hydrological processes, coastal processes, and human interactions with the environment. Model simulations of a hydrological and sediment transport model (WBM-SED) illustrate global river discharge patterns. WAVEWATCH III simulations have been specifically processed to show the impacts of hurricanes on ocean waves, with focus on hurricane Katrina and super storm Sandy. A large world dataset of dams built over the last two centuries gives an impression of the profound influence of humans on water management. Given the exposure of SOS, CSDMS aims to contribute at least 2 model datasets a year, and will soon provide displays of global river sediment fluxes and changes of the sea ice free season along the Arctic coast. Over 100 facilities worldwide show these numerical model displays to an estimated 33 million people every year. Datasets storyboards, and teacher follow-up materials associated with the simulations, are developed to address common core science K-12 standards. CSDMS dataset documentation aims to make people aware of the fact that they look at numerical model results, that underlying models have inherent assumptions and simplifications, and that limitations are known. CSDMS contributions aim to familiarize large audiences with the use of numerical

  14. SALICYLATE PROCESS FOR THORIUM SEPARATION FROM RARE EARTHS

    DOEpatents

    Cowan, G.A.

    1959-08-25

    The separation of thorium from rare earths is accomplished by forming an aqueous solution of salts of thorium and rare earths and sufficient acetate buffer to provide a pH of between 2 and 5, adding an ammonium salicylate to the aqueous buffered solution, contacting the resultant solution with a substantially water-immiscible organic solvent mixture of an ether and an ester, and separating the solvent extract phase containing thorium salicylate from the aqueous phase containing the rare earths.

  15. Improving the Representation of Estuarine Processes in Earth System Models

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Sun, Q.; Whitney, M. M.; Bryan, F.; Tseng, Y. H.

    2016-12-01

    The exchange of freshwater between the rivers and estuaries and the open ocean represents a unique form of scale-interaction in the climate system. The local variability in the terrestrial hydrologic cycle is integrated by rivers over potentially large drainage basins (up to semi-continental scales), and is then imposed on the coastal ocean at the scale of a river mouth. Appropriately treating riverine freshwater discharge into the oceans in Earth system models is a challenging problem. Commonly, the river runoff is discharged into the ocean models with zero salinity and arbitrarily distributed either horizontally or vertically over several grid cells. Those approaches entirely neglect estuarine physical processes that modify river inputs before they reach the open ocean. A physically based Estuary Box Model (EBM) is developed to parameterize the mixing processes in estuaries. The EBM has a two-layer structure representing the mixing processes driven by tides and shear flow within the estuaries. It predicts the magnitude of the mixing driven exchange flow, bringing saltier lower-layer shelf water into the estuary to mix with river water prior to discharge to the upper-layer open ocean. The EBM has been tested against observations and high-resolution three-dimensional simulations of the Columbia River estuary, showing excellent agreement in the predictions of the strength of the exchange flow and the salinity of the discharged water, including modulation with the spring-neap tidal cycle. The EBM is implemented globally at every river discharge point of the Community Earth System Model (CESM). In coupled ocean-sea ice experiments driven by CORE surface forcing, the sea surface salinity (SSS) in the coastal ocean is increased globally compared to the standard model, contributing to a decrease in coastal stratification. The SSS near the mouths of some of the largest rivers is decreased due to the reduction in the area over which riverine fresh water is discharged. The

  16. Impact melting of frozen oceans on the early Earth: implications for the origin of life

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Bada, J. L.; Bigham, C.; Miller, S. L.

    1994-01-01

    Without sufficient greenhouse gases in the atmosphere, the early Earth would have become a permanently frozen planet because the young Sun was less luminous than it is today. Several resolutions to this faint young Sun-frozen Earth paradox have been proposed, with an atmosphere rich in CO2 being the one generally favored. However, these models assume that there were no mechanisms for melting a once frozen ocean. Here we show that bolide impacts between about 3.6 and 4.0 billion years ago could have episodically melted an ice-covered early ocean. Thaw-freeze cycles associated with bolide impacts could have been important for the initiation of abiotic reactions that gave rise to the first living organisms.

  17. The role of impacts in the history of the early earth

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    French, Bevan M.

    1991-01-01

    The significant conclusions of a conference called 'Meteorite Impact and the Early Earth' are reported including data which support the notion that extraterrestrial impacts greatly influenced the development of the earth. The cratering of other planetary surfaces is discussed, and the energy added by meteorite impacts is characterized. The primary effects of large impacts are set forth in terms of atmospheric, oceanic, and biological considerations which suggest that the ramifications would have been significant. Contentious issues include the variation of impact rate with time in the early universe, the interpretation of the record of intense bombardment in the lunar highlands, and the effects related to alternative scenarios. Directions of future study are mentioned including the identification of terrestrial impact structures, conducting searches in the Archean, and assessing ancient impact rates.

  18. Impact melting of frozen oceans on the early Earth: Implications for the origin of life

    PubMed Central

    Bada, J. L.; Bigham, C.; Miller, S. L.

    1994-01-01

    Without sufficient greenhouse gases in the atmosphere, the early Earth would have become a permanently frozen planet because the young Sun was less luminous than it is today. Several resolutions to this faint young Sun-frozen Earth paradox have been proposed, with an atmosphere rich in CO2 being the one generally favored. However, these models assume that there were no mechanisms for melting a once frozen ocean. Here we show that bolide impacts between about 3.6 and 4.0 billion years ago could have episodically melted an ice-covered early ocean. Thaw-freeze cycles associated with bolide impacts could have been important for the initiation of abiotic reactions that gave rise to the first living organisms. PMID:11539550

  19. Extraterrestrial flux of potentially prebiotic C, N, and P to the early Earth.

    PubMed

    Pasek, Matthew; Lauretta, Dante

    2008-02-01

    With growing evidence for a heavy bombardment period ending 4-3.8 billion years ago, meteorites and comets may have been an important source of prebiotic carbon, nitrogen, and phosphorus on the early Earth. Life may have originated shortly after the late-heavy bombardment, when concentrations of organic compounds and reactive phosphorus were enough to "kick life into gear". This work quantifies the sources of potentially prebiotic, extraterrestrial C, N, and P and correlates these fluxes with a comparison to total Ir fluxes, and estimates the effect of atmosphere on the survival of material. We find (1) that carbonaceous chondrites were not a good source of organic compounds, but interplanetary dust particles provided a constant, steady flux of organic compounds to the surface of the Earth, (2) extraterrestrial metallic material was much more abundant on the early Earth, and delivered reactive P in the form of phosphide minerals to the Earth's surface, and (3) large impacts provided substantial local enrichments of potentially prebiotic reagents. These results help elucidate the potential role of extraterrestrial matter in the origin of life.

  20. Isotopic constraints on the age and early differentiation of the Earth.

    PubMed

    McCulloch, M T

    1996-03-01

    The Earth's age and early differentiation history are re-evaluated using updated isotopic constraints. From the most primitive terrestrial Pb isotopic compositions found at Isua Greenland, and the Pilbara of Western Australia, combined with precise geochronology of these localities, an age 4.49 +/- 0.02 Ga is obtained. This is interpreted as the mean age of core formation as U/Pb is fractionated due to sequestering of Pb into the Earth's core. The long-lived Rb-Sr isotopic system provides constraints on the time interval for the accretion of the Earth as Rb underwent significant depletion by volatile loss during accretion of the Earth or its precursor planetesimals. A primitive measured 87Sr/86Sr initial ratio of 0.700502 +/- 10 has been obtained for an early Archean (3.46 Ga) barite from the Pilbara Block of Western Australia. Using conservative models for the evolution of Rb/Sr in the early Archean mantle allows an estimate to be placed on the Earth's initial Sr ratio at approximately 4.50 Ga, of 0.69940 +/- 10. This is significantly higher than that measured for the Moon (0.69900 +/- 2) or in the achondrite, Angra dos Reis (0.69894 +/- 2) and for a Rb/Sr ratio of approximately 1/2 of chondrites corresponds to a mean age for accretion of the Earth of 4.48 + /- 0.04 Ga. The now extinct 146Sm-142Nd (T1/2(146)=103 l0(6)yrs) combined with the long-lived 147Sm-143Nd isotopic systematics can also be used to provide limits on the time of early differentiation of the Earth. High precision analyses of the oldest (3.8-3.9 Ga) Archean gneisses from Greenland (Amitsoq and Akilia gneisses), and Canada (Acasta gneiss) do not show measurable (> +/- l0ppm) variations of 142Nd, in contrast to the 33 ppm 142Nd excess reported for an Archean sample. The general lack of 142Nd variations, combined with the presence of highly positive epsilon 143 values (+4.0) at 3.9 Ga, indicates that the record of large-scale Sm/Nd fractionation events was not preserved in the early-Earth from 4

  1. Earth Observing System (EOS) Aqua Launch and Early Mission Attitude Support Experiences

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Tracewell, D.; Glickman, J.; Hashmall, J.; Natanson, G.; Sedlak, J.

    2003-01-01

    The Earth Observing System (EOS) Aqua satellite was successfully launched on May 4,2002. Aqua is the second in the series of EOS satellites. EOS is part of NASA s Earth Science Enterprise Program, whose goals are to advance the scientific understanding of the Earth system. Aqua is a three-axis stabilized, Earth-pointing spacecraft in a nearly circular, sun-synchronous orbit at an altitude of 705 km. The Goddard Space Flight Center (GSFC) Flight Dynamics attitude team supported all phases of the launch and early mission. This paper presents the main results and lessons learned during this period, including: real-time attitude mode transition support, sensor calibration, onboard computer attitude validation, response to spacecraft emergencies, postlaunch attitude analyses, and anomaly resolution. In particular, Flight Dynamics support proved to be invaluable for successful Earth acquisition, fine-point mode transition, and recognition and correction of several anomalies, including support for the resolution of problems observed with the MODIS instrument.

  2. Prebiotic chemistry and atmospheric warming of early Earth by an active young Sun

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Airapetian, V. S.; Glocer, A.; Gronoff, G.; Hébrard, E.; Danchi, W.

    2016-06-01

    Nitrogen is a critical ingredient of complex biological molecules. Molecular nitrogen, however, which was outgassed into the Earth’s early atmosphere, is relatively chemically inert and nitrogen fixation into more chemically reactive compounds requires high temperatures. Possible mechanisms of nitrogen fixation include lightning, atmospheric shock heating by meteorites, and solar ultraviolet radiation. Here we show that nitrogen fixation in the early terrestrial atmosphere can be explained by frequent and powerful coronal mass ejection events from the young Sun--so-called superflares. Using magnetohydrodynamic simulations constrained by Kepler Space Telescope observations, we find that successive superflare ejections produce shocks that accelerate energetic particles, which would have compressed the early Earth’s magnetosphere. The resulting extended polar cap openings provide pathways for energetic particles to penetrate into the atmosphere and, according to our atmospheric chemistry simulations, initiate reactions converting molecular nitrogen, carbon dioxide and methane to the potent greenhouse gas nitrous oxide as well as hydrogen cyanide, an essential compound for life. Furthermore, the destruction of N2, CO2 and CH4 suggests that these greenhouse gases cannot explain the stability of liquid water on the early Earth. Instead, we propose that the efficient formation of nitrous oxide could explain a warm early Earth.

  3. Haze aerosols in the atmosphere of early Earth: manna from heaven.

    PubMed

    Trainer, Melissa G; Pavlov, Alexander A; Curtis, Daniel B; McKay, Christopher P; Worsnop, Douglas R; Delia, Alice E; Toohey, Darin W; Toon, Owen B; Tolbert, Margaret A

    2004-01-01

    An organic haze layer in the upper atmosphere of Titan plays a crucial role in the atmospheric composition and climate of that moon. Such a haze layer may also have existed on the early Earth, providing an ultraviolet shield for greenhouse gases needed to warm the planet enough for life to arise and evolve. Despite the implications of such a haze layer, little is known about the organic material produced under early Earth conditions when both CO(2) and CH(4) may have been abundant in the atmosphere. For the first time, we experimentally demonstrate that organic haze can be generated in different CH(4)/CO(2) ratios. Here, we show that haze aerosols are able to form at CH(4) mixing ratios of 1,000 ppmv, a level likely to be present on early Earth. In addition, we find that organic hazes will form at C/O ratios as low as 0.6, which is lower than the predicted value of unity. We also show that as the C/O ratio decreases, the organic particles produced are more oxidized and contain biologically labile compounds. After life arose, the haze may thus have provided food for biota.

  4. PROCESS FOR SEPARATING AMERICIUM AND CURIUM FROM RARE EARTH ELEMENTS

    DOEpatents

    Baybarz, R.D.; Lloyd, M.H.

    1963-02-26

    This invention relates to methods of separating americium and curium values from rare earth values. In accordance with the invention americium, curium, and rare earth values are sorbed on an anion exchange resin. A major portion of the rare earth values are selectively stripped from the resin with a concentrated aqueous solution of lithium chloride, and americium, curium, and a minor portion of rare earth values are then stripped from the resin with a dilute aqueous solution of lithium chloride. The americium and curium values are further purified by increasing the concentration of lithium chloride in the solution to at least 8 molar and selectively extracting rare earth values from the resulting solution with a monoalkylphosphoric acid. (AEC)

  5. On the formation of continental silicic melts in thermochemical mantle convection models: implications for early Earth

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    van Thienen, P.; van den Berg, A. P.; Vlaar, N. J.

    2004-12-01

    Important constituents of Archean cratons, formed in the early and hot history of the Earth, are Tonalite-Trondhjemite-Granodiorite (TTG) plutons and greenstone belts. The formation of these granite-greenstone terrains is often ascribed to plate-tectonic processes. Buoyancy considerations, however, do not allow plate tectonics to take place in a significantly hotter Earth. We therefore propose an alternative mechanism for the coeval and proximate production of TTG plutons and greenstone-like crustal successions. That is, when a locally anomalously thick basaltic crust has been produced by continued addition of extrusive or intrusive basalts due to partial melting of the underlying convecting mantle, the transition of a sufficient amount of basalt in the lower crust to eclogite may trigger a resurfacing event, in which a complete crustal section of over 1000 km long sinks into the mantle in less than 2 million years. Pressure release partial melting in the complementary upwelling mantle produces large volumes of basaltic material replacing the original crust. Partial melting at the base of this newly produced crust may generate felsic melts which are added as intrusives and/or extrusives to the generally mafic crustal succession, adding to what resembles a greenstone belt. Partial melting of metabasalt in the sinking crustal section produces a significant volume of TTG melt which is added to the crust directly above the location of 'subduction', presumably in the form of a pluton. This scenario is self-consistently produced by numerical thermochemical mantle convection models, presented in this paper, including partial melting of mantle peridotite and crustal (meta)basalt. The metamorphic p, T conditions under which partial melting of metabasalt takes place in this scenario are consistent with geochemical trace element data for TTGs, which indicate melting under amphibolite rather than eclogite facies. Other geodynamical settings which we have also investigated

  6. Early evolution and dynamics of Earth from a molten initial stage

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Louro Lourenço, Diogo; Tackley, Paul J.

    2016-04-01

    It is now well established that most of the terrestrial planets underwent a magma ocean stage during their accretion. On Earth, it is probable that at the end of accretion, giant impacts like the hypothesised Moon-forming impact, together with other sources of heat, melted a substantial part of the mantle. The thermal and chemical evolution of the resulting magma ocean most certainly had dramatic consequences on the history of the planet. Considerable research has been done on magma oceans using simple 1-D models (e.g.: Abe, PEPI 1997; Solomatov, Treat. Geophys. 2007; Elkins-Tanton EPSL 2008). However, some aspects of the dynamics may not be adequately addressed in 1-D and require the use of 2-D or 3-D models. Moreover, new developments in mineral physics that indicate that melt can be denser than solid at high pressures (e.g.: de Koker et al., EPSL 2013) can have very important impacts on the classical views of the solidification of magma oceans (Labrosse et al., Nature 2007). The goal of our study is to understand and characterize the influence of melting on the long-term thermo-chemical evolution of rocky planet interiors, starting from an initial molten state (magma ocean). Our approach is to model viscous creep of the solid mantle, while parameterizing processes that involve melt as previously done in 1-D models, including melt-solid separation at all melt fractions, the use of an effective diffusivity to parameterize turbulent mixing, coupling to a parameterized core heat balance and a radiative surface boundary condition. These enhancements have been made to the numerical code StagYY (Tackley, PEPI 2008). We present results for the evolution of an Earth-like planet from a molten initial state to present day, while testing the effect of uncertainties in parameters such as melt-solid density differences, surface heat loss and efficiency of turbulent mixing. Our results show rapid cooling and crystallization until the rheological transition then much slower

  7. Early evolution and dynamics of Earth from a molten initial stage

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Lourenço, Diogo; Tackley, Paul

    2015-04-01

    It is now well established that most of the terrestrial planets underwent a magma ocean stage during their accretion. On Earth, it is probable that at the end of accretion, giant impacts like the hypothesised Moon-forming impact, together with other sources of heat, melted a substantial part of the mantle. The thermal and chemical evolution of the resulting magma ocean most certainly had dramatic consequences on the history of the planet. Considerable research has been done on magma oceans using simple 1-D models (e.g.: Abe, PEPI 1997; Solomatov, Treat. Geophys. 2007; Elkins-Tanton EPSL 2008). However, some aspects of the dynamics may not be adequately addressed in 1-D and require the use of 2-D or 3-D models. Moreover, new developments in mineral physics that indicate that melt can be denser than solid at high pressures (e.g.: de Koker et al., EPSL 2013) can have very important impacts on the classical views of the solidification of magma oceans (Labrosse et al., Nature 2007). The goal of our study is to understand and characterize the influence of melting on the long-term thermo-chemical evolution of rocky planet interiors, starting from an initial molten state (magma ocean). Our approach is to model viscous creep of the solid mantle, while parameterizing processes that involve melt as previously done in 1-D models, including melt-solid separation at all melt fractions, the use of an effective diffusivity to parameterize turbulent mixing, coupling to a parameterized core heat balance and a radiative surface boundary condition. These enhancements have been made to the numerical code StagYY (Tackley, PEPI 2008). We will present results for the evolution of an Earth-like planet from a molten initial state to present day, while testing the effect of uncertainties in parameters such as melt-solid density differences, surface heat loss and efficiency of turbulent mixing. Our results show rapid cooling and crystallization until the rheological transition then much

  8. Early evolution and dynamics of Earth from a molten initial stage

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Louro Lourenço, D. J.; Tackley, P. J.

    2014-12-01

    It is now well established that most of the terrestrial planets underwent a magma ocean stage during their accretion. On Earth, it is probable that at the end of accretion, giant impacts like the hypothesised Moon-forming impact, together with other sources of heat, melted a substantial part of the mantle. The thermal and chemical evolution of the resulting magma ocean most certainly had dramatic consequences on the history of the planet. Considerable research has been done on magma oceans using simple 1-D models (e.g.: Abe, PEPI 1997; Solomatov, Treat. Geophys. 2007; Elkins-Tanton EPSL 2008). However, some aspects of the dynamics may not be adequately addressed in 1-D and require the use of 2-D or 3-D models. Moreover, new developments in mineral physics that indicate that melt can be denser than solid at high pressures (e.g.: de Koker et al., EPSL 2013) can have very important impacts on the classical views of the solidification of magma oceans (Labrosse et al., Nature 2007). The goal of our study is to understand and characterize the influence of melting on the long-term thermo-chemical evolution of rocky planet interiors, starting from an initial molten state (magma ocean). Our approach is to model viscous creep of the solid mantle, while parameterizing processes that involve melt as previously done in 1-D models, including melt-solid separation at all melt fractions, the use of an effective diffusivity to parameterize turbulent mixing, coupling to a parameterized core heat balance and a radiative surface boundary condition. These enhancements have been made to the numerical code StagYY (Tackley, PEPI 2008). We will present results for the evolution of an Earth-like planet from a molten initial state to present day, while testing the effect of uncertainties in parameters such as melt-solid density differences, surface heat loss and efficiency of turbulent mixing. Our results show rapid cooling and crystallization until the rheological transition then much

  9. Early Stage of Origin of Earth (interval after Emergence of Sun, Formation of Liquid Core, Formation of Solid Core)

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Pechernikova, G. V.; Sergeev, V. N.

    2017-05-01

    Gravitational collapse of interstellar molecular cloud fragment has led to the formation of the Sun and its surrounding protoplanetary disk, consisting of 5 × 10^5 dust and gas. The collapse continued (1 years. Age of solar system (about 4.57×10^9 years) determine by age calcium-aluminum inclusions (CAI) which are present at samples of some meteorites (chondrites). Subsidence of dust to the central plane of a protoplanetary disk has led to formation of a dust subdisk which as a result of gravitational instability has broken up to condensations. In the process of collisional evolution they turned into dense planetesimals from which the planets formed. The accounting of a role of large bodies in evolution of a protoplanetary swarm in the field of terrestrial planets has allowed to define times of formation of the massive bodies permitting their early differentiation at the expense of short-lived isotopes heating and impacts to the melting temperature of the depths. The total time of Earth's growth is estimated about 10^8 years. Hf geochronometer showed that the core of the Earth has existed for Using W about 3×10^7 Hf geohronometer years since the formation of the CAI. Thus data W point to the formation of the Earth's core during its accretion. The paleomagnetic data indicate the existence of Earth's magnetic field past 3.5×10^9 years. But the age of the solid core, estimated by heat flow at the core-mantle boundary is 1.7×10^9 (0.5 years). Measurements of the thermal conductivity of liquid iron under the conditions that exist in the Earth's core, indicate the absence of the need for a solid core of existence to support the work geodynamo, although electrical resistivity measurements yield the opposite result.

  10. The Denali EarthScope Education Partnership: Creating Opportunities for Learning About Solid Earth Processes in Alaska and Beyond.

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Roush, J. J.; Hansen, R. A.

    2003-12-01

    The Geophysical Institute of the University of Alaska Fairbanks, in partnership with Denali National Park and Preserve, has begun an education outreach program that will create learning opportunities in solid earth geophysics for a wide sector of the public. We will capitalize upon a unique coincidence of heightened public interest in earthquakes (due to the M 7.9 Denali Fault event of Nov. 3rd, 2002), the startup of the EarthScope experiment, and the construction of the Denali Science & Learning Center, a premiere facility for science education located just 43 miles from the epicenter of the Denali Fault earthquake. Real-time data and current research results from EarthScope installations and science projects in Alaska will be used to engage students and teachers, national park visitors, and the general public in a discovery process that will enhance public understanding of tectonics, seismicity and volcanism along the boundary between the Pacific and North American plates. Activities will take place in five program areas, which are: 1) museum displays and exhibits, 2) outreach via print publications and electronic media, 3) curriculum development to enhance K-12 earth science education, 4) teacher training to develop earth science expertise among K-12 educators, and 5) interaction between scientists and the public. In order to engage the over 1 million annual visitors to Denali, as well as people throughout Alaska, project activities will correspond with the opening of the Denali Science and Learning Center in 2004. An electronic interactive kiosk is being constructed to provide public access to real-time data from seismic and geodetic monitoring networks in Alaska, as well as cutting edge visualizations of solid earth processes. A series of print publications and a website providing access to real-time seismic and geodetic data will be developed for park visitors and the general public, highlighting EarthScope science in Alaska. A suite of curriculum modules

  11. Image data processing system requirements study. Volume 1: Analysis. [for Earth Resources Survey Program

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Honikman, T.; Mcmahon, E.; Miller, E.; Pietrzak, L.; Yorsz, W.

    1973-01-01

    Digital image processing, image recorders, high-density digital data recorders, and data system element processing for use in an Earth Resources Survey image data processing system are studied. Loading to various ERS systems is also estimated by simulation.

  12. Conditions of Core Formation in the Early Earth: Single Stage or Heterogeneous Accretion?

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Righter, Kevin

    2010-01-01

    Since approx.1990 high pressure and temperature (PT) experiments on metal-silicate systems have showed that partition coefficients [D(met/sil)] for siderophile (iron-loving) elements are much different than those measured at low PT conditions [1,2]. The high PT data have been used to argue for a magma ocean during growth of the early Earth [3,4]. In the ensuing decades there have been hundreds of new experiments carried out and published on a wide range of siderophile elements (> 80 experiments published for Ni, Co, Mo, W, P, Mn, V, Cr, Ga, Cu and Pd). At the same time several different models have been advanced to explain the siderophile elements in Earth's mantle: a) shallow depth magma ocean 25-30 GPa [3,5]; b) deep magma ocean; up to 50 GPa [6,7], and c) early reduced and later oxidized magma ocean [8,9]. Some studies have drawn conclusions based on a small subset of siderophile elements, or a set of elements that provides little leverage on the big picture (like slightly siderophile elements), and no single study has attempted to quantitatively explain more than 5 elements at a time. The purpose of this abstract is to identify issues that have lead to a difference in interpretation, and to present updated predictive expressions based on new experimental data. The resulting expressions will be applied to the siderophile element depletions in Earth's upper mantle.

  13. Variation in 142Nd/144Nd of Archean rocks from southwest Greenland : Implications for early Earth mantle dynamics

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Rizo, H.; Boyet, M.; Blichert-Toft, J.; Rosing, M.; Paquette, J. L.

    2012-04-01

    The short-lived 146Sm-142Nd chronometer (half-life = 103 Ma) has proven successful in bringing constraints on the dynamics of the early Earth mantle. Since the parent isotope, 146Sm, was extant only during the first 300 Ma of the history of the Solar System, the positive 142Nd anomalies measured in southwest Greenland Archean rocks imply that their incompatible element-depleted mantle source formed during the Hadean. Interestingly, the magnitude of these anomalies seems to decrease over time. 3.7-3.8 Ga old rocks from the Amitsoq Complex have revealed +10 to +20 ppm 142Nd anomalies [1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7], whereas younger 3.0 Ga old samples from the Ivisaartoq greenstone belt yield smaller positive anomalies, ranging from +5.5 to +8.5 ppm [8]. Thus, the chemical heterogeneities detected in the southwest Greenland mantle were formed during the first 150 Ma of Earth's history, and seem to have resisted re-mixing by mantle convection until 3.0 Ga. In this study, we investigate the evolution of the southwest Greenland mantle during the time period of 3.3-3.4 Ga. The samples analyzed come from both the ~3.3 Ga amphibolite unit and the ~3.4 Ga Ameralik basic dyke swarm from the Amitsoq Complex. Coupled Sm-Nd and Lu-Hf bulk-rock ages obtained for seven amphibolites are in good agreement (3351 ± 210 Ma and 3302 ± 260 Ma, respectively) and consistent with the minimum age found by Nutman and Friend (2009) [9] for this formation. We further obtained coherent bulk-rock 147Sm-143Nd and zircon+baddeleyite 207Pb/206Pb ages for the Ameralik dykes (3428 ± 250 Ma and 3421 ± 34 Ma, respectively), in line with ages suggested by Nielsen at al., (2002) [10] and Nutman et al., (2004) [11]. We are currently in the process of analyzing these samples for 142Nd isotopic compositions and the results will be compared with the existing southwest Greenland data in order to shed new light on the evolution and destruction of heterogeneities in the early Earth mantle. [1] Rizo et al., (2011

  14. Earth

    2012-01-30

    Behold one of the more detailed images of the Earth yet created. This Blue Marble Earth montage shown above -- created from photographs taken by the Visible/Infrared Imager Radiometer Suite (VIIRS) instrument on board the new Suomi NPP satellite -- shows many stunning details of our home planet. The Suomi NPP satellite was launched last October and renamed last week after Verner Suomi, commonly deemed the father of satellite meteorology. The composite was created from the data collected during four orbits of the robotic satellite taken earlier this month and digitally projected onto the globe. Many features of North America and the Western Hemisphere are particularly visible on a high resolution version of the image. http://photojournal.jpl.nasa.gov/catalog/PIA18033

  15. Nitrogen Oxides in Early Earth's Atmosphere as Electron Acceptors for Life's Emergence.

    PubMed

    Wong, Michael L; Charnay, Benjamin D; Gao, Peter; Yung, Yuk L; Russell, Michael J

    2017-10-01

    We quantify the amount of nitrogen oxides (NOx) produced through lightning and photochemical processes in the Hadean atmosphere to be available in the Hadean ocean for the emergence of life. Atmospherically generated nitrate (NO 3 - ) and nitrite (NO 2 - ) are the most attractive high-potential electron acceptors for pulling and enabling crucial redox reactions of autotrophic metabolic pathways at submarine alkaline hydrothermal vents. The Hadean atmosphere, dominated by CO 2 and N 2 , will produce nitric oxide (NO) when shocked by lightning. Photochemical reactions involving NO and H 2 O vapor will then produce acids such as HNO, HNO 2 , HNO 3 , and HO 2 NO 2 that rain into the ocean. There, they dissociate into or react to form nitrate and nitrite. We present new calculations based on a novel combination of early-Earth global climate model and photochemical modeling, and we predict the flux of NOx to the Hadean ocean. In our 0.1-, 1-, and 10-bar pCO 2 models, we calculate the NOx delivery to be 2.4 × 10 5 , 6.5 × 10 8 , and 1.9 × 10 8 molecules cm -2 s -1 . After only tens of thousands to tens of millions of years, these NOx fluxes are expected to produce sufficient (micromolar) ocean concentrations of high-potential electron acceptors for the emergence of life. Key Words: Nitrogen oxides-Nitrate-Nitrite-Photochemistry-Lightning-Emergence of life. Astrobiology 17, 975-983.

  16. Biogenic methane, hydrogen escape, and the irreversible oxidation of early Earth.

    PubMed

    Catling, D C; Zahnle, K J; McKay, C

    2001-08-03

    The low O2 content of the Archean atmosphere implies that methane should have been present at levels approximately 10(2) to 10(3) parts per million volume (ppmv) (compared with 1.7 ppmv today) given a plausible biogenic source. CH4 is favored as the greenhouse gas that countered the lower luminosity of the early Sun. But abundant CH4 implies that hydrogen escapes to space (upward arrow space) orders of magnitude faster than today. Such reductant loss oxidizes the Earth. Photosynthesis splits water into O2 and H, and methanogenesis transfers the H into CH4. Hydrogen escape after CH4 photolysis, therefore, causes a net gain of oxygen [CO2 + 2H2O --> CH4 + 2O2 --> CO2 + O2 + 4H(upward arrow space)]. Expected irreversible oxidation (approximately 10(12) to 10(13) moles oxygen per year) may help explain how Earth's surface environment became irreversibly oxidized.

  17. Using GRIDVIEW to Better Understand the Early Bombardment History of the Moon, Mars and Earth

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Frey, Herbert

    2012-01-01

    For more than a decade we have used GRIDVIEW to help analyze topographic and related data for Mars and more recently for the Moon. Our focus has been to employ the stretching, contouring, profiling, circle-fitting and other capabilities of GRIDVIEW to search for Quasi-Circular Depressions (CTAs) in MOLA, LOLA and other topographic data, and for Circular Thin Areas (CTAs) in Mars and Moon model crustal thickness data. Both QCDs and CTAs likely represent buried or obscured impact craters not readily visible in image data. We found clear evidence for a much larger population of buried impact craters in the northern lowlands of Mars (Frey et al. 2002), suggesting that part of the Red Planet is not significantly younger than the southern highlands. Edgar and Frey (2008) found that the N(300) crater retention ages of both areas were essentially identical, a conclusion confirmed by Wyatt (unpublished data) using more recent crustal thickness data for Mars. MOLA topographic data and MOLA-derived crustal thickness data were used to both identify a large number of previously unrecognized very large impact basins (D> 1000 km) on Mars and to determine relative crater retention ages for them (Frey, 2008). The distribution of N(300) CRAs suggested most formed in a relatively short interval of time. This dating also suggested the main magnetic field of Mars disappeared during this period (Lillis et al., 2008), because only the youngest basins systematically lack a remagnetized signature. Similar QCD and CTA analysis of first Clementine (Frey, 2011) and more recently LOLA topographic and LOLA-derived crustal thickness data for the Moon (Frey et al., 2011) revealed a significantly larger population of impact basins > 300 km in diameter than previously known. N(50) CRAs suggest a two-peak distribution of ages (Frey, 2012). An improved counting process confirms the two peaks, perhaps indicating both a pre-Nectaris Early Heavy Bombardment (EHB) as well as a Late Heavy Bombardment (LHB

  18. Numerical Mantle Convection Models of Crustal Formation in an Oceanic Environment in the Early Earth

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    van Thienen, P.; van den Berg, A. P.; Vlaar, N. J.

    2001-12-01

    The generation of basaltic crust in the early Earth by partial melting of mantle rocks, subject to investigation in this study, is thought to be a first step in the creation of proto-continents (consisting largely of felsic material), since partial melting of basaltic material was probably an important source for these more evolved rocks. In the early Archean the earth's upper mantle may have been hotter than today by as much as several hundred degrees centigrade. As a consequence, partial melting in shallow convective upwellings would have produced a layering of basaltic crust and underlying depleted (lherzolitic-harzburgitic) mantle peridotite which is much thicker than found under modern day oceanic ridges. When a basaltic crustal layer becomes sufficiently thick, a phase transition to eclogite may occur in the lower parts, which would cause delamination of this dense crustal layer and recycling of dense eclogite into the upper mantle. This recycling mechanism may have contributed significantly to the early cooling of the earth during the Archean (Vlaar et al., 1994). The delamination mechanism which limits the build-up of a thick basaltic crustal layer is switched off after sufficient cooling of the upper mantle has taken place. We present results of numerical modelling experiments of mantle convection including pressure release partial melting. The model includes a simple approximate melt segregation mechanism and basalt to eclogite phase transition, to account for the dynamic accumulation and recycling of the crust in an upper mantle subject to secular cooling. Finite element methods are used to solve for the viscous flow field and the temperature field, and lagrangian particle tracers are used to represent the evolving composition due to partial melting and accumulation of the basaltic crust. We find that this mechanism creates a basaltic crust of several tens of kilometers thickness in several hundreds of million years. This is accompanied by a cooling of

  19. Sulfidic Anion Concentrations on Early Earth for Surficial Origins-of-Life Chemistry.

    PubMed

    Ranjan, Sukrit; Todd, Zoe R; Sutherland, John D; Sasselov, Dimitar D

    2018-04-08

    A key challenge in origin-of-life studies is understanding the environmental conditions on early Earth under which abiogenesis occurred. While some constraints do exist (e.g., zircon evidence for surface liquid water), relatively few constraints exist on the abundances of trace chemical species, which are relevant to assessing the plausibility and guiding the development of postulated prebiotic chemical pathways which depend on these species. In this work, we combine literature photochemistry models with simple equilibrium chemistry calculations to place constraints on the plausible range of concentrations of sulfidic anions (HS - , HSO 3 - , SO 3 2- ) available in surficial aquatic reservoirs on early Earth due to outgassing of SO 2 and H 2 S and their dissolution into small shallow surface water reservoirs like lakes. We find that this mechanism could have supplied prebiotically relevant levels of SO 2 -derived anions, but not H 2 S-derived anions. Radiative transfer modeling suggests UV light would have remained abundant on the planet surface for all but the largest volcanic explosions. We apply our results to the case study of the proposed prebiotic reaction network of Patel et al. ( 2015 ) and discuss the implications for improving its prebiotic plausibility. In general, epochs of moderately high volcanism could have been especially conducive to cyanosulfidic prebiotic chemistry. Our work can be similarly applied to assess and improve the prebiotic plausibility of other postulated surficial prebiotic chemistries that are sensitive to sulfidic anions, and our methods adapted to study other atmospherically derived trace species. Key Words: Early Earth-Origin of life-Prebiotic chemistry-Volcanism-UV radiation-Planetary environments. Astrobiology 18, xxx-xxx.

  20. Towards a certification process for tsunami early warning systems

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Löwe, Peter; Wächter, Jochen; Hammitzsch, Martin

    2013-04-01

    ). TRIDEC focuses on real-time intelligent information management in Earth management and its long-term application: The technical development is based on mature system architecture models and industry standards. The use of standards already applies to the operation of individual TRIDEC reference installations and their interlinking into an integrated service infrastructure for supranational warning services. This is a first step towards best practices and service lifecycles for Early Warning Centre IT service management, including Service Level Agreements (SLA) and Service Certification. While on a global scale the integration of TEWS progresses towards Systems of Systems (SoS), there is still an absence of accredited and reliable certifications for national TEWS or regional Tsunami Early Warning Systems of Systems (TEWSoS). Concepts for TEWS operations have already been published under the guidance of the IOC, and can now be complemented by the recent research advances concerning SoS architecture. Combined with feedback from the real world, such as the NEAMwave 2012 Tsunami exercise in the Mediterranean, this can serve as a starting point to formulate initial requirements for TEWS and TEWSoS certification: Certification activities will cover the establishment of new TEWS and TEWSoS, and also both maintenance and enhancement of existing TEWS/TEWSoS. While the IOC is expected to take a central role in the development of the certification strategy, it remains to be defined which bodies will actually conduct the certification process. Certification requirements and results are likely to become a valuable information source for various target groups, ranging from national policy decision makers, government agency planners, national and local government preparedness officials, TWC staff members, Disaster Responders, the media and the insurance industry.

  1. Effect of the Earth's rotation on subduction processes

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Levin, B. W.; Rodkin, M. V.; Sasorova, E. V.

    2017-09-01

    The role played by the Earth's rotation is very important in problems of physics of the atmosphere and ocean. The importance of inertia forces is traditionally estimated by the value of the Rossby number: if this parameter is small, the Coriolis force considerably affects the character of movements. In the case of convection in the Earth's mantle and movements of lithospheric plates, the Rossby number is quite small; therefore, the effect of the Coriolis force is reflected in the character of movements of the lithospheric plates. Analysis of statistical data on subduction zones verifies this suggestion.

  2. Functional design for operational earth resources ground data processing

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Baldwin, C. J. (Principal Investigator); Bradford, L. H.; Hutson, D. E.; Jugle, D. R.

    1972-01-01

    The author has identified the following significant results. Study emphasis was on developing a unified concept for the required ground system, capable of handling data from all viable acquisition platforms and sensor groupings envisaged as supporting operational earth survey programs. The platforms considered include both manned and unmanned spacecraft in near earth orbit, and continued use of low and high altitude aircraft. The sensor systems include both imaging and nonimaging devices, operated both passively and actively, from the ultraviolet to the microwave regions of the electromagnetic spectrum.

  3. A review of noble gas geochemistry in relation to early Earth history

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Kurz, M. D.

    1985-01-01

    One of the most fundamental noble gas constraints on early Earth history is derived from isotopic differences in (129)Xe/(130)Xe between various terrestrial materials. The short half life (17 m.y.) of extinct (129I, parent of (129)Xe, means that these differences must have been produced within the first 100 m.y. after terrestrial accretion. The identification of large anomalies in (129)Xe/(130)Xe in mid ocean ridge basalts (MORB), with respect to atmospheric xenon, suggests that the atmosphere and upper mantle have remained separate since that time. This alone is a very strong argument for early catastrophic degassing, which would be consistent with an early fractionation resulting in core formation. However, noble gas isotopic systematics of oceanic basalts show that the mantle cannot necessarily be regarded as a homogeneous system, since there are significant variations in (3)He/(4)He, (40)Ar/(36)Ar, and (129)Xe/(130)Xe. Therefore, the early degassing cannot be considered to have acted on the whole mantle. The specific mechanisms of degassing, in particular the thickness and growth of the early crust, is an important variable in understanding present day noble gas inventories. Another constraint can be obtained from rocks that are thought to be derived from near the lithosphere asthenosphere boundary: ultramafic xenoliths.

  4. Virtual Earth System Laboratory (VESL): A Virtual Research Environment for The Visualization of Earth System Data and Process Simulations

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Cheng, D. L. C.; Quinn, J. D.; Larour, E. Y.; Halkides, D. J.

    2017-12-01

    The Virtual Earth System Laboratory (VESL) is a Web application, under continued development at the Jet Propulsion Laboratory and UC Irvine, for the visualization of Earth System data and process simulations. As with any project of its size, we have encountered both successes and challenges during the course of development. Our principal point of success is the fact that VESL users can interact seamlessly with our earth science simulations within their own Web browser. Some of the challenges we have faced include retrofitting the VESL Web application to respond to touch gestures, reducing page load time (especially as the application has grown), and accounting for the differences between the various Web browsers and computing platforms.

  5. The Earth: Plasma Sources, Losses, and Transport Processes

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Welling, Daniel T.; André, Mats; Dandouras, Iannis; Delcourt, Dominique; Fazakerley, Andrew; Fontaine, Dominique; Foster, John; Ilie, Raluca; Kistler, Lynn; Lee, Justin H.; Liemohn, Michael W.; Slavin, James A.; Wang, Chih-Ping; Wiltberger, Michael; Yau, Andrew

    2015-10-01

    This paper reviews the state of knowledge concerning the source of magnetospheric plasma at Earth. Source of plasma, its acceleration and transport throughout the system, its consequences on system dynamics, and its loss are all discussed. Both observational and modeling advances since the last time this subject was covered in detail (Hultqvist et al., Magnetospheric Plasma Sources and Losses, 1999) are addressed.

  6. Earth Science (A Process Approach), Section 1: The Water Cycle.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Campbell, K. C.; And Others

    Included is a collection of earth science laboratory activities, which may provide the junior or senior high school science teacher with ideas for activities in his program. The included 48 experiments are grouped into these areas: properties of matter; evaporation; atmospheric moisture and condensation; precipitation; moving water, subsurface…

  7. Magnetic Nanofluid Rare Earth Element Extraction Process Report, Techno Economic Analysis, and Results for Geothermal Fluids

    SciT

    Pete McGrail

    This GDR submission is an interim technical report and raw data files from the first year of testing on functionalized nanoparticles for rare earth element extraction from geothermal fluids. The report contains Rare Earth Element uptake results (percent removal, mg Rare Earth Element/gram of sorbent, distribution coefficient) for the elements of Neodymium, Europium, Yttrium, Dysprosium, and Cesium. A detailed techno economic analysis is also presented in the report for a scaled up geothermal rare earth element extraction process. All rare earth element uptake testing was done on simulated geothermal brines with one rare earth element in each brine. The raremore » earth element uptake testing was conducted at room temperature.« less

  8. The early Martian environment: Clues from the cratered highlands and the Precambrian Earth

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Craddock, R. A.; Maxwell, T. A.

    1993-01-01

    There is abundant geomorphic evidence to suggest that Mars once had a much denser and warmer atmosphere than present today. Outflow channel, ancient valley networks, and degraded impact craters in the highlands all suggest that ancient Martian atmospheric conditions supported liquid water on the surface. The pressure, composition, and duration of this atmosphere is largely unknown. However, we have attempted to place some constraints on the nature of the early Martian atmosphere by analyzing morphologic variations of highland impact crater populations, synthesizing results of other investigators, and incorporating what is know about the geologic history of the early Earth. This is important for understanding the climatic evolution of Mars, the relative abundance of martian volatiles, and the nature of highland surface materials.

  9. Early results from Magsat. [studies of near-earth magnetic fields

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Langel, R. A.; Estes, R. H.; Mayhew, M. A.

    1981-01-01

    Papers presented at the May 27, 1981 meeting of the American Geophysical Union concerning early results from the Magsat satellite program, which was designed to study the near-earth magnetic fields originating in the core and lithosphere, are discussed. The satellite was launched on October 30, 1979 into a sun-synchronous (twilight) orbit, and re-entered the atmosphere on June 11, 1980. Instruments carried included a cesium vapor magnetometer to measure field magnitudes, a fluxgate magnetometer to measure field components and an optical system to measure fluxgate magnetometer orientation. Early results concerned spherical harmonic models, fields due to ionospheric and magnetospheric currents, the identification and interpretation of fields from lithospheric sources. The preliminary results confirm the possibility of separating the measured field into core, crustal and external components, and represent significant developments in analytical techniques in main-field modelling and the physics of the field sources.

  10. Accessory Mineral Records of Early Earth Crust-Mantle Systematics: an Example From West Greenland

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Storey, C. D.; Hawkesworth, C. J.

    2008-12-01

    Conditions for the formation and the nature of Earth's early crust are enigmatic due to poor preservation. Before c.4 Ga the only archives are detrital minerals eroded from earlier crust, such as the Jack Hills zircons in western Australia, or extinct isotope systematics. Zircons are particularly powerful since they retain precise records of their ages of crystallisation, and the Lu-Hf radiogenic isotope and O stable isotope systematics of the reservoir from which they crystallised. In principle, this allows insight into the nature of the crust, the mantle reservoir from which the melt was extracted and any reworked material incorporated into that melt. We have used in situ methods to measure U-Pb, O and Lu-Hf within single zircon crystals from tonalitic gneisses from West Greenland in the vicinity of the Isua Supracrustal Belt. They have little disturbed ages of c.3.8 Ga, mantle-like O isotope signatures and Lu-Hf isotope signatures that lie on the CHUR evolution line at 3.8 Ga. These samples have previously been subjected to Pb isotope feldspar and 142Nd whole rock analysis and have helped constrain models in which early differentiation of a proto-crust must have occurred. The CHUR-like Lu-Hf signature, along with mantle-like O signature from these zircons suggests juvenile melt production at 3.8 Ga from undifferentiated mantle, yet the other isotope systems preclude this possibility. Alternatively, this is further strong evidence for a heterogeneous mantle in the early Earth. Whilst zircons afford insight into the nature of the early crust and mantle, it is through the Sm-Nd system that the mantle has traditionally been viewed. Titanite often contains several thousand ppm Nd, making it amenable to precise analysis, and is a common accessory phase. It has a reasonably high closure temperature for Pb and O, and it can retain cores with older ages and distinct REE chemistry. It is often the main accessory phase alongside zircon, and it is the main carrier of Nd

  11. Processes of early stroke care and hospital costs.

    PubMed

    Svendsen, Marie Louise; Ehlers, Lars H; Hundborg, Heidi H; Ingeman, Annette; Johnsen, Søren P

    2014-08-01

    The relationship between processes of early stroke care and hospital costs remains unclear. We therefore examined the association in a population based cohort study. We identified 5909 stroke patients who were admitted to stroke units in a Danish county between 2005 and 2010.The examined recommended processes of care included early admission to a stroke unit, early initiation of antiplatelet or anticoagulant therapy, early computed tomography/magnetic resonance imaging (CT/MRI) scan, early physiotherapy and occupational therapy, early assessment of nutritional risk, constipation risk and of swallowing function, early mobilization,early catheterization, and early thromboembolism prophylaxis.Hospital costs were assessed for each patient based on the number of days spent in different in-hospital facilities using local hospital charges. The mean costs of hospitalization were $23 352 (standard deviation 27 827). The relationship between receiving more relevant processes of early stroke care and lower hospital costs followed a dose–response relationship. The adjusted costs were $24 566 (95% confidence interval 19 364–29 769) lower for patients who received 75–100% of the relevant processes of care compared with patients receiving 0–24%. All processes of care were associated with potential cost savings, except for early catheterization and early thromboembolism prophylaxis. Early care in agreement with key guidelines recommendations for the management of patients with stroke may be associated with hospital savings.

  12. Records of our Early Biosphere Illuminate our Origins and Guide our Search for Life Beyond Earth

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    DesMarais, David J.

    2003-01-01

    A scientific "mission of exploration to early Earth" will help us chart the distribution of life elsewhere. We must discriminate between attributes of biospheres that are universal versus those attributes that represent principally the outcomes of long-term survival specifically on Earth. In addition to the basic physics and chemistry of matter, the geologic evolution of rocky habitable planets and their climates might be similar elsewhere in the Universe. Certain key agents that drive long-term environmental change (e.g., stellar evolution, impacts, geothermal heat flow, tectonics, etc.) can help us to reconstruct ancient climates and to compare their evolution among populations of Earth- like planets. Early Earth was tectonically more active than today and therefore it exhaled reduced chemical species into the more oxidized surface environment at greater rates. This tectonic activity thus sustained oxidation-reduction reactions that provided the basis for the development of biochemical pathways that harvest chemical energy ("bioenergetics"). Most examples of bioenergetics today that extract energy by reacting oxidized and reduced chemicals in the environment were likely more pervasive among our microbial ancestors than are the presently known examples of photosynthesis. The geologic rock record indicates that, as early as 3.5 billion years ago (3.5 Ga), microbial biofilms were widespread within the coastal environments of small continents and tectonically unstable volcanic islands. Non oxygen-producing (non-oxygenic) photosynthesis preceded oxygenic photosynthesis, but all types of photosynthesis contributed substantially to the long-term increase in global primary biological productivity. Evidence of photosynthesis is tentative by 3.5 Ga and compelling by 2.7 Ga. Evidence of oxygenic photosynthesis is strong by 2.7 Ga and compelling by 2.3 Ga. These successive innovations transformed life from local communities that survived principally by catalyzing chemical

  13. The Effect of Improved Sub-Daily Earth Rotation Models on Global GPS Data Processing

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Yoon, S.; Choi, K. K.

    2017-12-01

    Throughout the various International GNSS Service (IGS) products, strong periodic signals have been observed around the 14 day period. This signal is clearly visible in all IGS time-series such as those related to orbit ephemerides, Earth rotation parameters (ERP) and ground station coordinates. Recent studies show that errors in the sub-daily Earth rotation models are the main factors that induce such noise. Current IGS orbit processing standards adopted the IERS 2010 convention and its sub-daily Earth rotation model. Since the IERS convention had published, recent advances in the VLBI analysis have made contributions to update the sub-daily Earth rotation models. We have compared several proposed sub-daily Earth rotation models and show the effect of using those models on orbit ephemeris, Earth rotation parameters and ground station coordinates generated by the NGS global GPS data processing strategy.

  14. The Formation of Haze During the Rise of Oxygen in the Atmosphere of the Early Earth

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Horst, S. M.; Jellinek, M.; Pierrehumbert, R.; Tolbert, M. A.

    2013-12-01

    Atmospheric aerosols play an important role in determining the radiation budget of an atmosphere and can also provide a wealth of organic material to the surface. Photochemical hazes are abundant in reducing atmospheres, such as the N2/CH4 atmosphere of Titan, but are unlikely to form in oxidizing atmospheres, such as the N2/O2 atmosphere of present day Earth. However, information about haze formation in mildly oxidizing atmospheres is lacking. Understanding haze formation in mildly oxidizing atmospheres is necessary for models that wish to investigate the atmosphere of the Early Earth as O2 first appeared and then increased in abundance. Previous studies of the atmosphere of the Early Earth have focused on haze formation in N2/CO2/CH4 atmospheres. In this work, we experimentally investigate the effect of the addition of O2 on the formation and composition of aerosols. Using a High-Resolution Time-of-Flight Aerosol Mass Spectrometer (HR-ToF-AMS) (see e.g. [1]) we have obtained in situ composition measurements of aerosol particles produced in N2/CO2/CH4/O2 gas mixtures subjected to FUV radiation (deuterium lamp, 115-400 nm) for a range of initial CO2/CH4/O2 mixing ratios. In particular, we studied the effect of O2 ranging from 2 ppm to 2%. The particles were also investigated using a Scanning Mobility Particle Sizer (SMPS), which measures particle size, number density and mass loading. A comparison of the composition of the aerosols will be presented. The effect of variation of O2 mixing ratio on aerosol production, size, and composition will also be discussed. [1] Trainer, M.G., et al. (2012) Astrobiology, 12, 315-326.

  15. The Formation of Haze During the Rise of Oxygen in the Atmosphere of the Early Earth

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Horst, S. M.; Jellinek, M.; Pierrehumbert, R.; Tolbert, M. A.

    2014-12-01

    also provide a wealth of organic material to the surface. Photochemical hazes are abundant in reducing atmospheres, such as the N2/CH4 atmosphere of Titan, but are unlikely to form in oxidizing atmospheres, such as the N2/O2 atmosphere of present day Earth. However, information about haze formation in mildly oxidizing atmospheres is lacking. Understanding haze formation in mildly oxidizing atmospheres is necessary for models that wish to investigate the atmosphere of the Early Earth as O2 first appeared and then increased in abundance. Previous studies of the atmosphere of the Early Earth have focused on haze formation in N2/CO2/CH4 atmospheres. In this work, we experimentally investigate the effect of the addition of O2 on the formation and composition of aerosols. Using a High-Resolution Time-of-Flight Aerosol Mass Spectrometer (HR-ToF-AMS) (see e.g. [1]) we have obtained in situ composition measurements of aerosol particles produced in N2/CO2/CH4/O2 gas mixtures subjected to FUV radiation (deuterium lamp, 115-400 nm) for a range of initial CO2/CH4/O2 mixing ratios. In particular, we studied the effect of O2 ranging from 2 ppm to 2%. The particles were also investigated using a Scanning Mobility Particle Sizer (SMPS), which measures particle size, number density and mass loading. A comparison of the composition of the aerosols will be presented. The effect of variation of O2 mixing ratio on aerosol production, size, and composition will also be discussed. [1] Trainer, M.G., et al. (2012) Astrobiology, 12, 315-326.

  16. Looking Backwards in Time to the Early Earth Using the Lens of Stable Isotope Geodynamic Cycles

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Gregory, R. T.

    2016-12-01

    The stable isotope ratios of hydrogen, carbon, oxygen and sulfur provide of means of tracing interactions between the major reservoirs of the Earth. The oceans and the dichotomy between continental and oceanic crust are key differences between the Earth and other terrestrial bodies. The existence of plate tectonics and the recognition that no primary crust survives at the Earth's surface sets this planet apart from the smaller terrestrial bodies. The thermostatic control of carbonate-silicate cycle works because of the hydrosphere and plate tectonics. Additionally, the contrast between the carbon isotope ratios for reduced and oxidized species appear to also be invariant over geologic time with evidence of old recycled carbon in the form of diamond inclusions in mantle-derived igneous rocks. Lessons from comparative planetology suggest that early differentiation of the Earth would have likely resulted in the rapid formation of the oceans, a water world over the primary crust. Plate tectonics provides a mechanism for buffering the oxygen isotope fractionation between the oceans and the mantle. The set point for hydrosphere's oxygen isotope composition is a result of the geometry of mid-ocean ridge accretion that is stable over an order magnitude change in spreading rates with time constants much younger shorter than the age of the Earth. The recognition that the "normal" ranges for hydrogen isotope ratios of igneous, metamorphic and sedimentary rocks of any age generally overlap with similar ranges, with the exception of rocks that have interacted with D- and 18O-depleted meteoric waters (generally at high latitudes), is an argument for a constant volume ocean over geologic time. Plate tectonics with a constant volume ocean constrains the thickness of the continental crust because of the rapidity of the mechanical weathering cycle (characteristic times of 10's of millions of years; freeboard of the continents argument). In a plate tectonic regime, chemical

  17. Ultramafic Terranes and Associated Springs as Analogs for Mars and Early Earth

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Blake, David; Schulte, Mitch; Cullings, Ken; DeVincezi, D. (Technical Monitor)

    2002-01-01

    Putative extinct or extant Martian organisms, like their terrestrial counterparts, must adopt metabolic strategies based on the environments in which they live. In order for organisms to derive metabolic energy from the natural environment (Martian or terrestrial), a state of thermodynamic disequilibrium must exist. The most widespread environment of chemical disequilibrium on present-day Earth results from the interaction of mafic rocks of the ocean crust with liquid water. Such environments were even more pervasive and important on the Archean Earth due to increased geothermal heat flow and the absence of widespread continental crust formation. The composition of the lower crust and upper mantle of the Earth is essentially the-same as that of Mars, and the early histories of these two planets are similar. It follows that a knowledge of the mineralogy, water-rock chemistry and microbial ecology of Earth's oceanic crust could be of great value in devising a search strategy for evidence of past or present life on Mars. In some tectonic regimes, cross-sections of lower oceanic crust and upper mantle are exposed on land as so-called "ophiolite suites." Such is the case in the state of California (USA) as a result of its location adjacent to active plate margins. These mafic and ultramafic rocks contain numerous springs that offer an easily accessible field laboratory for studying water/rock interactions and the microbial communities that are supported by the resulting geochemical energy. A preliminary screen of Archaean biodiversity was conducted in a cold spring located in a presently serpentinizing ultramafic terrane. PCR and phylogenetic analysis of partial 16s rRNA, sequences were performed on water and sediment samples. Archaea of recent phylogenetic origin were detected with sequences nearly identical to those of organisms living in ultra-high pH lakes of Africa.

  18. Cognitive load effects on early visual perceptual processing.

    PubMed

    Liu, Ping; Forte, Jason; Sewell, David; Carter, Olivia

    2018-05-01

    Contrast-based early visual processing has largely been considered to involve autonomous processes that do not need the support of cognitive resources. However, as spatial attention is known to modulate early visual perceptual processing, we explored whether cognitive load could similarly impact contrast-based perception. We used a dual-task paradigm to assess the impact of a concurrent working memory task on the performance of three different early visual tasks. The results from Experiment 1 suggest that cognitive load can modulate early visual processing. No effects of cognitive load were seen in Experiments 2 or 3. Together, the findings provide evidence that under some circumstances cognitive load effects can penetrate the early stages of visual processing and that higher cognitive function and early perceptual processing may not be as independent as was once thought.

  19. Increased insolation threshold for runaway greenhouse processes on Earth-like planets

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Leconte, Jérémy; Forget, Francois; Charnay, Benjamin; Wordsworth, Robin; Pottier, Alizée

    2013-12-01

    The increase in solar luminosity over geological timescales should warm the Earth's climate, increasing water evaporation, which will in turn enhance the atmospheric greenhouse effect. Above a certain critical insolation, this destabilizing greenhouse feedback can `run away' until the oceans have completely evaporated. Through increases in stratospheric humidity, warming may also cause evaporative loss of the oceans to space before the runaway greenhouse state occurs. The critical insolation thresholds for these processes, however, remain uncertain because they have so far been evaluated using one-dimensional models that cannot account for the dynamical and cloud feedback effects that are key stabilizing features of the Earth's climate. Here we use a three-dimensional global climate model to show that the insolation threshold for the runaway greenhouse state to occur is about 375 W m-2, which is significantly higher than previously thought. Our model is specifically developed to quantify the climate response of Earth-like planets to increased insolation in hot and extremely moist atmospheres. In contrast with previous studies, we find that clouds have a destabilizing feedback effect on the long-term warming. However, subsident, unsaturated regions created by the Hadley circulation have a stabilizing effect that is strong enough to shift the runaway greenhouse limit to higher values of insolation than are inferred from one-dimensional models. Furthermore, because of wavelength-dependent radiative effects, the stratosphere remains sufficiently cold and dry to hamper the escape of atmospheric water, even at large fluxes. This has strong implications for the possibility of liquid water existing on Venus early in its history, and extends the size of the habitable zone around other stars.

  20. Increased insolation threshold for runaway greenhouse processes on Earth-like planets.

    PubMed

    Leconte, Jérémy; Forget, Francois; Charnay, Benjamin; Wordsworth, Robin; Pottier, Alizée

    2013-12-12

    The increase in solar luminosity over geological timescales should warm the Earth's climate, increasing water evaporation, which will in turn enhance the atmospheric greenhouse effect. Above a certain critical insolation, this destabilizing greenhouse feedback can 'run away' until the oceans have completely evaporated. Through increases in stratospheric humidity, warming may also cause evaporative loss of the oceans to space before the runaway greenhouse state occurs. The critical insolation thresholds for these processes, however, remain uncertain because they have so far been evaluated using one-dimensional models that cannot account for the dynamical and cloud feedback effects that are key stabilizing features of the Earth's climate. Here we use a three-dimensional global climate model to show that the insolation threshold for the runaway greenhouse state to occur is about 375 W m(-2), which is significantly higher than previously thought. Our model is specifically developed to quantify the climate response of Earth-like planets to increased insolation in hot and extremely moist atmospheres. In contrast with previous studies, we find that clouds have a destabilizing feedback effect on the long-term warming. However, subsident, unsaturated regions created by the Hadley circulation have a stabilizing effect that is strong enough to shift the runaway greenhouse limit to higher values of insolation than are inferred from one-dimensional models. Furthermore, because of wavelength-dependent radiative effects, the stratosphere remains sufficiently cold and dry to hamper the escape of atmospheric water, even at large fluxes. This has strong implications for the possibility of liquid water existing on Venus early in its history, and extends the size of the habitable zone around other stars.

  1. The formation of sulfate and elemental sulfur aerosols under varying laboratory conditions: implications for early earth.

    PubMed

    DeWitt, H Langley; Hasenkopf, Christa A; Trainer, Melissa G; Farmer, Delphine K; Jimenez, Jose L; McKay, Christopher P; Toon, Owen B; Tolbert, Margaret A

    2010-10-01

    The presence of sulfur mass-independent fractionation (S-MIF) in sediments more than 2.45 × 10(9) years old is thought to be evidence for an early anoxic atmosphere. Photolysis of sulfur dioxide (SO(2)) by UV light with λ < 220 nm has been shown in models and some initial laboratory studies to create a S-MIF; however, sulfur must leave the atmosphere in at least two chemically different forms to preserve any S-MIF signature. Two commonly cited examples of chemically different sulfur species that could have exited the atmosphere are elemental sulfur (S(8)) and sulfuric acid (H(2)SO(4)) aerosols. Here, we use real-time aerosol mass spectrometry to directly detect the sulfur-containing aerosols formed when SO(2) either photolyzes at wavelengths from 115 to 400 nm, to simulate the UV solar spectrum, or interacts with high-energy electrons, to simulate lightning. We found that sulfur-containing aerosols form under all laboratory conditions. Further, the addition of a reducing gas, in our experiments hydrogen (H(2)) or methane (CH(4)), increased the formation of S(8). With UV photolysis, formation of S(8) aerosols is highly dependent on the initial SO(2) pressure; and S(8) is only formed at a 2% SO(2) mixing ratio and greater in the absence of a reductant, and at a 0.2% SO(2) mixing ratio and greater in the presence of 1000 ppmv CH(4). We also found that organosulfur compounds are formed from the photolysis of CH(4) and moderate amounts of SO(2). The implications for sulfur aerosols on early Earth are discussed. Key Words: S-MIF-Archean atmosphere-Early Earth-Sulfur aerosols.

  2. Terrestrial production vs. extraterrestrial delivery of prebiotic organics to the early Earth

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Chyba, C. F.; Sagan, C.; Thomas, P. J.; Brookshaw, L.

    1991-01-01

    A comprehensive treatment of comet/asteroid interaction with the atmosphere, ensuring surface impact, and resulting organic pyrolysis is required to determine whether more than a negligible fraction of the organics in incident comets and asteroids actually survived collision with Earth. Results of such an investigation, using a smoothed particle hydrodynamic simulation of cometary and asteroidal impacts into both oceans and rock, demonstrate that organics will not survive impacts at velocities approx. greater than 10 km s(exp -1), and that even comets and asteroids as small as 100m in radius cannot be aerobraked to below this velocity in 1 bar atmospheres. However, for plausible dense (10 bar CO2) early atmospheres, there will be sufficient aerobraking during atmospheric passage for some organics to survive the ensuing impact. Combining these results with analytical fits to the lunar impact record shows that 4.5 Gyr ago Earth was accreting at least approx. 10(exp 6) kg yr(exp 1) of intact cometary organics, a flux which thereafter declined with a approx. 100 Myr half-life. The extent to which this influx was augmented by asteroid impacts, as well as the effect of more careful modelling of a variety of conservative approximations, is currently being quantified. These results may be placed in context by comparison with in situ organic production from a variety of terrestrial energy sources, as well as organic delivery by interplanetary dust. Which source dominated the early terrestrial prebiotic inventory is found to depend on the nature of the early terrestrial atmosphere. However, there is an intriguing symmetry: it is exactly those dense CO2 atmospheres where in situ atmospheric production of organic molecules should be the most difficult, in which intact cometary organics would be delivered in large amounts.

  3. Materials processing in space: Early experiments

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Naumann, R. J.; Herring, H. W.

    1980-01-01

    The characteristics of the space environment were reviewed. Potential applications of space processing are discussed and include metallurgical processing, and processing of semiconductor materials. The behavior of fluid in low gravity is described. The evolution of apparatus for materials processing in space was reviewed.

  4. Auditory motion processing after early blindness

    PubMed Central

    Jiang, Fang; Stecker, G. Christopher; Fine, Ione

    2014-01-01

    Studies showing that occipital cortex responds to auditory and tactile stimuli after early blindness are often interpreted as demonstrating that early blind subjects “see” auditory and tactile stimuli. However, it is not clear whether these occipital responses directly mediate the perception of auditory/tactile stimuli, or simply modulate or augment responses within other sensory areas. We used fMRI pattern classification to categorize the perceived direction of motion for both coherent and ambiguous auditory motion stimuli. In sighted individuals, perceived motion direction was accurately categorized based on neural responses within the planum temporale (PT) and right lateral occipital cortex (LOC). Within early blind individuals, auditory motion decisions for both stimuli were successfully categorized from responses within the human middle temporal complex (hMT+), but not the PT or right LOC. These findings suggest that early blind responses within hMT+ are associated with the perception of auditory motion, and that these responses in hMT+ may usurp some of the functions of nondeprived PT. Thus, our results provide further evidence that blind individuals do indeed “see” auditory motion. PMID:25378368

  5. Early evolution of the earth - Accretion, atmosphere formation, and thermal history

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Abe, Yutaka; Matsui, Takafumi

    1986-01-01

    The thermal and atmospheric evolution of the earth growing planetesimal impacts are studied. The generation of an H2O protoatmosphere is examined, and the surface temperatures are estimated. The evolution of an impact-induced H2O atmosphere is analyzed. Consideration is given to the formation time of a 'magma ocean'and internal water budgets. The thermal history of an accreting earth is reviewed. The wet convection and greenhouse effects are discussed, and the role of Fe oxidation on the evolution of an impact-induced H2O atmopshere is described. The relationship between differentiation processes and core segregation, the H2O and FeO content of the mantle, and the origin of the hydrosphere is also examined.

  6. Nonlinear dynamics of global atmospheric and earth system processes

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Zhang, Taiping; Verbitsky, Mikhail; Saltzman, Barry; Mann, Michael E.; Park, Jeffrey; Lall, Upmanu

    1995-01-01

    During the grant period, the authors continued ongoing studies aimed at enhancing their understanding of the operation of the atmosphere as a complex nonlinear system interacting with the hydrosphere, biosphere, and cryosphere in response to external radiative forcing. Five papers were completed with support from the grant, representing contributions in three main areas of study: (1) theoretical studies of the interactive atmospheric response to changed biospheric boundary conditions measurable from satellites; (2) statistical-observational studies of global-scale temperature variability on interannual to century time scales; and (3) dynamics of long-term earth system changes associated with ice sheet surges.

  7. P/M Processing of Rare Earth Modified High Strength Steels.

    DTIC Science & Technology

    1980-12-01

    AA094 165 TRW INC CLEVELAND OH MATERIALS TECHNOLOGY F 6 P/N PROCESSING OF RARE EARTH MODIFIED HIGH STRENGTH STEELS DEC So A A SHEXM(ER NOOŕT76-C...LEVEL’ (7 PIM PROCESSING OF RARE EARTH MODIFIED HIGH STRENGTH STEELS By A. A. SHEINKER 00 TECHNICAL REPORT Prepared for Office of Naval Research...Processing of Rare Earth Modified High 1 Technical -’ 3t eC"Strength Steels * 1dc4,093Se~ 9PEFRIGOGNZTONAEADADDRESS 10. PROGRAM ELEMENT. PROJECT. TASK

  8. Reverse engineering nuclear properties from rare earth abundances in the r process

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Mumpower, M. R.; McLaughlin, G. C.; Surman, R.; Steiner, A. W.

    2017-03-01

    The bulk of the rare earth elements are believed to be synthesized in the rapid neutron capture process or r process of nucleosynthesis. The solar r-process residuals show a small peak in the rare earths around A∼ 160, which is proposed to be formed dynamically during the end phase of the r process by a pileup of material. This abundance feature is of particular importance as it is sensitive to both the nuclear physics inputs and the astrophysical conditions of the main r process. We explore the formation of the rare earth peak from the perspective of an inverse problem, using Monte Carlo studies of nuclear masses to investigate the unknown nuclear properties required to best match rare earth abundance sector of the solar isotopic residuals. When nuclear masses are changed, we recalculate the relevant β-decay properties and neutron capture rates in the rare earth region. The feedback provided by this observational constraint allows for the reverse engineering of nuclear properties far from stability where no experimental information exists. We investigate a range of astrophysical conditions with this method and show how these lead to different predictions in the nuclear properties influential to the formation of the rare earth peak. We conclude that targeted experimental campaigns in this region will help to resolve the type of conditions responsible for the production of the rare earth nuclei, and will provide new insights into the longstanding problem of the astrophysical site(s) of the r process.

  9. Biomolecule-Mineral Interactions in the Geochemical Environment on Early Earth and in the Human Body

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Sahai, N.

    2011-12-01

    We worked on four projects consistent with the broad goals of the grant to investigate (i) the potential impacts of mineral surface chemistry and particle size on the stability and viability of cell membranes, bacteria and human cells and (ii) the influence of biomolecules on mineral nucleation and growth. The projects are of relevance to the origin and early evolution of life, biomineralization, medical mineralogy, and environmental biogeochemistry. The freedom enabled by the five-year grant to explore high-risk scientific areas, and the resulting high impact outcomes, cannot be overstated. We developed an almost entirely new field of Medical Mineralogyy and extended our concepts and knowledge-base to the potential roles of mineral surfaces in the evolution of protocells and the earliest cells. These exciting connections to medical mineralogy, and to the origin and evolution of life on early Earth are fascinating topics to the general public and even to other scientists, especially when the links to mineralogy and geochemistry are highlighted. In brief, we examined the stability of lipid bilayers representing model protocell membranes comprised of phospholipid bilayers with mineral surfaces. We found that the stability of lipid bilayers depends on mineral surface charge and increases as silica glass ~ quartz < rutile ~ mica < corundum. In a second project, we investigated whether the evolution of bacterial extra-cellular polymeric substances (EPS) may have been driven by nanomineral toxicity. Results showed that EPS does protect against mineral toxicity, and toxicity increases as amorphous SiO2 < β-TiO2 (anatase) < γ-Al2O3. A commonly accepted mechanism for Biomineralization is protein-templated nucleation. We used Molecular Dynamics and Bioinformatics computational chemistry approaches and showed that the random coil structure of a specific peptide promotes formation of an amorphous Ca-PO4 cluster, but not direct templation of hydroxyapatite. The consistency

  10. Acquisition and Early Losses of Rare Gases from the Deep Earth

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Porcelli, D.; Cassen, P.; Woolum, D.; Wasserburg, G. J.

    1998-01-01

    Direct observations show that the deep Earth contains rare gases of solar composition distinct from those in the atmosphere. We examine the implications of mantle rare gas characteristics on acquisition of rare gases from the solar nebula and subsequent losses due to a large impact. Deep mantle rare gas concentrations and isotopic compositions can be obtained from a model of transport and distribution of mantle rare gases. This model assumes the lower mantle closed early, while the upper mantle is open to subduction from the atmosphere and mass transfer from the lower mantle. Constraints are derived that can be incorporated into models for terrestrial volatile acquisition: (1) Calculated lower-mantle Xe-isotopic ratios indicate that the fraction of radiogenic Xe produced by I-129 and Pu-244 during the first about 10(exp 8) yr was lost, a conclusion also drawn for atmospheric Xe. Thus, either the Earth was made from materials that had lost >99% of rare gases about (0.7-2) x 10(exp 8) yr after the solar system formed, or gases were then lost from the fully formed Earth. (2) Concentrations of 3He and 20Ne in the lower mantle were established after these losses. (3) Neon-isotopic data indicates that mantle Ne has solar composition. The model allows for solar Ar/Ne and Xe/Ne in the lower mantle if a dominant fraction of upper mantle Ar and Xe are subduction-derived. If Earth formed in the presence of the solar nebula, it could have been melted by accretional energy and the blanketing effect of a massive, nebula-derived atmosphere. Gases from this atmosphere would have been sequestered within the molten Earth by dissolution at the surface and downward mixing. It was found that too much Ne would be dissolved in the Earth unless the atmosphere began to escape when the Earth was only partially assembled. Here we consider conditions required to initially dissolve sufficient rare gases to account for the present lower mantle concentrations after subsequent losses at 10(exp 8

  11. The oxidation state of Hadean magmas and implications for early Earth's atmosphere.

    PubMed

    Trail, Dustin; Watson, E Bruce; Tailby, Nicholas D

    2011-11-30

    Magmatic outgassing of volatiles from Earth's interior probably played a critical part in determining the composition of the earliest atmosphere, more than 4,000 million years (Myr) ago. Given an elemental inventory of hydrogen, carbon, nitrogen, oxygen and sulphur, the identity of molecular species in gaseous volcanic emanations depends critically on the pressure (fugacity) of oxygen. Reduced melts having oxygen fugacities close to that defined by the iron-wüstite buffer would yield volatile species such as CH(4), H(2), H(2)S, NH(3) and CO, whereas melts close to the fayalite-magnetite-quartz buffer would be similar to present-day conditions and would be dominated by H(2)O, CO(2), SO(2) and N(2) (refs 1-4). Direct constraints on the oxidation state of terrestrial magmas before 3,850 Myr before present (that is, the Hadean eon) are tenuous because the rock record is sparse or absent. Samples from this earliest period of Earth's history are limited to igneous detrital zircons that pre-date the known rock record, with ages approaching ∼4,400 Myr (refs 5-8). Here we report a redox-sensitive calibration to determine the oxidation state of Hadean magmatic melts that is based on the incorporation of cerium into zircon crystals. We find that the melts have average oxygen fugacities that are consistent with an oxidation state defined by the fayalite-magnetite-quartz buffer, similar to present-day conditions. Moreover, selected Hadean zircons (having chemical characteristics consistent with crystallization specifically from mantle-derived melts) suggest oxygen fugacities similar to those of Archaean and present-day mantle-derived lavas as early as ∼4,350 Myr before present. These results suggest that outgassing of Earth's interior later than ∼200 Myr into the history of Solar System formation would not have resulted in a reducing atmosphere.

  12. Os isotopes in SNC meteorites and their implications to the early evolution of Mars and Earth

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Jagoutz, E.; Luck, J. M.; Othman, D. Ben; Wanke, H.

    1993-01-01

    A new development on the measurement of the Os isotopic composition by mass spectrometry using negative ions opened a new field of applications. The Re-Os systematic provides time information on the differentiation of the nobel metals. The nobel metals are strongly partitioned into metal and sulphide phases, but also the generation of silicate melts might fractionate the Re-Os system. Compared to the other isotopic systems which are mainly dating the fractionation of the alkalis and alkali-earth elements, the Re-Os system is expected to disclose entirely new information about the geochemistry. Especially the differentiation and early evolution of the planets such as the formation of the core will be elucidated with this method.

  13. Tunable Light-Guide Image Processing Snapshot Spectrometer (TuLIPSS) for Earth and Moon Observations

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Tkaczyk, T. S.; Alexander, D.; Luvall, J. C.; Wang, Y.; Dwight, J. G.; Pawlowsk, M. E.; Howell, B.; Tatum, P. F.; Stoian, R.-I.; Cheng, S.; Daou, A.

    2018-02-01

    A tunable light-guide image processing snapshot spectrometer (TuLIPSS) for Earth science research and observation is being developed through a NASA instrument incubator project with Rice University and Marshall Space Flight Center.

  14. Earth Observations for Early Detection of Agricultural Drought: Contributions of the Famine Early Warning Systems Network (FEWS NET)

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Budde, M. E.; Funk, C.; Husak, G. J.; Peterson, P.; Rowland, J.; Senay, G. B.; Verdin, J. P.

    2016-12-01

    The U.S. Geological Survey (USGS) has a long history of supporting the use of Earth observation data for food security monitoring through its role as an implementing partner of the Famine Early Warning Systems Network (FEWS NET) program. The use of remote sensing and crop modeling to address food security threats in the form of drought, floods, pests, and changing climatic regimes has been a core activity in monitoring FEWS NET countries. In recent years, it has become a requirement that FEWS NET apply monitoring and modeling frameworks at global scales to assess emerging crises in regions that FEWS NET does not traditionally monitor. USGS FEWS NET, in collaboration with the University of California, Santa Barbara, has developed a number of new global applications of satellite observations, derived products, and efficient tools for visualization and analyses to address these requirements. (1) A 35-year quasi-global (+/- 50 degrees latitude) time series of gridded rainfall estimates, the Climate Hazards Infrared Precipitation with Stations (CHIRPS) dataset, based on infrared satellite imagery and station observations. Data are available as 5-day (pentadal) accumulations at 0.05 degree spatial resolution. (2) Global actual evapotranspiration data based on application of the Simplified Surface Energy Balance (SSEB) model using 10-day MODIS Land Surface Temperature composites at 1-km resolution. (3) Production of global expedited MODIS (eMODIS) 10-day NDVI composites updated every 5 days. (4) Development of an updated Early Warning eXplorer (EWX) tool for data visualization, analysis, and sharing. (5) Creation of stand-alone tools for enhancement of gridded rainfall data and trend analyses. (6) Establishment of an agro-climatology analysis tool and knowledge base for more than 90 countries of interest to FEWS NET. In addition to these new products and tools, FEWS NET has partnered with the GEOGLAM community to develop a Crop Monitor for Early Warning (CM4EW) which

  15. Using the Earth as a guide to martian mass movement processes: From form to process

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Lanza, N.; Newsom, H. E.; Osterloo, M. M.; Okubo, C. H.

    2011-12-01

    The discovery of gully features on Mars has led to renewed interest in hillslope processes on that planet, in particular mass movement and the morphologies that it produces. Mass movement is a collection of gravity-driven processes that act to move materials down a hillslope. Here, we examine how mass movements on hillslopes may be expected to differ on Earth and Mars as the result of gravity differences between these planets. Downslope movement of unconsolidated materials is generally controlled by the bulk shear strength of these materials. Although the relationship between gravity and shear strength is largely dependent on variables that are independent of gravity, the lower gravity on Mars is expected to produce some systematic changes in mass movement behaviors that may in turn create morphological features that are observably different from their terrestrial counterparts. After scaling for gravity and modifying empirically derived relationships, we may expect the following differences on martian hillslopes when compared to their terrestrial counterparts: ==On Mars, hillslopes may have steeper angles of repose in fine grained (< ~2 mm) materials, even when dry. No change in angle of repose is expected for larger particles; ==An increase in soil moisture content (e.g., excess pore pressure) is expected to weaken unconsolidated slope materials more on Mars for a particular regolith type, which in turn may produce --An increase in creep rates for a given pore pressure, and --An increase in effectiveness of frost heave to transport materials downslope; ==Processes triggered by saturation may occur at lower pore pressures on Mars; --A smaller amount of fluid is needed to achieve failure; ==Shorter runout lengths are expected for rapid mass movements; ==On Mars, overland flow will exert a proportionally lower shear stress on slope materials; --In cohesive materials, the same volume of water will detach sediments of smaller sizes. On Earth, mass movement processes

  16. Exploring the Hydrothermal System in the Chicxulub Crater and Implications for the Early Evolution of Life on Earth

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Kring, D. A.; Schmieder, M.; Tikoo, S.; Riller, U. P.; Simpson, S. L.; Osinski, G.; Cockell, C. S.; Coolen, M.; Gulick, S. P. S.; Morgan, J. V.

    2017-12-01

    Impact cratering, particularly large basin-size craters with diameters >100 km, have the potential to generate vast subsurface hydrothermal systems. There were dozens of such impacts during the Hadean and early Archean, some of which vaporized seas for brief periods of time, during which the safest niches for early life may have been in those subsurface hydrothermal systems. The Chicxulub crater can serve as a proxy for those events. New IODP-ICDP core recovered by Expedition 364 reveals a high-temperature (>300 degree C) system that may have persisted for more than 100,000 years. Of order 105 to 106 km3 of crust was structurally deformed, melted, and vaporized within about 10 minutes of the impact. The crust had to endure immense strain rates of 104/s to 106/s, up to 12 orders of magnitude greater than those associated with igneous and metamorphic processes. The outcome is a porous, permeable region that is a perfect host for hydrothermal circulation across the entire diameter of the crater to depths up to 5 or 6 km. The target rocks at Chicxulub are composed of an 3 km-thick carbonate platform sequence over a crystalline basement composed of igneous granite, granodiorite, and a few other intrusive components, such as dolerite, and metamorphic assemblages composed, in part, of gneiss and mica schist. Post-impact hydrothermal alteration includes Ca-Na- and K-metasomatism, pervasive hydration to produce layered silicates, and lower-temperature vug-filling zeolites as the system cycled from high temperatures to low temperatures. While the extent of granitic crust on early Earth is still debated and, thus, the direct application of those mineral reactions to the Hadean and early Archean can be debated, the thermal evolution of the system should be applicable to diverse crustal compositions. It is important to point out that pre-impact thermal conditions of Hadean and early Archean crust can affect the size of an impact basin and, in turn, the proportion of that basin

  17. Nonlinear dynamics of global atmospheric and Earth-system processes

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Saltzman, Barry; Ebisuzaki, Wesley; Maasch, Kirk A.; Oglesby, Robert; Pandolfo, Lionel

    1990-01-01

    Researchers are continuing their studies of the nonlinear dynamics of global weather systems. Sensitivity analyses of large-scale dynamical models of the atmosphere (i.e., general circulation models i.e., GCM's) were performed to establish the role of satellite-signatures of soil moisture, sea surface temperature, snow cover, and sea ice as crucial boundary conditions determining global weather variability. To complete their study of the bimodality of the planetary wave states, they are using the dynamical systems approach to construct a low-order theoretical explanation of this phenomenon. This work should have important implications for extended range forecasting of low-frequency oscillations, elucidating the mechanisms for the transitions between the two wave modes. Researchers are using the methods of jump analysis and attractor dimension analysis to examine the long-term satellite records of significant variables (e.g., long wave radiation, and cloud amount), to explore the nature of mode transitions in the atmosphere, and to determine the minimum number of equations needed to describe the main weather variations with a low-order dynamical system. Where feasible they will continue to explore the applicability of the methods of complex dynamical systems analysis to the study of the global earth-system from an integrative viewpoint involving the roles of geochemical cycling and the interactive behavior of the atmosphere, hydrosphere, and biosphere.

  18. A model for the evolution of the Earth's mantle structure since the Early Paleozoic

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Zhang, Nan; Zhong, Shijie; Leng, Wei; Li, Zheng-Xiang

    2010-06-01

    Seismic tomography studies indicate that the Earth's mantle structure is characterized by African and Pacific seismically slow velocity anomalies (i.e., superplumes) and circum-Pacific seismically fast anomalies (i.e., a globally spherical harmonic degree 2 structure). However, the cause for and time evolution of the African and Pacific superplumes and the degree 2 mantle structure remain poorly understood with two competing proposals. First, the African and Pacific superplumes have remained largely unchanged for at least the last 300 Myr and possibly much longer. Second, the African superplume is formed sometime after the formation of Pangea (i.e., at 330 Ma) and the mantle in the African hemisphere is predominated by cold downwelling structures before and during the assembly of Pangea, while the Pacific superplume has been stable for the Pangea supercontinent cycle (i.e., globally a degree 1 structure before the Pangea formation). Here, we construct a proxy model of plate motions for the African hemisphere for the last 450 Myr since the Early Paleozoic using the paleogeographic reconstruction of continents constrained by paleomagnetic and geological observations. Coupled with assumed oceanic plate motions for the Pacific hemisphere, this proxy model for the plate motion history is used as time-dependent surface boundary condition in three-dimensional spherical models of thermochemical mantle convection to study the evolution of mantle structure, particularly the African mantle structure, since the Early Paleozoic. Our model calculations reproduce well the present-day mantle structure including the African and Pacific superplumes and generally support the second proposal with a dynamic cause for the superplume structure. Our results suggest that while the mantle in the African hemisphere before the assembly of Pangea is predominated by the cold downwelling structure resulting from plate convergence between Gondwana and Laurussia, it is unlikely that the bulk of

  19. Experimental investigation of anaerobic nitrogen fixation rates with varying pressure, temperature and metal concentration with application to the atmospheric evolution of early Earth and Mars.

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Gupta, Prateek

    2012-07-01

    The atmosphere of the early Earth is thought to have been significantly different than the modern composition of 21% O2 and 78% N2, yet the planet has been clearly established as hosting microbial life as far back as 3.8 billion years ago. As such, constraining the atmospheric composition of the early Earth is fundamental to establishing a database of habitable atmospheric compositions. A similar argument can be made for the planet Mars, where nitrates have been hypothesized to exist in the subsurface. During the early period on Mars when liquid water was likely more abundant, life may have developed to take advantage of available nitrates and a biologically-driven Martian nitrogen cycle could have evolved. Early Earth atmospheric composition has been investigated numerically, but only recently has the common assumption of a pN2 different than modern been investigated. Nonetheless, these latest attempts fail to take into account a key atmospheric parameter: life. On modern Earth, nitrogen is cycled vigorously by biology. The nitrogen cycle likely operated on the early Earth, but probably differed in the metabolic processes responsible, dominantly due to the lack of abundant oxygen which stabilizes oxidized forms of N that drive de-nitrification today. Recent advances in evolutionary genomics suggest that microbial pathways that are relatively uncommon today (i.e. vanadium and iron-based nitrogen fixation) probably played important roles in the early N cycle. We quantitatively investigate in the laboratory the effects of variable pressure, temperature and metal concentration on the rates of anoxic nitrogen fixation, as possible inputs for future models investigating atmospheric evolution, and better understand the evolution of the nitrogen cycle on Earth. A common anaerobic methanogenic archaeal species with i) a fully sequenced genome, ii) all three nitrogenases (molybdenum, vanadium and iron-based) and iii) the ability to be genetically manipulated will be used as

  20. Associative Processes in Early Olfactory Preference Acquisition

    PubMed Central

    Sullivan, Regina M.; Wilson, Donald A.; Leon, Michael

    2007-01-01

    Acquisition of behavioral conditioned responding and learned odor preferences during olfactory classical conditioning in rat pups requires forward or simultaneous pairings of the conditioned stimulus (CS) and the unconditioned stimulus (US). Other temporal relationships between the CS and US do not usually result in learning. The present study examined the influence of this CS-US relationship upon the neural olfactory bulb modifications that are acquired during early classical conditioning. Wistar rat pups were trained from Postnatal Days (PN) 1-18 with either forward (odor overlapping temporally with reinforcing stroking) or backward (stroking followed by odor) CS-US pairings. On PN 19, pups received either a behavioral odor preference test to the odor CS or an injection of 14C 2-DG and exposure to the odor CS, or olfactory bulb single unit responses were recorded in response to exposure to the odor CS. Only pups that received forward presentations of the CS and US exhibited both a preference for the CS and modified olfactory bulb neural responses to the CS. These results, then, suggest that the modified olfactory bulb neural responses acquired during classical conditioning are guided by the same temporal constraints as those which govern the acquisition of behavioral conditioned responses. PMID:17572798

  1. Understanding Student Cognition about Complex Earth System Processes Related to Climate Change

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    McNeal, K. S.; Libarkin, J.; Ledley, T. S.; Dutta, S.; Templeton, M. C.; Geroux, J.; Blakeney, G. A.

    2011-12-01

    The Earth's climate system includes complex behavior and interconnections with other Earth spheres that present challenges to student learning. To better understand these unique challenges, we have conducted experiments with high-school and introductory level college students to determine how information pertaining to the connections between the Earth's atmospheric system and the other Earth spheres (e.g., hydrosphere and cryosphere) are processed. Specifically, we include psychomotor tests (e.g., eye-tracking) and open-ended questionnaires in this research study, where participants were provided scientific images of the Earth (e.g., global precipitation and ocean and atmospheric currents), eye-tracked, and asked to provide causal or relational explanations about the viewed images. In addition, the students engaged in on-line modules (http://serc.carleton.edu/eslabs/climate/index.html) focused on Earth system science as training activities to address potential cognitive barriers. The developed modules included interactive media, hands-on lessons, links to outside resources, and formative assessment questions to promote a supportive and data-rich learning environment. Student eye movements were tracked during engagement with the materials to determine the role of perception and attention on understanding. Students also completed a conceptual questionnaire pre-post to determine if these on-line curriculum materials assisted in their development of connections between Earth's atmospheric system and the other Earth systems. The pre-post results of students' thinking about climate change concepts, as well as eye-tracking results, will be presented.

  2. Digital image processing for the earth resources technology satellite data.

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Will, P. M.; Bakis, R.; Wesley, M. A.

    1972-01-01

    This paper discusses the problems of digital processing of the large volumes of multispectral image data that are expected to be received from the ERTS program. Correction of geometric and radiometric distortions are discussed and a byte oriented implementation is proposed. CPU timing estimates are given for a System/360 Model 67, and show that a processing throughput of 1000 image sets per week is feasible.

  3. Geological Mapping of Fortuna Tessera (V-2): Venus and Earth's Archean Process Comparisons

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Head, James W.; Hurwitz,D. M.; Ivanov, M. A.; Basilevsky, A. T.; Kumar, P. Senthil

    2008-01-01

    The geological features, structures, thermal conditions, interpreted processes, and outstanding questions related to both the Earth's Archean and Venus share many similarities and we are using a problem-oriented approach to Venus mapping, guided by insight from the Archean record of the Earth, to gain new insight into the evolution of Venus and Earth's Archean. The Earth's preserved and well-documented Archean record provides important insight into high heat-flux tectonic and magmatic environments and structures and the surface of Venus reveals the current configuration and recent geological record of analogous high-temperature environments unmodified by subsequent several billion years of segmentation and overprinting, as on Earth. Elsewhere we have addressed the nature of the Earth's Archean, the similarities to and differences from Venus, and the specific Venus and Earth-Archean problems on which progress might be made through comparison. Here we present the major goals of the Venus-Archean comparison and show how preliminary mapping of the geology of the V-2 Fortuna Tessera quadrangle is providing insight on these problems. We have identified five key themes and questions common to both the Archean and Venus, the assessment of which could provide important new insights into the history and processes of both planets.

  4. Improving Earth/Prediction Models to Improve Network Processing

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Wagner, G. S.

    2017-12-01

    The United States Atomic Energy Detection System (USAEDS) primaryseismic network consists of a relatively small number of arrays andthree-component stations. The relatively small number of stationsin the USAEDS primary network make it both necessary and feasibleto optimize both station and network processing.Station processing improvements include detector tuning effortsthat use Receiver Operator Characteristic (ROC) curves to helpjudiciously set acceptable Type 1 (false) vs. Type 2 (miss) errorrates. Other station processing improvements include the use ofempirical/historical observations and continuous background noisemeasurements to compute time-varying, maximum likelihood probabilityof detection thresholds.The USAEDS network processing software makes extensive use of theazimuth and slowness information provided by frequency-wavenumberanalysis at array sites, and polarization analysis at three-componentsites. Most of the improvements in USAEDS network processing aredue to improvements in the models used to predict azimuth, slowness,and probability of detection. Kriged travel-time, azimuth andslowness corrections-and associated uncertainties-are computedusing a ground truth database. Improvements in station processingand the use of improved models for azimuth, slowness, and probabilityof detection have led to significant improvements in USADES networkprocessing.

  5. Early Visual Deprivation Alters Multisensory Processing in Peripersonal Space

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Collignon, Olivier; Charbonneau, Genevieve; Lassonde, Maryse; Lepore, Franco

    2009-01-01

    Multisensory peripersonal space develops in a maturational process that is thought to be influenced by early sensory experience. We investigated the role of vision in the effective development of audiotactile interactions in peripersonal space. Early blind (EB), late blind (LB) and sighted control (SC) participants were asked to lateralize…

  6. Early space experiments in materials processing

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Naumann, R. J.

    1979-01-01

    A comprehensive survey of the flight experiments conducted in conjunction with the United States Materials Processing in Space Program is presented. Also included are a brief description of the conditions prevailing in an orbiting spacecraft and the research implications provided by this unique environment. What was done and what was learned are summarized in order to serve as a background for future experiments. It is assumed that the reader has some knowledge of the physical sciences but no background in spaceflight experimentation or in the materials science per se.

  7. Noncanonical RNA Nucleosides as Molecular Fossils of an Early Earth-Generation by Prebiotic Methylations and Carbamoylations.

    PubMed

    Schneider, Christina; Becker, Sidney; Okamura, Hidenori; Crisp, Antony; Amatov, Tynchtyk; Stadlmeier, Michael; Carell, Thomas

    2018-05-14

    The RNA-world hypothesis assumes that life on Earth started with small RNA molecules that catalyzed their own formation. Vital to this hypothesis is the need for prebiotic routes towards RNA. Contemporary RNA, however, is not only constructed from the four canonical nucleobases (A, C, G, and U), it also contains many chemically modified (noncanonical) bases. A still open question is whether these noncanonical bases were formed in parallel to the canonical bases (chemical origin) or later, when life demanded higher functional diversity (biological origin). Here we show that isocyanates in combination with sodium nitrite establish methylating and carbamoylating reactivity compatible with early Earth conditions. These reactions lead to the formation of methylated and amino acid modified nucleosides that are still extant. Our data provide a plausible scenario for the chemical origin of certain noncanonical bases, which suggests that they are fossils of an early Earth. © 2018 Wiley-VCH Verlag GmbH & Co. KGaA, Weinheim.

  8. Early Earth Science Activities in the Sanford Underground Science and Engineering Laboratory at Homestake

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Wang, J. S.; Glaser, S. D.; Moore, J. R.; Hart, K.; King, G.; Regan, T.; Bang, S. S.; Sani, R. K.; Roggenthen, W. M.

    2007-12-01

    On July 10, 2007, the former Homestake Mine, Lead, South Dakota, was selected as the development site for the Deep Underground Science and Engineering Laboratory, to become the Sanford Underground Science and Engineering Laboratory at Homestake. Work on refurbishment and certification of the Ross Shaft began in August 2007 to effect pumping of water that had reached the 5000 level in late July. Completion of this work will allow a physics and geosciences laboratory to be constructed on the 4,850 ft level (1,478 m from the surface). Concurrent with reentry operations, several earth science research activities have been initiated. These early activities are as follows: (1) Seismic monitoring system: Accelerometers will be installed in surface boreholes and underground drifts as they become available as a result of the reentry work. (2) Evaluation of the 300 level (91 m), which has multiple locations for horizontal access, is ongoing. This near- surface level, with varying overburden thicknesses, offers excellent opportunities to investigate the "critical zone" in terms of hydrology, ecology, and geochemistry, yielding measurements of both moisture and carbon fluxes to evaluate fluid exchanges with the atmosphere. (3) Water and soil samples were collected in the Ross Shaft as part of the first reentry work. Molecular survey of microbial diversity showed the presence of mesophilic and thermophilic cellulose-degrading microorganisms. (4) Supercritical carbon dioxide injection experiments are being planned that will take advantage of three pairs of existing, nearly vertical, open 8-inch (0.2 m) boreholes that are easily accessible from the Ross Shaft. The candidate holes are located between the 1550 and the 2900 levels and are between 90 to 180 m in length (5) Monitoring of the response of the water during the dewatering operations will be facilitated by the use of existing boreholes. Ultimately, the dewatering operation provide access to the 8000 level (depth of 2,438 m

  9. Mars is the Earth's Only Nearby Early Life Analog, but the Moon is on the Path to Get There

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Schmitt, H. H.

    2017-02-01

    Mars provides a geological integration of the early solar system impacts recorded by the Moon and the contemporaneous water-rich pre-biotic period on Earth. Consideration of human missions to Mars needs to include a return to the Moon to stay.

  10. Rare Earth Extraction from NdFeB Magnet Using a Closed-Loop Acid Process.

    PubMed

    Kitagawa, Jiro; Uemura, Ryohei

    2017-08-14

    There is considerable interest in extraction of rare earth elements from NdFeB magnets to enable recycling of these elements. In practical extraction methods using wet processes, the acid waste solution discharge is a problem that must be resolved to reduce the environmental impact of the process. Here, we present an encouraging demonstration of rare earth element extraction from a NdFeB magnet using a closed-loop hydrochloric acid (HCl)-based process. The extraction method is based on corrosion of the magnet in a pretreatment stage and a subsequent ionic liquid technique for Fe extraction from the HCl solution. The rare earth elements are then precipitated using oxalic acid. Triple extraction has been conducted and the recovery ratio of the rare earth elements from the solution is approximately 50% for each extraction process, as compared to almost 100% recovery when using a one-shot extraction process without the ionic liquid but with sufficient oxalic acid. Despite its reduced extraction efficiency, the proposed method with its small number of procedures at almost room temperature is still highly advantageous in terms of both cost and environmental friendliness. This study represents an initial step towards realization of a closed-loop acid process for recycling of rare earth elements.

  11. Process for preparing higher oxides of the alkali and alkaline earth metals

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Sadhukhan, P.; Bell, A. (Inventor)

    1978-01-01

    High purity inorganic higher oxides of the alkali and alkaline earth metals are prepared by subjecting the hydroxide of the alkali and alkaline earth metal to a radio frequency discharge sustained in oxygen. The process is particulary adaptable to the production of high purity potassium superoxide by subjecting potassium hydroxide to glow discharge sustained in oxygen under the pressure of about 0.75 to 1.00 torr.

  12. A Multivariate Analysis of the Early Dropout Process

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Fiester, Alan R.; Rudestam, Kjell E.

    1975-01-01

    Principal-component factor analyses were performed on patient input (demographic and pretherapy expectations), therapist input (demographic), and patient perspective therapy process variables that significantly differentiated early dropout from nondropout outpatients at two community mental health centers. (Author)

  13. Reverse engineering nuclear properties from rare earth abundances in the r process

    SciT

    Mumpower, Matthew Ryan; McLaughlin, G. C.; Surman, R.

    The bulk of the rare earth elements are believed to be synthesized in the rapid neutron capture process or r process of nucleosynthesis. The solar r-process residuals show a small peak in the rare earths aroundmore » $$A\\sim 160$$, which is proposed to be formed dynamically during the end phase of the r process by a pileup of material. This abundance feature is of particular importance as it is sensitive to both the nuclear physics inputs and the astrophysical conditions of the main r process. Here, we explore the formation of the rare earth peak from the perspective of an inverse problem, using Monte Carlo studies of nuclear masses to investigate the unknown nuclear properties required to best match rare earth abundance sector of the solar isotopic residuals. When nuclear masses are changed, we recalculate the relevant β-decay properties and neutron capture rates in the rare earth region. The feedback provided by this observational constraint allows for the reverse engineering of nuclear properties far from stability where no experimental information exists. We investigate a range of astrophysical conditions with this method and show how these lead to different predictions in the nuclear properties influential to the formation of the rare earth peak. Finally, we conclude that targeted experimental campaigns in this region will help to resolve the type of conditions responsible for the production of the rare earth nuclei, and will provide new insights into the longstanding problem of the astrophysical site(s) of the r process.« less

  14. Reverse engineering nuclear properties from rare earth abundances in the r process

    DOE PAGES

    Mumpower, Matthew Ryan; McLaughlin, G. C.; Surman, R.; ...

    2017-02-01

    The bulk of the rare earth elements are believed to be synthesized in the rapid neutron capture process or r process of nucleosynthesis. The solar r-process residuals show a small peak in the rare earths aroundmore » $$A\\sim 160$$, which is proposed to be formed dynamically during the end phase of the r process by a pileup of material. This abundance feature is of particular importance as it is sensitive to both the nuclear physics inputs and the astrophysical conditions of the main r process. Here, we explore the formation of the rare earth peak from the perspective of an inverse problem, using Monte Carlo studies of nuclear masses to investigate the unknown nuclear properties required to best match rare earth abundance sector of the solar isotopic residuals. When nuclear masses are changed, we recalculate the relevant β-decay properties and neutron capture rates in the rare earth region. The feedback provided by this observational constraint allows for the reverse engineering of nuclear properties far from stability where no experimental information exists. We investigate a range of astrophysical conditions with this method and show how these lead to different predictions in the nuclear properties influential to the formation of the rare earth peak. Finally, we conclude that targeted experimental campaigns in this region will help to resolve the type of conditions responsible for the production of the rare earth nuclei, and will provide new insights into the longstanding problem of the astrophysical site(s) of the r process.« less

  15. Data processing requirements for the Earth Resources Technology Satellite (ERTS)

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Sos, J. Y.

    1972-01-01

    Some of the data handling considerations that led to the formulation of the data processing requirements for the ERTS system are discussed. The significant parameters that influence these requirements are: (1) payload characteristics, (2) spacecraft characteristics such as orbit, attitude and attitude rates, (3) payload coverage, and (4) product types and quantities. Items 3 and 4 have had the most significant influence on the generation of the requirements.

  16. EOforge: Generic Open Framework for Earth Observation Data Processing Systems

    DTIC Science & Technology

    2006-09-01

    Allow the use of existing interfaces, i.e. MUIS: ESA multimission catalogue for EO products. • Support last EO systems technologies, i.e. MASS ...5. Extensibility and configurability to allow customisation and the inclusion of new functionality. 6. Multi-instrument and multi-mission processing...such as: • MUIS: ESA multimission catalogue for EO products. • MASS (Multi-Application Support Service System): ESA web services technology standard

  17. Quantifying planetary limits of Earth system processes relevant to human activity using a thermodynamic view of the whole Earth system

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Kleidon, Axel

    2014-05-01

    Food, water, and energy play, obviously, a central role in maintaining human activity. In this contribution, I derive estimates for the fundamental limits on the rates by which these resources are provided by Earth system processes and the levels at which these can be used sustainably. The key idea here is that these resources are, directly or indirectly, generated out of the energy associated with the absorption of sunlight, and that the energy conversions from sunlight to other forms ultimately limit the generation of these resources. In order to derive these conversion limits, we need to trace the links between the processes that generate food, water and energy to the absorption of sunlight. The resource "food" results from biomass production by photosynthesis, which requires light and a sufficient magnitude of gas exchange of carbon dioxide at the surface, which is maintained by atmospheric motion which in turn is generated out of differential radiative heating and cooling. The resource "water" is linked to hydrologic cycling, with its magnitude being linked to the latent heat flux of the surface energy balance and water vapor transport in the atmosphere which is also driven by differential radiative heating and cooling. The availability of (renewable) energy is directly related to the generation of different forms of energy of climate system processes, such as the kinetic energy of atmospheric motion, which, again, relates to radiative heating differences. I use thermodynamics and its limits as a basis to establish the planetary limits of these processes and use a simple model to derive first-order estimates. These estimates compare quite well with observations, suggesting that this thermodynamic view of the whole Earth system provides an objective, physical basis to define and quantify planetary boundaries as well as the factors that shape these boundaries.

  18. The impact of transport processes on rare earth element patterns in marine authigenic and biogenic phosphates

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Auer, Gerald; Reuter, Markus; Hauzenberger, Christoph A.; Piller, Werner E.

    2017-04-01

    Rare earth elements (REEs) are commonly used proxies to reconstruct water chemistry and oxygen saturation during the formation of authigenic and biogenic phosphates in marine environments. In the modern ocean REEs exhibit a distinct pattern with enrichment of heavy REEs and strong depletion in cerium (Ce). The wide range of REE enrichment patterns found in ancient marine phosphates lead to the proposition that water chemistry has been very different in the Earth's past. However, both early and late diagenesis are known to affect REE signatures in phosphates altering primary marine signals. Herein we present a dataset of REE signatures in 38 grain specific LA-ICP-MS measurements of isolated phosphate and carbonate grains in three discrete rock samples. The phosphates mainly consist of authigenic phosphates and phosphatized microfossils that formed in a microbially mediated micro-milieu. In addition, isolated biogenic and reworked phosphatic grains are also present. The phosphates are emplaced in bioclastic grain- to packstones deposited on a carbonate ramp setting in the central Mediterranean Sea during the middle Miocene Monterey event. The results reveal markedly different REE patterns (normalized to the Post Archean Australian Shale standard) in terms of total enrichment and pattern shape. Analyses of REE diagenesis proxies show that diagenetic alteration affected the samples only to a minor degree. Grain shape and REE patterns together indicate that authigenic, biogenic and reworked phosphates have distinct REE patterns irrespective of the sample. Our study shows that while REE patterns in phosphates do reflect water chemistry during authigenesis, they are often already heavily altered during reworking, a process, which can occur in geologically negligible timespans. REE patterns are therefore more likely to reflect complex enrichment processes after their formation. Similarities in the REE patterns of reworked and biogenic phosphate further suggest that the

  19. The Formation of Sulfate and Elemental Sulfur Aerosols Under Varying Laboratory Conditions: Implications for Early Earth

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    DeWitt, H. Langley; Hasenkopf, Christa A.; Trainer, Melissa G.; Farmer, Delphine K.; Jimenez, Jose L.; McKay, Christopher P.; Toon, Owen B.; Tolbert, Margaret A.

    2010-01-01

    The presence of sulfur mass-independent fractionation (S-MIF) in sediments more than 2.45 x 10(exp 9) years old is thought to be evidence for an early anoxic atmosphere. Photolysis of sulfur dioxide (SO2) by UV light with lambda < 220 nm has been shown in models and some initial laboratory studies to create a S-MIF; however, sulfur must leave the atmosphere in at least two chemically different forms to preserve any S-MIF signature. Two commonly cited examples of chemically different sulfur species that could have exited the atmosphere are elemental sulfur (S8) and sulfuric acid (H2S04) aerosols. Here, we use real-time aerosol mass spectrometry to directly detect the sulfur-containing aerosols formed when SO2 either photolyzes at wavelengths from 115 to 400 nm, to simulate the UV solar spectrum, or interacts with high-energy electrons, to simulate lightning. We found that sulfur-containing aerosols form under all laboratory conditions. Further, the addition of a reducing gas, in our experiments hydrogen (H2) or methane (CH4), increased the formation of S8. With UV photolysis, formation of S8 aerosols is highly dependent on the initial SO2 pressure; and S8 is only formed at a 2% SO2 mixing ratio and greater in the absence of a reductant, and at a 0.2% SO2 mixing ratio and greater in the presence of 1000 ppmv CH4. We also found that organosulfur compounds are formed from the photolysis of CH4 and moderate amounts of SO2, The implications for sulfur aerosols on early Earth are discussed.

  20. Cracking the Code of Soil Genesis. The Early Role of Rare Earth Elements

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Zaharescu, D. G.; Dontsova, K.; Burghelea, C. I.; Maier, R. M.; Huxman, T. E.; Chorover, J.

    2014-12-01

    Soil is terrestrial life support system. Its genesis involves tight interactions between biota and mineral surfaces that mobilize structural elements into biogeochemical cycles. Of all chemical elements rare earth elements (REE) are a group of 16 non-nutrient elements of unusual geochemical similarity and present in all components of the surface environment. While much is known about the role of major nutrients in soil development we lack vital understanding of how early biotic colonization affects more conservative elements such as REE. A highly controlled experiment was set up at University of Arizona's Biosphere-2 that tested the effect of 4 biological treatments, incorporating a combination of microbe, grass, mycorrhiza and uninoculated control on REE leaching and uptake in 4 bedrock substrates: basalt, rhyolite, granite and schist. Generally the response of REE to biota presence was synergistic. Variation in total bedrock chemistry could explain major trends in pore water REE. There was a fast transition from chemistry-dominated to a biota dominated environment in the first 3-4 months of inoculation/seeding which translated into increase in REE signal over time. Relative REE abundances in water were generally reflected in plant concentrations, particularly in root, implying that below ground biomass is the main sync of REE in the ecosystem. Mycorrhiza effect on REE uptake in plant organs was significant and increased with infection rates. Presence of different biota translated into subtle differences in REE release, reveling potential biosignatures of biolota-rock colonization. The results thus bring fundamental insight into early stages non-nutrient cycle and soil genesis.

  1. The Case for Scientific Drilling of Precambrian Sedimentary Sequences: A Mission to Early Earth

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Buick, R.; Anbar, A. D.; Mojzsis, S. J.; Kaufman, A. J.; Kieft, T. L.; Lyons, T. W.; Humayun, M.

    2001-12-01

    Research into the emergence and early evolution of life, particularly in relation to environmental conditions, has intensified in the past decade. The field is energized by controversy (e.g., over the history of atmospheric composition, ocean redox, climate and biochemical pathways) and by the application of new biogeochemical tools (e.g., ion probe in situ stable isotope studies; improved geochronological techniques; non-mass-dependent stable isotope effects; stable metal isotope systematics; advances in organic geochemistry/biomarkers). The past decade has also seen improved understanding of old tools (notably, S isotopes), and new perspectives on evolution and on microbial interaction with the environment borne of the genomics revolution. Recent papers demonstrate the potential for innovative research when such developments are integrated, as well as the limitations of present knowledge. The chief limiting factor is not lack of scientists or advanced techniques, but availability of fresh samples from suitable successions. Where classic Precambrian stratigraphy exists, suitable rocks are rarely exposed due to interaction with the oxidizing atmosphere, occurrence of flat-lying strata or sedimentary cover. Available drill-cores are concentrated around ore bodies, and hence are inherently altered or not environmentally representative. Stratigraphic drilling using clean diamond drilling techniques, targeted in accord with scientific priorities, could provide samples of unmatched quality across the most interesting stratigraphic intervals. Diamond drilling is a proven, inexpensive technology for accessing subsurface material. The time is ripe to use this technology to secure the materials needed for further advances. The Mission to Early Earth (MtEE) Focus Group of the NASA Astrobiology Institute is developing a case for the acquisition, curation and distribution of suitable samples, with a special focus on diamond drilling. A communal activity is envisioned, modeled

  2. The Link Between Rare-Earth Peak Formation and the Astrophysical Site of the R Process

    SciT

    Mumpower, Matthew R.; McLaughlin, Gail C.; Surman, Rebecca

    The primary astrophysical source of the rare-earth elements is the rapid neutron capture process (r process). The rare-earth peak that is seen in the solar r-process residuals has been proposed to originate as a pile-up of nuclei during the end of the r process. Here, we introduce a new method utilizing Monte Carlo studies of nuclear masses in the rare-earth region, that includes self-consistently adjusting β-decay rates and neutron capture rates, to find the mass surfaces necessary for the formation of the rare-earth peak. We demonstrate our method with two types of astrophysical scenario, one corresponding to conditions typical ofmore » hot winds from core-collapse supernovae and stellar-mass accretion disks, and one corresponding to conditions typical of the ejection of the material from the tidal tails of neutron star mergers. In each type of astrophysical condition, this method successfully locates a region of enhanced stability in the mass surface that is responsible for the rare-earth peak. Finally, for each scenario, we find that the change in the mass surface has qualitatively different features, thus future measurements can shed light on the type of environment in which the r process occurred.« less

  3. THE LINK BETWEEN RARE-EARTH PEAK FORMATION AND THE ASTROPHYSICAL SITE OF THE R PROCESS

    SciT

    Mumpower, Matthew R.; McLaughlin, Gail C.; Surman, Rebecca

    The primary astrophysical source of the rare-earth elements is the rapid neutron capture process ( r process). The rare-earth peak that is seen in the solar r -process residuals has been proposed to originate as a pile-up of nuclei during the end of the r process. We introduce a new method utilizing Monte Carlo studies of nuclear masses in the rare-earth region, that includes self-consistently adjusting β -decay rates and neutron capture rates, to find the mass surfaces necessary for the formation of the rare-earth peak. We demonstrate our method with two types of astrophysical scenario, one corresponding to conditionsmore » typical of hot winds from core-collapse supernovae and stellar-mass accretion disks, and one corresponding to conditions typical of the ejection of the material from the tidal tails of neutron star mergers. In each type of astrophysical condition, this method successfully locates a region of enhanced stability in the mass surface that is responsible for the rare-earth peak. For each scenario, we find that the change in the mass surface has qualitatively different features, thus future measurements can shed light on the type of environment in which the r process occurred.« less

  4. The Link Between Rare-Earth Peak Formation and the Astrophysical Site of the R Process

    DOE PAGES

    Mumpower, Matthew R.; McLaughlin, Gail C.; Surman, Rebecca; ...

    2016-12-20

    The primary astrophysical source of the rare-earth elements is the rapid neutron capture process (r process). The rare-earth peak that is seen in the solar r-process residuals has been proposed to originate as a pile-up of nuclei during the end of the r process. Here, we introduce a new method utilizing Monte Carlo studies of nuclear masses in the rare-earth region, that includes self-consistently adjusting β-decay rates and neutron capture rates, to find the mass surfaces necessary for the formation of the rare-earth peak. We demonstrate our method with two types of astrophysical scenario, one corresponding to conditions typical ofmore » hot winds from core-collapse supernovae and stellar-mass accretion disks, and one corresponding to conditions typical of the ejection of the material from the tidal tails of neutron star mergers. In each type of astrophysical condition, this method successfully locates a region of enhanced stability in the mass surface that is responsible for the rare-earth peak. Finally, for each scenario, we find that the change in the mass surface has qualitatively different features, thus future measurements can shed light on the type of environment in which the r process occurred.« less

  5. Lunar and Planetary Science XXXV: Image Processing and Earth Observations

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    2004-01-01

    The titles in this section include: 1) Expansion in Geographic Information Services for PIGWAD; 2) Modernization of the Integrated Software for Imagers and Spectrometers; 3) Science-based Region-of-Interest Image Compression; 4) Topographic Analysis with a Stereo Matching Tool Kit; 5) Central Avra Valley Storage and Recovery Project (CAVSARP) Site, Tucson, Arizona: Floodwater and Soil Moisture Investigations with Extraterrestrial Applications; 6) ASE Floodwater Classifier Development for EO-1 HYPERION Imagery; 7) Autonomous Sciencecraft Experiment (ASE) Operations on EO-1 in 2004; 8) Autonomous Vegetation Cover Scene Classification of EO-1 Hyperion Hyperspectral Data; 9) Long-Term Continental Areal Reduction Produced by Tectonic Processes.

  6. CATIONIC EXCHANGE PROCESS FOR THE SEPARATION OF RARE EARTHS

    DOEpatents

    Choppin, G.R.; Thompson, S.G.; Harvey, B.G.

    1960-02-16

    A process for separating mixtures of elements in the lanthanum and actinium series of the periodic table is described. The mixture of elements is dissolved in 0.05 M HCI, wherein the elements exist as tripositive ions. The resulting solution is then transferred to a column of cationic exchange resin and the column eluted with 0.1 to 0.6 M aqueous ammonium alpha hydroxy isobutyrate solution of pH 3.8 to 5.0. The use of ammonium alpha hydroxy isobutyrate as an eluting agent results in sharper and more rapid separations than previously obtainable with eluants such as citric, tartaric, glycolic, and lactic acids.

  7. Process for depositing epitaxial alkaline earth oxide onto a substrate and structures prepared with the process

    DOEpatents

    McKee, Rodney A.; Walker, Frederick J.

    1996-01-01

    A process and structure involving a silicon substrate utilize molecular beam epitaxy (MBE) and/or electron beam evaporation methods and an ultra-high vacuum facility to grow a layup of epitaxial alkaline earth oxide films upon the substrate surface. By selecting metal constituents for the oxides and in the appropriate proportions so that the lattice parameter of each oxide grown closely approximates that of the substrate or base layer upon which oxide is grown, lattice strain at the film/film or film/substrate interface of adjacent films is appreciably reduced or relieved. Moreover, by selecting constituents for the oxides so that the lattice parameters of the materials of adjacent oxide films either increase or decrease in size from one parameter to another parameter, a graded layup of films can be grown (with reduced strain levels therebetween) so that the outer film has a lattice parameter which closely approximates that of, and thus accomodates the epitaxial growth of, a pervoskite chosen to be grown upon the outer film.

  8. NOx in the Atmosphere of Early Earth as Electron Acceptors for Life

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Wong, M. L.; Charnay, B.; Gao, P.; Yung, Y. L.; Russell, M. J.

    2015-12-01

    We quantify the amount of NOx produced in the Hadean atmosphere and available in the Hadean ocean for the emergence of life. Atmospherically generated nitrate (NO3-) and nitrite (NO2-) are the most attractive high-potential electron acceptors for driving the highly endergonic reactions at the entry points to autotrophic metabolic pathways at submarine alkaline hydrothermal vents (Ducluzeau, 2008; Russell, 2014). The Hadean atmosphere, dominated by CO2 and N2, will produce nitric oxide (NO) when shocked by lightning and impacts (Ducluzeau, 2008; Nna Mvondo, 2001). Photochemical reactions involving NO and H2O vapor will then produce acids such as HNO3 and HNO2 that rain into the ocean and dissociate into NO3- and NO2-. Previous work suggests that 1018 g of NOx can be produced in a million years or so, satisfying the need for micromolar concentrations of NO3- and NO2- in the ocean (Ducluzeau, 2008). But because this number is controversial, we present new calculations based on a novel combination of early-Earth GCM and photochemical modeling, calculating the sources and sinks for fixed nitrogen. Finally, it is notable that lightning has been detected on Venus and Mars along with evidence of atmospheric NO; in the distant past, could NOx have been created and available for the emergence of life on numerous wet, rocky worlds?

  9. Earth's early atmosphere as seen from carbon and nitrogen isotopic analysis of Archean sediments

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Gibson, E. K., Jr.; Carr, L. P.; Gilmour, I.; Pillinger, C. T.

    1986-01-01

    The origin and evolution of the Earth's early atmosphere has long been a topic of great interest but determination of actual compositions over geologic time is a difficult problem. However, recent systematic studies of stromatolite deposits (Precambrian Paleobiology Research Group) has extended our knowledge of Archean ecosystems. It has been shown that many stromatolite deposits have undergone negligible alteration since their time of formation. The discovery of primary fluid inclusions within unaltered 3.5 b.y. old Archiean sediments and the observation that the 3.3 b.y. old Barberton cherts have remained closed to argon loss and have not been subjected to thermal metamorphism suggests that an opportunity exists for the direct measurement of the volatile constituents present at their time of formation. Of primary interest to this study was the possibility that the stromatolites and other Archean sediments might retain a vestige of the atmosphere and thus afford an indication of the variations in carbon dioxide and nitrogen isotopic compositions with time. A suite of essentially unaltered Archean stromatolites and the cherts of different ages and geologic sites have been analyzed for their trapped carbon dioxide and nitrogen compositions by the stepped combustion extraction tech nique utilizing static mass spectrometers for the isotope measurements.

  10. Heavy Rare Earth Elements Affect Sphaerechinus granularis Sea Urchin Early Life Stages by Multiple Toxicity Endpoints.

    PubMed

    Gravina, Maria; Pagano, Giovanni; Oral, Rahime; Guida, Marco; Toscanesi, Maria; Siciliano, Antonietta; Di Nunzio, Aldo; Burić, Petra; Lyons, Daniel M; Thomas, Philippe J; Trifuoggi, Marco

    2018-05-01

    Heavy rare earth elements (HREEs) were tested for adverse effects to early life stages of the sea urchin Sphaerechinus granularis. Embryos were exposed to analytically measured HREE concentrations ranging from 10 -7 to 10 -5  M. No significant developmental defect (DD) increases were observed in embryos exposed to 10 -7  M HREEs, whereas 10 -5  M HREEs resulted in significant DD increase up to 96% for HoCl 3 versus 14% in controls. Embryos exposed to 10 -6  M HREEs showed the highest DD frequency in embryos exposed to 10 -6  M DyCl 3 and HoCl 3 . Cytogenetic analysis of HREE-exposed embryos revealed a significant decrease in mitotic activity, with increased mitotic aberrations. When S. granularis sperm were exposed to HREEs, the offspring of sperm exposed to 10 -5  M GdCl 3 and LuCl 3 showed significant DD increases. The results warrant investigations on HREEs in other test systems, and on REE-containing complex mixtures.

  11. SITE DEMONSTRATION BULLETIN - ENHANCED IN-SITU BIOREMEDIATION PROCESS, EARTH TECH, INC.

    EPA Science Inventory

    The USEPA conducted an evaluation of the Enhanced In-situ Bioremediation process, a biostimulation technology developed by the USDOE at the Westinghouse Savannah River Plant site in Aiken, SC. DOE has licensed the process to Earth Tech, Inc. The evaluation described in this bulle...

  12. EARTH TECH INC.'S ENHANCED IN-SITU BIOREMEDIATION PROCESS; INNOVATIVE TECHNOLOGY EVALUATION REPORT

    EPA Science Inventory

    The USEPA conducted an evaluation of the Enhanced In-situ Bioremediation process, a biostimulation technology developed by the USDOE at the Westinghouse Savannah River Plant site in Aiken, SC. DOE has licensed the process to Earth Tech, Inc. The evaluation described in this bulle...

  13. Insights into the Processing of Carbon by Early Microbial Ecosystems

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    DesMarais, D.; Bebout, B.; Carpenter, S.; Discipulo, S.; Londry, K.; Habicht, K.; Turk, K.

    2003-01-01

    Interactions between Earth and the biosphere that were crucial for early biological evolution also influenced substantially the processes that circulate C between its reservoirs in the atmosphere, ocean, crust and mantle. The C-13 C-12 values of crustal carbonates and organics have recorded changes both in biological discrimination and in the relative rates of burial of organics and carbonates. A full interpretation of these patterns needs further isotopic studies of microbial ecosystems and individual anaerobes. Thus we measured carbon isotope discrimination during autotrophic and heterotrophic growth of pure cultures of sulfate-reducing bacteria and archaea (SRB and SRA). Discrimination during CO2 assimilation is significantly larger than during heterotrophic growth on lactate or acetate. SRB grown lithoautotrophically consumed less than 3% of available CO2 and exhibited substantial discrimination, as follows: Desulfobacterium autotrophicum (alpha 1.0100 to 1.0123), Desulfobacter hydrogenophilus (alpha = 0.0138), and Desulfotomuculum acetoxidans (alpha = 1.0310). Mixotrophic growth of Desulfovibrio desulfuricans on acetate and CO2 resulted in biomass with delta C-13 composition intermediate to that of the substrates. We have recently extended these experiments to include the thermophilic SRA Archeoglobus spp. Ecological forces also influence isotopic discrimination. Accordingly, we quantified the flow of C and other constituents in modern marine cyanobacterial mats, whose ancestry extends back billions of years. Such ecosystem processes shaped the biosignatures that entered sediments and atmospheres. At Guerrero Negro, BCS, Mexico, we examined mats dominated by Microcoleus (subtidal) and Lyngbya (intertidal to supratidal) cyanobacteria. During 24 hour cycles, we observed the exchange of O2 and dissolved inorganic C (DIC) between mats and the overlying water. Microcoleus mats assimilated near-equal amounts of DIC during the day as they released at night, but

  14. Higher Flux from the Young Sun as an Explanation for Warm Temperatures for Early Earth and Mars

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Sackmann, I.-Juliana

    2001-01-01

    Observations indicate that the Earth was at least warm enough for liquid water to exist as far back as 4 Gyr ago, namely, as early as half a billion years after the formation of the Earth; in fact, there is evidence suggesting that Earth may have been even warmer then than it is now. These relatively warm temperatures required on early Earth are in apparent contradiction to the dimness of the early Sun predicted by the standard solar models. This problem has generally been explained by assuming that Earth's early atmosphere contained huge amounts of carbon dioxide (CO2), resulting in a large enough greenhouse effect to counteract the effect of a dimmer Sun. However, recent work places an upper limit of 0.04 bar on the partial pressure of CO2 in the period from 2.75 to 2.2 Gyr ago, based on the absence of siderite in paleosols; this casts doubt on the viability of a strong CO2 greenhouse effect on early Earth. The existence of liquid water on early Mars has been even more of a puzzle; even the maximum possible CO2 greenhouse effect cannot yield warm enough Martian surface temperatures. These problems can be resolved simultaneously for both Earth and Mars, if the early Sun was brighter than predicted by the standard solar models. This could be accomplished if the early Sun was slightly more massive than it is now, i.e., if the solar wind was considerably stronger in the past than at present. A slightly more massive young Sun would have left fingerprints on the internal structure of the present Sun. Today, helioseismic observations exist that can measure the internal structure of the Sun with very high precision. The task undertaken here was to compute solar models with the highest precision possible at this time, starting with slightly greater initial masses. These were evolved to the present solar age, where comparisons with the helioseismic observations could be made. Our computations also yielded the time evolution of the solar flux at the planets - a key input to

  15. Integrated planning and scheduling for Earth science data processing

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Boddy, Mark; White, Jim; Goldman, Robert; Short, Nick, Jr.

    1995-01-01

    Several current NASA programs such as the EOSDIS Core System (ECS) have data processing and data management requirements that call for an integrated planning and scheduling capability. In this paper, we describe the experience of applying advanced scheduling technology operationally, in terms of what was accomplished, lessons learned, and what remains to be done in order to achieve similar successes in ECS and other programs. We discuss the importance and benefits of advanced scheduling tools, and our progress toward realizing them, through examples and illustrations based on ECS requirements. The first part of the paper focuses on the Data Archive and Distribution (DADS) V0 Scheduler. We then discuss system integration issues ranging from communication with the scheduler to the monitoring of system events and re-scheduling in response to them. The challenge of adapting the scheduler to domain-specific features and scheduling policies is also considered. Extrapolation to the ECS domain raises issues of integrating scheduling with a product-generation planner (such as PlaSTiC), and implementing conditional planning in an operational system. We conclude by briefly noting ongoing technology development and deployment projects being undertaken by HTC and the ISTB.

  16. Processes of Early Childhood Interventions to Adult Well-Being

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Reynolds, Arthur J.; Ou, Suh-Ruu; Mondi, Christina F.; Hayakawa, Momoko

    2017-01-01

    This article describes the contributions of cognitive-scholastic advantage, family support behavior, and school quality and support as processes through which early childhood interventions promote well-being. Evidence in support of these processes is from longitudinal cohort studies of the Child-Parent Centers and other preventive interventions…

  17. Composition of LHB Comets and Their Influence on the Early Earth Atmosphere Composition

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Tornow, C.; Kupper, S.; Ilgner, M.; Kuehrt, E.; Motschmann, U.

    2011-01-01

    Two main processes were responsible for the composition of this atmosphere: chemical evolution of the volatile fraction of the accretion material forming the planet and the delivery of gasses to the planetary surface by impactors during the late heavy bombardment (LHB). The amount and composition of the volatile fraction influences the outgassing of the Earth mantle during the last planetary formation period. A very weakened form of outgassing activity can still be observed today by examining the composition of volcanic gasses. An enlightenment of the second process is based on the sparse records of the LHB impactors resulting from the composition of meteorites, observed cometary comas, and the impact material found on the Moon. However, for an assessment of the influence of the outgassing on the one hand and the LHB event on the other, one has to supplement the observations with numerical simulations of the formation of volatiles and their incorporation into the accretion material which is the precursors of planetary matter, comets and asteroids. These simulations are performed with a combined hydrodynamic-chemical model of the solar nebula (SN). We calculate the chemical composition of the gas and dust phase of the SN. From these data, we draw conclusions on the upper limits of the water content and the amount of carbon and nitrogen rich volatiles incorporated later into the accretion material. Knowing these limits we determine the portion of major gas compounds delivered during the LHB and compare it with the related quantities of the outgassed species.

  18. Early Evaluation of the VIIRS Calibration, Cloud Mask and Surface Reflectance Earth Data Records

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Vermote, Eric; Justice, Chris; Csiszar, Ivan

    2014-01-01

    Surface reflectance is one of the key products fromVIIRS and as withMODIS, is used in developing several higherorder land products. The VIIRS Surface Reflectance (SR) Intermediate Product (IP) is based on the heritageMODIS Collection 5 product (Vermote, El Saleous, & Justice, 2002). The quality and character of surface reflectance depend on the accuracy of the VIIRS Cloud Mask (VCM), the aerosol algorithms and the adequate calibration of the sensor. The focus of this paper is the early evaluation of the VIIRS SR product in the context of the maturity of the operational processing system, the Interface Data Processing System (IDPS). After a brief introduction, the paper presents the calibration performance and the role of the surface reflectance in calibration monitoring. The analysis of the performance of the cloud mask with a focus on vegetation monitoring (no snow conditions) shows typical problems over bright surfaces and high elevation sites. Also discussed is the performance of the aerosol input used in the atmospheric correction and in particular the artifacts generated by the use of the Navy Aerosol Analysis and Prediction System. Early quantitative results of the performance of the SR product over the AERONET sites showthatwith the fewadjustments recommended, the accuracy iswithin the threshold specifications. The analysis of the adequacy of the SR product (Land PEATE adjusted version) in applications of societal benefits is then presented. We conclude with a set of recommendations to ensure consistency and continuity of the JPSS mission with the MODIS Land Climate Data Record.

  19. MiTEP's Collaborative Field Course Design Process Based on Earth Science Literacy Principles

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Engelmann, C. A.; Rose, W. I.; Huntoon, J. E.; Klawiter, M. F.; Hungwe, K.

    2010-12-01

    Michigan Technological University has developed a collaborative process for designing summer field courses for teachers as part of their National Science Foundation funded Math Science Partnership program, called the Michigan Teacher Excellence Program (MiTEP). This design process was implemented and then piloted during two two-week courses: Earth Science Institute I (ESI I) and Earth Science Institute II (ESI II). Participants consisted of a small group of Michigan urban science teachers who are members of the MiTEP program. The Earth Science Literacy Principles (ESLP) served as the framework for course design in conjunction with input from participating MiTEP teachers as well as research done on common teacher and student misconceptions in Earth Science. Research on the Earth Science misconception component, aligned to the ESLP, is more fully addressed in GSA Abstracts with Programs Vol. 42, No. 5. “Recognizing Earth Science Misconceptions and Reconstructing Knowledge through Conceptual-Change-Teaching”. The ESLP were released to the public in January 2009 by the Earth Science Literacy Organizing Committee and can be found at http://www.earthscienceliteracy.org/index.html. Each day of the first nine days of both Institutes was focused on one of the nine ESLP Big Ideas; the tenth day emphasized integration of concepts across all of the ESLP Big Ideas. Throughout each day, Michigan Tech graduate student facilitators and professors from Michigan Tech and Grand Valley State University consistantly focused teaching and learning on the day's Big Idea. Many Earth Science experts from Michigan Tech and Grand Valley State University joined the MiTEP teachers in the field or on campus, giving presentations on the latest research in their area that was related to that Big Idea. Field sites were chosen for their unique geological features as well as for the “sense of place” each site provided. Preliminary research findings indicate that this collaborative design

  20. Visualization of Earth and Space Science Data at JPL's Science Data Processing Systems Section

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Green, William B.

    1996-01-01

    This presentation will provide an overview of systems in use at NASA's Jet Propulsion Laboratory for processing data returned by space exploration and earth observations spacecraft. Graphical and visualization techniques used to query and retrieve data from large scientific data bases will be described.

  1. How Irreversible Heat Transport Processes Drive Earth's Interdependent Thermal, Structural, and Chemical Evolution Providing a Strongly Heterogeneous, Layered Mantle

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Hofmeister, A.; Criss, R. E.

    2013-12-01

    Because magmatism conveys radioactive isotopes plus latent heat rapidly upwards while advecting heat, this process links and controls the thermal and chemical evolution of Earth. We present evidence that the lower mantle-upper mantle boundary is a profound chemical discontinuity, leading to observed heterogeneities in the outermost layers that can be directly sampled, and construct an alternative view of Earth's internal workings. Earth's beginning involved cooling via explosive outgassing of substantial ice (mainly CO) buried with dust during accretion. High carbon content is expected from Solar abundances and ice in comets. Reaction of CO with metal provided a carbide-rich core while converting MgSiO3 to olivine via oxidizing reactions. Because thermodynamic law (and buoyancy of hot particles) indicates that primordial heat from gravitational segregation is neither large nor carried downwards, whereas differentiation forced radioactive elements upwards, formation of the core and lower mantle greatly cooled the Earth. Reference conductive geotherms, calculated using accurate and new thermal diffusivity data, require that heat-producing elements are sequestered above 670 km which limits convection to the upper mantle. These irreversible beginnings limit secular cooling to radioactive wind-down, permiting deduction of Earth's inventory of heat-producing elements from today's heat flux. Coupling our estimate for heat producing elements with meteoritic data indicates that Earth's oxide content has been underestimated. Density sorting segregated a Si-rich, peridotitic upper mantle from a refractory, oxide lower mantle with high Ca, Al and Ti contents, consistent with diamond inclusion mineralogy. Early and rapid differentiation means that internal temperatures have long been buffered by freezing of the inner core, allowing survival of crust as old as ca.4 Ga. Magmatism remains important. Melt escaping though stress-induced fractures in the rigid lithosphere imparts a

  2. Nonproteinogenic D-amino acids at millimolar concentrations are a toxin for anaerobic microorganisms relevant to early Earth and other anoxic planets.

    PubMed

    Nixon, Sophie L; Cockell, Charles S

    2015-03-01

    The delivery of extraterrestrial organics to early Earth provided a potentially important source of carbon and energy for microbial life. Optically active organic compounds of extraterrestrial origin exist in racemic form, yet life on Earth has almost exclusively selected for L- over D-enantiomers of amino acids. Although D-enantiomers of proteinogenic amino acids are known to inhibit aerobic microorganisms, the role of concentrated nonproteinogenic meteoritic D-amino acids on anaerobic metabolisms relevant to early Earth and other anoxic planets such as Mars is unknown. Here, we test the inhibitory effect of D-enantiomers of two nonproteinogenic amino acids common to carbonaceous chondrites, norvaline and α-aminobutyric acid, on microbial iron reduction. Three pure strains (Geobacter bemidjiensis, Geobacter metallireducens, Geopsychrobacter electrodiphilus) and an iron-reducing enrichment culture were grown in the presence of 10 mM D-enantiomers of both amino acids. Further tests were conducted to assess the inhibitory effect of these D-amino acids at 1 and 0.1 mM. The presence of 10 mM D-norvaline and D-α-aminobutyric acid inhibited microbial iron reduction by all pure strains and the enrichment. G. bemidjiensis was not inhibited by either amino acid at 0.1 mM, but D-α-aminobutyric acid still inhibited at 1 mM. Calculations using published meteorite accumulation rates to the martian surface indicate D-α-aminobutyric acid may have reached inhibitory concentrations in little over 1000 years during peak infall. These data show that, on a young anoxic planet, the use of one enantiomer over another may render the nonbiological enantiomer an environmental toxin. Processes that generate racemic amino acids in the environment, such as meteoritic infall or impact synthesis, would have been toxic processes and could have been a selection pressure for the evolution of early racemases.

  3. Replicating the Ice-Volume Signal of the Early Pleistocene with a Complex Earth System Model

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Tabor, C. R.; Poulsen, C. J.; Pollard, D.

    2013-12-01

    Milankovitch theory proposes high-latitude summer insolation intensity paces the ice ages by controlling perennial snow cover amounts (Milankovitch, 1941). According to theory, the ~21 kyr cycle of precession should dominate the ice-volume records since it has the greatest influence on high-latitude summer insolation. Modeling experiments frequently support Milankovitch theory by attributing the majority of Northern Hemisphere high-latitude summer snowmelt to changes in the cycle of precession (e.g. Jackson and Broccoli, 2003). However, ice-volume proxy records, especially those of the Early Pleistocene (2.6-0.8 Ma), display variability with a period of ~41 kyr (Raymo and Lisiecki, 2005), indicative of insolation forcing from obliquity, which has a much smaller influence on summer insolation intensity than precession. Several hypotheses attempt to explain the discrepancies between Milkankovitch theory and the proxy records by invoking phenomena such as insolation gradients (Raymo and Nisancioglu, 2003), hemispheric offset (Raymo et al., 2006; Lee and Poulsen, 2009), and integrated summer energy (Huybers, 2006); however, all of these hypotheses contain caveats (Ruddiman, 2006) and have yet to be supported by modeling studies that use a complex GCM. To explore potential solutions to this '41 kyr problem,' we use an Earth system model composed of the GENESIS GCM and Land Surface model, the BIOME4 vegetation model, and the Pennsylvania State ice-sheet model. Using an asynchronous coupling technique, we run four idealized transient combinations of obliquity and precession, representing the orbital extremes of the Pleistocene (Berger and Loutre, 1991). Each experiment is run through several complete orbital cycles with a dynamic ice domain spanning North America and Greenland, and fixed preindustrial greenhouse-gas concentrations. For all orbital configurations, model results produce greater ice-volume spectral power at the frequency of obliquity despite significantly

  4. Interactive Computing and Processing of NASA Land Surface Observations Using Google Earth Engine

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Molthan, Andrew; Burks, Jason; Bell, Jordan

    2016-01-01

    Google's Earth Engine offers a "big data" approach to processing large volumes of NASA and other remote sensing products. h\\ps://earthengine.google.com/ Interfaces include a Javascript or Python-based API, useful for accessing and processing over large periods of record for Landsat and MODIS observations. Other data sets are frequently added, including weather and climate model data sets, etc. Demonstrations here focus on exploratory efforts to perform land surface change detection related to severe weather, and other disaster events.

  5. Image processing techniques and applications to the Earth Resources Technology Satellite program

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Polge, R. J.; Bhagavan, B. K.; Callas, L.

    1973-01-01

    The Earth Resources Technology Satellite system is studied, with emphasis on sensors, data processing requirements, and image data compression using the Fast Fourier and Hadamard transforms. The ERTS-A system and the fundamentals of remote sensing are discussed. Three user applications (forestry, crops, and rangelands) are selected and their spectral signatures are described. It is shown that additional sensors are needed for rangeland management. An on-board information processing system is recommended to reduce the amount of data transmitted.

  6. Fairness influences early signatures of reward-related neural processing.

    PubMed

    Massi, Bart; Luhmann, Christian C

    2015-12-01

    Many humans exhibit a strong preference for fairness during decision-making. Although there is evidence that social factors influence reward-related and affective neural processing, it is unclear if this effect is mediated by compulsory outcome evaluation processes or results from slower deliberate cognition. Here we show that the feedback-related negativity (FRN) and late positive potential (LPP), two signatures of early hedonic processing, are modulated by the fairness of rewards during a passive rating task. We find that unfair payouts elicit larger FRNs than fair payouts, whereas fair payouts elicit larger LPPs than unfair payouts. This is true both in the time-domain, where the FRN and LPP are related, and in the time-frequency domain, where the two signals are largely independent. Ultimately, this work demonstrates that fairness affects the early stages of reward and affective processing, suggesting a common biological mechanism for social and personal reward evaluation.

  7. Sensory Temporal Processing in Adults with Early Hearing Loss

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Heming, Joanne E.; Brown, Lenora N.

    2005-01-01

    This study examined tactile and visual temporal processing in adults with early loss of hearing. The tactile task consisted of punctate stimulations that were delivered to one or both hands by a mechanical tactile stimulator. Pairs of light emitting diodes were presented on a display for visual stimulation. Responses consisted of YES or NO…

  8. Reading Acquisition Enhances an Early Visual Process of Contour Integration

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Szwed, Marcin; Ventura, Paulo; Querido, Luis; Cohen, Laurent; Dehaene, Stanislas

    2012-01-01

    The acquisition of reading has an extensive impact on the developing brain and leads to enhanced abilities in phonological processing and visual letter perception. Could this expertise also extend to early visual abilities outside the reading domain? Here we studied the performance of illiterate, ex-illiterate and literate adults closely matched…

  9. ERP Evidence of Visualization at Early Stages of Visual Processing

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Page, Jonathan W.; Duhamel, Paul; Crognale, Michael A.

    2011-01-01

    Recent neuroimaging research suggests that early visual processing circuits are activated similarly during visualization and perception but have not demonstrated that the cortical activity is similar in character. We found functional equivalency in cortical activity by recording evoked potentials while color and luminance patterns were viewed and…

  10. Dyadic Processes in Early Marriage: Attributions, Behavior, and Marital Quality

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Durtschi, Jared A.; Fincham, Frank D.; Cui, Ming; Lorenz, Frederick O.; Conger, Rand D.

    2011-01-01

    Marital processes in early marriage are important for understanding couples' future marital quality. Spouses' attributions about a partner's behavior have been linked to marital quality, yet the mechanisms underlying this association remain largely unknown. When we used couple data from the Family Transitions Project (N = 280 couples) across the…

  11. Heavy rare earth elements affect early life stages in Paracentrotus lividus and Arbacia lixula sea urchins

    SciT

    Oral, Rahime

    Background: Heavy rare earth elements (HREEs) have been scarcely studied for their toxicity, in spite of their applications in several technologies. Thus HREEs require timely investigations for their adverse health effects. Methods: Paracentrotus lividus and Arbacia lixula embryos and sperm were exposed to trichloride salts of five HREEs (Dy, Ho, Er, Yb and Lu) and to Ce(III) as a light REE (LREE) reference to evaluate: 1) developmental defects (% DD) in HREE-exposed larvae or in the offspring of HREE-exposed sperm; 2) mitotic anomalies; 3) fertilization success; and 4) reactive oxygen species (ROS) formation, and nitric oxide (NO) and malondialdehyde (MDA)more » levels. Nominal HREE concentrations were confirmed by inductively coupled plasma mass spectrometry (ICP-MS). Results: HREEs induced concentration-related DD increases in P. lividus and A. lixula larvae, ranging from no significant DD increase at 10{sup −7} M HREEs up to ≅100% DD at 10{sup −5} M HREE. Larvae exposed to 10{sup −5} M Ce(III) resulted in less severe DD rates compared to HREEs. Decreased mitotic activity and increased aberration rates were found in HREE-exposed P. lividus embryos. Significant increases in ROS formation and NO levels were found both in HREE-exposed and in Ce(III) embryos, whereas only Ce(III), but not HREEs resulted in significant increase in MDA levels. Sperm exposure to HREEs (10{sup −5}–10{sup −4} M) resulted in a concentration-related decrease in fertilization success along with increase in offspring damage. These effects were significantly enhanced for Dy(III), Ho(III), Er(III) and Yb(III), compared to Lu(III) and to Ce(III). Conclusion: HREE-associated toxicity affected embryogenesis, fertilization, cytogenetic and redox endpoints showing different toxicities of tested HREEs. - Highlights: • Different toxicities were exerted by five tested HREEs on sea urchin early life stages. • Sea urchin embryos and sperm were sensitive to HREE levels ranging from 1

  12. Probing Core Processes in the Earth and Small Bodies Using Paleomagnetism

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Fu, R. R.; Weiss, B. P.; Lima, E. A.; Glenn, D. R.; Kehayias, P.; Walsworth, R. L.

    2015-12-01

    Convective motion in the cores of differentiated metal-silicate bodies may sustain a global dynamo magnetic field. Progressive crystallization in a dynamo-generating core is expected to play a central role in determining the observable properties of the hosted magnetic field. Importantly, the release of light elements and latent heat during core crystallization is a key source of entropy for sustaining core convection. Therefore, the persistence and intensity of a dynamo magnetic field depend directly on the extent and style of core crystallization. We present and discuss paleomagnetic data from the Earth and asteroid-sized bodies to characterize internally generated magnetic fields during the early histories of these objects. In the case of the Earth, recent and ongoing paleomagnetic experiments of zircons from the Jack Hills of Australia can potentially constrain the existence and intensity of the geodynamo before 3.5 Ga. If robust, such measurements hold strong implications for the energy budget of the Earth's early core and the dynamics of the early mantle. We will discuss both recently published and preliminary results and assess carefully the challenges and uncertainties of paleomagnetic experimentation on ancient zircon samples. In the case of small bodies, several classes of meteorites record ancient magnetic fields likely produced by core dynamos on their parent bodies. Data from the CV carbonaceous chondrites and pallasites indicate that dynamos in planetesimal-sized bodies persisted for a broad range of timescales between ~10 My and >100 My. Meanwhile, measurements of the angrite group of achondrites show that their earliest-forming members crystallized in an almost non-magnetic environment, suggesting a delayed onset of the planetesimal dynamo until several My after initial differentiation. We will discuss the possible causes for this observed diversity of small body dynamo properties, including the role of core crystallization and the distribution of

  13. A morphogram for silica-witherite biomorphs and its application to microfossil identification in the early earth rock record.

    PubMed

    Rouillard, J; García-Ruiz, J-M; Gong, J; van Zuilen, M A

    2018-05-01

    Archean hydrothermal environments formed a likely site for the origin and early evolution of life. These are also the settings, however, were complex abiologic structures can form. Low-temperature serpentinization of ultramafic crust can generate alkaline, silica-saturated fluids in which carbonate-silica crystalline aggregates with life-like morphologies can self-assemble. These "biomorphs" could have adsorbed hydrocarbons from Fischer-Tropsch type synthesis processes, leading to metamorphosed structures that resemble carbonaceous microfossils. Although this abiogenic process has been extensively cited in the literature and has generated important controversy, so far only one specific biomorph type with a filamentous shape has been discussed for the interpretation of Archean microfossils. It is therefore critical to precisely determine the full distribution in morphology and size of these biomorphs, and to study the range of plausible geochemical conditions under which these microstructures can form. Here, a set of witherite-silica biomorph synthesis experiments in silica-saturated solutions is presented, for a range of pH values (from 9 to 11.5) and barium ion concentrations (from 0.6 to 40 mmol/L BaCl 2 ). Under these varying conditions, a wide range of life-like structures is found, from fractal dendrites to complex shapes with continuous curvature. The size, spatial concentration, and morphology of the biomorphs are strongly controlled by environmental parameters, among which pH is the most important. This potentially limits the diversity of environments in which the growth of biomorphs could have occurred on Early Earth. Given the variety of the observed biomorph morphologies, our results show that the morphology of an individual microstructure is a poor criterion for biogenicity. However, biomorphs may be distinguished from actual populations of cellular microfossils by their wide, unimodal size distribution. Biomorphs grown by diffusion in silica gel can

  14. Comets as Messengers from the Early Solar System - Emerging Insights on Delivery of Water, Nitriles, and Organics to Earth

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Mumma, Michael J.; Charnley, Steven B.

    2012-01-01

    The question of exogenous delivery of water and organics to Earth and other young planets is of critical importance for understanding the origin of Earth's volatiles, and for assessing the possible existence of exo-planets similar to Earth. Viewed from a cosmic perspective, Earth is a dry planet, yet its oceans are enriched in deuterium by a large factor relative to nebular hydrogen and analogous isotopic enrichments in atmospheric nitrogen and noble gases are also seen. Why is this so? What are the implications for Mars? For icy Worlds in our Planetary System? For the existence of Earth-like exoplanets? An exogenous (vs. outgassed) origin for Earth's atmosphere is implied, and intense debate on the relative contributions of comets and asteroids continues - renewed by fresh models for dynamical transport in the protoplanetary disk, by revelations on the nature and diversity of volatile and rocky material within comets, and by the discovery of ocean-like water in a comet from the Kuiper Belt (cf., Mumma & Charnley 2011). Assessing the creation of conditions favorable to the emergence and sustenance of life depends critically on knowledge of the nature of the impacting bodies. Active comets have long been grouped according to their orbital properties, and this has proven useful for identifying the reservoir from which a given comet emerged (OC, KB) (Levison 1996). However, it is now clear that icy bodies were scattered into each reservoir from a range of nebular distances, and the comet populations in today's reservoirs thus share origins that are (in part) common. Comets from the Oort Cloud and Kuiper Disk reservoirs should have diverse composition, resulting from strong gradients in temperature and chemistry in the proto-planetary disk, coupled with dynamical models of early radial transport and mixing with later dispersion of the final cometary nuclei into the long-term storage reservoirs. The inclusion of material from the natal interstellar cloud is probable

  15. MT+, integrating magnetotellurics to determine earth structure, physical state, and processes

    Bedrosian, P.A.

    2007-01-01

    As one of the few deep-earth imaging techniques, magnetotellurics provides information on both the structure and physical state of the crust and upper mantle. Magnetotellurics is sensitive to electrical conductivity, which varies within the earth by many orders of magnitude and is modified by a range of earth processes. As with all geophysical techniques, magnetotellurics has a non-unique inverse problem and has limitations in resolution and sensitivity. As such, an integrated approach, either via the joint interpretation of independent geophysical models, or through the simultaneous inversion of independent data sets is valuable, and at times essential to an accurate interpretation. Magnetotelluric data and models are increasingly integrated with geological, geophysical and geochemical information. This review considers recent studies that illustrate the ways in which such information is combined, from qualitative comparisons to statistical correlation studies to multi-property inversions. Also emphasized are the range of problems addressed by these integrated approaches, and their value in elucidating earth structure, physical state, and processes. ?? Springer Science+Business Media B.V. 2007.

  16. Microbial Paleontology, Mineralogy and Geochemistry of Modern and Ancient Thermal Spring Deposits and Their Recognition on the Early Earth and Mars"

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Farmer, Jack D.

    2004-01-01

    The vision of this project was to improve our understanding of the processes by which microbiological information is captured and preserved in rapidly mineralizing sedimentary environments. Specifically, the research focused on the ways in which microbial mats and biofilms influence the sedimentology, geochemistry and paleontology of modem hydrothermal spring deposits in Yellowstone national Park and their ancient analogs. Toward that goal, we sought to understand how the preservation of fossil biosignatures is affected by 1) taphonomy- the natural degradation processes that affect an organism from the time of its death, until its discovery as a fossil and 2) diagenesis- longer-term, post-depositional processes, including cementation and matrix recrystallization, which collectively affect the mineral matrix that contains fossil biosignature information. Early objectives of this project included the development of observational frameworks (facies models) and methods (highly-integrated, interdisciplinary approaches) that could be used to explore for hydrothermal deposits in ancient terranes on Earth, and eventually on Mars.

  17. A Mercury-like component of early Earth yields uranium in the core and high mantle 142Nd

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Wohlers, Anke; Wood, Bernard J.

    2015-04-01

    Recent 142Nd isotope data indicate that the silicate Earth (its crust plus the mantle) has a samarium to neodymium elemental ratio (Sm/Nd) that is greater than that of the supposed chondritic building blocks of the planet. This elevated Sm/Nd has been ascribed either to a `hidden' reservoir in the Earth or to loss of an early-formed terrestrial crust by impact ablation. Since removal of crust by ablation would also remove the heat-producing elements--potassium, uranium and thorium--such removal would make it extremely difficult to balance terrestrial heat production with the observed heat flow. In the `hidden' reservoir alternative, a complementary low-Sm/Nd layer is usually considered to reside unobserved in the silicate lower mantle. We have previously shown, however, that the core is a likely reservoir for some lithophile elements such as niobium. We therefore address the question of whether core formation could have fractionated Nd from Sm and also acted as a sink for heat-producing elements. We show here that addition of a reduced Mercury-like body (or, alternatively, an enstatite-chondrite-like body) rich in sulfur to the early Earth would generate a superchondritic Sm/Nd in the mantle and an 142Nd/144Nd anomaly of approximately +14 parts per million relative to chondrite. In addition, the sulfur-rich core would partition uranium strongly and thorium slightly, supplying a substantial part of the `missing' heat source for the geodynamo.

  18. A Mercury-like component of early Earth yields uranium in the core and high mantle (142)Nd.

    PubMed

    Wohlers, Anke; Wood, Bernard J

    2015-04-16

    Recent (142)Nd isotope data indicate that the silicate Earth (its crust plus the mantle) has a samarium to neodymium elemental ratio (Sm/Nd) that is greater than that of the supposed chondritic building blocks of the planet. This elevated Sm/Nd has been ascribed either to a 'hidden' reservoir in the Earth or to loss of an early-formed terrestrial crust by impact ablation. Since removal of crust by ablation would also remove the heat-producing elements--potassium, uranium and thorium--such removal would make it extremely difficult to balance terrestrial heat production with the observed heat flow. In the 'hidden' reservoir alternative, a complementary low-Sm/Nd layer is usually considered to reside unobserved in the silicate lower mantle. We have previously shown, however, that the core is a likely reservoir for some lithophile elements such as niobium. We therefore address the question of whether core formation could have fractionated Nd from Sm and also acted as a sink for heat-producing elements. We show here that addition of a reduced Mercury-like body (or, alternatively, an enstatite-chondrite-like body) rich in sulfur to the early Earth would generate a superchondritic Sm/Nd in the mantle and an (142)Nd/(144)Nd anomaly of approximately +14 parts per million relative to chondrite. In addition, the sulfur-rich core would partition uranium strongly and thorium slightly, supplying a substantial part of the 'missing' heat source for the geodynamo.

  19. EarthShape: A Strategy for Investigating the Role of Biota on Surface Processes

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Ehlers, T. A.; von Blanckenburg, F.; Übernickel, K.; Paulino, L.

    2016-12-01

    EarthShape - "Earth surface shaping by biota" is a 6-year priority research program funded by the German science foundation (DFG-SPP 1803) that performs soil- and landscape-scale critical zone research at 4 locations along a climate gradient in the Chilean Coastal Cordillera. This region was selected because of its north-south orientation such that it captures a large ecological and climate gradient ranging from hyper-arid to temperate to humid conditions. The sites comprise granitic, previously unglaciated mountain ranges. EarthShape involves an interdisciplinary collaboration between geologists, geomorphologists, ecologists, soil scientists, microbiologists, geophysicists, geochemists, and hydrogeologists including 18 German and 8 Chilean institutions. EarthShape is composed of 4 research clusters representing the process chain from weathering of substrate to deposition of eroded material. Cluster 1 explores micro-biota as the "weathering engine". Investigations in this cluster quantify different mechanisms of biogenic weathering whereby plants, fungi, and bacteria interact with rock in the production of soil. Cluster 2 explores bio-mediated redistribution of material within the weathering zone. Studies in this cluster focus on soil catenas along hill slope profiles to investigate the modification of matter along its transport path. Cluster 3 explores biotic modulation of erosion and sediment routing at the catchment scale. Investigations in this cluster explore the effects of vegetation cover on solute and sediment transport from hill slopes to the channel network. Cluster 4 explores the depositional legacy of coupled biogenic and Earth surface systems. This cluster investigates records of vegetation-land surface interactions in different depositional settings. A final component of EarthShape lies in the integration of results from these 4 clusters using numerical models to bridging between the diverse times scales used by different disciplines.

  20. Techno-Economic Assessment for Integrating Biosorption into Rare Earth Recovery Process

    SciT

    Jiao, Yongqin; Sutherland, John; Jin, Hongyue

    The current uncertainty in the global supply of rare earth elements (REEs) necessitates the development of novel extraction technologies that utilize a variety of REE source materials. Herein, we examined the techno-economic performance of integrating a biosorption approach into a large-scale process for producing salable total rare earth oxides (TREOs) from various feedstocks. An airlift bioractor is proposed to carry out a biosorption process mediated by bioengineered rare earth-adsorbing bacteria. Techno-econmic asssements were compared for three distinctive categories of REE feedstocks requiring different pre-processing steps. Key parameters identified that affect profitability include REE concentration, composition of the feedstock, and costsmore » of feedstock pretreatment and waste management. Among the 11 specific feedstocks investigated, coal ash from the Appalachian Basin was projected to be the most profitable, largely due to its high-value REE content. Its cost breakdown includes pre-processing (primarily leaching) (8077.71%), biosorption (1619.04%), and oxalic acid precipitation and TREO roasting (3.35%). Surprisingly, biosorption from the high-grade Bull Hill REE ore is less profitable due to high material cost and low production revenue. Overall, our results confirmed that the application of biosorption to low-grade feedstocks for REE recovery is economically viable.« less

  1. Tin isotope fractionation during magmatic processes and the isotope composition of the bulk silicate Earth

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Wang, Xueying; Amet, Quentin; Fitoussi, Caroline; Bourdon, Bernard

    2018-05-01

    Tin is a moderately volatile element whose isotope composition can be used to investigate Earth and planet differentiation and the early history of the Solar System. Although the Sn stable isotope composition of several geological and archaeological samples has been reported, there is currently scarce information about the effect of igneous processes on Sn isotopes. In this study, high-precision Sn isotope measurements of peridotites and basalts were obtained by MC-ICP-MS with a double-spike technique. The basalt samples display small variations in δ124/116Sn ranging from -0.01 ± 0.11 to 0.27 ± 0.11‰ (2 s.d.) relative to NIST SRM 3161a standard solution, while peridotites have more dispersed and more negative δ124Sn values ranging from -1.04 ± 0.11 to -0.07 ± 0.11‰ (2 s.d.). Overall, basalts are enriched in heavy Sn isotopes relative to peridotites. In addition, δ124Sn in peridotites become more negative with increasing degrees of melt depletion. These results can be explained by different partitioning behavior of Sn4+ and Sn2+ during partial melting. Sn4+ is overall more incompatible than Sn2+ during partial melting, resulting in Sn4+-rich silicate melt and Sn2+-rich residue. As Sn4+ has been shown experimentally to be enriched in heavy isotopes relative to Sn2+, the effect of melting is to enrich residual peridotites in relatively more compatible Sn2+, which results in isotopically lighter peridotites and isotopically heavier mantle-derived melts. This picture can be disturbed partly by the effect of refertilization. Similarly, the presence of enriched components such as recycled oceanic crust or sediments could explain part of the variations in Sn isotopes in oceanic basalts. The most primitive peridotite analyzed in this study was used for estimating the Sn isotope composition of the BSE, with δ124Sn = -0.08 ± 0.11‰ (2 s.d.) relative to the Sn NIST SRM 3161a standard solution. Altogether, this suggests that Sn isotopes may be a powerful probe of

  2. Earth Observations for Early Detection of Agricultural Drought in Countries at Risk: Contributions of the Famine Early Warning Systems Network (FEWS NET) (Invited)

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Verdin, J. P.; Rowland, J.; Senay, G. B.; Funk, C. C.; Budde, M. E.; Husak, G. J.; Jayanthi, H.

    2013-12-01

    The Group on Earth Observations' Global Agricultural Monitoring (GEOGLAM) implementation plan emphasizes the information needs of countries at risk of food insecurity emergencies. Countries in this category are often vulnerable to disruption of agricultural production due to drought, while at the same time they lack well developed networks of in-situ observations to support early drought detection. Consequently, it is vital that Earth observations by satellites supplement those available from surface stations. The USGS, in its role as a FEWS NET implementing partner, has recently developed a number of new applications of satellite observations for this purpose. (1) In partnership with the University of California, Santa Barbara, a 30+ year time series of gridded precipitation estimates (CHIRPS) has been developed by blending NOAA GridSat B1 geostationary thermal infrared imagery with station observations using robust geostatistical methods. The core data set consists of pentadal (5-daily) accumulations from 1981-2013 at 0.05 degree spatial resolution between +/- 50 degrees latitude. Validation has been recently completed, and applications for gridded crop water balance calculations and mapping the Standardized Precipitation Index are in development. (2) Actual evapotranspiration (ETa) estimates using MODIS Land Surface Temperature (LST) data at 1-km have been successfully demonstrated using the operational Simplified Surface Energy Balance model with 8-day composites from the LPDAAC. A new, next-day latency implementation using daily LST swath data from the NASA LANCE server is in development for all the crop growing regions of the world. This ETa processing chain follows in the footsteps of (3) the expedited production of MODIS 250-meter NDVI images every five days at USGS EROS, likewise using LANCE daily swath data as input since 2010. Coverage includes Africa, Central Asia, the Middle East, Central America, and the Caribbean. (4) A surface water point monitoring

  3. The composition of the primitive atmosphere and the synthesis of organic compounds on the early Earth

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Bada, J. L.; Miller, S. L.

    1985-01-01

    The generally accepted theory for the origin of life on the Earth requires that a large variety of organic compounds be present to form the first living organisms and to provide the energy sources for primitive life either directly or through various fermentation reactions. This can provide a strong constraint on discussions of the formation of the Earth and on the composition of the primitive atmosphere. In order for substantial amounts of organic compounds to have been present on the prebiological Earth, certain conditions must have existed. There is a large body of literature on the prebiotic synthesis of organic compounds in various postulated atmospheres. In this mixture of abiotically synthesized organic compounds, the amino acids are of special interest since they are utilized by modern organisms to synthesize structural materials and a large array of catalytic peptides.

  4. Emotional words facilitate lexical but not early visual processing.

    PubMed

    Trauer, Sophie M; Kotz, Sonja A; Müller, Matthias M

    2015-12-12

    Emotional scenes and faces have shown to capture and bind visual resources at early sensory processing stages, i.e. in early visual cortex. However, emotional words have led to mixed results. In the current study ERPs were assessed simultaneously with steady-state visual evoked potentials (SSVEPs) to measure attention effects on early visual activity in emotional word processing. Neutral and negative words were flickered at 12.14 Hz whilst participants performed a Lexical Decision Task. Emotional word content did not modulate the 12.14 Hz SSVEP amplitude, neither did word lexicality. However, emotional words affected the ERP. Negative compared to neutral words as well as words compared to pseudowords lead to enhanced deflections in the P2 time range indicative of lexico-semantic access. The N400 was reduced for negative compared to neutral words and enhanced for pseudowords compared to words indicating facilitated semantic processing of emotional words. LPC amplitudes reflected word lexicality and thus the task-relevant response. In line with previous ERP and imaging evidence, the present results indicate that written emotional words are facilitated in processing only subsequent to visual analysis.

  5. False Negatives for Remote Life Detection on Ocean-Bearing Planets: Lessons from the Early Earth

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Reinhard, Christopher T.; Olson, Stephanie L.; Schwieterman, Edward W.; Lyons, Timothy W.

    2017-04-01

    Ocean-atmosphere chemistry on Earth has undergone dramatic evolutionary changes throughout its long history, with potentially significant ramifications for the emergence and long-term stability of atmospheric biosignatures. Though a great deal of work has centered on refining our understanding of false positives for remote life detection, much less attention has been paid to the possibility of false negatives, that is, cryptic biospheres that are widespread and active on a planet's surface but are ultimately undetectable or difficult to detect in the composition of a planet's atmosphere. Here, we summarize recent developments from geochemical proxy records and Earth system models that provide insight into the long-term evolution of the most readily detectable potential biosignature gases on Earth - oxygen (O2), ozone (O3), and methane (CH4). We suggest that the canonical O2-CH4 disequilibrium biosignature would perhaps have been challenging to detect remotely during Earth's ˜4.5-billion-year history and that in general atmospheric O2/O3 levels have been a poor proxy for the presence of Earth's biosphere for all but the last ˜500 million years. We further suggest that detecting atmospheric CH4 would have been problematic for most of the last ˜2.5 billion years of Earth's history. More broadly, we stress that internal oceanic recycling of biosignature gases will often render surface biospheres on ocean-bearing silicate worlds cryptic, with the implication that the planets most conducive to the development and maintenance of a pervasive biosphere will often be challenging to characterize via conventional atmospheric biosignatures.

  6. Early evolution of the Earth: Accretion, atmosphere formation, and thermal history

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Abe, Yutaka; Matsui, Takafumi

    1986-03-01

    Atmospheric and thermal evolution of the earth growing by planetesimal impacts was modeled by taking into account the blanketing effect of an impact-induced H2O atmosphere and the temperature dependence of H2O degassing. When the water content of planetesimals is larger than 0.1% by weight and the accretion time of the earth is less than 5 × 107 years, the surface of the accreting earth melts and thus a “magma ocean” forms and covers the surface. The formation of a “magma ocean” will result in the initiation of core-mantle separation and mantle differentiation during accretion. Once a magma ocean is formed, the surface temperature, the degree of melting in the magma ocean, and the mass of the H2O atmosphere are nearly constant as the protoplanet grows further. The final mass of the H2O atmosphere is about 1021 kg, a value which is insensitive to variations in the model parameter values such as the accretion time and the water content of planetesimals. That the final mass of the H2O atmosphere is close to the mass of the present oceans suggests an impact origin for the earth's hydrosphere. On the other hand, most of the H2O retained in planetesimals will be deposited in the solid earth. Free water within the proto-earth may affect differentiation of the proto-mantle, in particular, the mantle FeO abundance and the incorporation of a light element in the outer core.

  7. False Negatives for Remote Life Detection on Ocean-Bearing Planets: Lessons from the Early Earth.

    PubMed

    Reinhard, Christopher T; Olson, Stephanie L; Schwieterman, Edward W; Lyons, Timothy W

    2017-04-01

    Ocean-atmosphere chemistry on Earth has undergone dramatic evolutionary changes throughout its long history, with potentially significant ramifications for the emergence and long-term stability of atmospheric biosignatures. Though a great deal of work has centered on refining our understanding of false positives for remote life detection, much less attention has been paid to the possibility of false negatives, that is, cryptic biospheres that are widespread and active on a planet's surface but are ultimately undetectable or difficult to detect in the composition of a planet's atmosphere. Here, we summarize recent developments from geochemical proxy records and Earth system models that provide insight into the long-term evolution of the most readily detectable potential biosignature gases on Earth-oxygen (O 2 ), ozone (O 3 ), and methane (CH 4 ). We suggest that the canonical O 2 -CH 4 disequilibrium biosignature would perhaps have been challenging to detect remotely during Earth's ∼4.5-billion-year history and that in general atmospheric O 2 /O 3 levels have been a poor proxy for the presence of Earth's biosphere for all but the last ∼500 million years. We further suggest that detecting atmospheric CH 4 would have been problematic for most of the last ∼2.5 billion years of Earth's history. More broadly, we stress that internal oceanic recycling of biosignature gases will often render surface biospheres on ocean-bearing silicate worlds cryptic, with the implication that the planets most conducive to the development and maintenance of a pervasive biosphere will often be challenging to characterize via conventional atmospheric biosignatures. Key Words: Biosignatures-Oxygen-Methane-Ozone-Exoplanets-Planetary habitability. Astrobiology 17, 287-297.

  8. The accelerations of the earth and moon from early astronomical observations

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Muller, P. M.; Stephenson, F. R.

    1975-01-01

    An investigation has compiled a very large amount of data on central or near central solar eclipses as recorded in four principal ancient sources (Greek and Roman classics, medieval European chronicles, Chinese annals and astronomical treatises, and Late Babylonian astronomical texts) and applied careful data selectivity criteria and statistical methods to obtain reliable dates, magnitudes, and places of observation of the events, and thereby made estimates of the earth acceleration and lunar acceleration. The basic conclusion is that the lunar acceleration and both tidal and nontidal earth accelerations have been essentially constant during the period from 1375 B.C. to the present.

  9. Two Processes in Early Bimanual Motor Skill Learning

    PubMed Central

    Yeganeh Doost, Maral; Orban de Xivry, Jean-Jacques; Bihin, Benoît; Vandermeeren, Yves

    2017-01-01

    Most daily activities are bimanual and their efficient performance requires learning and retention of bimanual coordination. Despite in-depth knowledge of the various stages of motor skill learning in general, how new bimanual coordination control policies are established is still unclear. We designed a new cooperative bimanual task in which subjects had to move a cursor across a complex path (a circuit) as fast and as accurately as possible through coordinated bimanual movements. By looking at the transfer of the skill between different circuits and by looking at training with varying circuits, we identified two processes in early bimanual motor learning. Loss of performance due to the switch in circuit after 15 min of training amounted to 20%, which suggests that a significant portion of improvements in bimanual performance is specific to the used circuit (circuit-specific skill). In contrast, the loss of performance due to the switch in circuit was 5% after 4 min of training. This suggests that learning the new bimanual coordination control policy dominates early in the training and is independent of the used circuit. Finally, switching between two circuits throughout training did not affect the early stage of learning (i.e., the first few minutes), but did affect the later stage. Together, these results suggest that early bimanual motor skill learning includes two different processes. Learning the new bimanual coordination control policy predominates in the first minutes whereas circuit-specific skill improvements unfold later in parallel with further improvements in the bimanual coordination control policy. PMID:29326573

  10. Applications notice. [application of space techniques to earth resources, environment management, and space processing

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    1978-01-01

    The discipline programs of the Space and Terrestrial (S&T) Applications Program are described and examples of research areas of current interest are given. Application of space techniques to improve conditions on earth are summarized. Discipline programs discussed include: resource observations; environmental observations; communications; materials processing in space; and applications systems/information systems. Format information on submission of unsolicited proposals for research related to the S&T Applications Program are given.

  11. Radar Imaging of Europa's Subsurface Properties and Processes: The View from Earth

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Blankenship, D. D.; Moore, W. B.; Young, D. A.; Peters, M. E.

    2007-12-01

    A primary objective of future Europa studies will be to characterize the distribution of shallow subsurface water as well as to identify any ice-ocean interface. Another objective will be to understand the formation of surface and subsurface features associated with interchange processes between any ocean and the surface. Achieving these objectives will require either direct or inferred knowledge of the position of any ice/water interfaces as well as any brine or layer pockets. We will review the hypothesized processes that control the thermal, compositional and structural (TCS) properties, and therefore the dielectric character, of the subsurface of Europa's icy shell. Our approach will be to extract the TCS properties for various subsurface processes thought to control the formation of major surface (e.g., ridges/bands, lenticulae, chaos, cratering...) and subsurface (e.g., rigid shell eutectics, diapirs, accretionary lenses ...) features on Europa. We will then assess the spectrum of analog processes and TCS properties represented by Earth's cryosphere including both Arctic and Antarctic ice sheets, ice shelves and valley glaciers. There are few complete analogs over the full TCS space but, because of the wide range of ice thickness, impurities and strain rates for Earth's cryosphere, there are many more analogs than many Earth and planetary researchers might imagine for significant portions of this space (e.g., bottom crevasses, marine ice shelf/subglacial lake accretion, surging polythermal glaciers...).Our ultimate objective is to use these Earth analog studies to define the radar imaging approach for Europa's subsurface that will be most useful for supporting/refuting the hypotheses for the formation of major surface/subsurface features as well as for "pure" exploration of Europa's icy shell and its interface with the underlying ocean.

  12. Solid Waste Processing: An Essential Technology for the Early Phases of Mars Exploration and Colonization

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Wignarajah, Kanapathipillai; Pisharody, Suresh; Fisher, John; Flynn, Michael; Kliss, Mark (Technical Monitor)

    1997-01-01

    Terraforming of Mars is the long-term goal of colonization of Mars. However, this process is likely to be a very slow process and conservative estimates involving a synergic, technocentric approach estimate that it may take around 10,000 years before the planet can be parallel to that of Earth and where humans can live in open systems. Hence, any early missions will require the presence of a closed life support system where all wastes, both solids and liquids, will need to be recycled or where all consumables will need to be supplied. The economics of both are often a matter of speculation and conjecture, but some attempt is made here to evaluate the choice. If a choice is made to completely resupply and eject the waste mass, a number of unknown issues are at hand. On the other hand, processing of the wastes, will enable predictability and reliability of the ecosystem. Solid wastes though smaller in volume and mass than the liquid wastes contains more than 90% of the essential elements required by humans and plants. Further, if left unprocessed they present a serious risk to human health. This paper presents the use of well established technology in processing solid wastes, ensuring that the biogeochemical cycles of ecosystems are maintained, reliability of the closed life support system maintained and the establishment of the early processes necessary for the permanent presence of humans on Mars.

  13. From pattern to process: The strategy of the Earth Observing System: Volume 2: EOS Science Steering Committee report

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    1987-01-01

    The Earth Observing System (EOS) represents a new approach to the study of the Earth. It consists of remotely sensed and correlative in situ observations designed to address important, interrelated global-scale processes. There is an urgent need to study the Earth as a complete, integrated system in order to understand and predict changes caused by human activities and natural processes. The EOS approach is based on an information system concept and designed to provide a long-term study of the Earth using a variety of measurement methods from both operational and research satellite payloads and continuing ground-based Earth science studies. The EOS concept builds on the foundation of the earlier, single-discipline space missions designed for relatively short observation periods. Continued progress in our understanding of the Earth as a system will come from EOS observations spanning several decades using a variety of contemporaneous measurements.

  14. False Negatives for Remote Life Detection on Ocean-Bearing Planets: Lessons from the Early Earth

    PubMed Central

    Olson, Stephanie L.; Schwieterman, Edward W.; Lyons, Timothy W.

    2017-01-01

    Abstract Ocean-atmosphere chemistry on Earth has undergone dramatic evolutionary changes throughout its long history, with potentially significant ramifications for the emergence and long-term stability of atmospheric biosignatures. Though a great deal of work has centered on refining our understanding of false positives for remote life detection, much less attention has been paid to the possibility of false negatives, that is, cryptic biospheres that are widespread and active on a planet's surface but are ultimately undetectable or difficult to detect in the composition of a planet's atmosphere. Here, we summarize recent developments from geochemical proxy records and Earth system models that provide insight into the long-term evolution of the most readily detectable potential biosignature gases on Earth—oxygen (O2), ozone (O3), and methane (CH4). We suggest that the canonical O2-CH4 disequilibrium biosignature would perhaps have been challenging to detect remotely during Earth's ∼4.5-billion-year history and that in general atmospheric O2/O3 levels have been a poor proxy for the presence of Earth's biosphere for all but the last ∼500 million years. We further suggest that detecting atmospheric CH4 would have been problematic for most of the last ∼2.5 billion years of Earth's history. More broadly, we stress that internal oceanic recycling of biosignature gases will often render surface biospheres on ocean-bearing silicate worlds cryptic, with the implication that the planets most conducive to the development and maintenance of a pervasive biosphere will often be challenging to characterize via conventional atmospheric biosignatures. Key Words: Biosignatures—Oxygen—Methane—Ozone—Exoplanets—Planetary habitability. Astrobiology 17, 287–297. PMID:28418704

  15. The Influence of the Early Retirement Process on Satisfaction with Early Retirement and Psychological Well-Being

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Potocnik, Kristina; Tordera, Nuria; Peiro, Jose Maria

    2010-01-01

    The present study explores the influence of the early retirement process on adjustment to early retirement, taking into account the roles of individual characteristics and social context in this process. We proposed a systematic model integrating perceived ability to continue working, organizational pressures toward early retirement and group…

  16. Processing of Phosphorus Slag with Recovery of Rare Earth Metals and Obtaining Silicon Containing Cake

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Karshigina, Zaure; Abisheva, Zinesh; Bochevskaya, Yelena; Akcil, Ata; Sharipova, Aynash; Sargelova, Elmira

    2016-10-01

    The present research is devoted to the processing of slag generating during the yellow phosphorus production. In this paper are presented studies on leaching of phosphorus production slag by nitric acid with recovery of rare earth metals (REMs) into solution. REMs recovery into the solution achieved 98 % during the leaching process with using 7.5 mol/L of HNO3, liquid-to-solid ratio is 2.6:1, temperature is 60°C, process duration is 1 hour and stirrer speed is 500 rpm. Behaviour during the leaching of associated components such as calcium, aluminium, and iron was studied. After the leaching cake contains ∼⃒75-85 % of SiO2 and it might be useful for obtaining of precipitated silicon dioxide. With the purpose of separation from the impurities, recovery and concentrating of REMs, the obtained solution after leaching was subjected to extraction processing methods. The influence of ratio of organic and aqueous phases (O: A) on the extraction of rare earth metals by tributyl phosphate (TBP) with concentrations from 20 up to 100 % was studied. The REMs extraction with increasing TBP concentration under changes O:A ratio from 1:20 down to 1:1 into the organic phase from the solutions after nitric acid leaching increased from 22.2 up to 99.3%. The duration effect of REMs extraction process was studied by tributyl phosphate. It is revealed that with increasing of duration of the extraction process from 10 to 30 minutes REMs recovery into the organic phase almost did not changed. The behaviour of iron in the extraction process by TBP was studied. It was found that such accompanying components as calcium and aluminium by tributyl phosphate didn't extracted. To construct isotherm of REMs extraction of by tributyl phosphate was used variable volume method. It was calculated three-step extraction is needed for REMs recovery from the solutions after nitric acid leaching of phosphorus production slag. The process of the three-steps counter current extraction of rare earth

  17. Early Mission Maneuver Operations for the Deep Space Climate Observatory Sun-Earth L1 Libration Point Mission

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Roberts, Craig; Case, Sara; Reagoso, John; Webster, Cassandra

    2015-01-01

    The Deep Space Climate Observatory mission launched on February 11, 2015, and inserted onto a transfer trajectory toward a Lissajous orbit around the Sun-Earth L1 libration point. This paper presents an overview of the baseline transfer orbit and early mission maneuver operations leading up to the start of nominal science orbit operations. In particular, the analysis and performance of the spacecraft insertion, mid-course correction maneuvers, and the deep-space Lissajous orbit insertion maneuvers are discussed, com-paring the baseline orbit with actual mission results and highlighting mission and operations constraints..

  18. Pyrite-Induced Hydrogen Peroxide Formation as a Driving Force in the Evolution of Photosynthetic Organisms on an Early Earth

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Borda, Michael J.; Elsetinow, Alicia R.; Schoonen, Martin A.; Strongin, Daniel R.

    2001-09-01

    The remarkable discovery of pyrite-induced hydrogen peroxide (H2O2) provides a key step in the evolution of oxygenic photosynthesis. Here we show that H2O2 can be generated rapidly via a reaction between pyrite and H2O in the absence of dissolved oxygen. The reaction proceeds in the dark, and H2O2 levels increase upon illumination with visible light. Since pyrite was stable in most photic environments prior to the rise of O2 levels, this finding represents an important mechanism for the formation of H2O2 on early Earth.

  19. The Impact of Early Bilingualism on Face Recognition Processes.

    PubMed

    Kandel, Sonia; Burfin, Sabine; Méary, David; Ruiz-Tada, Elisa; Costa, Albert; Pascalis, Olivier

    2016-01-01

    Early linguistic experience has an impact on the way we decode audiovisual speech in face-to-face communication. The present study examined whether differences in visual speech decoding could be linked to a broader difference in face processing. To identify a phoneme we have to do an analysis of the speaker's face to focus on the relevant cues for speech decoding (e.g., locating the mouth with respect to the eyes). Face recognition processes were investigated through two classic effects in face recognition studies: the Other-Race Effect (ORE) and the Inversion Effect. Bilingual and monolingual participants did a face recognition task with Caucasian faces (own race), Chinese faces (other race), and cars that were presented in an Upright or Inverted position. The results revealed that monolinguals exhibited the classic ORE. Bilinguals did not. Overall, bilinguals were slower than monolinguals. These results suggest that bilinguals' face processing abilities differ from monolinguals'. Early exposure to more than one language may lead to a perceptual organization that goes beyond language processing and could extend to face analysis. We hypothesize that these differences could be due to the fact that bilinguals focus on different parts of the face than monolinguals, making them more efficient in other race face processing but slower. However, more studies using eye-tracking techniques are necessary to confirm this explanation.

  20. NASA Remote Sensing Data in Earth Sciences: Processing, Archiving, Distribution, Applications at the GES DISC

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Leptoukh, Gregory G.

    2005-01-01

    The NASA Goddard Earth Sciences Data and Information Services Center (GES DISC) is one of the major Distributed Active Archive Centers (DAACs) archiving and distributing remote sensing data from the NASA's Earth Observing System. In addition to providing just data, the GES DISC/DAAC has developed various value-adding processing services. A particularly useful service is data processing a t the DISC (i.e., close to the input data) with the users' algorithms. This can take a number of different forms: as a configuration-managed algorithm within the main processing stream; as a stand-alone program next to the on-line data storage; as build-it-yourself code within the Near-Archive Data Mining (NADM) system; or as an on-the-fly analysis with simple algorithms embedded into the web-based tools (to avoid downloading unnecessary all the data). The existing data management infrastructure at the GES DISC supports a wide spectrum of options: from data subsetting data spatially and/or by parameter to sophisticated on-line analysis tools, producing economies of scale and rapid time-to-deploy. Shifting processing and data management burden from users to the GES DISC, allows scientists to concentrate on science, while the GES DISC handles the data management and data processing at a lower cost. Several examples of successful partnerships with scientists in the area of data processing and mining are presented.

  1. EarthShape: A Strategy for Investigating the Role of Biota on Surface Processes

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Übernickel, Kirstin; Ehlers, Todd Alan; von Blanckenburg, Friedhelm; Paulino, Leandro

    2017-04-01

    EarthShape - "Earth surface shaping by biota" is a 6-year priority research program funded by the German science foundation (DFG-SPP 1803) that performs soil- and landscape-scale critical zone research at 4 locations along a climate gradient in Chile, South America. The program is in its first year and involves an interdisciplinary collaboration between geologists, geomorphologists, ecologists, soil scientists, microbiologists, geophysicists, geochemists, hydrogeologists and climatologists including 18 German and 8 Chilean institutions. EarthShape is composed of 4 research clusters representing the process chain from weathering of substrate to deposition of eroded material. Cluster 1 explores micro-biota as the "weathering engine". Investigations in this cluster quantify different mechanisms of biogenic weathering whereby plants, fungi, and bacteria interact with rock in the production of soil. Cluster 2 explores bio-mediated redistribution of material within the weathering zone. Studies in this cluster focus on soil catenas along hill slope profiles to investigate the modification of matter along its transport path. Cluster 3 explores biotic modulation of erosion and sediment routing at the catchment scale. Investigations in this cluster explore the effects of vegetation cover on solute and sediment transport from hill slopes to the channel network. Cluster 4 explores the depositional legacy of coupled biogenic and Earth surface systems. This cluster investigates records of vegetation-land surface interactions in different depositional settings. A final component of EarthShape lies in the integration of results from these 4 clusters using numerical models to bridging between the diverse times scales used by different disciplines. The Chilean Coastal Cordillera between 25° and 40°S was selected to carry out this research because its north-south orientation captures a large ecological and climate gradient. This gradient ranges from hyper-arid (Atacama desert) to

  2. Processes of Early Childhood Interventions to Adult Well-Being.

    PubMed

    Reynolds, Arthur J; Ou, Suh-Ruu; Mondi, Christina F; Hayakawa, Momoko

    2017-03-01

    This article describes the contributions of cognitive-scholastic advantage, family support behavior, and school quality and support as processes through which early childhood interventions promote well-being. Evidence in support of these processes is from longitudinal cohort studies of the Child-Parent Centers and other preventive interventions beginning by age 4. Relatively large effects of participation have been documented for school readiness skills at age 5, parent involvement, K-12 achievement, remedial education, educational attainment, and crime prevention. The three processes account for up to half of the program impacts on well-being. They also help to explain the positive economic returns of many effective programs. The generalizability of these processes is supported by a sizable knowledge base, including a scale up of the Child-Parent Centers. © 2017 The Authors. Child Development © 2017 Society for Research in Child Development, Inc.

  3. Marking Tests to Certify Part Identification Processes for Use in Low Earth Orbit

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Roxby, D. L.

    2015-01-01

    The primary purpose for the MISSE marking tests was to define Data Matrix symbol marking processes that will remain readable after exposure to Low Earth Orbit environments. A wide range of different Data Matrix symbol marking processes and materials, including some still under development, were evaluated. The samples flown on MISSE 1 and 2 were in orbit for 3 years and 348 days, MISSE 3 and 4 were in orbit for 1 year and 15 days, MISSE 6 was in orbit for 1 year and 130 days, and MISSE 8 was in orbit for 2 years and 55 days. The initial MISSE marking tests clearly reflected that intrusive marking processes can be successfully used for this purpose. All of the intrusive marking processes tested exceeded program expectations and met 100 percent of the principle investigators objectives. However, subsequent tests demonstrated that some additive marking processes will also satisfy the requirements. This was an unexpected result.

  4. Applications of neural network methods to the processing of earth observation satellite data.

    PubMed

    Loyola, Diego G

    2006-03-01

    The new generation of earth observation satellites carries advanced sensors that will gather very precise data for studying the Earth system and global climate. This paper shows that neural network methods can be successfully used for solving forward and inverse remote sensing problems, providing both accurate and fast solutions. Two examples of multi-neural network systems for the determination of cloud properties and for the retrieval of total columns of ozone using satellite data are presented. The developed algorithms based on multi-neural network are currently being used for the operational processing of European atmospheric satellite sensors and will play a key role in related satellite missions planed for the near future.

  5. Origin of the Early Sial Crust and U-Pb Isotope-Geochemical Heterogeneity of the Earth's Mantle

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Mishkin, M. A.; Nozhkin, A. D.; Vovna, G. M.; Sakhno, V. G.; Veldemar, A. A.

    2018-02-01

    It is shown that presence of the Early Precambrian sial crust in the Indo-Atlantic segment of the Earth and its absence in the Pacific has been caused by geochemical differences in the mantle underlying these segments. These differences were examined on the basis of Nd-Hf and U-Pb isotopes in modern basalts. The U-Pb isotope system is of particular interest, since uranium is a member of a group of heat-generating radioactive elements providing heat for plumes. It is shown that in the Indo-Atlantic segment, a distribution of areas of the modern HIMU type mantle is typical, while it is almost completely absent in the Pacific segment. In the Archean, in the upper HIMU type paleo-mantle areas, plume generation and formation of the primordial basic crust occurred; this was followed by its remelting resulting in the appearance of an early sial crust forming cratons of the Indo-Atlantic segment.

  6. Using Statistical Process Control for detecting anomalies in multivariate spatiotemporal Earth Observations

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Flach, Milan; Mahecha, Miguel; Gans, Fabian; Rodner, Erik; Bodesheim, Paul; Guanche-Garcia, Yanira; Brenning, Alexander; Denzler, Joachim; Reichstein, Markus

    2016-04-01

    The number of available Earth observations (EOs) is currently substantially increasing. Detecting anomalous patterns in these multivariate time series is an important step in identifying changes in the underlying dynamical system. Likewise, data quality issues might result in anomalous multivariate data constellations and have to be identified before corrupting subsequent analyses. In industrial application a common strategy is to monitor production chains with several sensors coupled to some statistical process control (SPC) algorithm. The basic idea is to raise an alarm when these sensor data depict some anomalous pattern according to the SPC, i.e. the production chain is considered 'out of control'. In fact, the industrial applications are conceptually similar to the on-line monitoring of EOs. However, algorithms used in the context of SPC or process monitoring are rarely considered for supervising multivariate spatio-temporal Earth observations. The objective of this study is to exploit the potential and transferability of SPC concepts to Earth system applications. We compare a range of different algorithms typically applied by SPC systems and evaluate their capability to detect e.g. known extreme events in land surface processes. Specifically two main issues are addressed: (1) identifying the most suitable combination of data pre-processing and detection algorithm for a specific type of event and (2) analyzing the limits of the individual approaches with respect to the magnitude, spatio-temporal size of the event as well as the data's signal to noise ratio. Extensive artificial data sets that represent the typical properties of Earth observations are used in this study. Our results show that the majority of the algorithms used can be considered for the detection of multivariate spatiotemporal events and directly transferred to real Earth observation data as currently assembled in different projects at the European scale, e.g. http://baci-h2020.eu

  7. Gestalten of today: early processing of visual contours and surfaces.

    PubMed

    Kovács, I

    1996-12-01

    While much is known about the specialized, parallel processing streams of low-level vision that extract primary visual cues, there is only limited knowledge about the dynamic interactions between them. How are the fragments, caught by local analyzers, assembled together to provide us with a unified percept? How are local discontinuities in texture, motion or depth evaluated with respect to object boundaries and surface properties? These questions are presented within the framework of orientation-specific spatial interactions of early vision. Key observations of psychophysics, anatomy and neurophysiology on interactions of various spatial and temporal ranges are reviewed. Aspects of the functional architecture and possible neural substrates of local orientation-specific interactions are discussed, underlining their role in the integration of information across the visual field, and particularly in contour integration. Examples are provided demonstrating that global context, such as contour closure and figure-ground assignment, affects these local interactions. It is illustrated that figure-ground assignment is realized early in visual processing, and that the pattern of early interactions also brings about an effective and sparse coding of visual shape. Finally, it is concluded that the underlying functional architecture is not only dynamic and context dependent, but the pattern of connectivity depends as much on past experience as on actual stimulation.

  8. [Establishment of malaria early warning system in Jiangsu Province II application of digital earth system in malaria epidemic management and surveillance].

    PubMed

    Wang, Wei-Ming; Zhou, Hua-Yun; Liu, Yao-Bao; Li, Ju-Lin; Cao, Yuan-Yuan; Cao, Jun

    2013-04-01

    To explore a new mode of malaria elimination through the application of digital earth system in malaria epidemic management and surveillance. While we investigated the malaria cases and deal with the epidemic areas in Jiangsu Province in 2011, we used JISIBAO UniStrong G330 GIS data acquisition unit (GPS) to collect the latitude and longitude of the cases located, and then established a landmark library about early-warning areas and an image management system by using Google Earth Free 6.2 and its image processing software. A total of 374 malaria cases were reported in Jiangsu Province in 2011. Among them, there were 13 local vivax malaria cases, 11 imported vivax malaria cases from other provinces, 20 abroad imported vivax malaria cases, 309 abroad imported falciparum malaria cases, 7 abroad imported quartan malaria cases (Plasmodium malaria infection), and 14 abroad imported ovale malaria cases (P. ovale infection). Through the analysis of Google Earth Mapping system, these malaria cases showed a certain degree of aggregation except the abroad imported quartan malaria cases which were highly sporadic. The local vivax malaria cases mainly concentrated in Sihong County, the imported vivax malaria cases from other provinces mainly concentrated in Suzhou City and Wuxi City, the abroad imported vivax malaria cases concentrated in Nanjing City, the abroad imported falciparum malaria cases clustered in the middle parts of Jiangsu Province, and the abroad imported ovale malaria cases clustered in Liyang City. The operation of Google Earth Free 6.2 is simple, convenient and quick, which could help the public health authority to make the decision of malaria prevention and control, including the use of funds and other health resources.

  9. Early climate on earth-reduced gas models and early climate on Mars-reduced gas and obliquity models

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Toon, O. B.; Sagan, C.

    1978-01-01

    At high obliquity, Martian polar ground temperatures could exceed the melting point of ice for considerable periods of time (approximately 90 Earth days). Under special conditions ice itself might melt. Carbon dioxide adsorbed on the Martian regolith is not expected to buffer the seasonal pressure wave except in the unlikely event that the soil pore size is very large (50 micron). For a basaltic soil composition the maximum CO2 that could be desorbed over obliquity time scales due to thermal forces is a few millibars. At low obliquities the atmospheric pressures may drop, desorbing the soil. The only means to achieve higher CO2 pressures is to have much higher planet-wide temperatures due to some greenhouse effect, or to be at an epoch before the regolith or carbonates formed. The water ice budget between north and south polar caps was considered and summer sublimation rates imply that the ice could be exchanged between the poles during obliquity cycles. A critical factor in the polar cap water budget is the interaction of water and dust. The origin of the Martian polar laminae is probably due to variations in this interaction.

  10. EARTH SYSTEM ATLAS: A Platform for Access to Peer-Reviewed Information about process and change in the Earth System

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Sahagian, D.; Prentice, C.

    2004-12-01

    A great deal of time, effort and resources have been expended on global change research to date, but dissemination and visualization of the key pertinent data sets has been problematical. Toward that end, we are constructing an Earth System Atlas which will serve as a single compendium describing the state of the art in our understanding of the Earth system and how it has responded to and is likely to respond to natural and anthropogenic perturbations. The Atlas is an interactive web-based system of data bases and data manipulation tools and so is much more than a collection of pre-made maps posted on the web. It represents a tool for assembling, manipulating, and displaying specific data as selected and customized by the user. Maps are created "on the fly" according to user-specified instructions. The information contained in the Atlas represents the growing body of data assembled by the broader Earth system research community, and can be displayed in the form of maps and time series of the various relevant parameters that drive and are driven by changes in the Earth system at various time scales. The Atlas is designed to display the information assembled by the global change research community in the form of maps and time series of all the relevant parameters that drive or are driven by changes in the Earth System at various time scales. This will serve to provide existing data to the community, but also will help to highlight data gaps that may hinder our understanding of critical components of the Earth system. This new approach to handling Earth system data is unique in several ways. First and foremost, data must be peer-reviewed. Further, it is designed to draw on the expertise and products of extensive international research networks rather than on a limited number of projects or institutions. It provides explanatory explanations targeted to the user's needs, and the display of maps and time series can be customize by the user. In general, the Atlas is

  11. Basic abnormalities in visual processing affect face processing at an early age in autism spectrum disorder.

    PubMed

    Vlamings, Petra Hendrika Johanna Maria; Jonkman, Lisa Marthe; van Daalen, Emma; van der Gaag, Rutger Jan; Kemner, Chantal

    2010-12-15

    A detailed visual processing style has been noted in autism spectrum disorder (ASD); this contributes to problems in face processing and has been directly related to abnormal processing of spatial frequencies (SFs). Little is known about the early development of face processing in ASD and the relation with abnormal SF processing. We investigated whether young ASD children show abnormalities in low spatial frequency (LSF, global) and high spatial frequency (HSF, detailed) processing and explored whether these are crucially involved in the early development of face processing. Three- to 4-year-old children with ASD (n = 22) were compared with developmentally delayed children without ASD (n = 17). Spatial frequency processing was studied by recording visual evoked potentials from visual brain areas while children passively viewed gratings (HSF/LSF). In addition, children watched face stimuli with different expressions, filtered to include only HSF or LSF. Enhanced activity in visual brain areas was found in response to HSF versus LSF information in children with ASD, in contrast to control subjects. Furthermore, facial-expression processing was also primarily driven by detail in ASD. Enhanced visual processing of detailed (HSF) information is present early in ASD and occurs for neutral (gratings), as well as for socially relevant stimuli (facial expressions). These data indicate that there is a general abnormality in visual SF processing in early ASD and are in agreement with suggestions that a fast LSF subcortical face processing route might be affected in ASD. This could suggest that abnormal visual processing is causative in the development of social problems in ASD. Copyright © 2010 Society of Biological Psychiatry. Published by Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  12. Oxygen and hydrogen peroxide in the early evolution of life on earth: in silico comparative analysis of biochemical pathways.

    PubMed

    Slesak, Ireneusz; Slesak, Halina; Kruk, Jerzy

    2012-08-01

    In the Universe, oxygen is the third most widespread element, while on Earth it is the most abundant one. Moreover, oxygen is a major constituent of all biopolymers fundamental to living organisms. Besides O(2), reactive oxygen species (ROS), among them hydrogen peroxide (H(2)O(2)), are also important reactants in the present aerobic metabolism. According to a widely accepted hypothesis, aerobic metabolism and many other reactions/pathways involving O(2) appeared after the evolution of oxygenic photosynthesis. In this study, the hypothesis was formulated that the Last Universal Common Ancestor (LUCA) was at least able to tolerate O(2) and detoxify ROS in a primordial environment. A comparative analysis was carried out of a number of the O(2)-and H(2)O(2)-involving metabolic reactions that occur in strict anaerobes, facultative anaerobes, and aerobes. The results indicate that the most likely LUCA possessed O(2)-and H(2)O(2)-involving pathways, mainly reactions to remove ROS, and had, at least in part, the components of aerobic respiration. Based on this, the presence of a low, but significant, quantity of H(2)O(2) and O(2) should be taken into account in theoretical models of the early Archean atmosphere and oceans and the evolution of life. It is suggested that the early metabolism involving O(2)/H(2)O(2) was a key adaptation of LUCA to already existing weakly oxic zones in Earth's primordial environment.

  13. Integrative Mapping of Global-Scale Processes and Patterns on "Imaginary Earth" Continental Geometries: A Teaching Tool in an Earth History Course

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Sunderlin, David

    2009-01-01

    The complexity and interrelatedness of aspects of the geosciences is an important concept to convey in an undergraduate geoscience curriculum. A synthesis capstone project has served to integrate pattern-based learning of an introductory Earth History course into an active and process-based exercise in hypothesis production. In this exercise,…

  14. The Viability and Style of the Modern Plate-Tectonic Subduction Process in a Hotter Earth

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    van Hunen, J.; van den Berg, A.; Vlaar, N. J.

    2001-12-01

    The Earth was probably warmer during the Archean and Proterozoic, and a 50 to 300 K mantle temperature increase has been suggested. This resulted in a thicker basaltic oceanic crust and underlying harzburgitic layer, and increased buoyancy of the lithosphere. This phenomenon has raised questions about the style or even the existence of plate tectonics in a younger Earth. Buoyant, low-angle subduction (e.g. below overriding plates) could have been more important, but also alternative tectonic styles, such as small-scale layered convection within the thickened crust have been proposed. We conducted 2-D Cartesian numerical model calculations to quantify the viability of the subduction process for an Earth with a higher potential temperature.As the basalt-to-eclogite transition in the crust plays an important role in the buoyancy of the oceanic plate and slab, and therefore also in its propensity to subduct, the kinetics of this phase transition is included in the numerical model. One set of model results suggest that flat subduction below a continuously overriding lithosphere, or lithospheric doubling, can give rise to flat subduction up to a mantle temperature, which is not much higher (38 to 75 K) than today. An even hotter mantle is too weak to support the flat slab, so that fast, steep Benioff subduction develops. We performed another set of model calculations to examine the possibility of modern-style subduction in a hotter Earth, without extra driving forces such as lithospheric doubling. We use again the mechanism of lithospheric doubling, but only to trigger the subduction process, and switch it off after a few million years, when `active' subduction developes. For a mantle temperature increase up to 150 K, we find subduction to be essentially the same as today, but subduction rates increase with increasing mantle temperature and increasing eclogitisation rates. For a 225 K mantle temperature increase, considerable amounts of the dense eclogitic crust

  15. Impact Craters on Earth: Lessons for Understanding Martian Geological Materials and Processes

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Osinski, G. R.

    2015-12-01

    Impact cratering is one of the most ubiquitous geological processes in the Solar System and has had a significant influence on the geological evolution of Mars. Unlike the Moon and Mercury, the Martian impact cratering record is notably diverse, which is interpreted to reflect interactions during the impact process with target volatiles and/or the atmosphere. The Earth also possesses a volatile-rich crust and an atmosphere and so is one of the best analogues for understanding the effects of impact cratering on Mars. Furthermore, fieldwork at terrestrial craters and analysis of samples is critical to ground-truth observations made based on remote sensing data from Martian orbiters, landers, and rovers. In recent years, the effect of target lithology on various aspects of the impact cratering process has emerged as a major research topic. On Mars, volatiles have been invoked to be the primary factor influencing the morphology of ejecta deposits - e.g., the formation of single-, double- and multiple-layered ejecta deposits - and central uplifts - e.g., the formation of so-called "central pit" craters. Studies of craters on Earth have also shown that volatiles complicate the identification of impactites - i.e., rocks produced and/or affected by impact cratering. Identifying impactites on Earth is challenging, often requiring intensive and multi-technique laboratory analysis of hand specimens. As such, it is even more challenging to recognize such materials in remote datasets. Here, observations from the Haughton (d = 23 km; Canada), Ries (d = 24 km; Germany), Mistastin (d = 28 km; Canada), Tunnunik, (d = 28 km; Canada), and West Clearwater Lake (d = 36 km; Canada) impact structures are presented. First, it is shown that some impactites mimic intrusive, volcanic, volcanoclastic and in some cases sedimentary clastic rocks. Care should, therefore, be taken in the identification of seemingly unusual igneous rocks at rover landing sites as they may represent impact melt

  16. Comparative Analysis of Processes for Recovery of Rare Earths from Bauxite Residue

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Borra, Chenna Rao; Blanpain, Bart; Pontikes, Yiannis; Binnemans, Koen; Van Gerven, Tom

    2016-11-01

    Environmental concerns and lack of space suggest that the management of bauxite residue needs to be re-adressed. The utilization of the residue has thus become a topic high on the agenda for both academia and industry, yet, up to date, it is only rarely used. Nonetheless, recovery of rare earth elements (REEs) with or without other metals from bauxite residue, and utilization of the left-over residue in other applications like building materials may be a viable alternative to storage. Hence, different processes developed by the authors for recovery of REEs and other metals from bauxite residue were compared. In this study, preliminary energy and cost analyses were carried out to assess the feasibility of the processes. These analyses show that the combination of alkali roasting-smelting-quenching-leaching is a promising process for the treatment of bauxite residue and that it is justified to study this process at a pilot scale.

  17. Thermodynamic Investigation of the Reduction-Distillation Process for Rare Earth Metals Production

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Judge, W. D.; Azimi, G.

    2017-10-01

    Owing to their high vapor pressure, the four rare earth metals samarium, europium, thulium, and ytterbium are produced by reduction-distillation whereby their oxides are reduced with metallic lanthanum in vacuo, and the produced metal is subsequently vaporized off. Here, we performed a thorough thermodynamic investigation to establish a fundamental understanding of the reduction-distillation process. Thermodynamic functions including vapor pressures, Gibbs free energies, and enthalpies of reaction were calculated and compared with available experimental data. Furthermore, the kinetics of the process was explored and theoretical evaporation rates were calculated from thermodynamic data. The thermodynamic model developed in this work can help optimize processing conditions to maximize the yield and improve the overall process.

  18. Laboratory Studies of Survival Limits of Bacteria During Shock Compression: Application to Impacts on the Early Earth

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Willis, M. J.; Ahrens, T. J.; Bertani, L. E.; Nash, C. Z.

    2004-12-01

    Shock recovery experiments on suspensions of 106 mm-3 E. coli bacteria contained in water-based medium, within stainless steel containers, are used to simulate the impact environment of bacteria residing in water-filled cracks in rocks. Early Earth life is likely to have existed in such environments. Some 10-2 to 10-4 of the bacteria population survived initial (800 ns duration) shock pressures in water of 219 and 260 MPa. TEM images of shock recovered bacteria indicate cell wall indentations and rupture, possibly induced by inward invasion of medium into the cell wall. Notably cell wall rupture occurs dynamically at ˜0.1 times the static pressures E.coli have been demonstrated (Sharma et al., 2002) to survive and may be caused by Rayleigh-Taylor instabilities. We infer the invading fluid pressure may exceed the tensile strength of the cell wall. We assume the overpressures are limited to the initial shock pressure in water. Parameters for the Grady & Lipkin (1980) model of tensile failure versus time-scale (strain rate) are fit to present data, assuming that at low strain rates, overpressures exceeding cell Turgor pressure require ˜103 sec. This model, if validated by experiments at other timescales, may permit using short loading duration laboratory data to infer response of organisms to lower shock overpressures for the longer times (100 to 103 s) of planetary impacts. An Ahrens & O'Keefe (1987) shock attenuation model is then applied for Earth impactors. This model suggests that Earth impactors of radius 1.5 km induce shocks within water-filled cracks in rock to dynamic pressure such that stresses exceeding the survivability threshold of E. coli bacteria, to radii of 1.7-2.6×102 km. In contrast, a giant (1500 km radius) impactor produces a non survival zone for E. coli that encompasses the entire Earth.

  19. Final Report Collaborative Project. Improving the Representation of Coastal and Estuarine Processes in Earth System Models

    SciT

    Bryan, Frank; Dennis, John; MacCready, Parker

    This project aimed to improve long term global climate simulations by resolving and enhancing the representation of the processes involved in the cycling of freshwater through estuaries and coastal regions. This was a collaborative multi-institution project consisting of physical oceanographers, climate model developers, and computational scientists. It specifically targeted the DOE objectives of advancing simulation and predictive capability of climate models through improvements in resolution and physical process representation. The main computational objectives were: 1. To develop computationally efficient, but physically based, parameterizations of estuary and continental shelf mixing processes for use in an Earth System Model (CESM). 2. Tomore » develop a two-way nested regional modeling framework in order to dynamically downscale the climate response of particular coastal ocean regions and to upscale the impact of the regional coastal processes to the global climate in an Earth System Model (CESM). 3. To develop computational infrastructure to enhance the efficiency of data transfer between specific sources and destinations, i.e., a point-to-point communication capability, (used in objective 1) within POP, the ocean component of CESM.« less

  20. Uderstanding Snowball Earth Deglaciation

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Abbot, D. S.

    2012-12-01

    Earth, a normally clement planet comfortably in its star's habitable zone, suffered global or nearly global glaciation at least twice during the Neoproterozoic era (at about 635 and 710 million years ago). Viewed in the context of planetary evolution, these pan-global glaciations (Snowball Earth events) were extremely rapid, lasting only a few million years. The dramatic effect of the Snowball Earth events on the development of the planet can be seen through their link to rises in atmospheric oxygen and evolutionary innovations. These potential catastrophes on an otherwise clement planet can be used to gain insight into planetary habitability more generally. Since Earth is not currently a Snowball, a sound deglaciation mechanism is crucial for the viability of the Snowball Earth hypothesis. The traditional deglaciation mechanism is a massive build up of CO2 due to reduced weathering during Snowball Earth events until tropical surface temperatures reach the melting point. Once initiated, such a deglaciation might happen on a timescale of only dozens of thousands of years and would thrust Earth from the coldest climate in its history to the warmest. Therefore embedded in Snowball Earth events is an even more rapid and dramatic environmental change. Early global climate model simulations raised doubt about whether Snowball Earth deglaciation could be achieved at a CO2 concentration low enough to be consistent with geochemical data, which represented a potential challenge to the Snowball Earth hypothesis. Over the past few years dust and clouds have emerged as the essential missing additional processes that would allow Snowball Earth deglaciation at a low enough CO2 concentration. I will discuss the dust and cloud mechanisms and the modeling behind these ideas. This effort is critical for the broader implications of Snowball Earth events because understanding the specific deglaciation mechanism determines whether similar processes could happen on other planets.

  1. Archean greenstone-tonalite duality: Thermochemical mantle convection models or plate tectonics in the early Earth global dynamics?

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Kerrich, Robert; Polat, Ali

    2006-03-01

    Mantle convection and plate tectonics are one system, because oceanic plates are cold upper thermal boundary layers of the convection cells. As a corollary, Phanerozoic-style of plate tectonics or more likely a different version of it (i.e. a larger number of slowly moving plates, or similar number of faster plates) is expected to have operated in the hotter, vigorously convecting early Earth. Despite the recent advances in understanding the origin of Archean greenstone-granitoid terranes, the question regarding the operation of plate tectonics in the early Earth remains still controversial. Numerical model outputs for the Archean Earth range from predominantly shallow to flat subduction between 4.0 and 2.5 Ga and well-established steep subduction since 2.5 Ga [Abbott, D., Drury, R., Smith, W.H.F., 1994. Flat to steep transition in subduction style. Geology 22, 937-940], to no plate tectonics but rather foundering of 1000 km sectors of basaltic crust, then "resurfaced" by upper asthenospheric mantle basaltic melts that generate the observed duality of basalts and tonalities [van Thienen, P., van den Berg, A.P., Vlaar, N.J., 2004a. Production and recycling of oceanic crust in the early earth. Tectonophysics 386, 41-65; van Thienen, P., Van den Berg, A.P., Vlaar, N.J., 2004b. On the formation of continental silicic melts in thermochemical mantle convection models: implications for early Earth. Tectonophysics 394, 111-124]. These model outputs can be tested against the geological record. Greenstone belt volcanics are composites of komatiite-basalt plateau sequences erupted from deep mantle plumes and bimodal basalt-dacite sequences having the geochemical signatures of convergent margins; i.e. horizontally imbricated plateau and island arc crust. Greenstone belts from 3.8 to 2.5 Ga include volcanic types reported from Cenozoic convergent margins including: boninites; arc picrites; and the association of adakites-Mg andesites- and Nb-enriched basalts. Archean cratons

  2. Technology Readiness Level Assessment Process as Applied to NASA Earth Science Missions

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Leete, Stephen J.; Romero, Raul A.; Dempsey, James A.; Carey, John P.; Cline, Helmut P.; Lively, Carey F.

    2015-01-01

    Technology assessments of fourteen science instruments were conducted within NASA using the NASA Technology Readiness Level (TRL) Metric. The instruments were part of three NASA Earth Science Decadal Survey missions in pre-formulation. The Earth Systematic Missions Program (ESMP) Systems Engineering Working Group (SEWG), composed of members of three NASA Centers, provided a newly modified electronic workbook to be completed, with instructions. Each instrument development team performed an internal assessment of its technology status, prepared an overview of its instrument, and completed the workbook with the results of its assessment. A team from the ESMP SEWG met with each instrument team and provided feedback. The instrument teams then reported through the Program Scientist for their respective missions to NASA's Earth Science Division (ESD) on technology readiness, taking the SEWG input into account. The instruments were found to have a range of TRL from 4 to 7. Lessons Learned are presented; however, due to the competition-sensitive nature of the assessments, the results for specific missions are not presented. The assessments were generally successful, and produced useful results for the agency. The SEWG team identified a number of potential improvements to the process. Particular focus was on ensuring traceability to guiding NASA documents, including the NASA Systems Engineering Handbook. The TRL Workbook has been substantially modified, and the revised workbook is described.

  3. Utility-based early modulation of processing distracting stimulus information.

    PubMed

    Wendt, Mike; Luna-Rodriguez, Aquiles; Jacobsen, Thomas

    2014-12-10

    Humans are selective information processors who efficiently prevent goal-inappropriate stimulus information to gain control over their actions. Nonetheless, stimuli, which are both unnecessary for solving a current task and liable to cue an incorrect response (i.e., "distractors"), frequently modulate task performance, even when consistently paired with a physical feature that makes them easily discernible from target stimuli. Current models of cognitive control assume adjustment of the processing of distractor information based on the overall distractor utility (e.g., predictive value regarding the appropriate response, likelihood to elicit conflict with target processing). Although studies on distractor interference have supported the notion of utility-based processing adjustment, previous evidence is inconclusive regarding the specificity of this adjustment for distractor information and the stage(s) of processing affected. To assess the processing of distractors during sensory-perceptual phases we applied EEG recording in a stimulus identification task, involving successive distractor-target presentation, and manipulated the overall distractor utility. Behavioral measures replicated previously found utility modulations of distractor interference. Crucially, distractor-evoked visual potentials (i.e., posterior N1) were more pronounced in high-utility than low-utility conditions. This effect generalized to distractors unrelated to the utility manipulation, providing evidence for item-unspecific adjustment of early distractor processing to the experienced utility of distractor information. Copyright © 2014 the authors 0270-6474/14/3416720-06$15.00/0.

  4. An open source Bayesian Monte Carlo isotope mixing model with applications in Earth surface processes

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Arendt, Carli A.; Aciego, Sarah M.; Hetland, Eric A.

    2015-05-01

    The implementation of isotopic tracers as constraints on source contributions has become increasingly relevant to understanding Earth surface processes. Interpretation of these isotopic tracers has become more accessible with the development of Bayesian Monte Carlo (BMC) mixing models, which allow uncertainty in mixing end-members and provide methodology for systems with multicomponent mixing. This study presents an open source multiple isotope BMC mixing model that is applicable to Earth surface environments with sources exhibiting distinct end-member isotopic signatures. Our model is first applied to new δ18O and δD measurements from the Athabasca Glacier, which showed expected seasonal melt evolution trends and vigorously assessed the statistical relevance of the resulting fraction estimations. To highlight the broad applicability of our model to a variety of Earth surface environments and relevant isotopic systems, we expand our model to two additional case studies: deriving melt sources from δ18O, δD, and 222Rn measurements of Greenland Ice Sheet bulk water samples and assessing nutrient sources from ɛNd and 87Sr/86Sr measurements of Hawaiian soil cores. The model produces results for the Greenland Ice Sheet and Hawaiian soil data sets that are consistent with the originally published fractional contribution estimates. The advantage of this method is that it quantifies the error induced by variability in the end-member compositions, unrealized by the models previously applied to the above case studies. Results from all three case studies demonstrate the broad applicability of this statistical BMC isotopic mixing model for estimating source contribution fractions in a variety of Earth surface systems.

  5. Early Childhood Stuttering and Electrophysiological Indices of Language Processing

    PubMed Central

    Weber-Fox, Christine; Wray, Amanda Hampton; Arnold, Hayley

    2013-01-01

    We examined neural activity mediating semantic and syntactic processing in 27 preschool-age children who stutter (CWS) and 27 preschool-age children who do not stutter (CWNS) matched for age, nonverbal IQ and language abilities. All participants displayed language abilities and nonverbal IQ within the normal range. Event-related brain potentials (ERPs) were elicited while participants watched a cartoon video and heard naturally spoken sentences that were either correct or contained semantic or syntactic (phrase structure) violations. ERPs in CWS, compared to CWNS, were characterized by longer N400 peak latencies elicited by semantic processing. In the CWS, syntactic violations elicited greater negative amplitudes for the early time window (150–350 ms) over medial sites compared to CWNS. Additionally, the amplitude of the P600 elicited by syntactic violations relative to control words was significant over the left hemisphere for the CWNS but showed the reverse pattern in CWS, a robust effect only over the right hemisphere. Both groups of preschoolage children demonstrated marked and differential effects for neural processes elicited by semantic and phrase structure violations; however, a significant proportion of young CWS exhibit differences in the neural functions mediating language processing compared to CWNS despite normal language abilities. These results are the first to show that differences in event-related brain potentials reflecting language processing occur as early as the preschool years in CWS and provide the first evidence that atypical lateralization of hemispheric speech/language functions previously observed in the brains of adults who stutter begin to emerge near the onset of developmental stuttering. PMID:23773672

  6. Bolide impacts and the oxidation state of carbon in the earth's early atmosphere

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Kasting, James F.

    1990-01-01

    A one-dimensional photochemical model was used to examine the effect of bolide impacts on the oxidation state of earth's primitive atmosphere. The impact rate should have been high prior to 3.8 Ga before present, based on evidence derived from the moon. Impacts of comets or carbonaceous asteroids should have enhanced the atmospheric CO/CO2 ratio by bringing in CO ice and/or organic carbon that can be oxidized to CO in the impact plume. Ordinary chondritic impactors would contain elemental iron that could have reacted with ambient CO2 to give CO. Nitric oxide (NO) should also have been produced by reaction between ambient CO2 and N2 in the hot impact plumes. High NO concentrations increase the atmospheric CO/CO2 ratio by increasing the rainout rate of oxidized gases. According to the model, atmospheric CO/CO2 ratios of unity or greater are possible during the first several hundred million years of earth's history, provided that dissolved CO was not rapidly oxidized to bicarbonate in the ocean.

  7. Deep phylogeny--how a tree can help characterize early life on Earth.

    PubMed

    Gaucher, Eric A; Kratzer, James T; Randall, Ryan N

    2010-01-01

    The Darwinian concept of biological evolution assumes that life on Earth shares a common ancestor. The diversification of this common ancestor through speciation events and vertical transmission of genetic material implies that the classification of life can be illustrated in a tree-like manner, commonly referred to as the Tree of Life. This article describes features of the Tree of Life, such as how the tree has been both pruned and become bushier throughout the past century as our knowledge of biology has expanded. We present current views that the classification of life may be best illustrated as a ring or even a coral with tree-like characteristics. This article also discusses how the organization of the Tree of Life offers clues about ancient life on Earth. In particular, we focus on the environmental conditions and temperature history of Precambrian life and show how chemical, biological, and geological data can converge to better understand this history."You know, a tree is a tree. How many more do you need to look at?"--Ronald Reagan (Governor of California), quoted in the Sacramento Bee, opposing expansion of Redwood National Park, March 3, 1966.

  8. Deep Phylogeny—How a Tree Can Help Characterize Early Life on Earth

    PubMed Central

    Gaucher, Eric A.; Kratzer, James T.; Randall, Ryan N.

    2010-01-01

    The Darwinian concept of biological evolution assumes that life on Earth shares a common ancestor. The diversification of this common ancestor through speciation events and vertical transmission of genetic material implies that the classification of life can be illustrated in a tree-like manner, commonly referred to as the Tree of Life. This article describes features of the Tree of Life, such as how the tree has been both pruned and become bushier throughout the past century as our knowledge of biology has expanded. We present current views that the classification of life may be best illustrated as a ring or even a coral with tree-like characteristics. This article also discusses how the organization of the Tree of Life offers clues about ancient life on Earth. In particular, we focus on the environmental conditions and temperature history of Precambrian life and show how chemical, biological, and geological data can converge to better understand this history. “You know, a tree is a tree.  How many more do you need to look at?” –Ronald Reagan (Governor of California), quoted in the Sacramento Bee, opposing expansion of Redwood National Park, March 3, 1966 PMID:20182607

  9. Earth's early fossil record: Why not look for similar fossils on Mars?

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Awramik, Stanley M.

    1989-01-01

    The oldest evidence of life on Earth is discussed with attention being given to the structure and formation of stromatolites and microfossils. Fossilization of microbes in calcium carbonate or chert media is discussed. In searching for fossil remains on Mars, some lessons learned from the study of Earth's earliest fossil record can be applied. Certain sedimentary rock types and sedimentary rock configurations should be targeted for investigation and returned by the Martian rover and ultimately by human explorers. Domical, columnar to wavy laminated stratiform sedimentary rocks that resemble stromatolites should be actively sought. Limestone, other carbonates, and chert are the favored lithology. Being macroscopic, stromatolites might be recognized by an intelligent unmanned rover. In addition, black, waxy chert with conchoidal fracture should be sought. Chert is by far the preferred lithology for the preservation of microbes and chemical fossils. Even under optimal geological conditions (little or no metamorphism or tectonic alteration, excellent outcrops, and good black chert) and using experienced field biogeologists, the chances of finding well preserved microbial remains in chert are very low.

  10. Identification of Volcanic Landforms and Processes on Earth and Mars using Geospatial Analysis (Invited)

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Fagents, S. A.; Hamilton, C. W.

    2009-12-01

    Nearest neighbor (NN) analysis enables the identification of landforms using non-morphological parameters and can be useful for constraining the geological processes contributing to observed patterns of spatial distribution. Explosive interactions between lava and water can generate volcanic rootless cone (VRC) groups that are well suited to geospatial analyses because they consist of a large number of landforms that share a common formation mechanism. We have applied NN analysis tools to quantitatively compare the spatial distribution of VRCs in the Laki lava flow in Iceland to analogous landforms in the Tartarus Colles Region of eastern Elysium Planitia, Mars. Our results show that rootless eruption sites on both Earth and Mars exhibit systematic variations in spatial organization that are related to variations in the distribution of resources (lava and water) at different scales. Field observations in Iceland reveal that VRC groups are composite structures formed by the emplacement of chronologically and spatially distinct domains. Regionally, rootless cones cluster into groups and domains, but within domains NN distances exhibit random to repelled distributions. This suggests that on regional scales VRCs cluster in locations that contain sufficient resources, whereas on local scales rootless eruption sites tend to self-organize into distributions that maximize the utilization of limited resources (typically groundwater). Within the Laki lava flow, near-surface water is abundant and pre-eruption topography appears to exert the greatest control on both lava inundation regions and clustering of rootless eruption sites. In contrast, lava thickness appears to be the controlling factor in the formation of rootless eruption sites in the Tartarus Colles Region. A critical lava thickness may be required to initiate rootless eruptions on Mars because the lava flows must contain sufficient heat for transferred thermal energy to reach the underlying cryosphere and

  11. Framework for Processing Citizens Science Data for Applications to NASA Earth Science Missions

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Teng, William; Albayrak, Arif

    2017-01-01

    Citizen science (or crowdsourcing) has drawn much high-level recent and ongoing interest and support. It is poised to be applied, beyond the by-now fairly familiar use of, e.g., Twitter for natural hazards monitoring, to science research, such as augmenting the validation of NASA earth science mission data. This interest and support is seen in the 2014 National Plan for Civil Earth Observations, the 2015 White House forum on citizen science and crowdsourcing, the ongoing Senate Bill 2013 (Crowdsourcing and Citizen Science Act of 2015), the recent (August 2016) Open Geospatial Consortium (OGC) call for public participation in its newly-established Citizen Science Domain Working Group, and NASA's initiation of a new Citizen Science for Earth Systems Program (along with its first citizen science-focused solicitation for proposals). Over the past several years, we have been exploring the feasibility of extracting from the Twitter data stream useful information for application to NASA precipitation research, with both "passive" and "active" participation by the twitterers. The Twitter database, which recently passed its tenth anniversary, is potentially a rich source of real-time and historical global information for science applications. The time-varying set of "precipitation" tweets can be thought of as an organic network of rain gauges, potentially providing a widespread view of precipitation occurrence. The validation of satellite precipitation estimates is challenging, because many regions lack data or access to data, especially outside of the U.S. and in remote and developing areas. Mining the Twitter stream could augment these validation programs and, potentially, help tune existing algorithms. Our ongoing work, though exploratory, has resulted in key components for processing and managing tweets, including the capabilities to filter the Twitter stream in real time, to extract location information, to filter for exact phrases, and to plot tweet distributions. The

  12. Liquefaction process for solid carbonaceous materials containing alkaline earth metal humates

    DOEpatents

    Epperly, William R.; Deane, Barry C.; Brunson, Roy J.

    1982-01-01

    An improved liquefaction process wherein wall scale and particulate agglomeration during the liquefaction of solid carbonaceous materials containing alkaline earth metal humates is reduced and/or eliminated by subjecting the solid carbonaceous materials to controlled cyclic cavitation during liquefaction. It is important that the solid carbonaceous material be slurried in a suitable solvent or diluent during liquefaction. The cyclic cavitation may be imparted via pressure cycling, cyclic agitation and the like. When pressure cycling or the like is employed an amplitude equivalent to at least 25 psia is required to effectively remove scale from the liquefaction vessel walls.

  13. Earth Science System of the Future: Observing, Processing, and Delivering Data Products Directly to Users

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Crisp, David; Komar, George (Technical Monitor)

    2001-01-01

    Advancement of our predictive capabilities will require new scientific knowledge, improvement of our modeling capabilities, and new observation strategies to generate the complex data sets needed by coupled modeling networks. New observation strategies must support remote sensing from a variety of vantage points and will include "sensorwebs" of small satellites in low Earth orbit, large aperture sensors in Geostationary orbits, and sentinel satellites at L1 and L2 to provide day/night views of the entire globe. Onboard data processing and high speed computing and communications will enable near real-time tailoring and delivery of information products (i.e., predictions) directly to users.

  14. Concept formation: a supportive process for early career nurses.

    PubMed

    Thornley, Tracey; West, Sandra

    2010-09-01

    Individuals come to understand abstract constructs such as that of the 'expert' through the formation of concepts. Time and repeated opportunity for observation to support the generalisation and abstraction of the developing concept are essential if the concept is to form successfully. Development of an effective concept of the 'expert nurse' is critical for early career nurses who are attempting to integrate theory, values and beliefs as they develop their clinical practice. This study explores the use of a concept development framework in a grounded theory study of the 'expert nurse'. Qualitative. Using grounded theory methods for data collection and analysis, semi-structured interviews were conducted with registered nurses. The participants were asked to describe their concept of the 'expert nurse' and to discuss their experience of developing this. Participants reported forming their concept of the 'expert nurse', after multiple opportunities to engage with nurses identified as 'expert'. This identification did not necessarily relate to the designated position of the 'expert nurse' or assigned mentors. When the early career nurse does not successfully form a concept of the 'expert nurse', difficulties in personal and professional development including skill/knowledge development may arise. To underpin development of their clinical practice effectively, early career nurses need to be provided with opportunities that facilitate the purposive formation of their own concept of the 'expert nurse'. Formation of this concept is not well supported by the common practice of assigning mentors. Early career nurses must be provided with the time and the opportunity to individually develop and refine their concept of the 'expert nurse'. To achieve this, strategies including providing opportunities to engage with expert nurses and discussion of the process of concept formation and its place in underpinning personal judgments may be of assistance. © 2010 Blackwell Publishing

  15. The young sun, the early earth and the photochemistry of oxygen, ozone and formaldehyde in the early atmosphere

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Canuto, V. M.; Levine, J. S.; Augustsson, T. R.; Imhoff, C. L.; Goldman, I.; Hubickyj, O.

    1986-01-01

    Recent work on the evolution of the solar nebula and the subsequent formation of planets is reviewed, and the stages of star formation thought to lead to a protosun and an accompanying solar nebula are considered. Photochemical results suggest that concentrations of O2, O3, and H2CO, and the ratio of CO/CO2 in the prebiological paleoatmosphere are very sensitive to atmospheric levels of H2O and CO2 and to the flux of incident solar ultraviolet. For enhanced levels of CO2 and solar UV, surface levels of O2 may have approached the parts per billion level in the prebiological paleoatmosphere. It is suggested that 10 percent or more of the enhanced H2CO production could have been rained out of the atmosphere into the early oceans where synthesis into more complex organic molecules could have taken place. CO/CO2 values of greater than unity could have been possible for enhanced levels of solar UV flux.

  16. Early differential processing of material images: Evidence from ERP classification.

    PubMed

    Wiebel, Christiane B; Valsecchi, Matteo; Gegenfurtner, Karl R

    2014-06-24

    Investigating the temporal dynamics of natural image processing using event-related potentials (ERPs) has a long tradition in object recognition research. In a classical Go-NoGo task two characteristic effects have been emphasized: an early task independent category effect and a later task-dependent target effect. Here, we set out to use this well-established Go-NoGo paradigm to study the time course of material categorization. Material perception has gained more and more interest over the years as its importance in natural viewing conditions has been ignored for a long time. In addition to analyzing standard ERPs, we conducted a single trial ERP pattern analysis. To validate this procedure, we also measured ERPs in two object categories (people and animals). Our linear classification procedure was able to largely capture the overall pattern of results from the canonical analysis of the ERPs and even extend it. We replicate the known target effect (differential Go-NoGo potential at frontal sites) for the material images. Furthermore, we observe task-independent differential activity between the two material categories as early as 140 ms after stimulus onset. Using our linear classification approach, we show that material categories can be differentiated consistently based on the ERP pattern in single trials around 100 ms after stimulus onset, independent of the target-related status. This strengthens the idea of early differential visual processing of material categories independent of the task, probably due to differences in low-level image properties and suggests pattern classification of ERP topographies as a strong instrument for investigating electrophysiological brain activity. © 2014 ARVO.

  17. Early somatosensory processing in individuals at risk for developing psychoses.

    PubMed

    Hagenmuller, Florence; Heekeren, Karsten; Theodoridou, Anastasia; Walitza, Susanne; Haker, Helene; Rössler, Wulf; Kawohl, Wolfram

    2014-01-01

    Human cortical somatosensory evoked potentials (SEPs) allow an accurate investigation of thalamocortical and early cortical processing. SEPs reveal a burst of superimposed early (N20) high-frequency oscillations around 600 Hz. Previous studies reported alterations of SEPs in patients with schizophrenia. This study addresses the question whether those alterations are also observable in populations at risk for developing schizophrenia or bipolar disorders. To our knowledge to date, this is the first study investigating SEPs in a population at risk for developing psychoses. Median nerve SEPs were investigated using multichannel EEG in individuals at risk for developing bipolar disorders (n = 25), individuals with high-risk status (n = 59) and ultra-high-risk status for schizophrenia (n = 73) and a gender and age-matched control group (n = 45). Strengths and latencies of low- and high-frequency components as estimated by dipole source analysis were compared between groups. Low- and high-frequency source activity was reduced in both groups at risk for schizophrenia, in comparison to the group at risk for bipolar disorders. HFO amplitudes were also significant reduced in subjects with high-risk status for schizophrenia compared to healthy controls. These differences were accentuated among cannabis non-users. Reduced N20 source strengths were related to higher positive symptom load. These results suggest that the risk for schizophrenia, in contrast to bipolar disorders, may involve an impairment of early cerebral somatosensory processing. Neurophysiologic alterations in schizophrenia precede the onset of initial psychotic episode and may serve as indicator of vulnerability for developing schizophrenia.

  18. Early somatosensory processing in individuals at risk for developing psychoses

    PubMed Central

    Hagenmuller, Florence; Heekeren, Karsten; Theodoridou, Anastasia; Walitza, Susanne; Haker, Helene; Rössler, Wulf; Kawohl, Wolfram

    2014-01-01

    Human cortical somatosensory evoked potentials (SEPs) allow an accurate investigation of thalamocortical and early cortical processing. SEPs reveal a burst of superimposed early (N20) high-frequency oscillations around 600 Hz. Previous studies reported alterations of SEPs in patients with schizophrenia. This study addresses the question whether those alterations are also observable in populations at risk for developing schizophrenia or bipolar disorders. To our knowledge to date, this is the first study investigating SEPs in a population at risk for developing psychoses. Median nerve SEPs were investigated using multichannel EEG in individuals at risk for developing bipolar disorders (n = 25), individuals with high-risk status (n = 59) and ultra-high-risk status for schizophrenia (n = 73) and a gender and age-matched control group (n = 45). Strengths and latencies of low- and high-frequency components as estimated by dipole source analysis were compared between groups. Low- and high-frequency source activity was reduced in both groups at risk for schizophrenia, in comparison to the group at risk for bipolar disorders. HFO amplitudes were also significant reduced in subjects with high-risk status for schizophrenia compared to healthy controls. These differences were accentuated among cannabis non-users. Reduced N20 source strengths were related to higher positive symptom load. These results suggest that the risk for schizophrenia, in contrast to bipolar disorders, may involve an impairment of early cerebral somatosensory processing. Neurophysiologic alterations in schizophrenia precede the onset of initial psychotic episode and may serve as indicator of vulnerability for developing schizophrenia. PMID:25309363

  19. Independence of Early Speech Processing from Word Meaning

    PubMed Central

    Travis, Katherine E.; Leonard, Matthew K.; Chan, Alexander M.; Torres, Christina; Sizemore, Marisa L.; Qu, Zhe; Eskandar, Emad; Dale, Anders M.; Elman, Jeffrey L.; Cash, Sydney S.; Halgren, Eric

    2013-01-01

    We combined magnetoencephalography (MEG) with magnetic resonance imaging and electrocorticography to separate in anatomy and latency 2 fundamental stages underlying speech comprehension. The first acoustic-phonetic stage is selective for words relative to control stimuli individually matched on acoustic properties. It begins ∼60 ms after stimulus onset and is localized to middle superior temporal cortex. It was replicated in another experiment, but is strongly dissociated from the response to tones in the same subjects. Within the same task, semantic priming of the same words by a related picture modulates cortical processing in a broader network, but this does not begin until ∼217 ms. The earlier onset of acoustic-phonetic processing compared with lexico-semantic modulation was significant in each individual subject. The MEG source estimates were confirmed with intracranial local field potential and high gamma power responses acquired in 2 additional subjects performing the same task. These recordings further identified sites within superior temporal cortex that responded only to the acoustic-phonetic contrast at short latencies, or the lexico-semantic at long. The independence of the early acoustic-phonetic response from semantic context suggests a limited role for lexical feedback in early speech perception. PMID:22875868

  20. PHYS: Division of Physical Chemistry 258 - Properties and Origins of Cometary and Asteroidal Organic Matter Delivered to the Early Earth

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Messenger, Scott; Nguyen, Ann

    2017-01-01

    Comets and asteroids may have contributed much of the Earth's water and organic matter. The Earth accretes approximately 4x10(exp 7) Kg of dust and meteorites from these sources every year. The least altered meteorites contain complex assemblages of organic compounds and abundant hydrated minerals. These carbonaceous chondrite meteorites probably derive from asteroids that underwent hydrothermal processing within the first few million years after their accretion. Meteorite organics show isotopic and chemical signatures of low-T ion-molecule and grain-surface chemistry and photolysis of icy grains that occurred in cold molecular clouds and the outer protoplanetary disk. These signatures have been overprinted by aqueously mediated chemistry in asteroid parent bodies, forming amino acids and other prebiotic molecules. Comets are much richer in organic matter but it is less well characterized. Comet dust collected in the stratosphere shows larger H and N isotopic anomalies than most meteorites, suggesting better preservation of primordial organics. Rosetta studies of comet 67P coma dust find complex organic matter that may be related to the macromolecular material that dominates the organic inventory of primitive meteorites. The exogenous organic material accreting on Earth throughout its history is made up of thousands of molecular species formed in diverse processes ranging from circumstellar outflows to chemistry at near absolute zero in dark cloud cores and the formative environment within minor planets. NASA and JAXA are currently flying sample return missions to primitive, potentially organic-rich asteroids. The OSIRIS-REx and Hayabusa2 missions will map their target asteroids, Bennu and Ryugu, in detail and return regolith samples to Earth. Laboratory analyses of these pristine asteroid samples will provide unprecedented views of asteroidal organic matter relatively free of terrestrial contamination within well determined geological context. Studies of

  1. Early Hydrodynamic Escape Limits Rocky Planets to Less Than or Equal to 1.6 Earth Radii

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Lehmer, O. R.; Catling, D. C.

    2017-01-01

    In the past decade thousands of exoplanet candidates and hundreds of confirmed exoplanets have been found. For sub-Neptune-sized planets, those less than approx. 10 Earth masses, we can separate planets into two broad categories: predominantly rocky planets, and gaseous planets with thick volatile sheaths. Observations and subsequent analysis of these planets show that rocky planets are only found with radii less than approx. 1.6 Earth radii. No rocky planet has yet been found that violates this limit. We propose that hydrodynamic escape of hydrogen rich protoatmospheres, accreted by forming planets, explains the limit in rocky planet size. Following the hydrodynamic escape model employed by Luger et al. (2015), we modelled the XUV driven escape from young planets (less than approx.100 Myr in age) around a Sun-like star. With a simple, first-order model we found that the rocky planet radii limit occurs consistently at approx. 1.6 Earth radii across a wide range of plausible parameter spaces. Our model shows that hydrodynamic escape can explain the observed cutoff between rocky and gaseous planets. Fig. 1 shows the results of our model for rocky planets between 0.5 and 10 Earth masses that accrete 3 wt. % H2/He during formation. The simulation was run for 100 Myr, after that time the XUV flux drops off exponentially and hydrodynamic escape drops with it. A cutoff between rocky planets and gaseous ones is clearly seen at approx. 1.5-1.6 Earth radii. We are only interested in the upper size limit for rocky planets. As such, we assumed pure hydrogen atmospheres and the highest possible isothermal atmospheric temperatures, which will produce an upper limit on the hydrodynamic loss rate. Previous work shows that a reasonable approximation for an upper temperature limit in a hydrogen rich protoatmosphere is 2000-3000 K, consistent with our assumptions. From these results, we propose that the observed dichotomy between mini-Neptunes and rocky worlds is simply explained by

  2. Questionable inheritance: What Processes on Planetesimals Mean for the Bulk Composition of the Earth

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Elkins-Tanton, L. T.

    2015-12-01

    Interrogating Earth's interior is limited to indirect means, such as seismic or magnetic fields, and relies heavily on modeling. A large body of literature either attempts to constrain the composition of the deep mantle by mass balancing the Earth with a chondritic composition, or to demonstrate that the Earth does not have a chondritic composition. These models provide predictions for the composition and density of the ultra-low shear wave provinces and for the D" layer, among others, and compare their results to structures resulting from seismic studies. The bulk composition of the Earth, however, remains an open question. We now know that the planets accreted from embryos that were already differentiated. The complexity of processes that occurred on planetesimals and planetary embryos are just beginning to come to light. Heating by radiogenic 26Al likely produced waves of hydration and dehydration in planetesimals. These free fluids may have carried a wide range of volatiles, moving them from the interior to the lid, or even losing them to space. Simultaneously, the first free fluids may have reacted with metals, producing oxides or sulfides. Further heating is required to reduce these to metals and made core formation possible; or perhaps the earliest cores are not fully metallic. These planetesimals and the embryos they were growing into were subjected to a series of impacts. As the work of Asphaug and his group have demonstrated, some of these are accretionary impacts, and some are hit-and-run, or destructive impacts. These destructive impacts may have reduced the thickness of Mercury's mantle, and stripped the mantle off the metal asteroid Psyche. Where, then would the shattered silicates from such collisions go? Asphuag suggests that at least in part they are added to the growing terrestrial planets. If the planetesimals and planetary embryos were compositionally heterogeneous because of interior fluid and magma movement, then the silicates blown off them

  3. Cosmic Carbon Chemistry: From the Interstellar Medium to the Early Earth

    PubMed Central

    Ehrenfreund, Pascale; Cami, Jan

    2010-01-01

    Astronomical observations have shown that carbonaceous compounds in the gas and solid state, refractory and icy are ubiquitous in our and distant galaxies. Interstellar molecular clouds and circumstellar envelopes are factories of complex molecular synthesis. A surprisingly large number of molecules that are used in contemporary biochemistry on Earth are found in the interstellar medium, planetary atmospheres and surfaces, comets, asteroids and meteorites, and interplanetary dust particles. In this article we review the current knowledge of abundant organic material in different space environments and investigate the connection between presolar and solar system material, based on observations of interstellar dust and gas, cometary volatiles, simulation experiments, and the analysis of extraterrestrial matter. Current challenges in astrochemistry are discussed and future research directions are proposed. PMID:20554702

  4. Mimicking the surface and prebiotic chemistry of early Earth using flow chemistry.

    PubMed

    Ritson, Dougal J; Battilocchio, Claudio; Ley, Steven V; Sutherland, John D

    2018-05-08

    When considering life's aetiology, the first questions that must be addressed are "how?" and "where?" were ostensibly complex molecules, considered necessary for life's beginning, constructed from simpler, more abundant feedstock molecules on primitive Earth. Previously, we have used multiple clues from the prebiotic synthetic requirements of (proto)biomolecules to pinpoint a set of closely related geochemical scenarios that are suggestive of flow and semi-batch chemistries. We now wish to report a multistep, uninterrupted synthesis of a key heterocycle (2-aminooxazole) en route to activated nucleotides starting from highly plausible, prebiotic feedstock molecules under conditions which mimic this scenario. Further consideration of the scenario has uncovered additional pertinent and novel aspects of prebiotic chemistry, which greatly enhance the efficiency and plausibility of the synthesis.

  5. Bolide impacts and the oxidation state of carbon in the Earth's early atmosphere

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Kasting, J. F.

    1992-01-01

    A one-dimensional photochemical model was used to examine the effect of bolide impacts on the oxidation state of Earth's primitive atmosphere. The impact rate should have been high prior to 3.8 Ga before present, based on evidence derived from the Moon. Impacts of comets or carbonaceous asteroids should have enhanced the atmospheric CO/CO2 ratio by bringing in CO ice and/or organic carbon that can be oxidized to CO in the impact plume. Ordinary chondritic impactors would contain elemental iron that could have reacted with ambient CO2 to give CO. Nitric oxide (NO) should also have been produced by reaction between ambient CO2 and N2 in the hot impact plumes. High NO concentrations increase the atmospheric CO/CO2 ratio by increasing the rainout rate of oxidized gases. According to the model, atmospheric CO/CO2 ratios of unity or greater are possible during the first several hundred million years of Earth's history, provided that dissolved CO was not rapidly oxidized to bicarbonate in the ocean. Specifically, high atmospheric CO/CO2 ratios are possible if either: (1) the climate was cool (like today's climate), so that hydration of dissolved CO to formate was slow, or (2) the formate formed from CO was efficiently converted into volatile, reduced carbon compounds, such as methane. A high atmospheric CO/CO2 ratio may have helped to facilitate prebiotic synthesis by enhancing the production rates of hydrogen cyanide and formaldehyde. Formaldehyde may have been produced even more efficiently by photochemical reduction of bicarbonate and formate in Fe(++)-rich surface waters.

  6. Evolution of attention mechanisms for early visual processing

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Müller, Thomas; Knoll, Alois

    2011-03-01

    Early visual processing as a method to speed up computations on visual input data has long been discussed in the computer vision community. The general target of a such approaches is to filter nonrelevant information from the costly higher-level visual processing algorithms. By insertion of this additional filter layer the overall approach can be speeded up without actually changing the visual processing methodology. Being inspired by the layered architecture of the human visual processing apparatus, several approaches for early visual processing have been recently proposed. Most promising in this field is the extraction of a saliency map to determine regions of current attention in the visual field. Such saliency can be computed in a bottom-up manner, i.e. the theory claims that static regions of attention emerge from a certain color footprint, and dynamic regions of attention emerge from connected blobs of textures moving in a uniform way in the visual field. Top-down saliency effects are either unconscious through inherent mechanisms like inhibition-of-return, i.e. within a period of time the attention level paid to a certain region automatically decreases if the properties of that region do not change, or volitional through cognitive feedback, e.g. if an object moves consistently in the visual field. These bottom-up and top-down saliency effects have been implemented and evaluated in a previous computer vision system for the project JAST. In this paper an extension applying evolutionary processes is proposed. The prior vision system utilized multiple threads to analyze the regions of attention delivered from the early processing mechanism. Here, in addition, multiple saliency units are used to produce these regions of attention. All of these saliency units have different parameter-sets. The idea is to let the population of saliency units create regions of attention, then evaluate the results with cognitive feedback and finally apply the genetic mechanism

  7. The Design of a High Performance Earth Imagery and Raster Data Management and Processing Platform

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Xie, Qingyun

    2016-06-01

    This paper summarizes the general requirements and specific characteristics of both geospatial raster database management system and raster data processing platform from a domain-specific perspective as well as from a computing point of view. It also discusses the need of tight integration between the database system and the processing system. These requirements resulted in Oracle Spatial GeoRaster, a global scale and high performance earth imagery and raster data management and processing platform. The rationale, design, implementation, and benefits of Oracle Spatial GeoRaster are described. Basically, as a database management system, GeoRaster defines an integrated raster data model, supports image compression, data manipulation, general and spatial indices, content and context based queries and updates, versioning, concurrency, security, replication, standby, backup and recovery, multitenancy, and ETL. It provides high scalability using computer and storage clustering. As a raster data processing platform, GeoRaster provides basic operations, image processing, raster analytics, and data distribution featuring high performance computing (HPC). Specifically, HPC features include locality computing, concurrent processing, parallel processing, and in-memory computing. In addition, the APIs and the plug-in architecture are discussed.

  8. Facilitated early cortical processing of nude human bodies.

    PubMed

    Alho, Jussi; Salminen, Nelli; Sams, Mikko; Hietanen, Jari K; Nummenmaa, Lauri

    2015-07-01

    Functional brain imaging has identified specialized neural systems supporting human body perception. Responses to nude vs. clothed bodies within this system are amplified. However, it remains unresolved whether nude and clothed bodies are processed by same cerebral networks or whether processing of nude bodies recruits additional affective and arousal processing areas. We recorded simultaneous MEG and EEG while participants viewed photographs of clothed and nude bodies. Global field power revealed a peak ∼145ms after stimulus onset to both clothed and nude bodies, and ∼205ms exclusively to nude bodies. Nude-body-sensitive responses were centered first (100-200ms) in the extrastriate and fusiform body areas, and subsequently (200-300ms) in affective-motivational areas including insula and anterior cingulate cortex. We conclude that visibility of sexual features facilitates early cortical processing of human bodies, the purpose of which is presumably to trigger sexual behavior and ultimately ensure reproduction. Copyright © 2015 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

  9. Relationships between early literacy and nonlinguistic rhythmic processes in kindergarteners.

    PubMed

    Ozernov-Palchik, Ola; Wolf, Maryanne; Patel, Aniruddh D

    2018-03-01

    A growing number of studies report links between nonlinguistic rhythmic abilities and certain linguistic abilities, particularly phonological skills. The current study investigated the relationship between nonlinguistic rhythmic processing, phonological abilities, and early literacy abilities in kindergarteners. A distinctive aspect of the current work was the exploration of whether processing of different types of rhythmic patterns is differentially related to kindergarteners' phonological and reading-related abilities. Specifically, we examined the processing of metrical versus nonmetrical rhythmic patterns, that is, patterns capable of being subdivided into equal temporal intervals or not (Povel & Essens, 1985). This is an important comparison because most music involves metrical sequences, in which rhythm often has an underlying temporal grid of isochronous units. In contrast, nonmetrical sequences are arguably more typical to speech rhythm, which is temporally structured but does not involve an underlying grid of equal temporal units. A rhythm discrimination app with metrical and nonmetrical patterns was administered to 74 kindergarteners in conjunction with cognitive and preliteracy measures. Findings support a relationship among rhythm perception, phonological awareness, and letter-sound knowledge (an essential precursor of reading). A mediation analysis revealed that the association between rhythm perception and letter-sound knowledge is mediated through phonological awareness. Furthermore, metrical perception accounted for unique variance in letter-sound knowledge above all other language and cognitive measures. These results point to a unique role for temporal regularity processing in the association between musical rhythm and literacy in young children. Copyright © 2017 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  10. Photobiomodulation laser improves the early repair process of hypothyroid rats

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Uzêda e Silva, V. D.; Rodriguez, T. T.; Xavier, F. C. A.; dos Santos, J. N.; Vasconcelos, R. M.; Ramalho, L. M. P.

    2018-04-01

    Delay in wound healing has been observed in the hypothyroidism disfunction. Laser light can modulate various biological phenomena acting on different cell types. However, there are few reports in the literature regarding the effects of laser on wound healing of hypothyroid models. This study aimed to evaluate the differences in reepithelialization process of cutaneous wounds on hypothyroid and euthyroid rats treated with laser phototherapy. Forty-eight rats were divided into two main groups: euthyroid (EU) and hypothyroid (HYPO). Hypothyroidism was induced by Thyroidectomy. Each group was divided into subgroups: control (without laser) and laser groups. Standard surgical wound was created on the dorsum of each rat. The irradiation protocols (λ660 nm, 40 mW, CW; 10 J/cm2) was carried out immediately after wounding and repeated every 24h during 3 and 7 days. After animal death, specimens were taken, routinely processed, cut, stained with hematoxylin-eosin, and underwent histological analysis. Three days after the surgery, it was possible to observe initial reepithelialization in more advanced stages in the wound area of the irradiated hypothyroid group when compared to control hypothyroid group (p<0.05). No significant difference was found in the experimental period of 7 days among the groups. It was concluded that the laser light did influence reepithelialization process on hypothyroid rats in early stages of healing process.

  11. NASA Advanced Concepts Office, Earth-To-Orbit Team Design Process and Tools

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Waters, Eric D.; Garcia, Jessica; Beers, Benjamin; Philips, Alan; Holt, James B.; Threet, Grady E., Jr.

    2013-01-01

    The Earth to Orbit (ETO) Team of the Advanced Concepts Office (ACO) at NASA Marshal Space Flight Center (MSFC) is considered the preeminent group to go to for prephase A and phase A concept definition. The ACO team has been at the forefront of a multitude of launch vehicle studies determining the future direction of the Agency as a whole due, in part, to their rapid turnaround time in analyzing concepts and their ability to cover broad trade spaces of vehicles in that limited timeframe. Each completed vehicle concept includes a full mass breakdown of each vehicle to tertiary subsystem components, along with a vehicle trajectory analysis to determine optimized payload delivery to specified orbital parameters, flight environments, and delta v capability. Additionally, a structural analysis of the vehicle based on material properties and geometries is performed as well as an analysis to determine the flight loads based on the trajectory outputs. As mentioned, the ACO Earth to Orbit Team prides themselves on their rapid turnaround time and often need to fulfill customer requests within limited schedule or little advanced notice. Due to working in this fast paced environment, the ETO team has developed some finely honed skills and methods to maximize the delivery capability to meet their customer needs. This paper will describe the interfaces between the 3 primary disciplines used in the design process; weights and sizing, trajectory, and structural analysis, as well as the approach each discipline employs to streamline their particular piece of the design process.

  12. Development of the Earth's early crust: Implications from the Beartooth Mountains

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Mueller, P. A.; Wooden, J. L.; Henry, D. J.; Mogk, D. W.

    1983-01-01

    The Beartooth Mountains of Montana and Wyoming are one of several major uplifts of Precambrian rocks in the northwestern of the Wyoming Province. The range is composed of a wide variety of rock types which record a complex geologic history that extends from early ( 3400 Ma) to late (approx 700 Ma) Precambrian time. The Archean geology of the range is complex and many areas remain unstudied in detail. In this discussion two areas are discussed for which there is considerable structural, geochemical and petrologic information. The easternmost portion of the range (EBT) and the northwesternmost portion, the North Snowy Block (NSB), contain rather extensive records of both early and late Archean geologic activity. These data are used to constrain a petrologic tectonic model for the development of continental crust in this area.

  13. Building the Next Generation of Earth Scientists: the Deep Carbon Observatory Early Career Scientist Workshops

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Pratt, K.; Fellowes, J.; Giovannelli, D.; Stagno, V.

    2016-12-01

    Building a network of collaborators and colleagues is a key professional development activity for early career scientists (ECS) dealing with a challenging job market. At large conferences, young scientists often focus on interacting with senior researchers, competing for a small number of positions in leading laboratories. However, building a strong, international network amongst their peers in related disciplines is often as valuable in the long run. The Deep Carbon Observatory (DCO) began funding a series of workshops in 2014 designed to connect early career researchers within its extensive network of multidisciplinary scientists. The workshops, by design, are by and for early career scientists, thus removing any element of competition and focusing on peer-to-peer networking, collaboration, and creativity. The successful workshops, organized by committees of early career deep carbon scientists, have nucleated a lively community of like-minded individuals from around the world. Indeed, the organizers themselves often benefit greatly from the leadership experience of pulling together an international workshop on budget and on deadline. We have found that a combination of presentations from all participants in classroom sessions, professional development training such as communication and data management, and field-based relationship building and networking is a recipe for success. Small groups within the DCO ECS network have formed; publishing papers together, forging new research directions, and planning novel and ambitious field campaigns. Many DCO ECS also have come together to convene sessions at major international conferences, including the AGU Fall Meeting. Most of all, there is a broad sense of camaraderie and accessibility within the DCO ECS Community, providing the foundation for a career in the new, international, and interdisciplinary field of deep carbon science.

  14. Evidence from coupled (Sm-147)-(Nd-143) and (Sm-146)-(Nd-142) systematics for very early (4.5-Gyr) differentiation of the earth's mantle

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Harper, Charles L., Jr.; Jacobsen, Stein B.

    1992-01-01

    Evidence for early differentiation of the earth's mantle is presented based on measurements of Nd-143/Nd-144 and Nd-142/Nd-144 ratios in an approximately 3.8 Gyr-old supracrustal rock from Isua, West Greenland. Coupled (Sm-146,147)-(Nd-142,143) systematics suggest that the fractionation of Sm/Nd took place 4.44-4.54 Gyr ago, due to extraction of a light rare earth element-enriched primordial crust.

  15. Basic Instinct Undressed: Early Spatiotemporal Processing for Primary Sexual Characteristics

    PubMed Central

    Legrand, Lore B.; Del Zotto, Marzia; Tyrand, Rémi; Pegna, Alan J.

    2013-01-01

    This study investigates the spatiotemporal dynamics associated with conscious and non-conscious processing of naked and dressed human bodies. To this effect, stimuli of naked men and women with visible primary sexual characteristics, as well as dressed bodies, were presented to 20 heterosexual male and female participants while acquiring high resolution EEG data. The stimuli were either consciously detectable (supraliminal presentations) or were rendered non-conscious through backward masking (subliminal presentations). The N1 event-related potential component was significantly enhanced in participants when they viewed naked compared to dressed bodies under supraliminal viewing conditions. More importantly, naked bodies of the opposite sex produced a significantly greater N1 component compared to dressed bodies during subliminal presentations, when participants were not aware of the stimulus presented. A source localization algorithm computed on the N1 showed that the response for naked bodies in the supraliminal viewing condition was stronger in body processing areas, primary visual areas and additional structures related to emotion processing. By contrast, in the subliminal viewing condition, only visual and body processing areas were found to be activated. These results suggest that naked bodies and primary sexual characteristics are processed early in time (i.e., <200 ms) and activate key brain structures even when they are not consciously detected. It appears that, similarly to what has been reported for emotional faces, sexual features benefit from automatic and rapid processing, most likely due to their high relevance for the individual and their importance for the species in terms of reproductive success. PMID:23894532

  16. Basic instinct undressed: early spatiotemporal processing for primary sexual characteristics.

    PubMed

    Legrand, Lore B; Del Zotto, Marzia; Tyrand, Rémi; Pegna, Alan J

    2013-01-01

    This study investigates the spatiotemporal dynamics associated with conscious and non-conscious processing of naked and dressed human bodies. To this effect, stimuli of naked men and women with visible primary sexual characteristics, as well as dressed bodies, were presented to 20 heterosexual male and female participants while acquiring high resolution EEG data. The stimuli were either consciously detectable (supraliminal presentations) or were rendered non-conscious through backward masking (subliminal presentations). The N1 event-related potential component was significantly enhanced in participants when they viewed naked compared to dressed bodies under supraliminal viewing conditions. More importantly, naked bodies of the opposite sex produced a significantly greater N1 component compared to dressed bodies during subliminal presentations, when participants were not aware of the stimulus presented. A source localization algorithm computed on the N1 showed that the response for naked bodies in the supraliminal viewing condition was stronger in body processing areas, primary visual areas and additional structures related to emotion processing. By contrast, in the subliminal viewing condition, only visual and body processing areas were found to be activated. These results suggest that naked bodies and primary sexual characteristics are processed early in time (i.e., <200 ms) and activate key brain structures even when they are not consciously detected. It appears that, similarly to what has been reported for emotional faces, sexual features benefit from automatic and rapid processing, most likely due to their high relevance for the individual and their importance for the species in terms of reproductive success.

  17. Ancient Earth, Alien Earths Event

    2014-08-20

    Panelists pose for a group photo at the “Ancient Earth, Alien Earths” Event at NASA Headquarters in Washington, DC Wednesday, August 20, 2014. The event was sponsored by NASA, the National Science Foundation (NSF), and the Smithsonian Institution and highlighted how research on early Earth could help guide our search for habitable planets orbiting other stars. Photo Credit: (NASA/Aubrey Gemignani)

  18. The precision-processing subsystem for the Earth Resources Technology Satellite.

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Chapelle, W. E.; Bybee, J. E.; Bedross, G. M.

    1972-01-01

    Description of the precision processor, a subsystem in the image-processing system for the Earth Resources Technology Satellite (ERTS). This processor is a special-purpose image-measurement and printing system, designed to process user-selected bulk images to produce 1:1,000,000-scale film outputs and digital image data, presented in a Universal-Transverse-Mercator (UTM) projection. The system will remove geometric and radiometric errors introduced by the ERTS multispectral sensors and by the bulk-processor electron-beam recorder. The geometric transformations required for each input scene are determined by resection computations based on reseau measurements and image comparisons with a special ground-control base contained within the system; the images are then printed and digitized by electronic image-transfer techniques.

  19. Approximating the r-Process on Earth with Thermonuclear Explosions. Lessons Learned and Unanswered Questions

    SciT

    Becker, Stephen Allan

    2016-01-28

    During the astrophysical r-process, multiple neutron captures occur so rapidly on target nuclei that their daughter nuclei generally do not have time to undergo radioactive decay before another neutron is captured. The r-process can be approximately simulated on Earth in certain types of thermonuclear explosions through an analogous process of rapid neutron captures known as the "prompt capture" process. Between 1952 and 1969, 23 nuclear tests were fielded by the US which were involved (at least partially) with the "prompt capture" process. Of these tests, 15 were at least partially successful. Some of these tests were conducted under the Plowsharemore » Peaceful Nuclear Explosion Program as scientific research experiments. It is now known that the USSR conducted similar nuclear tests during 1966 to 1979. The elements einsteinium and fermium were first discovered by this process. The most successful tests achieved 19 successive neutron captures on the initial target nuclei. A review of the US program, target nuclei used, heavy element yields, scientific achievements of the program, and how some of the results have been used by the astrophysical community is given. Finally, some unanswered questions concerning very neutron-rich nuclei that could potentially have been answered with additional nuclear experiments is presented.« less

  20. Mobility of rare earth element in hydrothermal process and weathering product: a review

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Lintjewas, L.; Setiawan, I.

    2018-02-01

    The Rare Earth Element (REE), consists of La, Ce, Pr, Nd, Pm, Sm, Eu, Gd, Tb, Dy, Lu, Ho, Er, Tm, Yb, are important elements to be used as raw materials of advanced technology such as semiconductors, magnets, and lasers. The research of REE in Indonesia has not been done. Several researches were conducted on granitic rocks and weathering product such as Bangka, Sibolga, West Kalimantan, West Sulawesi and Papua. REE can be formed by hydrothermal processes such as Bayan Obo, South China. The REE study on active hydrothermal system (geothermal) in this case also has the potential to produce mineral deposits. The purpose of this review paper is to know the mobility of REE on hydrothermal process and weathering products. Mobility of REE in the hydrothermal process can change the distribution patterns and REE content such as Ce, Eu, La, Lu, Nd, Sm, and Y. Another process besides the hydrothermal is weathering process. REE mobility is influenced by weathering products, where the REE will experience residual and secondary enrichment processes in heavier minerals.

  1. The Critical Zone: A Necessary Framework for Understanding Surface Earth Processes

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Dietrich, W. E.

    2016-12-01

    One definition of the critical zone is: the thin veneer of Earth that extends from the top of the vegetation to the base of weathered bedrock. With this definition we can envision the critical zone as a distinct entity with a well-defined top and a fairly well-defined bottom that is distributed across terrestrial earth landscapes. It is a zone of co-evolving processes and, importantly, much of this zone is well below the soil mantle (and commonly more than 10 times thicker than the soil). Weathering advance into fresh bedrock creates a hydrologically-conductive skin that mediates runoff and solute chemistry, stores water used by vegetation, releases water as baseflow to streams, influences soil production and hillslope evolution, and feeds gasses to the atmosphere. Especially in seasonally dry environments, rock moisture in the critical zone, i.e. moisture that is exchangeable and potentially mobile in the matrix and fractures of the bedrock, can be a significant source of water to plants and is a previously unrecognized large component of the water budget that matters to climate models. First observations on the systematic variation of the critical zone across hillslopes have led to four distinct theories representing four distinct processes for what controls the depth to fresh bedrock (and thus the thickness of this zone across a hillslope). These theories are motivating geophysical surveys, deep drilling, and other actions to parameterize and explore the power of these models. Studies at the NSF-supported Critical Zone Observatories have taught us that the critical zone is an entity and that enduring field studies reveal key processes. A challenge we now face is how to include this emerging understanding of the critical zone into models of reactive transport, hydrologic processes and water supply, critical zone structure, landscape evolution, and climate.

  2. Automated Job Controller for Clouds and the Earth's Radiant Energy System (CERES) Production Processing

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Gleason, J. L.; Hillyer, T. N.

    2011-12-01

    Clouds and the Earth's Radiant Energy System (CERES) is one of NASA's highest priority Earth Observing System (EOS) scientific instruments. The CERES science team will integrate data from the CERES Flight Model 5 (FM5) on the NPOESS Preparatory Project (NPP) in addition to the four CERES scanning instrument on Terra and Aqua. The CERES production system consists of over 75 Product Generation Executives (PGEs) maintained by twelve subsystem groups. The processing chain fuses CERES instrument observations with data from 19 other unique sources. The addition of FM5 to over 22 instrument years of data to be reprocessed from flight models 1-4 creates a need for an optimized production processing approach. This poster discusses a new approach, using JBoss and Perl to manage job scheduling and interdependencies between PGEs and external data sources. The new optimized approach uses JBoss to serve handler servlets which regulate PGE-level job interdependencies and job completion notifications. Additional servlets are used to regulate all job submissions from the handlers and to interact with the operator. Perl submission scripts are used to build Process Control Files and to interact directly with the operating system and cluster scheduler. The result is a reduced burden on the operator by algorithmically enforcing a set of rules that determine the optimal time to produce data products with the highest integrity. These rules are designed on a per PGE basis and periodically change. This design provides the means to dynamically update PGE rules at run time and increases the processing throughput by using an event driven controller. The immediate notification of a PGE's completion (an event) allows successor PGEs to launch at the proper time with minimal start up latency, thereby increasing computer system utilization.

  3. Were Ocean Impacts an Important Mechanism to Deliver Meteoritic Organic Matter to the Early Earth? Some Inferences from Eltanin

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Kyte, Frank T.; Gersonde, Rainer; Kuhn. Gerhard

    2002-01-01

    Several workers have addressed the potential for extraterrestrial delivery of volatles, including water and complex organic compounds, to the early Earth. For example, Chyba and Sagan (1992) argued that since impacts would destroy organic matter, most extraterrestrial organics must be delivered in the fine-fractions of interplanetary dust. More recent computer simulations (Pierazzo and Chyba, 1999), however, have shown that substantial amounts of amino acids may survive the impacts of large (km-sized) comets and that this may exceed the amounts derived from IDPs or Miller-Urey synthesis in the atmosphere. Once an ocean developed on the early Earth, impacts of small ,asteroids and comets into deep-ocean basins were potentially common and may have been the most likely events to deliver large amounts of organics. The deposits of the late Pliocene impact of the Eltanin asteroid into the Bellingshausen Sea provide the only record of a deep-ocean (approx. 5 km) impact that can be used to constrain models of these events. This impact was first discovered in 1981 as an Ir anomaly in sediment cores collected by the USNS Eltanin in 1965 (Kyte et al., 1981). In 1995, Polarstem expedition ANT XII/4 made the first geological survey of the suspected impact region. Three sediment cores sampled around the San Martin seamounts (approx. 57.5S, 91 W) contained well-preserved impact deposits that include disturbed ocean sediments and meteoritic impact ejecta (Gersonde et al., 1997). The latter is composed of shock- melted asteroidal materials and unmelted meteorites. In 2001, the FS Polarstem returned to the impact area during expedition ANT XVIII/5a. At least 16 cores were recovered that contain ejecta deposits. These cores and geophysical data from the expedition can be used to map the effects of the impact over a large region of the ocean floor.

  4. Peptide synthesis triggered by comet impacts: A possible method for peptide delivery to the early Earth and icy satellites

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Sugahara, Haruna; Mimura, Koichi

    2015-09-01

    We performed shock experiments simulating natural comet impacts in an attempt to examine the role that comet impacts play in peptide synthesis. In the present study, we selected a mixture of alanine (DL-alanine), water ice, and silicate (forsterite) to make a starting material for the experiments. The shock experiments were conducted under cryogenic conditions (77 K), and the shock pressure range achieved in the experiments was 4.8-25.8 GPa. The results show that alanine is oligomerized into peptides up to tripeptides due to the impact shock. The synthesized peptides were racemic, indicating that there was no enantioselective synthesis of peptides from racemic amino acids due to the impact shock. We also found that the yield of linear peptides was a magnitude higher than those of cyclic diketopiperazine. Furthermore, we estimated the amount of cometary-derived peptides to the early Earth based on two models (the Lunar Crating model and the Nice model) during the Late Heavy Bombardment (LHB) using our experimental data. The estimation based on the Lunar Crating model gave 3 × 109 mol of dialanine, 4 × 107 mol of trialanine, and 3 × 108 mol of alanine-diketopiperazine. Those based on the Nice model, in which the main impactor of LHB is comets, gave 6 × 1010 mol of dialanine, 1 × 109 mol of trialanine, and 8 × 109 mol of alanine-diketopiperazine. The estimated amounts were comparable to those originating from terrestrial sources (Cleaves, H.J., Aubrey, A.D., Bada, J.L. [2009]. Orig. Life Evol. Biosph. 39, 109-126). Our results indicate that comet impacts played an important role in chemical evolution as a supplier of linear peptides, which are important for further chemical evolution on the early Earth. Our study also highlights the importance of icy satellites, which were formed by comet accumulation, as prime targets for missions searching for extraterrestrial life.

  5. Extensometric observation of Earth tides and local tectonic processes at the Vyhne station, Slovakia

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Brimich, Ladislav; Bednárik, Martin; Bezák, Vladimír; Kohút, Igor; Bán, Dóra; Eper-Pápai, Ildikó; Mentes, Gyula

    2016-06-01

    The Vyhne Tidal Station of the Earth Science Institute of the Slovak Academy of Sciences is located in the former mining gallery of St. Anthony of Padua in the Vyhne valley, Štiavnické vrchy Mts., Central Slovakia. It is equipped with a 20.5 metre long quartz-tube extensometer measuring Earth's tides, and long-term tectonic deformations of the Earth's crust. Data between 2001 and 2015 with some diverse gaps were digitally collected, processed and analysed. The effects of the local conditions, such as structure of the observatory, cavity effect, topography and geological features of the surrounding rocks, were investigated in detail and these effects were taken into consideration during the interpretation of the results of the data analysis. Tidal analysis of the extensometric data between 2005 and 2015 revealed that the measured tidal amplitudes are close to the theoretical values. The tidal transfer of the observatory was also investigated by coherence analysis between the theoretical and the measured extensometric data. The coherence is better than 0.9 both in the diurnal and semidiurnal band. The effect of the free core nutation resonance was also investigated in the case of the K1 and P1 tidal components. Since the K1/O1 ratio was about the theoretical value 0.8, than the P1/O1 was between 1.0 and 1.15 instead of the theoretical value of 0.9. The rate of the long-term strain rate was also investigated and the obtained -0.05 μstr/y shows a good agreement with the strain rate inferred from GPS measurements in the Central European GPS Reference Network.

  6. Web Services Implementations at Land Process and Goddard Earth Sciences Distributed Active Archive Centers

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Cole, M.; Bambacus, M.; Lynnes, C.; Sauer, B.; Falke, S.; Yang, W.

    2007-12-01

    NASA's vast array of scientific data within its Distributed Active Archive Centers (DAACs) is especially valuable to both traditional research scientists as well as the emerging market of Earth Science Information Partners. For example, the air quality science and management communities are increasingly using satellite derived observations in their analyses and decision making. The Air Quality Cluster in the Federation of Earth Science Information Partners (ESIP) uses web infrastructures of interoperability, or Service Oriented Architecture (SOA), to extend data exploration, use, and analysis and provides a user environment for DAAC products. In an effort to continually offer these NASA data to the broadest research community audience, and reusing emerging technologies, both NASA's Goddard Earth Science (GES) and Land Process (LP) DAACs have engaged in a web services pilot project. Through these projects both GES and LP have exposed data through the Open Geospatial Consortiums (OGC) Web Services standards. Reusing several different existing applications and implementation techniques, GES and LP successfully exposed a variety data, through distributed systems to be ingested into multiple end-user systems. The results of this project will enable researchers world wide to access some of NASA's GES & LP DAAC data through OGC protocols. This functionality encourages inter-disciplinary research while increasing data use through advanced technologies. This paper will concentrate on the implementation and use of OGC Web Services, specifically Web Map and Web Coverage Services (WMS, WCS) at GES and LP DAACs, and the value of these services within scientific applications, including integration with the DataFed air quality web infrastructure and in the development of data analysis web applications.

  7. Earth-mass dark-matter haloes as the first structures in the early Universe.

    PubMed

    Diemand, J; Moore, B; Stadel, J

    2005-01-27

    The Universe was nearly smooth and homogeneous before a redshift of z = 100, about 20 million years after the Big Bang. After this epoch, the tiny fluctuations imprinted upon the matter distribution during the initial expansion began to collapse because of gravity. The properties of these fluctuations depend on the unknown nature of dark matter, the determination of which is one of the biggest challenges in present-day science. Here we report supercomputer simulations of the concordance cosmological model, which assumes neutralino dark matter (at present the preferred candidate), and find that the first objects to form are numerous Earth-mass dark-matter haloes about as large as the Solar System. They are stable against gravitational disruption, even within the central regions of the Milky Way. We expect over 10(15) to survive within the Galactic halo, with one passing through the Solar System every few thousand years. The nearest structures should be among the brightest sources of gamma-rays (from particle-particle annihilation).

  8. 'Nano' Morphology and Element Signatures of Early Life on Earth: A New Tool for Assessing Biogenicity

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Oehler, D. Z.; Mostefaoui, S.; Meibom, A.; Selo, M.; McKay, D. S.; Robert, F.

    2006-01-01

    The relatively young technology of NanoSIMS is unlocking an exciting new level of information from organic matter in ancient sediments. We are using this technique to characterize Proterozoic organic material that is clearly biogenic as a guide for interpreting controversial organic structures in either terrestrial or extraterrestrial samples. NanoSIMS is secondary ion mass spectrometry for trace element and isotope analysis at sub-micron resolution. In 2005, Robert et al. [1] combined NanoSIMS element maps with optical microscopic imagery in an effort to develop a new method for assessing biogenicity of Precambrian structures. The ability of NanoSIMS to map simultaneously the distribution of organic elements with a 50 nm spatial resolution provides new biologic markers that could help define the timing of life s development on Earth. The current study corroborates the work of Robert et al. and builds on their study by using NanoSIMS to map C, N (as CN), S, Si and O of both excellently preserved microfossils and less well preserved, non-descript organics in Proterozoic chert from the ca. 0.8 Ga Bitter Springs Formation of Australia.

  9. Synergy of Earth Observation and In-Situ Monitoring Data for Flood Hazard Early Warning System

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Brodsky, Lukas; Kodesova, Radka; Spazierova, Katerina

    2010-12-01

    In this study, we demonstrate synergy of EO and in-situ monitoring data for early warning flood hazard system in the Czech Republic developed within ESA PECS project FLOREO. The development of the demonstration system is oriented to support existing monitoring activities, especially snow melt and surface water runoff contributing to flooding events. The system consists of two main parts accordingly, the first is snow cover and snow melt monitoring driven mainly by EO data and the other is surface water runoff modeling and monitoring driven by synergy of in-situ and EO data.

  10. Synchronous contextual irregularities affect early scene processing: replication and extension.

    PubMed

    Mudrik, Liad; Shalgi, Shani; Lamy, Dominique; Deouell, Leon Y

    2014-04-01

    Whether contextual regularities facilitate perceptual stages of scene processing is widely debated, and empirical evidence is still inconclusive. Specifically, it was recently suggested that contextual violations affect early processing of a scene only when the incongruent object and the scene are presented a-synchronously, creating expectations. We compared event-related potentials (ERPs) evoked by scenes that depicted a person performing an action using either a congruent or an incongruent object (e.g., a man shaving with a razor or with a fork) when scene and object were presented simultaneously. We also explored the role of attention in contextual processing by using a pre-cue to direct subjects׳ attention towards or away from the congruent/incongruent object. Subjects׳ task was to determine how many hands the person in the picture used in order to perform the action. We replicated our previous findings of frontocentral negativity for incongruent scenes that started ~ 210 ms post stimulus presentation, even earlier than previously found. Surprisingly, this incongruency ERP effect was negatively correlated with the reaction times cost on incongruent scenes. The results did not allow us to draw conclusions about the role of attention in detecting the regularity, due to a weak attention manipulation. By replicating the 200-300 ms incongruity effect with a new group of subjects at even earlier latencies than previously reported, the results strengthen the evidence for contextual processing during this time window even when simultaneous presentation of the scene and object prevent the formation of prior expectations. We discuss possible methodological limitations that may account for previous failures to find this an effect, and conclude that contextual information affects object model selection processes prior to full object identification, with semantic knowledge activation stages unfolding only later on. Copyright © 2014 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  11. Primary differentiation in the early Earth: Nd and Sr isotopic evidence from diamondiferous eclogites for both old depleted and old enriched mantle, Yakutia, Siberia

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Snyder, Gregory A.; Jerde, Eric A.; Taylor, Lawrence A.; Halliday, Alex N.; Sobolev, Vladimir N.; Sobolev, Nickolai V.; Clayton, Robert N.; Mayeda, Toshiko K.; Deines, Peter

    1993-01-01

    Ancient, stable, continental cratons possess thick, subcontinental-lithospheric mantle 'keels' which favor particularly the emplacement of diamondiferous kimberlites and included peridotites and eclogites. These refractory mantle samples of the roots provide hard constraints on the theories of formation, growth, and evolution of these cratons. Xenoliths containing only primary garnet and clinopyroxene (eclogites), although rare in most kimberlites, can retain the geochemical signatures of their parent protoliths (e.g., subducted oceanic crust, ancient mantle) thus offering the opportunity to address mantle processes which may have taken place at earlier times in the Earth's history. In fact, it has been postulated that some eclogites are residues from the accretion of the early Earth. Nd and Sr isotopic data are presented which may be interpreted as evidence of an early (greater than 4 Ga) mantle differentiation event. The kimberlites of Yakutia are located both marginal and central to the Siberian craton, and a wide variety of xenoliths are present within them. The Siberian mantle samples have received little attention in the western world, largely because suitable suites of Yakutian samples have not been readily available. Importantly, there is evidence that metasomatism of the Siberian lithosphere has been considerably less intense or extensive than for the Kaapvaal craton. Therefore, it should be considerably easier to elicit the igneous/metamorphic histories of Siberian kimberlitic xenoliths. One of the notable features of the Siberian eclogites is the common appearance of diamonds, especially in the Mir and Udachnaya pipes. In all, eight eclogite samples (eight garnet separates and eight clinopyroxene separates) have been analyzed to date on the Udachnaya pipe, seven from our group.

  12. Non-resonant excitation of rare-earth ions via virtual Auger process

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Yassievich, I. N.

    2011-05-01

    The luminescence of rare-earth ions (REI) is often intensified by defects associated with REIs or excitons bound to these defects. In this paper we show that the presence of such a state opens the possibility of non-resonance optical pumping via the process involving virtual Auger transition. It is the second order perturbation process when an electron arrives in an virtual intermediate state due to the optical transition (the first step) and the Auger transition is the second one. We have calculated the cross-section of such an excitation process when the optical transition is accompanied by creation of the exciton bound to the defect associated with REI and obtained a simple analytical expression for the cross-section. The excess energy of the excitation quanta is taken away by multiphonon emission. The electron-phonon interaction with local phonon vibrations of the bound exciton is assumed to determine the multiphonon process. It is shown that the probability of the process under study exceeds considerably the probability of direct optical 4f-4f absorption even in the case when the energy distance between the excitation quantum energy and the exciton energy is about 0.1 of the exciton energy. The excitation mechanism considered leads to the appearance of a broad unsymmetrical band in the excitation spectrum with the red side much wider and flatter than the blue one.

  13. Main Difference with Formed Process of the Moon and Earth Minerals and Fluids

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Kato, T.; Miura, Y.

    2018-04-01

    Minerals show large and global distribution on Earth system, but small and local formation on the Moon. Fluid water is formed as same size and distribution on Earth and the Moon based on their body-systems.

  14. Technical Note: Coupling of chemical processes with the Modular Earth Submodel System (MESSy) submodel TRACER

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Jöckel, P.; Kerkweg, A.; Buchholz, J.; Tost, H.; Sander, R.; Pozzer, A.

    2007-11-01

    The implementation of processes related to chemistry into Earth System Models and their coupling within such systems requires the consistent description of the chemical species involved. We provide a tool (written in Fortran95) to structure and manage information about constituents, herein after referred to as tracers, namely the Modular Earth Submodel System (MESSy) generic (i.e., infrastructure) submodel TRACER. With TRACER it is possible to define a multitude of tracer sets, depending on the spatio-temporal representation (i.e., the grid structure) of the model. The required information about a specific chemical species is split into the static meta-information about the characteristics of the species, and its (generally in time and space variable) abundance in the corresponding representation. TRACER moreover includes two submodels. One is TRACER_FAMILY, an implementation of the tracer family concept. It distinguishes between two types: type-1 families are usually applied to handle strongly related tracers (e.g., fast equilibrating species) for a specific process (e.g., advection). In contrast to this, type-2 families are applied for tagging techniques, in which specific species are artificially decomposed and associated with additional information, in order to conserve the linear relationship between the family and its members. The second submodel is TRACER_PDEF, which corrects and budgets numerical negative overshoots that arise in many process implementations due to the numerical limitations (limited precision, rounding errors). The submodel therefore guarantees the positive definiteness of the tracers and stabilises the integration scheme. As a by-product, it further provides a global tracer mass diagnostic. Last but not least, we present the submodel PTRAC for the definition of prognostic tracers via a Fortran95 namelist. TRACER with its submodels and PTRAC can readily be applied to a variety of models without further requirements. The code and a

  15. Texture evolution during thermomechanical processing in rare earth free magnesium alloys

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Miller, Victoria Mayne

    The use of wrought magnesium alloys is highly desirable for a wide range of applications where low component weight is desirable due to the high specific strength and stiffness the alloys can achieve. However, the implementation of wrought magnesium has been hindered by the limited room temperature formability which typically results from deformation processing. This work identifies opportunities for texture modification during thermomechanical processing of conventional (rare earth free) magnesium alloys via a combination of experimental investigation and polycrystal plasticity simulations. During deformation, it is observed that a homogeneous distribution of coarse intermetallic particles efficiently weakens deformation texture at all strain levels, while a highly inhomogeneous particle distribution is only effective at high strains. The particle deformation effects are complemented by the addition of alkaline earth solute, which modifies the relative deformation mode activity. During recrystallization, grains with basal orientations recrystallize more readily than off-basal grains, despite similar levels of internal misorientation. Dislocation substructure investigations revealed that this is a result of enhanced nucleation in the basal grains due to the dominance of prismatic slip. This dissertation identifies avenues to enhance the potential formability of magnesium alloys during thermomechanical processing by minimizing the evolved texture strength. The following are the identified key aspects of microstructural control: -Maintaining a fine grain size, likely via Zener pinning, to favorably modify deformation mode activity and homogenize deformation. -Developing a coarse, homogeneously distributed population of coarse intermetallic particles to promote a diffuse deformation texture. -Minimizing the activity of prismatic slip to retard the recrystallization of grains with basal orientations, allowing the development of a more diffuse recrystallization texture.

  16. Rare-earth-doped optical-fiber core deposition using full vapor-phase SPCVD process

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Barnini, A.; Robin, T.; Cadier, B.; Aka, G.; Caurant, D.; Gotter, T.; Guyon, C.; Pinsard, E.; Guitton, P.; Laurent, A.; Montron, R.

    2017-02-01

    One key parameter in the race toward ever-higher power fiber lasers remains the rare earth doped optical core quality. Modern Large Mode Area (LMA) fibers require a fine radial control of the core refractive index (RI) close to the silica level. These low RI are achieved with multi-component materials that cannot be readily obtained using conventional solution doping based Modified Chemical Vapor Deposition (MCVD) technology. This paper presents a study of such optical material obtained through a full-vapor phase Surface Plasma Chemical Vapor Deposition (SPCVD). The SPCVD process generates straight glassy films on the inner surface of a thermally regulated synthetic silica tube under vacuum. The first part of the presented results points out the feasibility of ytterbium-doped aluminosilicate fibers by this process. In the second part we describe the challenge controlling the refractive index throughout the core diameter when using volatile fluorine to create efficient LMA fiber profiles. It has been demonstrated that it is possible to counter-act the loss of fluorine at the center of the core by adjusting the core composition locally. Our materials yielded, when used in optical fibers with numerical apertures ranging from 0.07 to 0.09, power conversion efficiency up to 76% and low background losses below 20 dB/km at 1100nm. Photodarkening has been measured to be similar to equivalent MCVD based fibers. The use of cerium as a co-dopant allowed for a complete mitigation of this laser lifetime detrimental effect. The SPCVD process enables high capacity preforms and is particularly versatile when it comes to radial tailoring of both rare earth doping level and RI. Large core diameter preforms - up to 4mm - were successfully produced.

  17. Evolution of Electron Transport Chains During the Anaerobic to Aerobic Transition on Early Earth

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Sepúlveda, R.; Ortiz, R.; Holmes, D. S.

    2015-12-01

    Sepulveda, R., Ortiz R. and Holmes DS. Center for Bioinformatics and Genome Biology, Fundacion Ciencia y Vida, and Facultad de Ciencias Biologicas, Universidad Andres Bello, Santiago, Chile.According to several models, life emerged on earth in an anoxic environment where oxygen was not available as a terminal electron acceptor for energy generating reactions. After the Great Oxidation Event (GOE) about 2.4 billion years ago, or perhaps even before the GOE, oxygen became the most widespread and efficient terminal electron acceptor and was accompanied by the evolution of a number of redox proteins that could deliver electrons to reduce oxygen to water. Where did these proteins come from? One hypothesis is that they evolved by the neofunctionalization of previously existing redox proteins that had been used in anaerobic conditions as terminal electron donors to reduce compounds such as perchlorate, nitric oxide or iron. We have used a number of bioinformatic tools to explore a large number of genomes looking for discernable signals of such redeployment of function. A Perl pipeline was designed to detect sequence similarity, conserved gene context, remote homology detection, identification of domains and functional evolution of electron carrier proteins from extreme acidophiles, including the small blue copper protein rusticyanin (involved in FeII oxidation), cytochrome oxidase subunit II and quinol-dependent nitric oxide reductase (qNOR). The protein folds and copper binding sites of rusticyanin are conserved in cytochrome oxidase aa3 subunit II, a protein complex that is responsible for the final passage of electrons to reduce oxygen. Therefore, we hypothesize that rusticyanin, cytochrome oxidase II and qNOR are evolutionarily related. Acknowledgments: Fondecyt 1130683.

  18. Heavy rare earth elements affect early life stages in Paracentrotus lividus and Arbacia lixula sea urchins.

    PubMed

    Oral, Rahime; Pagano, Giovanni; Siciliano, Antonietta; Gravina, Maria; Palumbo, Anna; Castellano, Immacolata; Migliaccio, Oriana; Thomas, Philippe J; Guida, Marco; Tommasi, Franca; Trifuoggi, Marco

    2017-04-01

    Heavy rare earth elements (HREEs) have been scarcely studied for their toxicity, in spite of their applications in several technologies. Thus HREEs require timely investigations for their adverse health effects. Paracentrotus lividus and Arbacia lixula embryos and sperm were exposed to trichloride salts of five HREEs (Dy, Ho, Er, Yb and Lu) and to Ce(III) as a light REE (LREE) reference to evaluate: 1) developmental defects (% DD) in HREE-exposed larvae or in the offspring of HREE-exposed sperm; 2) mitotic anomalies; 3) fertilization success; and 4) reactive oxygen species (ROS) formation, and nitric oxide (NO) and malondialdehyde (MDA) levels. Nominal HREE concentrations were confirmed by inductively coupled plasma mass spectrometry (ICP-MS). HREEs induced concentration-related DD increases in P. lividus and A. lixula larvae, ranging from no significant DD increase at 10 -7 M HREEs up to ≅100% DD at 10 -5 M HREE. Larvae exposed to 10 -5 M Ce(III) resulted in less severe DD rates compared to HREEs. Decreased mitotic activity and increased aberration rates were found in HREE-exposed P. lividus embryos. Significant increases in ROS formation and NO levels were found both in HREE-exposed and in Ce(III) embryos, whereas only Ce(III), but not HREEs resulted in significant increase in MDA levels. Sperm exposure to HREEs (10 -5 -10 -4 M) resulted in a concentration-related decrease in fertilization success along with increase in offspring damage. These effects were significantly enhanced for Dy(III), Ho(III), Er(III) and Yb(III), compared to Lu(III) and to Ce(III). HREE-associated toxicity affected embryogenesis, fertilization, cytogenetic and redox endpoints showing different toxicities of tested HREEs. Copyright © 2017 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  19. 7 CFR 1794.11 - Apply NEPA early in the planning process.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2011 CFR

    2011-01-01

    ... 7 Agriculture 12 2011-01-01 2011-01-01 false Apply NEPA early in the planning process. 1794.11... National Environmental Policy Act § 1794.11 Apply NEPA early in the planning process. The environmental review process requires early coordination with and involvement of RUS. Applicants should consult with...

  20. 7 CFR 1794.11 - Apply NEPA early in the planning process.

    Code of Federal Regulations, 2010 CFR

    2010-01-01

    ... 7 Agriculture 12 2010-01-01 2010-01-01 false Apply NEPA early in the planning process. 1794.11... National Environmental Policy Act § 1794.11 Apply NEPA early in the planning process. The environmental review process requires early coordination with and involvement of RUS. Applicants should consult with...

  1. Emotional sounds modulate early neural processing of emotional pictures

    PubMed Central

    Gerdes, Antje B. M.; Wieser, Matthias J.; Bublatzky, Florian; Kusay, Anita; Plichta, Michael M.; Alpers, Georg W.

    2013-01-01

    In our natural environment, emotional information is conveyed by converging visual and auditory information; multimodal integration is of utmost importance. In the laboratory, however, emotion researchers have mostly focused on the examination of unimodal stimuli. Few existing studies on multimodal emotion processing have focused on human communication such as the integration of facial and vocal expressions. Extending the concept of multimodality, the current study examines how the neural processing of emotional pictures is influenced by simultaneously presented sounds. Twenty pleasant, unpleasant, and neutral pictures of complex scenes were presented to 22 healthy participants. On the critical trials these pictures were paired with pleasant, unpleasant, and neutral sounds. Sound presentation started 500 ms before picture onset and each stimulus presentation lasted for 2 s. EEG was recorded from 64 channels and ERP analyses focused on the picture onset. In addition, valence and arousal ratings were obtained. Previous findings for the neural processing of emotional pictures were replicated. Specifically, unpleasant compared to neutral pictures were associated with an increased parietal P200 and a more pronounced centroparietal late positive potential (LPP), independent of the accompanying sound valence. For audiovisual stimulation, increased parietal P100 and P200 were found in response to all pictures which were accompanied by unpleasant or pleasant sounds compared to pictures with neutral sounds. Most importantly, incongruent audiovisual pairs of unpleasant pictures and pleasant sounds enhanced parietal P100 and P200 compared to pairings with congruent sounds. Taken together, the present findings indicate that emotional sounds modulate early stages of visual processing and, therefore, provide an avenue by which multimodal experience may enhance perception. PMID:24151476

  2. The role of hard turbulent thermal convection in the Earth's early thermal evolution

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Hansen, Ulli; Yuen, David A.; Zhao, Wuling; Malevsky, Andrei V.

    1992-01-01

    In the last several years great progress was made in the study of a new transition in thermal convection, called hard turbulence. Initial experiments were conducted with helium gas, then with water. It was shown that for base-heated Newtonian convection a transition occurred at Rayleigh numbers between 10(exp 7) and 10(exp 8). This transition is characterized by the appearance of disconnected plume structures in contrast to continuous plumes with mushroom-shaped tops found for lower Rayleigh numbers. This new hydrodynamic transition is expected to play an important role in reshaping our concepts of mantle convection in the early stages of planetary evolution. We have conducted two-dimensional calculations for large and small aspect-ratio configuration to see whether such a transition would take place for infinite Prandtl number fluids.

  3. Geologically Controlled Isotope-Time Patterns Reveal Early Differentiation and Crust Formation Processes

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Bennett, V. C.; Nutman, A. P.

    2014-12-01

    The mechanisms of continental crust production and evolution in the early Earth remain controversial, as are questions of the relative roles of early differentiation versus subsequent tectonic procssing in creating Earth's chemical signatures. Here we present geologic observations integrated with whole rock major, trace element and Sm-Nd isotopic signatures and combined with U-Pb and Lu-Hf isotopic compositions of zircon populations from the same rocks, from the most extensive early rock record comprising the 3.9 Ga to 3.6 Ga terranes of southwest Greenland. These data reveal repeated patterns of formation of juvenile TTG crust and associated mafic and ultramafic rocks in convergent margin settings followed by formation of more evolved granites [1]. Our new zircon Lu-Hf data from rare 3.6-3.7 Ga tonalites within the Itsaq Gneiss Complex, obtained from single component, non-migmatitic gneisses with simple zircon populations, limited within sample Hf isotopic variability and accurate U-Pb ages, now document extraction of juvenile tonalites from a near chondritic mantle source between 3.9 Ga and 3.6 Ga. The more evolved, granitic rocks in each area show slightly negative initial ɛHf in accord with crustal reworking of the older (3.8-3.9 Ga) gniesses. There is no evidence for Hadean material in the sources of the granitoids. The Hf isotope-time patterns are consistent with juvenile crust production from a mantle source that experienced only modest amounts of prior crustal extraction. They are distinct from those predicted by reprocessing of an enriched Hadean mafic crust, as has been proposed for this region [2] and for the source of the Hadean Jack Hills zircons [3]. The well-documented, time decreasing, positive 142Nd anomalies [e.g., 4] from these rocks are further evidence of crustal derivation from a convecting mantle source, rather than reworking of an enriched mafic lithosphere. The 143Nd isotopic -time patterns are more complex, reflecting the interplay

  4. Early aerial photography and contributions to Digital Earth - The case of the 1921 Halifax air survey mission in Canada

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Werle, D.

    2016-04-01

    This paper presents research into the military and civilian history, technological development, and practical outcomes of aerial photography in Canada immediately after the First World War. The collections of early aerial photography in Canada and elsewhere, as well as the institutional and practical circumstances and arrangements of their creation, represent an important part of remote sensing heritage. It is argued that the digital rendition of the air photos and their representation in mosaic form can make valuable contributions to Digital Earth historic inquiries and mapping exercises today. An episode of one of the first urban surveys, carried out over Halifax, Nova Scotia, in 1921, is highlighted and an air photo mosaic and interpretation key is presented. Using the almost one hundred year old air photos and a digitally re-assembled mosaic of a substantial portion of that collection as a guide, a variety of features unique to the post-war urban landscape of the Halifax peninsula are analysed, illustrated, and compared with records of past and current land use. The pan-chromatic air photo ensemble at a nominal scale of 1:5,000 is placed into the historical context with contemporary thematic maps, recent air photos, and modern satellite imagery. Further research opportunities and applications concerning early Canadian aerial photography are outlined.

  5. Disgust-specific modulation of early attention processes.

    PubMed

    van Hooff, Johanna C; van Buuringen, Melanie; El M'rabet, Ihsane; de Gier, Margot; van Zalingen, Lilian

    2014-10-01

    Although threatening images are known to attract and keep our attention, little is known about the existence of emotion-specific attention effects. In this study (N=46), characteristics of an anticipated, disgust-specific effect were investigated by means of a covert orienting paradigm incorporating pictures that were either disgust-evoking, fear-evoking, happiness-evoking or neutral. Attention adhesion to these pictures was measured by the time necessary to identify a peripheral target, presented 100, 200, 500, or 800 ms after picture onset. Main results showed that reaction times were delayed for targets following the disgust-evoking pictures by 100 and 200 ms, suggesting that only these pictures temporarily grabbed hold of participants' attention. These delays were similar for ignore- and attend-instructions, and they were not affected by the participants' anxiety levels or disgust sensitivity. The disgust-specific influence on early attention processes thus appeared very robust, occurring in the majority of participants and without contribution of voluntary- and strategic-attention processes. In contrast, a smaller and less reliable effect of all emotional (arousing) pictures was present in the form of delayed responding in the 100 ms cue-target interval. This effect was more transitory and apparent only in participants with relatively high state-anxiety scores. Practical and theoretical consequences of these findings are discussed. Copyright © 2014 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

  6. Tuned by experience: How orientation probability modulates early perceptual processing.

    PubMed

    Jabar, Syaheed B; Filipowicz, Alex; Anderson, Britt

    2017-09-01

    Probable stimuli are more often and more quickly detected. While stimulus probability is known to affect decision-making, it can also be explained as a perceptual phenomenon. Using spatial gratings, we have previously shown that probable orientations are also more precisely estimated, even while participants remained naive to the manipulation. We conducted an electrophysiological study to investigate the effect that probability has on perception and visual-evoked potentials. In line with previous studies on oddballs and stimulus prevalence, low-probability orientations were associated with a greater late positive 'P300' component which might be related to either surprise or decision-making. However, the early 'C1' component, thought to reflect V1 processing, was dampened for high-probability orientations while later P1 and N1 components were unaffected. Exploratory analyses revealed a participant-level correlation between C1 and P300 amplitudes, suggesting a link between perceptual processing and decision-making. We discuss how these probability effects could be indicative of sharpening of neurons preferring the probable orientations, due either to perceptual learning, or to feature-based attention. Copyright © 2017 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  7. Hemispheric differences in processing of vocalizations depend on early experience.

    PubMed

    Phan, Mimi L; Vicario, David S

    2010-02-02

    An intriguing phenomenon in the neurobiology of language is lateralization: the dominant role of one hemisphere in a particular function. Lateralization is not exclusive to language because lateral differences are observed in other sensory modalities, behaviors, and animal species. Despite much scientific attention, the function of lateralization, its possible dependence on experience, and the functional implications of such dependence have yet to be clearly determined. We have explored the role of early experience in the development of lateralized sensory processing in the brain, using the songbird model of vocal learning. By controlling exposure to natural vocalizations (through isolation, song tutoring, and muting), we manipulated the postnatal auditory environment of developing zebra finches, and then assessed effects on hemispheric specialization for communication sounds in adulthood. Using bilateral multielectrode recordings from a forebrain auditory area known to selectively process species-specific vocalizations, we found that auditory responses to species-typical songs and long calls, in both male and female birds, were stronger in the right hemisphere than in the left, and that right-side responses adapted more rapidly to stimulus repetition. We describe specific instances, particularly in males, where these lateral differences show an influence of auditory experience with song and/or the bird's own voice during development.

  8. Early evolution and dynamics of Earth from a molten initial stage

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Lourenço, Diogo L.; Tackley, Paul J.

    2014-05-01

    It is now well established that most of the terrestrial planets underwent a magma ocean stage during their accretion. On Earth, it is probable that at the end of accretion, giant impacts like the hypothesised Moon-forming impact, together with other sources of heat such as conversion of gravitational energy of formation into heat, heat losses from the core at the core-mantle boundary, radioactive decay, electromagnetic induction heating and tidal heating, melted a substantial part of the mantle. The thermal and chemical evolution of the resulting magma ocean most certainly had dramatic consequences on the history of the planet, influencing the chemical composition of the mantle after differentiation, the style of tectonic regime prevailing in the solid-state mantle and its habitability. Considerable research has been done on magma oceans using 1-D models (e.g.: Abe, PEPI 1997; Solomatov, Treat. Geophys. 2007; Elkins-Tanton, EPSL 2008). However, its dynamics, evolution from a molten state to the present day solid state, and crystallisation are still not fully understood and are more complex than a 1-D formulation. Recent advances in computational methods and resources allow us to address numerically more complex problems, with higher resolution and multiple physics incorporated. Moreover, new developments in mineral physics that indicate that melt can be denser than solid at high pressures (e.g.: de Koker et al., EPSL 2013) can have very important impacts on the classical views of the solidification of magma oceans (Labrosse et al., Nature 2007). The goal of our study is to understand and characterise the influence of melting on the long-term thermo-chemical evolution of rocky planet interiors, starting from an initial molten state (magma ocean). Our approach is to test existing published 1-D parameterisations of magma ocean dynamics and extend them into 2-D models. We will address this problem using the numerical code StagYY (Tackley, PEPI 2008), which uses a

  9. Mathematic modeling of the Earth's surface and the process of remote sensing

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Balter, B. M.

    1979-01-01

    It is shown that real data from remote sensing of the Earth from outer space are not best suited to the search for optimal procedures with which to process such data. To work out the procedures, it was proposed that data synthesized with the help of mathematical modeling be used. A criterion for simularity to reality was formulated. The basic principles for constructing methods for modeling the data from remote sensing are recommended. A concrete method is formulated for modeling a complete cycle of radiation transformations in remote sensing. A computer program is described which realizes the proposed method. Some results from calculations are presented which show that the method satisfies the requirements imposed on it.

  10. Preface to highly siderophile element constraints on Earth and planetary processes

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Riches, Amy J. V.

    2017-11-01

    The geochemical properties of the highly siderophile elements (HSEs; Os, Ir, Ru, Rh, Pt, Pd, Re and Au) - being strongly iron-loving, but also chalcophile (i.e., having an affinity for sulphide), and generally occurring at ultra trace levels in silicate rocks, their weathered products, and oceanic waters - mean that this suite of elements and their isotopic compositions are useful in tracing a wide variety of processes. Thus, the HSEs are useful probes with which to tackle major research questions pertinent to past and present day change at a variety of scales and in a range of Earth and other-worldly environments by constraining reservoir compositions, chemical drivers, and the timing of key events and/or transformation rates.

  11. A reactive distillation process for the treatment of LiCl-KCl eutectic waste salt containing rare earth chlorides

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Eun, H. C.; Choi, J. H.; Kim, N. Y.; Lee, T. K.; Han, S. Y.; Lee, K. R.; Park, H. S.; Ahn, D. H.

    2016-11-01

    The pyrochemical process, which recovers useful resources (U/TRU metals) from used nuclear fuel using an electrochemical method, generates LiCl-KCl eutectic waste salt containing radioactive rare earth chlorides (RECl3). It is necessary to develop a simple process for the treatment of LiCl-KCl eutectic waste salt in a hot-cell facility. For this reason, a reactive distillation process using a chemical agent was achieved as a method to separate rare earths from the LiCl-KCl waste salt. Before conducting the reactive distillation, thermodynamic equilibrium behaviors of the reactions between rare earth (Nd, La, Ce, Pr) chlorides and the chemical agent (K2CO3) were predicted using software. The addition of the chemical agent was determined to separate the rare earth chlorides into an oxide form using these equilibrium results. In the reactive distillation test, the rare earth chlorides in LiCl-KCl eutectic salt were decontaminated at a decontamination factor (DF) of more than 5000, and were mainly converted into oxide (Nd2O3, CeO2, La2O3, Pr2O3) or oxychloride (LaOCl, PrOCl) forms. The LiCl-KCl was purified into a form with a very low concentration (<1 ppm) for the rare earth chlorides.

  12. Pedogenetic processes in anthrosols with pretic horizon (Amazonian Dark Earth) in Central Amazon, Brazil.

    PubMed

    Macedo, Rodrigo S; Teixeira, Wenceslau G; Corrêa, Marcelo M; Martins, Gilvan C; Vidal-Torrado, Pablo

    2017-01-01

    Anthrosols known as Amazonian Dark Earth (ADE) have borne witness to the intensification of sedentary patterns and the demographic increase in Central Amazon. As a result, a recurring pattern has been observed of mounds with ADE arising from domestic activities and the disposal of waste. The objective of this research was to demonstrate the relationship of these anthropic activities with pedogenetic formation processes of ADE in the municipality of Iranduba, Brazil. Disturbed and undisturbed soil samples were taken from two areas of ADE (pretic horizon) and from a non-anthropic pedon. Physical, chemical, micromorphological and SEM-EDS analyses were performed. The coarse material of the pretic horizons consisted predominantly of quartz, iron nodules, ceramics and charcoal fragments, and the fine material is organo-mineral. There was a direct relationship between the color of pretic horizons and the number of charcoal fragments. The thickness of the ADE results from the redistribution of charcoal at depth through bioturbation, transforming subsurface horizons into anthropic horizons. ADE presents granular microaggregates of geochemical and zoogenetic origin. Degradation of iron nodules is intensified in pretic horizons, promoting a reverse pedogenic process contributing to the xanthization process. Surprisingly the anthropic activities also favor clay dispersion and argilluviation; clay coatings on the ceramic fragments and in the pores demonstrate that this is a current process. Processes identified as contributing to ADE genesis included: i) addition of organic residues and ceramic artifacts (cumulization) with the use of fire; ii) mechanical action of humans, roots and macrofauna (bioturbation); iii) melanization of deeper horizons as a result of bioturbation; iv) argilluviation and degradation of iron nodules. This study offers new support to archaeological research in respect to ADE formation processes in Central Amazon and confirmed the hypothesis that ancient

  13. Pedogenetic processes in anthrosols with pretic horizon (Amazonian Dark Earth) in Central Amazon, Brazil

    PubMed Central

    Macedo, Rodrigo S.; Teixeira, Wenceslau G.; Corrêa, Marcelo M.; Martins, Gilvan C.

    2017-01-01

    Anthrosols known as Amazonian Dark Earth (ADE) have borne witness to the intensification of sedentary patterns and the demographic increase in Central Amazon. As a result, a recurring pattern has been observed of mounds with ADE arising from domestic activities and the disposal of waste. The objective of this research was to demonstrate the relationship of these anthropic activities with pedogenetic formation processes of ADE in the municipality of Iranduba, Brazil. Disturbed and undisturbed soil samples were taken from two areas of ADE (pretic horizon) and from a non-anthropic pedon. Physical, chemical, micromorphological and SEM-EDS analyses were performed. The coarse material of the pretic horizons consisted predominantly of quartz, iron nodules, ceramics and charcoal fragments, and the fine material is organo-mineral. There was a direct relationship between the color of pretic horizons and the number of charcoal fragments. The thickness of the ADE results from the redistribution of charcoal at depth through bioturbation, transforming subsurface horizons into anthropic horizons. ADE presents granular microaggregates of geochemical and zoogenetic origin. Degradation of iron nodules is intensified in pretic horizons, promoting a reverse pedogenic process contributing to the xanthization process. Surprisingly the anthropic activities also favor clay dispersion and argilluviation; clay coatings on the ceramic fragments and in the pores demonstrate that this is a current process. Processes identified as contributing to ADE genesis included: i) addition of organic residues and ceramic artifacts (cumulization) with the use of fire; ii) mechanical action of humans, roots and macrofauna (bioturbation); iii) melanization of deeper horizons as a result of bioturbation; iv) argilluviation and degradation of iron nodules. This study offers new support to archaeological research in respect to ADE formation processes in Central Amazon and confirmed the hypothesis that ancient

  14. The ultimate mineral processing challenge: Recovery of rare earths, phosphorus and uranium from Florida phosphatic clay

    SciT

    Zhang, Patrick; Liang, Haijun; Jin, Zhen

    We report phosphate beneficiation in Florida generates more than one tonne of phosphatic clay, or slime, per tonne of phosphate rock produced. Since the start of the practice of large-scale washing and desliming for phosphate beneficiation, more than 2 Gt of slime has accumulated, containing approximately 600 Mt of phosphate rock, 600 kt of rare earth elements (REEs) and 80 million kilograms of uranium. The recovery of these valuable elements from the phosphatic clay is one of the most challenging endeavors in mineral processing, because the clay is extremely dilute, with an average solids concentration of 3 percent, and finemore » in size, with more than 50 percent having particle size smaller than 2 μm, and it contains nearly 50 percent clay minerals as well as large amounts of magnesium, iron and aluminum. With industry support and under funding from the Critical Materials Institute, the Florida Industrial and Phosphate Research Institute in conjunction with the Oak Ridge National Laboratory undertook the task to recover phosphorus, rare earths and uranium from Florida phosphatic clay. This paper presents the results from the preliminary testing of two approaches. The first approach involves three-stage cycloning using cyclones with diameters of 12.4 cm (5 in.), 5.08 cm (2 in.) and 2.54 cm (1 in.), respectively, to remove clay minerals followed by flotation and leaching. The second approach is a two-step leaching process. In the first step, selective leaching was conducted to remove magnesium, thus allowing the production of phosphoric acid suitable for the manufacture of diammonium phosphate (DAP) in the second leaching step. The results showed that multistage cycloning with small cyclones is necessary to remove clay minerals. Finally, selective leaching at about pH 3.2 using sulfuric acid was found to be effective for removing more than 80 percent of magnesium from the feed with minimal loss of phosphorus.« less

  15. Simulation of energy-dependent electron diffusion processes in the Earth's outer radiation belt

    DOE PAGES

    Ma, Q.; Li, W.; Thorne, R. M.; ...

    2016-04-28

    The radial and local diffusion processes induced by various plasma waves govern the highly energetic electron dynamics in the Earth's radiation belts, causing distinct characteristics in electron distributions at various energies. In this study, we present our simulation results of the energetic electron evolution during a geomagnetic storm using the University of California, Los Angeles 3-D diffusion code. Following the plasma sheet electron injections, the electrons at different energy bands detected by the Magnetic Electron Ion Spectrometer (MagEIS) and Relativistic Electron Proton Telescope (REPT) instruments on board the Van Allen Probes exhibit a rapid enhancement followed by a slow diffusivemore » movement in differential energy fluxes, and the radial extent to which electrons can penetrate into depends on energy with closer penetration toward the Earth at lower energies than higher energies. We incorporate radial diffusion, local acceleration, and loss processes due to whistler mode wave observations to perform a 3-D diffusion simulation. Here, our simulation results demonstrate that chorus waves cause electron flux increase by more than 1 order of magnitude during the first 18 h, and the subsequent radial extents of the energetic electrons during the storm recovery phase are determined by the coupled radial diffusion and the pitch angle scattering by EMIC waves and plasmaspheric hiss. The radial diffusion caused by ULF waves and local plasma wave scattering are energy dependent, which lead to the observed electron flux variations with energy dependences. Lastly, this study suggests that plasma wave distributions in the inner magnetosphere are crucial for the energy-dependent intrusions of several hundred keV to several MeV electrons.« less

  16. The ultimate mineral processing challenge: Recovery of rare earths, phosphorus and uranium from Florida phosphatic clay

    DOE PAGES

    Zhang, Patrick; Liang, Haijun; Jin, Zhen; ...

    2017-11-01

    We report phosphate beneficiation in Florida generates more than one tonne of phosphatic clay, or slime, per tonne of phosphate rock produced. Since the start of the practice of large-scale washing and desliming for phosphate beneficiation, more than 2 Gt of slime has accumulated, containing approximately 600 Mt of phosphate rock, 600 kt of rare earth elements (REEs) and 80 million kilograms of uranium. The recovery of these valuable elements from the phosphatic clay is one of the most challenging endeavors in mineral processing, because the clay is extremely dilute, with an average solids concentration of 3 percent, and finemore » in size, with more than 50 percent having particle size smaller than 2 μm, and it contains nearly 50 percent clay minerals as well as large amounts of magnesium, iron and aluminum. With industry support and under funding from the Critical Materials Institute, the Florida Industrial and Phosphate Research Institute in conjunction with the Oak Ridge National Laboratory undertook the task to recover phosphorus, rare earths and uranium from Florida phosphatic clay. This paper presents the results from the preliminary testing of two approaches. The first approach involves three-stage cycloning using cyclones with diameters of 12.4 cm (5 in.), 5.08 cm (2 in.) and 2.54 cm (1 in.), respectively, to remove clay minerals followed by flotation and leaching. The second approach is a two-step leaching process. In the first step, selective leaching was conducted to remove magnesium, thus allowing the production of phosphoric acid suitable for the manufacture of diammonium phosphate (DAP) in the second leaching step. The results showed that multistage cycloning with small cyclones is necessary to remove clay minerals. Finally, selective leaching at about pH 3.2 using sulfuric acid was found to be effective for removing more than 80 percent of magnesium from the feed with minimal loss of phosphorus.« less

  17. Understanding Global Change: Tools for exploring Earth processes and biotic change through time

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Bean, J. R.; White, L. D.; Berbeco, M.

    2014-12-01

    Teaching global change is one of the great pedagogical challenges of our day because real understanding entails integrating a variety of concepts from different scientific subject areas, including chemistry, physics, and biology, with a variety of causes and impacts in the past, present, and future. With the adoption of the Next Generation Science Standards, which emphasize climate change and other human impacts on natural systems, there has never been a better time to provide instructional support to educators on these topics. In response to this clear need, the University of California Museum of Paleontology, in collaboration with the National Center for Science Education, developed a new web resource for teachers and students titled "Understanding Global Change" (UGC) that introduces the drivers and impacts of global change. This website clarifies the connections among deep time, modern Earth system processes, and anthropogenic influences, and provides K-16 instructors with a wide range of easy-to-use tools, strategies, and lesson plans for communicating these important concepts regarding global change and the basic Earth systems processes. In summer 2014, the UGC website was field-tested during a workshop with 25 K-12 teachers and science educators. Feedback from participants helped the UGC team develop and identify pedagogically sound lesson plans and instructional tools on global change. These resources are accessible through UGC's searchable database, are aligned with NGSS and Common Core, and are categorized by grade level, subject, and level of inquiry-based instruction (confirmation, structured, guided, open). Providing a range of content and tools at levels appropriate for teachers is essential because our initial needs assessment found that educators often feel that they lack the content knowledge and expertise to address complex, but relevant global change issues, such as ocean acidification and deforestation. Ongoing needs assessments and surveys of

  18. On the temporal evolution of long-wavelength mantle structure of the Earth since the early Paleozoic

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Zhong, Shijie; Rudolph, Maxwell L.

    2015-05-01

    The seismic structure of the Earth's lower mantle is characterized by a dominantly degree-2 pattern with the African and Pacific large low shear velocity provinces (i.e., LLSVP) that are separated by circum-Pacific seismically fast anomalies. It is important to understand the origin of such a degree-2 mantle structure and its temporal evolution. In this study, we investigated the effects of plate motion history and mantle viscosity on the temporal evolution of the lower mantle structure since the early Paleozoic by formulating 3-D spherical shell models of thermochemical convection. For convection models with realistic mantle viscosity and no initial structure, it takes about ˜50 Myr to develop dominantly degree-2 lower mantle structure using the published plate motion models for the last either 120 Ma or 250 Ma. However, it takes longer time to develop the mantle structure for more viscous mantle. While the circum-Pangea subduction in plate motion history models promotes the formation of degree-2 mantle structure, the published pre-Pangea plate motions before 330 Ma produce relatively cold lower mantle in the African hemisphere and significant degree-1 structure in the early Pangea (˜300 Ma) or later times, even if the lower mantle has an initially degree-2 structure and a viscosity as high as 1023 Pas. This suggests that the African LLSVP may not be stationary since the early Paleozoic. With the published plate motion models and lower mantle viscosity of 1022 Pas, our mantle convection models suggest that the present-day degree-2 mantle structure may have largely been formed by ˜200 Ma.

  19. Symbiosis in cell evolution: Life and its environment on the early earth

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Margulis, L.

    1981-01-01

    The book treats cell evolution from the viewpoint of the serial endosymbiosis theory of the origin of organelles. Following a brief outline of the symbiotic theory, which holds that eukaryotes evolved by the association of free-living bacteria with a host prokaryote, the diversity of life is considered, and five kingdoms of organisms are distinguished: the prokaryotic Monera and the eukaryotic Protoctista, Animalia, Fungi and Plantae. Symbiotic and traditional direct filiation theories of cell evolution are compared. Recent observations of cell structure and biochemistry are reviewed in relation to early cell evolution, with attention given to the geological context for the origin of eukaryotic cells, the origin of major bacterial anaerobic pathways, the relationship between aerobic metabolism and atmospheric oxygen, criteria for distinguishing symbiotic organelles from those that originated by differentiation, and the major classes of eukaryotic organelles: mitochondria, cilia, microtubules, the mitotic and meiotic apparatuses, and pastids. Cell evolution during the Phanerozoic is also discussed with emphasis on the effects of life on the biosphere

  20. LA-ICP-MS analysis of isolated phosphatic grains indicates selective rare earth element enrichment during reworking and transport processes

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Auer, Gerald; Reuter, Markus; Hauzenberger, Christoph A.; Piller, Werner E.

    2016-04-01

    Rare earth elements (REE) are a commonly used proxy to reconstruct water chemistry and oxygen saturation during the formation history of authigenic and biogenic phosphates in marine environments. In the modern ocean REE exhibit a distinct pattern with enrichment of heavy REE and strong depletion in Cerium. Studies of ancient phosphates and carbonates, however, showed that this 'modern' pattern is only rarely present in the geological past. Consequently, the wide range of REE enrichment patterns found in ancient marine phosphates lead to the proposition that water chemistry had to have been radically different in the earth's past. A wealth of studies has already shown that both early and late diagenesis can strongly affect REE signatures in phosphates and severely alter primary marine signals. However, no previous research was conducted on how alteration processes occurring prior to final deposition affect marine phosphates. Herein we present a dataset of multiple LA-ICP-MS measurements of REE signatures in isolated phosphate and carbonate grains deposited in a carbonate ramp setting in the central Mediterranean Sea during the middle Miocene "Monterey event". The phosphates are represented by authigenic, biogenic and detrital grains emplaced in bioclastic grain- to packstones dominated by bryozoan and echinoderm fragments, as well as abundant benthic and planktic foraminifers. The results of 39 grain specific LA-ICP-MS measurements in three discrete rock samples reveals four markedly different REE patterns (normalized to the Post Archean Australian Shale standard) in terms of total enrichment and pattern shape. Analyses of REE diagenesis proxies show that diagenetic alteration affected the samples only to a minor degree. Considering grain shape and REE patterns together indicate that authigenic, detrital and biogenic phosphates have distinct REE patterns irrespective of the sample. Our results show that the observed REE patterns in phosphates only broadly reflect

  1. Exploring the implication of climate process uncertainties within the Earth System Framework

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Booth, B.; Lambert, F. H.; McNeal, D.; Harris, G.; Sexton, D.; Boulton, C.; Murphy, J.

    2011-12-01

    Uncertainties in the magnitude of future climate change have been a focus of a great deal of research. Much of the work with General Circulation Models has focused on the atmospheric response to changes in atmospheric composition, while other processes remain outside these frameworks. Here we introduce an ensemble of new simulations, based on an Earth System configuration of HadCM3C, designed to explored uncertainties in both physical (atmospheric, oceanic and aerosol physics) and carbon cycle processes, using perturbed parameter approaches previously used to explore atmospheric uncertainty. Framed in the context of the climate response to future changes in emissions, the resultant future projections represent significantly broader uncertainty than existing concentration driven GCM assessments. The systematic nature of the ensemble design enables interactions between components to be explored. For example, we show how metrics of physical processes (such as climate sensitivity) are also influenced carbon cycle parameters. The suggestion from this work is that carbon cycle processes represent a comparable contribution to uncertainty in future climate projections as contributions from atmospheric feedbacks more conventionally explored. The broad range of climate responses explored within these ensembles, rather than representing a reason for inaction, provide information on lower likelihood but high impact changes. For example while the majority of these simulations suggest that future Amazon forest extent is resilient to the projected climate changes, a small number simulate dramatic forest dieback. This ensemble represents a framework to examine these risks, breaking them down into physical processes (such as ocean temperature drivers of rainfall change) and vegetation processes (where uncertainties point towards requirements for new observational constraints).

  2. An Agro-Climatological Early Warning Tool Based on the Google Earth Engine to Support Regional Food Security Analysis

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Landsfeld, M. F.; Daudert, B.; Friedrichs, M.; Morton, C.; Hegewisch, K.; Husak, G. J.; Funk, C. C.; Peterson, P.; Huntington, J. L.; Abatzoglou, J. T.; Verdin, J. P.; Williams, E. L.

    2015-12-01

    The Famine Early Warning Systems Network (FEWS NET) focuses on food insecurity in developing nations and provides objective, evidence based analysis to help government decision-makers and relief agencies plan for and respond to humanitarian emergencies. The Google Earth Engine (GEE) is a platform provided by Google Inc. to support scientific research and analysis of environmental data in their cloud environment. The intent is to allow scientists and independent researchers to mine massive collections of environmental data and leverage Google's vast computational resources to detect changes and monitor the Earth's surface and climate. GEE hosts an enormous amount of satellite imagery and climate archives, one of which is the Climate Hazards Group Infrared Precipitation with Stations dataset (CHIRPS). The CHIRPS dataset is land based, quasi-global (latitude 50N-50S), 0.05 degree resolution, and has a relatively long term period of record (1981-present). CHIRPS is on a continuous monthly feed into the GEE as new data fields are generated each month. This precipitation dataset is a key input for FEWS NET monitoring and forecasting efforts. FEWS NET intends to leverage the GEE in order to provide analysts and scientists with flexible, interactive tools to aid in their monitoring and research efforts. These scientists often work in bandwidth limited regions, so lightweight Internet tools and services that bypass the need for downloading massive datasets to analyze them, are preferred for their work. The GEE provides just this type of service. We present a tool designed specifically for FEWS NET scientists to be utilized interactively for investigating and monitoring for agro-climatological issues. We are able to utilize the enormous GEE computing power to generate on-the-fly statistics to calculate precipitation anomalies, z-scores, percentiles and band ratios, and allow the user to interactively select custom areas for statistical time series comparisons and predictions.

  3. Optimization of a novel enzyme treatment process for early-stage processing of sheepskins.

    PubMed

    Lim, Y F; Bronlund, J E; Allsop, T F; Shilton, A N; Edmonds, R L

    2010-01-01

    An enzyme treatment process for early-stage processing of sheepskins has been previously reported by the Leather and Shoe Research Association of New Zealand (LASRA) as an alternative to current industry operations. The newly developed process had marked benefits over conventional processing in terms of a lowered energy usage (73%), processing time (47%) as well as water use (49%), but had been developed as a "proof of principle''. The objective of this work was to develop the process further to a stage ready for adoption by industry. Mass balancing was used to investigate potential modifications for the process based on the understanding developed from a detailed analysis of preliminary design trials. Results showed that a configuration utilising a 2 stage counter-current system for the washing stages and segregation and recycling of enzyme float prior to dilution in the neutralization stage was a significant improvement. Benefits over conventional processing include a reduction of residual TDS by 50% at the washing stages and 70% savings on water use overall. Benefits over the un-optimized LASRA process are reduction of solids in product after enzyme treatment and neutralization stages by 30%, additional water savings of 21%, as well as 10% savings of enzyme usage.

  4. Rare-earth leaching from Florida phosphate rock in wet-process phosphoric acid production

    DOE PAGES

    Liang, Haijun; Zhang, Patrick; Jin, Zhen; ...

    2017-08-01

    Phosphorite, or phosphate rock, is the most significant secondary rare-earth resource. It contains high amounts of phosphate-bearing minerals along with low contents of rare earth elements (REEs). In Florida, about 19 Mt of phosphate rock are mined annually and most are used to manufacture fertilizers using a wet process, in which sulfuric acid reacts with phosphates to produce phosphoric acid and phosphogypsum. In the wet process, REEs are also leached out into solution and eventually get lost in the leaching residue and phosphate fertilizer. Recovering REEs from Florida phosphate rock in the wet process will be beneficial to broadening rare-earthmore » availability, improving the quality of phosphoric acid product and protecting the environment. Here, this study focuses on the influences of we