SCIENCE INITIATIVE HARIPAD KERALA INDIA

Mineral diversity clue to early Earth chemistry


Mineral evolution is a new way to look at our planet’s history. It’s the study of the increasing diversity and characteristics of Earth’s near-surface minerals, from the dozen that arrived on interstellar dust particles when the Solar System was formed to the more than 4,700 types existing today. New research on a mineral called molybdenite by a team led by Robert Hazen at Carnegie’s Geophysical Laboratory provides important new insights about the changing chemistry of our planet as a result of geological and biological processes. The work is published by Earth and Planetary Science Letters. Mineral evolution is an approach to understanding Earth's changing near-surface geochemistry. All chemical elements were present from the start of our Solar System, but at first they formed comparatively few minerals—perhaps no more than 500 different species in the first billion years. As time passed on the planet, novel combinations of elements led to new minerals.Continue

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