First-anniversary highlights

January 2009 marks the first anniversary of the launch of Nature Geoscience. To celebrate, we have put together our favourites from the first 12 issues. The selection, which is free for the months of January to March, reflects the breadth of topics covered by Nature Geoscience, and the diversity of article styles. We hope you enjoy it.


January 2008

From climate assessment to climate services

Martin Visbeck

The Intergovernmental Panel for Climate Change has convinced the public that climate change is real. To tackle it, the panel needs complementary climate services that provide continuous climate information for all regions and the globe.


February 2008

News and Views:
Palaeoclimate: The riddle of the clays

Gerald R. Dickens

Rising carbon levels contributed to profound climate change 55 million years ago. Where did that extra carbon come from? One proposal - a cometary impact - is rebuffed by two analyses of magnetic particles in clay sediment cores from New Jersey.


March 2008

Science, geopolitics and the governance of Antarctica

Simon Naylor, Martin Siegert, Katrina Dean and Simone Turchetti

International Polar Year 2007- 2009 had three predecessors 125, 75 and 50 years ago. These international research efforts were not free from geopolitical interests.


April 2008

Global and regional climate changes due to black carbon

V. Ramanathan & G. Carmichael

Black carbon in soot is an efficient absorbing agent of solar irradiation that is preferentially emitted in the tropics and can form atmospheric brown clouds in mixture with other aerosols. These factors combine to make black carbon emissions the second most important contribution to anthropogenic climate warming, after carbon dioxide emissions.


May 2008

News and Views:
Seismology: Do faults shimmy before they shake?

Michael R. Brudzinski

Not only do plate boundary faults generate earthquakes, they also produce slow slip and non-volcanic tremor. New observations on these phenomena provide fresh insights into the conditions that dictate earthquake behaviour.


June 2008

Clay minerals in delta deposits and organic preservation potential on Mars

Bethany L. Ehlmann, John F. Mustard, Caleb I. Fassett, Samuel C. Schon, James W. Head III, David J. Des Marais, John A. Grant & Scott L. Murchie

High-resolution data from the Mars Reconnaissance Orbiter are used to identify clay-rich fluvial-lacustrine sediments in an open lake basin on Mars near the 45-km-diameter Jezero crater. The basin contains sedimentary deposits of hydrous minerals sourced from a smectite-rich catchment in the Nili Fossae region, which are well suited for the sequestration and preservation of organic material.


July 2008

Aerobic production of methane in the sea

David M. Karl, Lucas Beversdorf, Karin M. Björkman, Matthew J. Church, Asuncion Martinez & Edward F. Delong

Surface waters of most of the world's oceans are supersaturated with respect to atmospheric methane. Measurements in seawater samples suggest that an aerobic methane production pathway, which involves the decomposition of phosphorus-containing organic compounds, may be responsible.


August 2008

Self-subduction of the Pangaean global plate

Gabriel Gutiérrez-Alonso, Javier Fernández-Suárez, Arlo B. Weil, J. Brendan Murphy, R. Damian Nance, Fernando Corfú & Stephen T. Johnston

The Earth's continents amalgamated into the supercontinent Pangaea 320 million years ago. After the supercontinent formed, structural deformation continued, which eventually resulted in the subduction of the ocean margin of Pangaea beneath the continental edge at the other end of the same plate.


September 2008

Book Review:
Deep time travel

Neil D. L. Clark

Trewin has written a book that will very much appeal to the adult reader. He has chosen his favourite Scottish fossil localities, built a picture of each landscape and environment at the time when the fossils were living organisms, and brought us on a fact-filled adventure to prehistoric Scotland.


October 2008

How a century of ammonia synthesis changed the world

Jan Willem Erisman, Mark A. Sutton, James Galloway, Zbigniew Klimont & Wilfried Winiwarter

On 13 October 1908, Fritz Haber filed his patent on the "synthesis of ammonia from its elements" for which he was later awarded the 1918 Nobel Prize in Chemistry. A hundred years on we live in a world transformed by and highly dependent upon Haber-Bosch nitrogen.


November 2008

A slab fragment wedged under Tokyo and its tectonic and seismic implications

Shinji Toda, Ross S. Stein, Stephen H. Kirby & Serkan B. Bozkurt

A three-dimensional evaluation of earthquake hypocentres beneath the Kanto basin in Japan reveals the presence of a distinct, 25-km-thick and 100-km-wide body. Its fast seismic velocity and the presence of a double seismic zone suggest that it is a fragment of the Pacific slab, rather than an extension of the Philippine Sea slab. This implies that the penetration of the Philippine Sea slab is much shallower beneath the Kanto basin than was previously thought.


December 2008

Acceleration of Byrd Glacier, Antarctica, linked to rapid drainage of subglacial lakes

Leigh A. Stearns, Benjamin E. Smith, Gordon S. Hamilton

Large ice streams and outlet glaciers drain Greenland and Antarctica. An observed acceleration of ice velocity in one of these outlet glaciers, Byrd Glacier, East Antarctica coincides with a large water discharge from two subglacial lakes, allowing direct attribution of the change in glacier dynamics to the water drainage network beneath the ice.

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