Rare African plant points the way to diamonds

Pandanus candelabrum’s role as a diamond spotter may sound unlikely, but this sort of indicator species has been known about for centuries. For example, the small Alpine plant Lychnis alpina has distinctive pink flowers and has been used since medieval times to find sources of copper. Modern analysis has since discovered that the species is […]

Are we ready for the next volcanic catastrophe?

No volcano erupts without warning signs, caused by rising magma triggering earthquake swarms and inflating the ground surface. The problem is that out of our world’s 1,300 or more active and potentially active volcanoes, we monitor only a few hundred. The Tambora eruption reinforces the unofficial volcanological axiom: the longer the wait, the bigger the […]