Shop Windows to the Universe

Check out the fun Earth science related bumper stickers in our online store! Express yourself!


Although in most places science is taught as different disciplines, actually, it's all connected! In order to do research in the Earth and space sciences - also sometimes called the "geosciences", you need to have a strong background in all the sciences, as well as in mathematics, too. In this section, we have brought together information related to the Earth and space sciences from across our website on the different scientific disciplines. Explore these links to find out more about geology, physics, chemistry, and biology.
Daniel Wolf Savin, a senior research scientist at Columbia University's
Astrophysics Laboratory, has published a paper on the research he and his
colleagues have done on how stars began. They learned that hydrogen and
helium produced all other
<a href="/physical_science/element.html&edu=elem&dev=1">elements</a> in
the <a href="/the_universe/the_universe.html&edu=elem&dev=1">universe</a>.
Find out more about their research
<a href="/headline_universe/olpa/stars_01july10.html&edu=elem&dev=1">here</a>.<p><small><em> Image Courtesy of Daniel Wolf Savin, Columbia University</em></small></p>A view of the Earth as seen by the <a href="/space_missions/apollo17.html&edu=elem&dev=1">Apollo
17</a> crew
while traveling to the
<a href="/earth/moons_and_rings.html&edu=elem&dev=1">Moon</a> on
December 7, 1972.  Africa, Madagascar, and the Arabian Peninsula are
visible, and you can barely make out the
<a href="/earth/polar/antarctica.html&edu=elem&dev=1">Antarctic</a>,
shrouded in the heavy
<a href="/earth/Atmosphere/cloud.html&edu=elem&dev=1">cloud</a> cover
in the southern hemisphere.
Arching cloud patterns show the presence of <a href="/earth/Atmosphere/front.html&edu=elem&dev=1">weather
fronts</a>.<p><small><em>Image courtesy of NASA/Apollo 17.</em></small></p>Although we humans have never experienced fast <a href="/earth/climate/climate.html&edu=elem&dev=1">global
warming</a>, our
planet has. And our planet keeps records of what happened. The oldest
records that the
<a href="/earth/earth.html&edu=elem&dev=1">Earth</a> keeps
are in its
<a href="/earth/geology/sed_intro.html&edu=elem&dev=1">rocks</a>.
In this image, <a href="/headline_universe/olpa/methane_28may08.html&edu=elem&dev=1">geologists Chris von der Borch and Dave
Mrofka</a> collect
sediment samples in South Australia. These rocks hold clues to help
explain why climate changed abruptly 635 million years ago.<p><small><em>                    Courtesy of Martin Kennedy, UCR</em></small></p>Everything you see around you is made of tiny particles called <a href="/physical_science/physics/atom_particle/atom.html&edu=elem&dev=1">atoms</a>. There are many different types of atoms, each with a special combination of <a href="/physical_science/physics/atom_particle/proton.html&edu=elem&dev=1">protons</a>, <a href="/physical_science/physics/atom_particle/neutron.html&edu=elem&dev=1">neutrons</a> and <a href="/physical_science/physics/atom_particle/electron.html&edu=elem&dev=1">electrons</a>. These different types of atoms are called <a href="/physical_science/element.html&edu=elem&dev=1">elements</a>.<p><small><em>              L.Gardiner/Windows to the Universe</em></small></p>How did life evolve on <a href="/earth/earth.html&edu=elem&dev=1">Earth</a> during the <a href="/earth/past/Archean.html&edu=elem&dev=1">Archean</a>, when the <a href="/sun/sun.html&edu=elem&dev=1">Sun</a> was about 25% weaker than today?  The Earth should have been <a href="/earth/polar/cryosphere_glacier1.html&edu=elem&dev=1">glaciated</a>, if <a href="/earth/climate/earth_greenhouse.html&edu=elem&dev=1">greenhouse</a> gas concentration was the same as today.  <a href="">Researchers</a> studying the <a href="/physical_science/physics/atom_particle/isotope.html&edu=elem&dev=1">isotopic</a> signatures of Earth's early atmosphere in <a href="/earth/geology/rocks_intro.html&edu=elem&dev=1">rocks</a> from Northern Australia have ruled out high levels of <a href="/physical_science/chemistry/nitrogen_molecular.html&edu=elem&dev=1">nitrogen</a> as a possible way to increase warming from <a href="/earth/Atmosphere/overview.html&edu=elem&dev=1">atmospheric</a> <a href="/physical_science/chemistry/carbon_dioxide.html&edu=elem&dev=1">carbon dioxide</a>.<p><small><em>Image courtesy of Manchester University</em></small></p>Scientists at the University of Michigan have found that <a href="/earth/polar/cryosphere_permafrost1.html&edu=elem&dev=1">permafrost</a> in the <a href="/earth/polar/polar_north.html&edu=elem&dev=1">Arctic</a> is extremely sensitive to sunlight.  Exposure to sunlight releases carbon gases trapped in the permafrost, including <a href="/earth/climate/earth_greenhouse.html&edu=elem&dev=1">climate-warming</a> <a href="/physical_science/chemistry/carbon_dioxide.html&edu=elem&dev=1">carbon dioxide</a>, to the <a href="/earth/Atmosphere/overview.html&edu=elem&dev=1">atmosphere</a> much faster than previously thought.<p><small><em>George Kling, The University of Michigan</em></small></p>

Windows to the Universe Community



Windows to the Universe, a project of the National Earth Science Teachers Association, is sponsored in part is sponsored in part through grants from federal agencies (NASA and NOAA), and partnerships with affiliated organizations, including the American Geophysical Union, the Howard Hughes Medical Institute, the Earth System Information Partnership, the American Meteorological Society, the National Center for Science Education, and TERC. The American Geophysical Union and the American Geosciences Institute are Windows to the Universe Founding Partners. NESTA welcomes new Institutional Affiliates in support of our ongoing programs, as well as collaborations on new projects. Contact NESTA for more information. NASA ESIP NCSE HHMI AGU AGI AMS NOAA