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Latest and Breaking Oceanography News

Evidence indicates Yucatan Peninsula hit by tsunami 1,500 years ago
(University of Colorado at Boulder) The eastern coastline of Mexico's Yucatan Peninsula, a mecca for tourists, may have been walloped by a tsunami between 1,500 and 900 years ago, says a new study involving Mexico's Centro Ecological Akumal and the University of Colorado Boulder.

New detector sniffs out origins of methane
(Massachusetts Institute of Technology) An instrument identifies methane's origins in mines, deep-sea vents, and cows.

Old mothers know best: Killer whale study sheds light on the evolution of menopause
(University of Exeter) A new study led by the Universities of Exeter and York has shown that female killer whales survive after menopause because they help their family members find food during hard times. This research provides insights into why women continue to live long after they can no longer have children.

Scientists question rush to build Nicaragua canal
(Rice University) A consortium of environmental scientists including Rice University's Pedro Alvarez has expressed strong concern about the impact of a controversial Central American canal across Nicaragua.

NSU researchers discover hurricanes helped accelerate spread of lionfish
(Nova Southeastern University) NSU researchers studied the correlation between hurricanes and spread of invasive species, lionfish, due to changes in ocean currents.

New data provided by seabed sediments on the climate within the Mediterranean basin
(University of Granada) An international team of scientists which included three University of Granada and the Andalusian Institute of Earth Sciences researchers (a joint UGR-CISC center) have found new data on the weather in the Mediterranean basin over the course of the past 20.000 years thanks to the chemical composition of sediments deposited in its seabed.

Animal functional diversity started out poor, became richer over time
(Stanford's School of Earth, Energy & Environmental Sciences ) The finding refutes a hypothesis by the famed evolutionary biologist Stephen J. Gould that marine creatures underwent an 'early burst' of functional diversity during the dawn of animal life.

Lightning plus volcanic ash makes glass
(Geological Society of America) In their open-access paper for Geology, Kimberly Genareau and colleagues propose, for the first time, a mechanism for the generation of glass spherules in geologic deposits through the occurrence of volcanic lightning. The existence of fulgurites -- glassy products formed in rocks and sediments struck by cloud-to-ground lightning -- provide direct evidence that geologic materials can be melted via natural lightning occurrence.

This week From AGU: Ionosphere irregularities, Colombian volcanoes, Salish Sea nutrients
(American Geophysical Union) Researchers at NASA's Jet Propulsion Laboratory, Pasadena, California, in collaboration with the University of New Brunswick in Canada, are studying irregularities in the ionosphere, a part of the atmosphere centered about 350 kilometers (217 miles) above the ground that defines the boundary between Earth and space.

Combined Arctic ice observations show decades of loss
(University of Washington) Historic submarine and modern satellite records show that average ice thickness in the central Arctic Ocean dropped by 65 percent from 1975 to 2012. September ice thickness, when the ice cover is at a minimum, dropped by 85 percent.

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