A team of University of Minnesota scientists has discovered how iron- and chromium-rich rocks can generate natural gas (methane) and related hydrocarbons when reacted with superheated fluids circulating deep beneath the floor of the Atlantic Ocean.
Because the process is completely nonbiological, the hydrocarbons could have been a source of "food" for some of the first organisms to inhabit the Earth. Also, methane is a potent greenhouse gas, and this process may have contributed to global warming early in geologic time, the researchers said. The researchers--Dionysios Foustoukos and Fu Qi and their graduate adviser, professor W.E. Seyfried, Jr.--will present a portion of this work Monday, Dec. 13, at the American Geophysical Union meeting in the Moscone Convention Center, San Francisco.
The most familiar sources of methane are bacteria that live in bogs, lakes and the stomachs of ruminants like cows. But before any life existed, there must have been an energy source that could be tapped by primitive life forms. The simplest sources are hydrogen-rich compounds like hydrogen gas, hydrogen sulfide gas and hydrocarbons.
Deane Morrison, | EurekAlert!
Scientists shed light on carbon's descent into the deep Earth
19.07.2017 | European Synchrotron Radiation Facility
Thawing permafrost releases old greenhouse gas
19.07.2017 | GFZ GeoForschungsZentrum Potsdam, Helmholtz Centre
Physicists have developed a new technique that uses electrical voltages to control the electron spin on a chip. The newly-developed method provides protection from spin decay, meaning that the contained information can be maintained and transmitted over comparatively large distances, as has been demonstrated by a team from the University of Basel’s Department of Physics and the Swiss Nanoscience Institute. The results have been published in Physical Review X.
For several years, researchers have been trying to use the spin of an electron to store and transmit information. The spin of each electron is always coupled...
What is the mass of a proton? Scientists from Germany and Japan successfully did an important step towards the most exact knowledge of this fundamental constant. By means of precision measurements on a single proton, they could improve the precision by a factor of three and also correct the existing value.
To determine the mass of a single proton still more accurate – a group of physicists led by Klaus Blaum and Sven Sturm of the Max Planck Institute for Nuclear...
The research team of Prof. Dr. Oliver Einsle at the University of Freiburg's Institute of Biochemistry has long been exploring the functioning of nitrogenase....
A one trillion tonne iceberg - one of the biggest ever recorded -- has calved away from the Larsen C Ice Shelf in Antarctica, after a rift in the ice,...
Physics supports biology: Researchers from PTB have developed a model system to investigate friction phenomena with atomic precision
Friction: what you want from car brakes, otherwise rather a nuisance. In any case, it is useful to know as precisely as possible how friction phenomena arise –...
19.07.2017 | Event News
12.07.2017 | Event News
12.07.2017 | Event News
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20.07.2017 | Materials Sciences
20.07.2017 | Physics and Astronomy