Breakfast at the Cosmic Dawn

Astronomers using the European Space Observatory’s Very Large Telescope (VLT) report observing reservoirs of cool gas around some of the earliest galaxies in the Universe. These gas halos, they say, are the perfect food for supermassive black holes at the centre of these galaxies and […]

Timing Matters for Rockfall Estimates

Rockfalls, in which gravel- to boulder-sized rocks break away from slopes, skew toward the small end on the scale of landslides. Nevertheless, they remain hazardous. Rockfalls have blocked roads, crushed infrastructure, and taken lives. Reports from around the world suggest that they may be becoming more […]

Lost volcanoes among oil and gas

Researchers have uncovered around 100 previously undescribed ancient volcanoes buried deep beneath central Australia. That’s both surprising and significant, they suggest. Surprising because they have gone unnoticed despite half a century of oil and gas exploration and production in what are known as the Cooper-Eromanga Basins, […]

Now that’s an active asteroid

Scientists poring over data from NASA’s OSIRIS-REx mission are trying to figure out why the near-Earth asteroid Bennu is periodically ejecting rocks the size of ping-pong balls. The find came “sort of by accident,” says Harold Connolly Jr, a cosmochemist and meteoriticist at Rowan University, US, when […]