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June 2006
vol. 51, no. 6

FEATURES

18 A Nanotechnology Revolution for the Geosciences
The manipulation of individual atoms and molecules through nanotechnology could have a big impact on alternative energy, resource extraction and pollution control.
Stephen L. Gillett

22 Extreme Microbes: Testing Lifes Limits
Microbial life survives in astonishing environmental extremes on Earth, shedding light on the search for life elsewhere in the universe.
Robert M. Hazen

26 Exploring Life in the High Lakes
Nathalie Cabrol is free diving in one of the highest lakes on Earth to understand lakes, and life, on ancient Mars.
Tim Palucka

30 Microsatellite Mania
Satellites are shrinking, as researchers look for new ways to keep an eye on the planet.
Kathryn Hansen


NEWS & VIEWS

7 COMMENT
Global Warming: Whose Problem is it Anyway?

The United States needs to stop being an ostrich and start being more of a hawk in the war against global warming.
Michael Glantz

8 NEWS NOTES
Fish fossil fills evolutionary gap * Found: One of many missing human links * Fish teeth bite into Antarctic formation * Plate shifts in the Pacific Northwest * Ancient methane-makers * Penguins endure extinction event * Seeing below Tambora * Warming opened Americas to humans

17 POLITICAL SCENE
NASA Science: The Sick Man of Federal Research

Due to a lack of funding and support, NASA’s science programs are anemic, potentially limiting opportunities for young scientists engaged in crosscutting research.
Margaret Anne Baker

36 GEOPHENOMENA
Sea levels may rise sooner
Eastern Europe fights massive flooding

38 TRENDS & INNOVATIONS
Smart Volcano Mini-Sensors

In the dangerous world of volcano monitoring, researchers are working to find new ways to make their monitoring instruments smaller, lighter, cheaper and intelligent.
Megan Sever

42 EDUCATION & OUTREACH
Geoscience Training in Full Force
A summer program is immersing high school students in geology through classroom, field and real-world experiences.
Kathryn Hansen

44 ENERGY & RESOURCES
Is ethanol the answer?
Mineral Resource of the Month: Beryllium

46 GEOMEDIA
On Exhibit: Art from the rocks
Books: Pleistocene ecology and public policy: A review of Twilight of the Mammoths: Ice Age Extinctions and the Rewilding of America
On the Web: Google delves into Mars

50 PROFILES
Natalie Mahowald: Interdisciplinary intellect

51 BENCHMARKS
June 20, 1977: Oil Flows From Alaska Pipeline
Nearly 10 years after the discovery of oil at Prudhoe Bay on Alaska’s North Slope, the Trans-Alaska Pipeline comes online to move oil from the bay south to the Valdez port.

60 GEOLOGIC COLUMN
Getting Unstuck
Do you have writer’s block or a general lack of inspiration? Some simple tricks could help you turn the light bulb back on.
Lisa Rossbacher

DEPARTMENTS
 4 From the Editor
 6 Letters:
Perspectives from readers
34 Where on Earth?

52 GeoMarketplace

54 Classifieds:
Career opportunities

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