Earth Science

Earth Science covers all facets of how the earth works, from from volcanoes to the world's oceans.

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The autumnal equinox is the day Earth is perfectly angled to the sun, so the day and night are of equal length. Well, almost.

By Kathryn Whitbourne

One term might give you the impression of something grand and mysterious, while the other makes you think of claustrophobia-inducing environs that threaten human life. But what's the real difference?

By Nathan Chandler

Water is one of the most abundant substances on the planet. About 70 percent of our planet is covered by oceans, but just how much water is there on Earth?

By HowStuffWorks.com Contributors

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Birds are — quite literally — living dinosaurs. Our quiz will test your knowledge of the fluffy, downy and winged dinos of the bygone Mesozoic era, from little Microraptor to the enormous Yutyrannus.

By Mark Mancini

The stratosphere is the second-lowest level in Earth's atmosphere. It's a bastion of ozone gas and rapid winds, where clouds are scarce, but life endures.

By Mark Mancini

The Pacific's Ring of Fire is a 25,000 mile long "ring" that's home to 75 percent of all the world's volcanic activity and 90 percent of the planet's earthquakes. So what makes this area so active?

By Mark Mancini

Since its discovery in 1870, the Wyoming cone geyser Old Faithful has wowed spectators with its predictable eruptions, but its eruptions are not quite as predictable or prodigious as they once were.

By Mark Mancini

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Ice volcanoes form when it's freezing cold outside and choppy water is forced to erupt through a hole in the ice around a body of water, cascading down into the classic shape of a volcano.

By Jesslyn Shields

Not all fossils are found on dry land. In fact some of the most fascinating fossil finds in history have been submerged for centuries.

By Mark Mancini

"The 26th century" doesn't roll off the tongue as easily as "the 21st century" does. But that hasn't stopped us from imagining what our hometown planet will be like in a few hundred years. Any guesses?

By Robert Lamb

You've probably heard of the Tropics of Cancer and Capricorn, but do you know the difference?

By Michelle Konstantinovsky

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You've probably heard of the Tropics of Capricorn and Cancer, but do you know the difference?

By Michelle Konstantinovsky

The Arctic Circle is a region marked by frigid temperatures, strange sunlight and glaciers galore. And for hundreds of thousands of people, it's also home sweet home.

By Mark Mancini

This is not an easy question to answer, thanks to the mists of time. But historians have put forth several possibilities. An ancient tablet claims one king ruled for 28,000 years!

By Nathan Chandler

If it looks like a party is on, maybe they'll come back. Playing the sounds of a noisy, healthy coral reef can attract important fish species to devastated reef habitats.

By Jesslyn Shields

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Mountain Lake in Virginia is best known for its starring role in 'Dirty Dancing.' But today, it's nothing more than a muddy pit that's all but dried up ... and geologists think they may know why.

By Stephanie Parker

Gondwana was a humongous landmass that persisted for 300 million years before it began to break up, forming all the continents in the modern Southern Hemisphere.

By Jesslyn Shields

The Earth is unique in the solar system because its surface is made of moving plates, which may enable the very existence of life.

By Patrick J. Kiger

Cultures all over the world have treasured turquoise for its color and rarity for thousands of years — from Native American jewelry and Aztec and Mesoamerican art to King Tutankhamun's death mask.

By Michelle Konstantinovsky

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Many scientists believe that humans influence Earth at a rate so massive that a change to the geologic time scale is in order.

By Mark Mancini

EXXpedition founder Emily Penn will captain the 300, all-female crew in its first Round the World sailing voyage.

By Patty Rasmussen

Cobalt is associated with the color blue, but it's so needed for rechargeable batteries that the U.S. put it on the list of minerals it can't live without.

By Dave Roos

It's perhaps one of the strangest fossils ever discovered. We'll explain how it came to be 15 million years ago, and how hikers found it in the '30s.

By Mark Mancini

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What's as strong as steel but half the weight; able to live in almost any body part and an important part of both airplanes and cake frosting? Would you believe, titanium?

By Dave Roos

Permafrost across the globe is rapidly melting. What could this mean for the future of the planet?

By Mark Mancini