What are hole-punch clouds?

Ever seen one of these? People sometimes report them as UFOs. They’re called hole-punch clouds, and jets make ’em. The connection between hole-punch clouds, jets and snowfall, here.

Asteroid swept within moon’s distance April 5

Astronomers did know in advance that asteroid 2016 FW13 would pass closely – but safely – on April 5, 2016. Check out a photo from the Virtual Telescope Project.

Neanderthals bred with modern humans, study confirms

Advanced genetic analysis and statistical modeling have confirmed that early humans mated with Neanderthals.

This date in science: Pluto gets a demotion

On August 24, 2006, astronomers voted to demote Pluto to dwarf planet status. Hear from Alan Stern, lead scientist on a space mission to Pluto.

Bob Hardage: Using seismic technologies in oil and gas exploration

Seismic waves, the same type of waves used to study earthquakes, are also used to explore deep underground for reservoirs of oil and natural gas.

Chris Zahm: Understanding and probing the world below our feet

Necessary resources such as oil and water lie below our feet. How today’s scientists are coming to understand the world underground, while exploring for resources in safe, practical and effective ways.

Jay Kipper and Sean Murphy on nanotechnology in oil and gas production

How nanotechnology is being used to gain access to the harder-to-reach oil and gas reservoirs of today,

Michael Young on water resources in Texas

Severe drought in 2011 and 2012 raises questions about the present and future water resources of Texas.

Jeffrey Paine: Retreating shoreline along Texas Gulf coast

The Texas Gulf coast is among the most dynamic environments on Earth. Jeffrey Paine talks about the retreating coastline, and the risks and value of human activity there.

Ian Duncan on environmental impact of fracking

A geologist’s perspective on the environmental impact of fracking. Does it affect water quality? Does it cause earthquakes?

Kathryn Reese-Taylor on the Mayan calendar and 2012 doomsday prophesies

EarthSky spoke with a professor of Mayan archaeology about the supposed connection between an ancient Mayan calendar and 2012 doomsday prophecies.

Lesli Wood: Exploring Gulf of Mexico deep water oil

To meet demand for oil within U.S. borders, industry has pushed the limits of technology to reach oil reserves in deep waters of the Gulf of Mexico.

David Stuart on the Mayan calendar and 2012 doomsday predictions

Stuart, an archaeologist and expert on the ancient Maya, told EarthSky that neither the Maya, nor their calendar, ever predicted the end of the world.

Tim Lowenstein on a world of microbes buried alive in ancient salt

Lowenstein studies water droplets that have been sealed inside salt crystals for thousands to millions of years.

Bridget Scanlon on groundwater depletion and solutions

Bridget Scanlon and other scientists say we need to know where our water resources are, and what options society can leverage to use these resources most effectively.

James Holden explores life thriving in deep, hot undersea vents

Deep in cracks of hot undersea volcanoes, microbes inhale hydrogen and carbon dioxide and exhale methane. They might help scientists understand life beyond Earth.

Eric Potter explains what, how and why of hydraulic fracturing

A geologist presents the basics of hydraulic fracturing, or fracking, and explains why it’s being used to obtain energy.

Paul Ehrlich and the vital role of women in this century

The author of The Population Bomb said that equal opportunities for women might be key to maintaining Earth’s population at a reasonable level.

Peter Claggett sees changes to Chesapeake Bay with Landsat

Landsat has been observing the landscape of the vast 64,000 square miles of watershed in Chesapeake Bay for decades.

Scott Tinker: Past, present and future of energy

Energy expert Scott Tinker said, “It’s a waltz, with energy underpinning the economy, and the economy helping to invest in the environment. It’s very elegant when it’s working well.”