About the Geophysical Laboratory

The Geophysical Laboratory was established in 1905 to investigate the processes that control the composition and structure of the Earth as it was known at the time, including developing the underlying physics and chemistry and creating the experimental tools required for the task. Over a century later, this core mission has expanded to include the physics, chemistry, and biology of the Earth over the entire range of conditions our planet has experienced since its formation, as well as parallel studies of other planets of this and other solar systems from their surfaces to their cores.

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News

High Pressure

The Geophysical Laboratory’s Postdoctoral Associate Zachary Geballe has been honored with Carnegie’s seventh Postdoctoral Innovation and Excellence (PIE) Award. These prizes are made through nominations from the departments and are chosen by the Office of the President.

High Pressure

Washington, DC  A group of scientists led by the Geophysical Laboratory's Huiyang Gou and Timothy Strobel performed high-pressure experiments on linear dicyanoacetylene (C4N2) using a diamond anvil cell, in which a pressure-induced reaction process was uncovered. Discrete linear C4N2 molecules were found to polymerize into a disordered extended network without significant change to the bulk composition.

Materials

Washington, DC—It would be difficult to overestimate the importance of silicon when it comes to computing, solar energy, and other technological applications. (Not to mention the fact that it makes up an awful lot of the Earth’s crust.) Yet there is still so much to learn about how to harness the capabilities of element number 14.

Matter at Extreme States

Washington, DC--Experimental petrologist Michael Walter, currently head of the School of Earth Sciences at the University of Bristol, has been selected as the eighth director of Carnegie’s Geophysical Laboratory.  He will begin his directorship on April 1, 2018.  

Materials

Washington, DC— A team including several Geophysical Laboratory scientists has developed a form of ultrastrong, lightweight carbon that is also elastic and electrically conductive. A material with such a unique combination of properties could serve a wide variety of applications from aerospace engineering to military armor.