Portal:Earth sciences

The Earth Sciences Portal

Earth seen from Moon
Earth seen from Moon

Earth science or geoscience includes all fields of natural science related to the planet Earth. This is a branch of science dealing with the physical, chemical, and biological complex constitutions and synergistic linkages of Earth's four spheres, namely biosphere, hydrosphere, atmosphere, and geosphere. Earth science can be considered to be a branch of planetary science, but with a much older history. Earth science encompasses four main branches of study, the lithosphere, the hydrosphere, the atmosphere, and the biosphere, each of which is further broken down into more specialized fields.

There are both reductionist and holistic approaches to Earth sciences. It is also the study of Earth and its neighbors in space. Some Earth scientists use their knowledge of the planet to locate and develop energy and mineral resources. Others study the impact of human activity on Earth's environment, and design methods to protect the planet. Some use their knowledge about Earth processes such as volcanoes, earthquakes, and hurricanes to plan communities that will not expose people to these dangerous events. (Full article...)

Selected articles

Did you know? -

Photograph of volcano
  • ...that a tuya (pictured) is a type of flat-topped, steep-sided volcano formed when lava erupts through a thick glacier or ice sheet?
  • ...that in the United States, on average tornadoes are around 500 feet (150 m) across, and stay on the ground for 5 miles (8 km)?
  • ...that dust storms can carry large amounts of dust, so much so that the leading edge of one can appear as a solid wall of dust as much as 1.6 km (1 mile) high?
  • ...that the area of the world Ocean is 361 million square  kilometers, its volume is approximately 1.3 billion cubic kilometers, and its average depth is 3,790 meters?
  • ...that three quarters of the earth's atmosphere lies within the troposphere, and the depth of this layer varies between 17 km at the equator and 7 km at the poles?
  • ...that the Mariana Trench is the deepest point in the ocean?

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In the news

26 March 2022 – 2020–2022 Taal Volcano eruptions
The Philippine Institute of Volcanology and Seismology raises the alert status of the Taal Volcano to level 3 after the volcano had a short-lived phreatomagmatic eruption. (CNN Philippines)
16 March 2022 – 2022 Fukushima earthquake
A 7.3 magnitude earthquake strikes off Fukushima, Japan, triggering tsunami warnings and causing power outages for millions of people in Tokyo. At least four people are killed and 94 others are injured. (Al Jazeera) (NDTV)
8 March 2022 – International sanctions during the Russo-Ukrainian War
Chinese officials indicate that they are interested in buying shares in recently-distressed Russian energy and minerals companies, seeking supply security. The negotiations, however, are still at an early stage. (Bloomberg)

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Climate change (More...)

Global warming · Rachel Carson · Retreat of glaciers since 1850

Earthquakes (More...)

1949 Ambato earthquake · 1968 Illinois earthquake · 1980 eruption of Mount St. Helens · 1997 Qayen earthquake · 2002 Bou'in-Zahra earthquake · 2005 Qeshm earthquake · 2007–2008 Nazko earthquakes

Volcanoes (More...)

1980 eruption of Mount St. Helens · 2007–2008 Nazko earthquakes · Amchitka · Armero tragedy · Calabozos · Cerro Azul (Chile volcano) · Craters of the Moon National Monument and Preserve · David A. Johnston · Geology of the Lassen volcanic area · Loihi Seamount · Mauna Kea · Mauna Loa · Metacomet Ridge · Mono–Inyo Craters · Mount Cayley volcanic field · Mount St. Helens · Mount Tambora · Nevado del Ruiz · Surtsey · The Volcano (British Columbia) · Upper and Lower Table Rock · Volcano (South Park) · Yellowstone National Park

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Mary Anning · Archaea · Archaeopteryx · Cerro Azul (Chile volcano) · Bryce Canyon National Park · Calabozos · Chicxulub crater · Cretaceous–Paleogene extinction event · Charles Darwin · Earth · Ediacara biota · Geology of the Bryce Canyon area · Geology of the Capitol Reef area · Geology of the Death Valley area · Geology of the Grand Canyon area · Geology of the Lassen volcanic area · Geology of the Zion and Kolob canyons area · Global warming · Iridium · Oil shale · The Volcano (British Columbia) · Toronto Magnetic and Meteorological Observatory · Volcanology of Io · Yellowstone National Park

Geography (More...)

Antarctica · Australia · Bryce Canyon National Park · Carlsbad Caverns National Park · Craters of the Moon National Monument and Preserve · Death Valley National Park · Geography of India · Geography of Ireland · National parks of England and Wales · Niagara Falls · Rondane National Park · Shoshone National Forest · Yellowstone National Park · Yosemite National Park · Zion National Park

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1941 Atlantic hurricane season · 1991 Atlantic hurricane season · 1995 Pacific hurricane season · 1998 Pacific hurricane season · 2002 Atlantic hurricane season · 2003 Atlantic hurricane season · Category 5 Pacific hurricanes · Hurricane Isabel · Lists of Florida hurricanes · Lists of North Carolina hurricanes

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  • Phosphosiderite
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Media files used on this page

The Earth seen from Apollo 17.jpg
"The Blue Marble" is a famous photograph of the Earth taken on December 7, 1972, by the crew of the Apollo 17 spacecraft en route to the Moon at a distance of about 29,000 kilometres (18,000 mi). It shows Africa, Antarctica, and the Arabian Peninsula.
Darkgreen flag waving.svg
Author/Creator: TristanBomb, Licence: CC0
A dark green flag.
NASA-Apollo8-Dec24-Earthrise.jpg
Taken by Apollo 8 crewmember Bill Anders on December 24, 1968, at mission time 075:49:07 [8] (16:40 UTC), while in orbit around the Moon, showing the Earth rising for the third time above the lunar horizon. The lunar horizon is approximately 780 kilometers from the spacecraft. Width of the photographed area at the lunar horizon is about 175 kilometers. [9] The land mass visible just above the terminator line is west Africa. Note that this phenomenon is only visible to an observer in motion relative to the lunar surface. Because of the Moon's synchronous rotation relative to the Earth (i.e., the same side of the Moon is always facing Earth), the Earth appears to be stationary (measured in anything less than a geological timescale) in the lunar "sky". In order to observe the effect of Earth rising or setting over the Moon's horizon, an observer must travel towards or away from the point on the lunar surface where the Earth is most directly overhead (centred in the sky). Otherwise, the Earth's apparent motion/visible change will be limited to: 1. Growing larger/smaller as the orbital distance between the two bodies changes. 2. Slight apparent movement of the Earth due to the eccenticity of the Moon's orbit, the effect being called libration. 3. Rotation of the Earth (the Moon's rotation is synchronous relative to the Earth, the Earth's rotation is not synchronous relative to the Moon). 4. Atmospheric & surface changes on Earth (i.e.: weather patterns, changing seasons, etc.). Two craters, visible on the image were named 8 Homeward and Anders' Earthrise in honor of Apollo 8 by IAU in 2018. [10]
Waves in pacifica 1.jpg
Author/Creator: Brocken Inaglory, Licence: CC BY-SA 4.0
Sea Storm in Pacifica, w:California
Stylised atom with three Bohr model orbits and stylised nucleus.svg
Author/Creator:

SVG by Indolences.

Recoloring and ironing out some glitches done by Rainer Klute., Licence: CC-BY-SA-3.0
Stylised atom. Blue dots are electrons, red dots are protons and black dots are neutrons.
EF4DaltonMNtornadoJuly2020.png
EF4 tornado doing damage near Dalton, Minnesota.
Cyclone Catarina from the ISS on March 26 2004.JPG
Before the year 2004, only two tropical cyclones had ever been noted in the South Atlantic Basin, and no hurricane. However, a circulation center well off the coast of southern Brazil developed tropical cyclone characteristics and continued to intensify as it moved westward. The system developed an eye and apparently reached hurricane strength on Friday, March 26, before eventually making landfall late on Saturday, March 27, 2004.
The crew of the International Space Station was notified of the cyclone and acquired excellent photographs of the storm just as it made landfall on the southern Brazilian state of Santa Catarina (the storm has been unofficially dubbed “Cyclone Catarina”). Note the clockwise circulation of Southern Hemisphere cyclones, the well-defined banding features, and the eyewall of at least a Category 1 system. The coastline is visible under the clouds in the upper left corner of the image.
TsunamiHazardSign.svg
Tsunami hazard sign
Featured article star.svg
(c) Booyabazooka, CC-BY-SA-3.0
Wikipedia featured article star
Lower antelope 2 md.jpg
Author/Creator: Moondigger, Licence: CC BY-SA 2.5
Inside Lower Antelope Canyon, featuring red sandstone corridors.
Top of Atmosphere.jpg
View of the crescent moon through the top of the Earth's atmosphere. Photographed above 21.5°N, 113.3°E by International Space Station crew Expedition 13 over the South China Sea, just south of Macau (NASA image ID: ISS013-E-54329).
YellowstonefallJUN05.JPG
Author/Creator: Scott Catron, Licence: CC BY 2.5
Lower Falls of the Yellowstone. Yellowstone National Park, Wyoming, USA.
Jfader dryden.jpg
NASA 1m satellite photo (composite) of Dryden Research Center on Edwards Air Force Base, California.
Herðubreið-Iceland-2.jpg
Author/Creator: User en:User:Icemuon, cropped by User:Seattle Skier, Licence: CC-BY-SA-3.0
The mountain Herðubreið, interior of Iceland, viewed from the southeast.
Pyrite from Ampliación a Victoria Mine, Navajún, La Rioja, Spain 2.jpg
Author/Creator: JJ Harrison (https://www.jjharrison.com.au/), Licence: CC BY-SA 3.0
Pyrite from Ampliación a Victoria Mine, Navajún, La Rioja, Spain.
Zircon-t09zirc-08d.jpg
(c) Rob Lavinsky, iRocks.com – CC-BY-SA-3.0
Zircon
Locality: Harchu (Harchoo), Astor valley (Astore valley), Astor District (Astore District), Northern Areas, Pakistan (Locality at mindat.org)
Size: miniature, 4.7 x 4.1 x 2.0 cm
Zircon
An equant, glassy and gemmy, orangy-red crystal of zircon is perched high on a quartz biotite mica matrix. The crystal measures 1.0 cm in length. Minor contact is present near the back of the crystal but is insignificant.
Linecons big-star.svg
Author/Creator: Designmodo http://www.designmodo.com/, Licence: CC BY 3.0
Linecons by Designmodo
00065 sand collage.jpg
Author/Creator: Siim Sepp (Sandatlas), Licence: CC BY-SA 3.0
Global collage of sand samples. There is one square centimeter of sand on every sample photo. Sand samples row by row from left to right: 1. Glass sand from Kauai, Hawaii 2. Dune sand from the Gobi Desert 3. Quartz sand with green glauconite from Estonia 4. Volcanic sand with reddish weathered basalt from Maui, Hawaii 5. Biogenic coral sand from Molokai, Hawaii 6. Coral pink sand dunes from Utah 7. Volcanic glass sand from California 8. Garnet sand from Emerald Creek, Idaho 9. Olivine sand from Papakolea, Hawaii. Additional information from the source: [2]
Diatomaceous Earth BrightField.jpg
Author/Creator: Zephyris, Licence: CC BY-SA 3.0
Diatomaceous earth, also known as diatomite or kieselgur, as viewed under bright field illumination on a light microscope. Diatomaceous earth is a soft, siliceous, sedementary rock made up of the cell walls/shells of single cell diatoms and readily crumbles to a fine powder. Diatom cell walls are bivalve, i.e. made up of two halves, and are made up of biogenic silica; silica synthesised in the diatom cell by the polymerisation of silicic acid. This sample consists of a mixture of centric (radially symmetric) and pennate (bilaterally symmetric) diatoms. The primary uses of diatomaceous earth are for cleaning (scouring), filtration, heat-resistive insulation and as an inert absorbent substrate. One of the most famous uses was by Alfred Nobel who developed dynamite; a mixture of diatomaceous earth and nitroglycerin. This image of diatomaceous earth particles in water is at a scale of 6.236 pixels/μm, the entire image covers a region of approximately 1.13 by 0.69 mm.
Platinum-nugget.jpg
Author/Creator: Alchemist-hp (talk) (www.pse-mendelejew.de), Licence: FAL
native Platinum nugget, locality Kondyor mine, Khabarovsk Krai, Russia. Size ca. 35 × 23 × 14 mm, weight ca. 112g = 3.6 oz. Collection: M.R.
Roses des Sables Tunisie.jpg
Author/Creator: Didier Descouens, Licence: CC BY-SA 4.0
Desert roses (Gypsum)
Locality : Southern Tunisia
Size : 47 × 33 cm.
Lombok Topography (labelled).png
Author/Creator: , Licence: CC BY-SA 3.0
Topographic map of Lombok, Indonesia. Created with GMT from SRTM data, labels added by Jo-Jo Eumerus
Himalayan salt (coarse).jpg
Author/Creator: Ivar Leidus, Licence: CC BY-SA 4.0
Himalayan salt (coarse, ⌀ up to 5 mm) from Pakistan
Thin section scan crossed polarizers Siilinjärvi R636-105.90.jpg
Author/Creator: kallerna, Licence: CC BY-SA 4.0
Scanned image of thin section from Siilinjärvi apatite ore in cross polarised transmitted light.

The thin section is only slightly oriented and shearing has barely effected to the rock. The grain size is quite large and carbonate content is high.

Tetraferriphlogopite is the main mineral of the thin section and it forms 50 % of the area. Grains are usually 1-3 mm in diameter and oval in shape. Smaller elongated chips are common between the grains.

Carbonates form one third of the thin section area. Calcite is the dominating carbonate mineral. Carbonates look unaltered in the thin section and they are grown into large mineral aggregates. Dolomite grains are commonly smaller than the calcite grains. The diameter of the grains is 0.2-2 mm.

Apatite is widespread mineral in the thin section, and usually found as big rounded grains. The grains are 0.5-2.5 mm in diameter and form 10 area-% of the thin section.

Amphiboles are found as variable sized sub- to euhedral grains. Biggest crystals are > 3 mm in diameter, and usually they are > 0.5 mm in diameter. However, even tiny crystals are found. Amphiboles form 7 area-% of the thin section.
Bluff erosion in Pacifica 2.jpg
Author/Creator: Brocken Inaglory, Licence: CC BY-SA 3.0
On December 17, 2009 30 feet chunk of the cliff below the apartment building fell to Pacific Ocean. Residents were given 20 minutes to evacuate the building. Now the workers are trying to save it.
Change in Average Temperature.svg
Temperature changes to date have been most pronounced in northern latitudes and over land masses. The image uses longer term averages of at least a decade to smooth out climate variability due to factors such as El Niño. The map is improved from the highest quality rendering that NASA’s Scientific Visualization Studio generates, with horizontal and vertical lines removed and with a more legible projection of Kavraiskiy VII. Grey areas in the image have insufficient data for rendering. For a version that includes Fahrenheit, see File:Change in Average Temperature With Fahrenheit.svg
Charles Darwin seated crop.jpg
Photograph of Charles Darwin; the frontispiece of Francis Darwin's The Life and Letters of Charles Darwin (1887) has the caption "From a Photograph (1854?) by Messrs. Maull. And Fox. Engraved for Harper's Magazine, October 1884."[1] In an 1899 paper, Francis Darwin wrote that "The date of the photograph is probably 1854; it is, however, impossible to be certain on this point, the books of Messrs. Maull and Fox having been destroyed by fire. The reproduction is by Mr. Dew-Smith, who has been at some disadvantage, having only an old and faded print to work from."[2]
2010 Chile earthquake - Building destroyed in Concepción.jpg
Author/Creator: Claudio Núñez, Licence: CC BY-SA 2.0
En Concepción, el edificio Alto Río, de 20 pisos, colapsó producto del terremoto del 27 de febrero de 2010.
Oceans.png
Author/Creator: Alexandre Van de Sande (Avsa at English Wikipedia), Licence: CC-BY-SA-3.0
World oceans
Vanadinite - ACF mine, Mibladen, Morocco.jpg
Author/Creator: Ivar Leidus, Licence: CC BY-SA 4.0
Cluster of reddish brown tabular vanadinite crystals up to 1,8 cm in size (4.0 × 2.5 × 2.3 cm). Found from ACF mine, Mibladen, Morocco
Nuvola apps edu science.svg
Author/Creator: David Vignoni / ICON KING, Licence: LGPL
Icon from Nuvola icon theme for KDE 3.x / GNOME 2.
Crystal Clear app internet.png
Author/Creator: Everaldo Coelho and YellowIcon;, Licence: LGPL
An icon from icon theme Crystal Clear
Tunnel View, Yosemite Valley, Yosemite NP - Diliff.jpg
Author/Creator: Diliff, Licence: CC BY-SA 3.0
The view of Yosemite Valley from Tunnel View in Yosemite National Park, California, United States.
Windbuchencom.jpg
Windbeeches on the Schauinsland in Germany (Black Forest).
Spaccato vulcano.svg
Author/Creator: Fred the Oyster, Licence: CC BY-SA 4.0
Illustration of volcano eruption
Ireland from space edit.jpg
A true colour image of Ireland captured by a NASA satellite
Sulfur - El Desierto mine, San Pablo de Napa, Daniel Campos Province, Potosí, Bolivia.jpg
Author/Creator: Ivar Leidus, Licence: CC BY-SA 4.0
Sulfur crystals on the matrix (4.8 × 3.5 × 3 cm). Found from El Desierto mine, San Pablo de Napa, Daniel Campos Province, Potosí, Bolivia
Hemimorphite - Mapimi, Durango, Mexico.jpg
Author/Creator: Ivar Leidus, Licence: CC BY-SA 4.0
Colorless prismatic crystals of hemimorphite on matrix (4.5 × 4.0 × 2.0 cm) with calcite. Found from Ojuela mine, Mapimí, Durango, Mexico.
Soil profile.png
Soil profile. Units are inches.
Améthystre sceptre2.jpg
Author/Creator: Didier Descouens, Licence: CC BY-SA 4.0
Amethyst
Locality : Mun. Las Vigas de Ramírez (Mun. de Profesor Rafael Ramírez), Veracruz, Mexico
Size : 5x3x3cm
ACFEL ice auger core remover barrel.jpg
The ACFEL (later SIPRE) ice auger, showing an ice core pushed up into the core remover barrel.
Jordens inre.svg
Author/Creator: Original Mats Halldin Vectorization: Chabacano, Licence: CC-BY-SA-3.0
A diagram showing layers within the Earth's mantle and core
Glacial lakes, Bhutan.jpg
This image shows the termini of the glaciers in the Bhutan-Himalaya. Glacial lakes have been rapidly forming on the surface of the debris-covered glaciers in this region during the last few decades. USGS researchers have found a strong correlation between increasing temperatures and glacial retreat in this region.

According to a joint press release issued by NASA and the U.S. Geological Survey, the great majority of the world’s glaciers appear to be declining at rates equal to or greater than long-established trends. This image from the ASTER (Advanced Spaceborne Thermal Emission and Reflection Radiometer) instrument aboard NASA’s Terra satellite shows the termini of the glaciers in the Bhutan-Himalaya. Glacial lakes have been rapidly forming on the surface of the debris-covered glaciers in this region during the last few decades.

According to Jeffrey Kargel, a USGS scientist, glaciers in the Himalaya are wasting at alarming and accelerating rates, as indicated by comparisons of satellite and historic data, and as shown by the widespread, rapid growth of lakes on the glacier surfaces. According to a 2001 report by the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change, scientists estimate that surface temperatures could rise by 1.4°C to 5.8°C by the end of the century. The researchers have found a strong correlation between increasing temperatures and glacier retreat.
Cerussite - Nakhlak mine, Anarak, Esfahan, Iran.jpg
Author/Creator: Ivar Leidus, Licence: CC BY-SA 4.0
Cerussite crystals (4.0 × 3.0 × 2.0 cm) from Nakhlak mine, Anarak, Isfahan, Iran
Life in the Ediacaran sea.jpg
Author/Creator: Ryan Somma, Licence: CC BY-SA 2.0
Diorama of Ediacaran sealife displayed at the Smithsonian Institution.
Opal from Yowah, Queensland, Australia 2.jpg
(c) Noodle snacks, CC BY-SA 2.5
Opal from Yowah, Queensland, Australia. Length: about 20mm.
Full moon partially obscured by atmosphere.jpg
Original caption from NASA: "S103-E-5037 (21 December 1999)--- Astronauts aboard the Space Shuttle Discovery recorded this rarely seen phenomenon of the full Moon partially obscured by the atmosphere of Earth. The image was recorded with an electronic still camera at 15:15:15 GMT, Dec. 21, 1999.".
Nuvola apps kword.svg
Author/Creator: David Vignoni, Licence: LGPL
From GNOME version of Nuvola. Also available in PNG, at Nuvola/apps.
Nuvola apps display.png
Author/Creator: David Vignoni / ICON KING, Licence: LGPL
Icon from Nuvola icon theme for KDE 3.x.
Hurricane Lili- Peak.JPG
A tightly-wound power-house, Hurricane Lili reached Hurricane 4 status on October 2, 2002—the day this image was acquired by the Moderate Resolution Imaging Spectroradiometer on the Terra satellite. Lili remained at Category 4 status even as it approached the Gulf Coast of the United States, but dropped to Category 2 before actually making landfall. In this image, Lili appears poised in the center of the Gulf, and bands of clouds are touching Texas and Louisiana in the northwest quadrant of the storm and the Yucatan Peninsula in the south.
Wulfenite mexique.jpg
Author/Creator: Didier Descouens, Licence: CC BY-SA 4.0
Wulfenite, Calcite
Locality: Erupción Mine (Ahumada Mine; Erupción-Ahumada Mine), Los Lamentos Mts (Sierra de Los Lamentos), Municipio de Ahumada, Chihuahua, Mexico
Size: specimen 18x10x79cm - crystal 1.6 cm
Rhodochrosite on Matrix - Peru.jpg
Author/Creator: JJ Harrison (https://www.jjharrison.com.au/), Licence: CC BY-SA 4.0
Rhodochrosite on Matrix from Peru. Size 4×2.5 cm.
GeologicalExfoliationOfGraniteRock.jpg
Author/Creator: Wing-Chi Poon (talk · contribs), Licence: CC BY-SA 2.5
Geological exfoliation of granite dome rock in the Enchanted Rock State Natural Area, Texas, USA.
Mary Anning painting.jpg
Portrait of Mary Anning with her dog Tray and the Golden Cap outcrop in the background, Natural History Museum, London. This painting was owned by her brother Joseph, and presented to the museum in 1935 by Miss Annette Anning.
Etna eruption seen from the International Space Station.jpg
ISS005-E-19024 --- The three-member crew of the Expedition Five mission onboard the International Space Station was able to observe Mt. Etna’s spectacular eruption, and photograph the details of the eruption plume and smoke from fires triggered by the lava as it flowed down the 11,000 ft mountain. This image and a second image (ISS005-E-19016) are looking obliquely to the southeast over the island of Sicily. This wider view (ISS005-E-19024) shows the ash plume curving out toward the horizon, caught first by low-level winds blowing to the southeast, and to the south toward Africa at higher altitudes. Ashfall was reported in Libya, more than 350 miles away. The lighter-colored plumes downslope and north of the summit seen in this frame are produced by forest fires set by lava flowing into the pine forests on the slope of the mountain. This image provides a more three-dimensional profile of the eruption plume. This eruption was one of Etna’s most vigorous in years, volcanologists reported this week. The eruption was triggered by a series of earthquakes on October 27, 2002, they said. These images were taken on October 30. Although schools were closed and air traffic was diverted because of the ash, no towns or villages were reported to have been threatened by the lava flow.
1971-CANNIKIN-2.jpg
The upper stage of a Spartan anti-ballistic missile interceptor with a nuclear warhead is loaded into its shot hole for Operation Cannikin, Amchitka, Alaska.
Brown Bluff-2016-Tabarin Peninsula–Volcanic tephra.jpg
(c) Andrew Shiva / Wikipedia, CC BY-SA 4.0
Block of tephra, at Brown Bluff, Tabarin Peninsula, Antarctic Peninsula. To give an idea of scale, the height at the center of the object is at least 6 ft (1.8 m). Per Skilling, I. P. (1994). Evolution of an englacial volcano: Brown Bluff, Antarctica. (not publicly available on line, and I was only able to read the first two pages), it appears to be "alkali basaltic" in composition (at least the Brown Bluff tephra in general appears to be), I think this is referring to the darker solid chunks contained in the lighter matrix material.
Yucatan chix crater.jpg
This shaded relief image of Mexico's Yucatán Peninsula shows a subtle, but unmistakable, indication of the Chicxulub impact crater. Most scientists now agree that this impact was the cause of the Cretaceous-Tertiary Extinction, the event 65 million years ago that marked the sudden extinction of the dinosaurs as well as the majority of life then on Earth.
Blairmorite from the Crowsnest Formation.jpg
Author/Creator: Photo by Paul Glombick, courtesy of Alberta Geological Survey, Licence: CC BY-SA 4.0
A specimen of blairmorite from the Crowsnest Formation in Alberta. Courtesy of C.W. Langenberg and Alberta Geological Survey. This specimen is about 17 cm (6.7 in) in length.
Gypsum var. selenite from Andamooka Ranges - Lake Torrens area, South Australia.jpg
Author/Creator: JJ Harrison (https://www.jjharrison.com.au/), Licence: CC BY-SA 2.5
Gypsum var. selenite from Andamooka Ranges - Lake Torrens area, South Australia.
MtRedoubtedit1.jpg
Picture of Mount Redoubt eruption. Ascending eruption cloud from Redoubt Volcano as viewed to the west from the Kenai Peninsula. The mushroom-shaped plume rose from avalanches of hot debris (pyroclastic flows) thhh jbhat cascaded down the north flank of the volcano. A smaller, white steam plume rises from the summit crater.
MSH82 st helens plume from harrys ridge 05-19-82.jpg
Plumes of steam, gas, and ash often occurred at Mount St. Helens in the early 1980s. On clear days they could be seen from Portland, Oregon, 50 mi (80 km) to the south. The plume photographed here rose nearly 3,000 ft (910 m) above the volcano's rim. The view is from Harrys Ridge, 5 mi (8 km) north of the mountain.
Nuvola apps edu mathematics-p.svg
Author/Creator: David Vignoni (original icon); Flamurai (SVG convertion), Licence: GPL
Square root of x formula. Symbol of mathematics.
Crocoite from the Dundas extended mine, Dundas, Tasmania, Australia.jpg
Author/Creator: JJ Harrison (https://www.jjharrison.com.au/), Licence: CC BY-SA 2.5

Crocoite from the Dundas extended mine, Dundas, Tasmania, Australia
Camera data

  • Camera Canon EOS 400D
  • Lens Canon EF 70-200mm f4L w/ 12mm extension tube
  • Flash Shoot through umbrella
  • Focal length 94 mm
  • Aperture f/11
  • Exposure time 1/160 s
  • Sensivity ISO 100
Anning plesiosaur.png
"Plesiosaurus macrocephalus", found by Mary Anning.
Mohawkite.jpg
Author/Creator: Alchemist-hp (talk) (www.pse-mendelejew.de), Licence: GFDL 1.2
Mohawkite nugget, a mixture of Domeykite, Algodonite and native copper, chemical formula: Cu3As up to Cu6As. Locality: Mohawk Mine, Houghton, Keweenaw, Michigan, USA. Size ca. 50 × 40 × 28 mm. Collection M.R.
Bowling Balls Beach 2 edit.jpg
Author/Creator: Brocken Inaglory (edited by Noodle snacks), Licence: CC BY-SA 3.0
Bowling Balls Beach in Mendocino county, California, USA. Concretions on Bowling Balls Beach (Mendocino County, California) were weathered out of steeply-tilted Cenozoic mudstone
Hurricane Katrina Eye viewed from Hurricane Hunter.jpg
View of the eyewall of Hurricane Katrina taken on August 28, 2005, as seen from NOAA WP-3D Orion hurricane hunter aircraft before the storm made landfall on the United States Gulf Coast.
Dolomite-Magnésite- Navarre.jpg
Author/Creator: Didier Descouens, Licence: CC BY-SA 4.0
Dolomite and magnesite
Locality : Azcárate Quarry, Eugui, Esteribar, Navarre, Spain
Size : 10.2x6.7cm.
Mahameru-volcano.jpeg
Author/Creator: Jan-Pieter Nap, Licence: CC-BY-SA-3.0
The Mount Bromo volcano on the island Java of Indonesia.
Change in Average Temperature With Fahrenheit.svg
Author/Creator: NASA’s Scientific Visualization Studio, Key and Title by uploader (Eric Fisk), Licence: CC BY-SA 4.0
Temperature changes to date have been most pronounced in northern latitudes and over land masses. The image uses longer term averages of at least a decade to smooth out climate variability due to factors such as El Niño. The map is improved from the highest quality rendering that NASA’s Scientific Visualization Studio generates, with horizontal and vertical lines removed and with a more legible projection of Kavraiskiy VII. Grey areas in the image have insufficient data for rendering. For a version without Fahrenheit, see File:Change in Average Temperature.svg
Azurite, Burra Mine, South Australia.jpg
Author/Creator: JJ Harrison (https://www.jjharrison.com.au/), Licence: CC BY-SA 3.0
Azurite, Burra Mine, South Australia
Crater Lake winter pano2.jpg
(c) WolfmanSF, CC BY-SA 3.0
Panoramic winter view of Crater Lake in Crater Lake National Park, Oregon, from Rim Village. Full-size version.
Quartz var. Smokey from Morella, Victoria.jpg
Author/Creator: JJ Harrison (https://www.jjharrison.com.au/), Licence: CC BY-SA 3.0
Quartz var. Smokey from Morella, Victoria
Richat Structure - SRTM.jpg
PIA04963: Richat Structure, Mauritania - This prominent circular feature, known as the Richat Structure, in the Sahara desert of Mauritania is often noted by astronauts because it forms a conspicuous 50-kilometer-wide (30-mile-wide) bull's-eye on the otherwise rather featureless expanse of the desert. Initially mistaken for a possible impact crater, it is now known to be an eroded circular anticline (structural dome) of layered sedimentary rocks.

Extensive sand dunes occur in this region and the interaction of bedrock topography, wind, and moving sand is evident in this scene. Note especially how the dune field ends abruptly short of the cliffs at the far right as wind from the northeast (lower right) apparently funnels around the cliff point, sweeping clean areas near the base of the cliff. Note also the small isolated peak within the dune field. That peak captures some sand on its windward side, but mostly deflects the wind and sand around its sides, creating a sand-barren streak that continues far downwind.

This view was generated from a Landsat satellite image draped over an elevation model produced by the Shuttle Radar Topography Mission (SRTM). The view uses a 6-times vertical exaggeration to greatly enhance topographic expression. For vertical scale, note that the height of the mesa ridge in the back center of the view is about 285 meters (about 935 feet) tall. Colors of the scene were enhanced by use of a combination of visible and infrared bands, which helps to differentiate bedrock (browns), sand (yellow, some white), minor vegetation in drainage channels (green), and salty sediments (bluish whites). Some shading of the elevation model was included to further highlight the topographic features.

Elevation data used in this image was acquired by the Shuttle Radar Topography Mission (SRTM) aboard the Space Shuttle Endeavour, launched on February 11, 2000. SRTM used the same radar instrument that comprised the Spaceborne Imaging Radar-C/X-Band Synthetic Aperture Radar (SIR-C/X-SAR) that flew twice on the Space Shuttle Endeavour in 1994. SRTM was designed to collect three-dimensional measurements of the Earth's surface. To collect the 3-D data, engineers added a 60-meter-long (200-foot) mast, installed additional C-band and X-band antennas, and improved tracking and navigation devices. The mission is a cooperative project between the National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA), the National Geospatial-Intelligence Agency (NGA) of the U.S. Department of Defense (DoD), and the German and Italian space agencies. It is managed by NASA's Jet Propulsion Laboratory, Pasadena, Calif., for NASA's Earth Science Enterprise, Washington, D.C.

View Size: 68 kilometers (42 miles) wide by 112 kilometers (69 miles) distance
Location: 21.2 degrees North latitude, 11.7 degrees West longitude
Orientation: View toward west-northwest
Image Data: Landsat Bands 1, 4, 7 in B.G.R.
Date Acquired: February 2000 (SRTM), January 13, 1987 (Landsat)
Sarychev Volcano edit.jpg
A picture of Russia's Sarychev Volcano, on Matua Island in the Kuril Islands, erupting on 12 June 2009, as seen from the International Space Station (ISS). The ISS orbits the Earth at a height of between 347 and 360 km.

Original description by NASA:
"A fortuitous orbit of the International Space Station allowed the astronauts this striking view of Sarychev volcano (Russia’s Kuril Islands, northeast of Japan) in an early stage of eruption on June 12, 2009. Sarychev Peak is one of the most active volcanoes in the Kuril Island chain and is located on the northwestern end of Matua Island.

"Prior to June 12, the last explosive eruption had occurred in 1989 with eruptions in 1986, 1976, 1954 and 1946 also producing lava flows. Commercial airline flights were diverted from the region to minimize the danger of engine failures from ash intake. This detailed photograph is exciting to volcanologists because it captures several phenomena that occur during the earliest stages of an explosive volcanic eruption.

"The main column is one of a series of plumes that rose above Matua Island (48.1 degrees north latitude and 153.2 degrees east longitude) on June 12. The plume appears to be a combination of brown ash and white steam. The vigorously rising plume gives the steam a bubble-like appearance; the surrounding atmosphere has been shoved up by the shock wave of the eruption. The smooth white cloud on top may be water condensation that resulted from rapid rising and cooling of the air mass above the ash column, and is probably a transient feature (the eruption plume is starting to punch through). The structure also indicates that little to no shearing winds were present at the time to disrupt the plume. By contrast, a cloud of denser, gray ash -- most probably a pyroclastic flow -- appears to be hugging the ground, descending from the volcano summit. The rising eruption plume casts a shadow to the northwest of the island (bottom center). Brown ash at a lower altitude of the atmosphere spreads out above the ground at upper right. Low-level stratus clouds approach Matua Island from the east, wrapping around the lower slopes of the volcano. Only about 1.5 kilometers of the coastline of Matua Island (upper center) can be seen beneath the clouds and ash."
Plates tect2 en.svg
The key principle of plate tectonics is that the lithosphere exists as separate and distinct tectonic plates, which float on the fluid-like (visco-elastic solid) asthenosphere. The relative fluidity of the asthenosphere allows the tectonic plates to undergo motion in different directions. This map shows 15 of the largest plates. Note that the Indo-Australian Plate may be breaking apart into the Indian and Australian plates, which are shown separately on this map.
Hurricane Isabel from ISS.jpg
From his vantage point high above the Earth in the International Space Station, Astronaut Ed Lu captured this broad view of Hurricane Isabel. The image, ISS007-E-14750, was taken with a 50 mm lens on a digital camera.
Pahoeoe fountain original.jpg
Image of a Pahoehoe fountain. Original caption: "Arching fountain approximately 10 m high issuing from the western end of the 0740 vents, a series of spatter cones 170 m long, south of Pu‘u Kahaualea. Episodes 2 and 3 were characterized by spatter and cinder cones, such as Pu‘u Halulu, which was 60 m high by episode 3 (photo by J.D. Griggs, 02/25/83, JG928) (picture #004)."
Morocco Africa Flickr Rosino December 2005 84514010.jpg
Author/Creator: Rosino on Flickr, Licence: CC BY-SA 2.0
Erg Chebbi, Morocco, Africa
Isabel 2003-09-12 1815Z.png
Hurricane Isabel at peak intensity northeast of the Lesser Antilles on September 12, 2003
Petrified wood closeup 2.jpg
Author/Creator: Daniel Schwen, Licence: CC-BY-SA-3.0
Petrified tree in Petrified Forest National Park, USA.
Amber2.jpg
Author/Creator: Anders L. Damgaard - www.amber-inclusions.dk - Baltic-amber-beetle, Licence: CC BY-SA 3.0
Baltic amber inclusions - Ant - About 7 mm long. Alternate amber with fingers cropped slightly, keeping a 2:3 aspect ratio.
Archaeopteryx lithographica (Berlin specimen).jpg
Author/Creator: H. Raab (User: Vesta), Licence: CC BY-SA 3.0
Archaeopteryx lithographica, specimen displayed at the Museum für Naturkunde in Berlin. (This image shows the original fossil - not a cast.)
Antarctica 6400px from Blue Marble.jpg
Antarctica. An orthographic projection of NASA's Blue Marble data set (1 km resolution global satellite composite). "MODIS observations of polar sea ice were combined with observations of Antarctica made by the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration’s AVHRR sensor—the Advanced Very High Resolution Radiometer." Image was generated using a custom C program for handling the Blue Marble files, with orthographic projection formulas from MathWorld.
Note: this image has been manually modified to fill in an area of black pixels in the ocean, in the upper right quadrant. The black pixels are presumed to be due to missing data in the land/sea mask used in making the original Blue Marble image.
Franz Josef glacier.JPG
Author/Creator: en:user:dramatic, Licence: CC-BY-SA-3.0
Franz Josef Glacier photographed from the valley floor
Sihlsee002.jpg
Author/Creator: Markus Bernet, Licence: CC BY-SA 2.5
Sihlsee, Canton of Schwyz (Switzerland): northern shore with Friherrenberg, Einsiedeln Abbey and Mythen
Amethyst. Magaliesburg, South Africa.jpg
Author/Creator: JJ Harrison (https://jjharrison.com.au/), Licence: CC BY-SA 3.0
Amethyst specimen from Magaliesburg, South Africa.
Creedite 3.jpg
Author/Creator: JJ Harrison (https://www.jjharrison.com.au/), Licence: CC BY-SA 3.0
Creedite, Navidad Mine, Rodeo, Durango, Mexico. Size is about 10 × 10 × 7 cm.
EscherichiaColi NIAID.jpg
Escherichia coli: Scanning electron micrograph of Escherichia coli, grown in culture and adhered to a cover slip.
Prehnite - Southbury, Connecticut, USA.jpg
Author/Creator: Ivar Leidus, Licence: CC BY-SA 4.0
Prehnite (4.0 × 3.5 × 2.0 cm) from Southbury, Connecticut, USA
Eruptions in the Lassen area in the last 50,000 years-map.jpg
Map — Eruptions in the Lassen area in the last 50,000 years.
5 Terrestrial planets size comparison.png
Size comparison of the four terrestrial planets Mercury, Venus, Earth and Mars and the terrestrial dwarf planet Ceres.
The fossils from Cretaceous age found in Lebanon.jpg
Author/Creator: Brocken Inaglory, Licence: CC BY-SA 3.0
Fossil fish Diplomystus birdii, lobster Pseudostacus sp., and a partial Dercetis triqueter
Stage: Middle Cretaceous, Cenomanian Stage (95 million years ago)
Locality: Hakel, Lebanon.
Dimension: 24 cm across
Malachite, Zaire.jpg
Author/Creator: JJ Harrison (https://www.jjharrison.com.au/), Licence: CC BY-SA 3.0
You may select the license of your choice.
Petrified forest log 1 md.jpg
Author/Creator: User:Moondigger, Licence: CC BY-SA 2.5
A petrified log in Petrified Forest National Park, Arizona, U.S.A.
Gafilo 2004-03-06 0655Z.jpg
On March 6, 2004, Very Intense Tropical Cyclone Gafilo approached Madagascar. The system soon became the most intense tropical cyclone in the South-West Indian Ocean on record, before making landfall over Madagascar early on March 7. This image was taken by the Moderate Resolution Imaging Spectroradiometer (MODIS) on NASA’s Terra satellite at 06:55 UTC on March 6, 2004.
Earth symbol (bold).svg
Author/Creator: Kwamikagami, Licence: CC BY-SA 4.0
U+1F728 🜨, heavier line weight (1.333 px)
Global tropical cyclone tracks-edit2.jpg
This map shows the tracks of all Tropical cyclones which formed worldwide from 1985 to 2005. The points show the locations of the storms at six-hourly intervals and use the color scheme shown to the right from the Saffir-Simpson Hurricane Scale. However, remnants of the storms are not shown as triangles.
Rolling-thunder-cloud.jpg
Author/Creator:
  • Photo by John Kerstholt.
  • original upload by Solitude
, Licence: CC-BY-SA-3.0
Rolling thunderstorm (Cumulonimbus arcus)
Complex adaptive system.svg
Author/Creator: , Licence: CC0
A way of modeling a Complex Adaptive System. A system with high adaptive capacity exerts complex adaptive behavior in a changing environment.
Turquoise-40031.jpg
(c) Rob Lavinsky, iRocks.com – CC-BY-SA-3.0
Turquoise
Locality: Arizona, USA (Locality at mindat.org)
A complete nodule, all around, of solid turquoise! This one weighs in at 4.8 ounces or 137 grams. 7 x 5 x 5 cm
Giant Marbles in Joshua Tree National Park.jpg
Author/Creator: Brocken Inaglory, Licence: CC BY-SA 3.0
Rock formation in in Joshua Tree National Park, Southern California.
  • The rocks that look as balls are called giant marbles.
Cassiterite.jpg
Author/Creator: Alchemist-hp (talk) (www.pse-mendelejew.de), Licence: GFDL 1.2
Cassiterite bipyramids, chemical formula SnO2. locality Southeast slope Xuebaoding, Pingwu country, province Sichuan in China. Edge length ca. 30mm. Collection M.R.
Astrolabe-Persian-18C.jpg
Author/Creator: Andrew Dunn, Licence: CC BY-SA 2.0
An 18th Century Persian astrolabe – maker unknown. The points of the curved spikes on the front rete plate, mark the positions of the brightest stars. The name of each star being labeled at the base of each spike. The back plate, or mater is engraved with projected coordinate lines. From the Whipple Museum of the History of Science in Cambridge.