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Planetary Science

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illustration of early solar system collisions

HERE TODAY  Violent collisions in the early solar system, illustrated here, probably broke apart would-be planets — but diamonds forged in those planets’ cores may have made it to Earth as meteorites.

laser and exoplanet

UNDER PRESSURE  Using lasers, scientists compressed iron to high pressures that are likely found in large, rocky exoplanets’ cores. Here, an image of inside the laser chamber is shown with an artist’s rendering of an exoplanet.


DEAD INSIDE  Mars doesn’t have a magnetic field today because something shut off its churning core. A new study suggests waterlocked minerals in the mantle could have provided enough hydrogen to interfere with the convection of the core.

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