The $1 Billion Journey to the Mantle of the Earth

In an unprecedented $1 billion mission to reach the Earth's mantle, geologists are set to start drilling 3.7 miles (6 km) beneath the seafloor, to reach the Earth's mantle. And according to project co-leader Damon Teagle, "It will be the equivalent of dangling a steel string the width of a human hair in the deep end… » 10/02/12 3:30pm 10/02/12 3:30pm

X-rays reveal why the Moon has no volcanoes

The Moon is an almost completely still world, its eternal peace and quiet disrupted only by the occasional meteor or Apollo astronaut. But we now know there's plenty of magma inside the Moon. So why are there no volcanoes? » 2/19/12 4:00pm 2/19/12 4:00pm

Where is all the Earth's heat coming from?

Earth runs on massive amounts of heat, enough to melt iron in the core and create our magnetic field, enough to power the constant movement of plate tectonics. Where all this heat comes from is a mystery...but we're getting closer. » 7/17/11 10:00am 7/17/11 10:00am

The Earth's core melts and freezes all at the same time

The inner core of our planet is roughly as big as the Moon, and we can only guess what's going on deep inside our planet. We might now have an answer...and it's even more volatile and weird than we thought. » 5/18/11 10:34am 5/18/11 10:34am

A history of supercontinents on planet Earth

Earth's continents are constantly changing, moving and rearranging themselves over millions of years - affecting Earth's climate and biology. Every few hundred million years, the continents combine to create massive, world-spanning supercontinents. Here's the past and future of Earth's supercontinets. » 1/27/11 2:31pm 1/27/11 2:31pm

Methane-eating bacteria alive and well in the deepest layer of Earth's…

Nearly a mile underground, there's an entire ecosystem carving out a rather alien existence in the deepest layer of Earth's crust. These bacteria are totally unlike their brethren nearer the surface, and there might be even stranger bacteria further down. » 11/21/10 11:15am 11/21/10 11:15am

A vast magma ocean is bubbling beneath the Earth's mantle

1800 miles underground lies a mysterious zone between the Earth's mantle and core. Nobody is quite sure what's down there, but new evidence suggests the area reaches temperatures of 7000 degrees Fahrenheit, meaning it could be a vast magma ocean. » 9/17/10 12:39pm 9/17/10 12:39pm

Oldest piece of Earth's mantle ever discovered dates back to the…

Earth formed 4.54 billion years ago. But we've never found any rocks remaining from the time when our planet formed. Until now. A piece of ancient mantle is revealing Earth's oldest secrets. » 8/12/10 7:30am 8/12/10 7:30am