104 news posts related to Geophysical Sciences

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Eric Steig named chair of the Department of Earth and Space Sciences

Eric Steig

The UW College of the Environment is pleased to announce that Eric Steig has agreed to serve as chair of the Department of Earth and Space Sciences (ESS), effective February 1, 2020, through June 30, 2023. Steig is a glaciologist and isotope geochemist who studies how the climate behaved in the past to learn what it can tell us both about the effects of climate change today, and how it will change in the future. 

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Take a peak: 10 facts about the tallest mountain on Earth

students in Hawaii

When thinking of the “biggest” mountains on Earth, many people immediately think of Mount Everest or Denali, but some of the biggest mountains actually start below sea level and grow into islands. At over 33,000 feet, Mauna Kea in Hawaii reigns supreme as the biggest mountain on Earth as measured from base to top. Let’s explore the ways in which these mountains are different, both in how they are made and their geologic setting. 

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World Tsunami Awareness Day: what are the risks and how can we prepare?

The coast of the Pacific Northwest from space.

In the depths of the Pacific Ocean, just off the upper West Coast of the United States, a collision between an unstoppable force and an immovable object has been gathering energy for hundreds of years. The Cascadia Subduction Zone (CSZ), where the Juan de Fuca and North American tectonic plates meet, must release this pent up energy eventually in an event many refer to as “the really big one”. 

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Washington’s first student-built satellite preparing for launch

students in lab

A University of Washington satellite smaller than a loaf of bread will, if all goes well, launch this weekend on its way to low-Earth orbit. It will be the first student-built satellite from Washington state to go into space. HuskySat-1 is one of seven student-built satellites from around the country scheduled to launch at 9:30 a.m. Eastern time Saturday, Nov. 2, from NASA’s Wallops Flight Facility on the Virginia coast. 

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Lightning ‘superbolts’ form over oceans from November to February

Sydney lightening storm

The lightning season in the Southeastern U.S. is almost finished for this year, but the peak season for the most powerful strokes of lightning won’t begin until November, according to a newly published global survey of these rare events. A University of Washington study maps the location and timing of “superbolts” — bolts that release electrical energy of more than 1 million Joules, or a thousand times more energy than the average lightning bolt, in the very low frequency range in which lightning is most active. 

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