A prehistoric crystal may contain ‘ancient life’ inside and geologists want to open it

A life form from 830 million years ago could be contained in a crystal. To find out for sure, geologists want to split it open. A screenwriter looking for a good story for a horror or adventure film that goes wrong couldn’t have found a better way to start a post-apocalyptic story: an 830 million-year-old … Read more

Word Search: A giant’s pathway, a crystal cave, and other geological wonders

Geologists study the earth, and know exactly why a cave in Mexico is full of enormous crystals, or why the coast in Northern Ireland looks like the location where a giant laid down a cobbled path. Staying on the theme of interesting geological formations, here are some wonders from around the world that awe and … Read more

Geology news: Scientists to open 830million-year-old crystal that may hold LIFE | Science | News

The tiny remnants of prokaryotic and algal life were found in an ancient halite crystal on May 11. Announced by researchers at the Geological Society of America, the tiny creatures were found within microscopic bubbles of liquid in the crystal, known as fluid inclusions. These miniscule bubbles function as microhabitats for the colonies to live … Read more

Geologists plan to crack open an 830-million-year-old crystal that might contain ancient life 

Geologists are planning to crack open an 830-million-year-old rock salt crystal, which they believe contains ancient microorganisms that may still be alive. Researchers from the Geological Society of America first announced their discovery of tiny remnants of prokaryotic and algal life inside an ancient halite crystal earlier this month. These organisms were found inside microscopic … Read more

This 830-million-year-old crystal might contain life. And we’re about to open it : NPR

The shapes in this salt crystal are consistent with what would be expected for microorganisms. Kathy Benison hide caption toggle caption Kathy Benison From lemons to ham, salt is a handy food preservative. But researchers studying some really old salt crystals found them preserving something else – evidence of life. “There are little cubes of … Read more

High-Speed X-Ray Lasers Reveal the Secret Crystal Structures of Small Molecules

Artist’s rendition of the X-ray beam illuminating a solution of powdered metal-organic materials called chalcogenolates. Credit: Ella Maru Studios High-speed X-ray free-electron lasers have unlocked the crystal structures of small molecules relevant to chemistry and materials science, proving a new method that could advance semiconductor and solar cell development. Compounds that form tiny crystals hold … Read more

Stronger Nuclear Fusion Materials May Be Possible Thanks to Photos of a Tiny Aluminum Crystal

A laser compressing an aluminum crystal provides a clearer view of a material’s plastic deformation, potentially leading to the design of stronger nuclear fusion materials and spacecraft shields. Imagine dropping a tennis ball onto a bedroom mattress. The tennis ball will bend the mattress a bit, but not permanently – pick the ball back up, … Read more

Earliest geochemical evidence of plate tectonics found in 3.8-billion-year-old crystal

Creative destruction: a thinner ocean plate sides under a continental plate, melting and recycling the ocean crust into the Earth’s interior and birthing volcanoes in this illustration of subduction, a consequence of modern plate tectonics. Credit: Nikolas Midttun A handful of ancient zircon crystals found in South Africa hold the oldest evidence of subduction, a … Read more

Tracking real-time atomic movement between crystal grains in metals – BIOENGINEER.ORG

Metallic materials used in engineering must be strong and ductile – capable of carrying high mechanical loads while able to withstand deformation without breaking. Whether a material is weak or strong, ductile or brittle, however, is not determined simply by the crystal grains that make up the material, but rather by what happens in the … Read more

New Breakthrough Could Bring Time Crystals Out of The Lab And Into The Real World

We’ve just taken another step closer to time crystals that can be used for practical applications. New experimental work has yielded a room-temperature time crystal in a system that is not isolated from its ambient surroundings. This, the researchers say, paves the way for chip-scale time crystals that can be used in real-world settings, away … Read more