A massive floating laboratory is attempting to drill through four miles of seabed to take samples of the Earth’s mantle
By Rena Marie PacellaPosted 04.01.2010 at 3:37 pm 21 Comments
The world's deepest drill is about to get taller—tall enough to dig into Earth's mantle. Already, the Chikyu research vessel is capable of fetching samples at depths of 23,000 feet below the seabed, two to four times that of any other drill. In 2007, off the coast of Japan, it became the first mission to study subduction zones, the area between tectonic plates that is the birthplace of many earthquakes. Over the next three years, scientists will tack on at least an extra mile of drill and attempt the most ambitious mission ever: piercing the Earth's mantle.
Ever wonder how geysers work? Our FYI editor explains these natural eruptions of steam and water.
By Bob Sillery (Editor), Diane Lanigan and Angela Palmer (Research)Posted 01.25.2002 at 1:19 pm 1 Comment
A geyser is a natural hot spring that erupts with a gush of steam and water. The most famous of these natural wonders, known for its predictability and beautiful plume, is Old Faithful in Yellowstone National Park. The average interval between its spoutings is 78 minutes. Here's what sets Old Faithful and other geysers off.