Earth & Climate

Grist: Massive sinkholes in Texas could combine to form even massiver sinkhole

Wink sinkholes, smu, remote satellite images, insar, ogallala aquiferGrist journalist Katie Herzog covered the research of SMU geophysicists Zhong Lu, professor, Shuler-Foscue Chair, and Jin-Woo Kim research scientist, both in the Roy M. Huffington Department of Earth Sciences at SMU.

Herzog’s article, “Massive sinkholes in Texas could combine to form even massive sinkhole,” published June 15, 2016. Continue reading

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Geohazard: Giant sinkholes near West Texas oil patch towns are growing — as new ones lurk

Two giant sinkholes that sit between two West Texas oil patch towns are growing — and two new ones appear to be lurking, say geophysicists at Southern Methodist University, Dallas. Satellite radar images reveal substantial ground movement in and around the infamous sinkholes near Wink, Texas — suggesting expansion of the two existing holes, with subsidence in two other nearby areas suggesting new ones may surface. Continue reading

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Wildfire on warming planet requires adaptive capacity at local, national, int’l scales

Industrialized nations that view wildfire as the enemy have much to learn from people in some parts of the world who have learned to live compatibly with wildfire, says a team of fire research scientists.

The interdisciplinary team say there is much to be learned from these “fire-adaptive communities” and they are calling on policy makers to tap that knowledge, particularly in the wake of global warming. Continue reading

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Dallas Morning News: North Texas dino had tough armor, keen sense of smell

Pawpaw skull, Jacobs, SMU, Ankylasaurus, hearing, smellDallas Morning News journalist Charles Scudder covered the research of SMU Earth Sciences Professor Louis L. Jacobs in a Guide Live article “North Texas dino had tough armor, keen sense of smell.”

A professor in Dedman College‘s Roy M. Huffington Department of Earth Sciences, Jacobs is co-author of a new analysis of the Cretaceous Period dinosaur Pawpawsaurus based on the first CT scans ever taken of the dinosaur’s skull.
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Live Science: Dino Senses: Ankylosaurus Cousin Had a Super Sniffer

Pawpaw skull, Jacobs, SMU, Ankylasaurus, hearing, smellScience journalist Laura Geggel covered the research of SMU Earth Sciences Professor Louis L. Jacobs in her article “Dino Senses: Ankylosaurus Cousin Had a Super Sniffer.”

A professor in Dedman College‘s Roy M. Huffington Department of Earth Sciences, Jacobs is co-author of a new analysis of the Cretaceous Period dinosaur Pawpawsaurus based on the first CT scans ever taken of the dinosaur’s skull.
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Early armored dino from Texas lacked cousin’s club-tail weapon, but had a nose for danger

First-ever CT scans of the early armored dinosaur Pawpawsaurus campbelli reveal that although the Texas dino lacked its cousin’s club-tail it had a sharp nose for danger.

A relative of Ankylosaurus, Pawpawsaurus’s saving grace from predators may have been an acute sense of smell, says SMU vertebrate paleontologist Louis Jacobs. Pawpawsaurus lived 100 million years ago, preceding Ankylosaurus by 35 million years. Continue reading

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Dallas Morning News: Fracking-related activities have caused majority of recent Texas earthquakes

earthquake, causes, SMU, oil, fracking, seismologyScience journalist Anna Kuchment with The Dallas Morning News covered the research of SMU seismologists on the historical record of North Texas earthquakes and their causes.

The SMU seismology team on May 18 published online new evidence of human involvement in earthquakes since the 1920s in the journal Seismological Research Letters. The study found that human-caused earthquakes have been present since at least 1925, and widespread throughout the state. While they are tied to oil and gas operations, the specific production techniques behind these quakes have differed over the decades, according to Cliff Frohlich, Heather DeShon, Brian Stump, Chris Hayward, Mathew J. Hornbach and Jacob I. Walter.
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Study: Humans have been causing earthquakes in Texas since the 1920s

earthquake, causes, SMU, oil, fracking, seismology
Earthquakes triggered by human activity have been happening in Texas since at least 1925, and they have been widespread throughout the state ever since, according to a new historical review of the evidence publishing online May 18 in Seismological Research Letters.

The earthquakes are caused by oil and gas operations, but the specific production techniques behind these quakes have differed over the decades, according to Cliff Frohlich, the study’s lead author, and co-authors Heather DeShon, Brian Stump, Chris Hayward, Mathew J. Hornbach and Jacob I. Walter. Continue reading

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Live Science: Fearsome Dinosaur-Age ‘Hammerhead’ Reptile Ate … Plants?

Hammerhead reptile, vegetarian, Jacobs, SMU

Science journalist Laura Geggel tapped the expertise of SMU Earth Sciences Professor Louis L. Jacobs for a recent article about a prehistoric plant-eating reptile.

A professor in Dedman College‘s Roy M. Huffington Department of Earth Sciences, Jacobs is a world-renowned vertebrate paleontologist.

He joined SMU’s faculty in 1983 and in 2012 was honored by the 7,200-member Science Teachers Association of Texas with their prestigious Skoog Cup for his significant contributions to advance quality science education. Continue reading

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