On WORT 89.9 FM: UW Origins Project explores how scientists research our beginnings

UW-Madison’s recently released Origins project links together different academic fields to paint a picture of how scientists research Earth’s and mankind’s beginnings. Anthropology professor John Hawks is featured in the project, and spoke with Nina Kravinsky about the study.

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Exploring our Origins

The quest to understand our beginnings — of our universe, of life on Earth, of our species — inspires people all over the world. At the University of Wisconsin-Madison, researchers have forged partnerships with colleagues in South Africa and are uncovering answers and opening new scientific frontiers.

The stories of their work are presented in "Origins," a three-part multimedia narrative exploring the beginnings of the universe, life on earth and humankind.

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L&S winners: Cool Science Images 2018

A panel of eight experienced artists and scientists judged the scientific, aesthetic and creative qualities of 171 images and videos submitted by UW–Madison faculty, staff and students — a record number of entries for the eighth annual competition.

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L&S wins nine of twelve UW-Madison Distinguished Teaching Awards

Twelve faculty members - nine of them from the College of Letters & Science - have been chosen to receive this year’s Distinguished Teaching Awards, an honor given out since 1953 to recognize the university’s finest educators.

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In the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel: A mastodon and a meteor older than Earth are highlights of the UW Geology Museum

If you want to touch a hunk of roughly 4.56-billion-year-old meteorite that predates Earth, view fossilized bones from two mastodons that wandered western Wisconsin during the Ice Age or learn more about the universe, the University of Wisconsin-Madison Geology Museum is well worth a visit.

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In On Wisconsin Magazine: A perfect storm

UW professor Harold Tobin planned to teach Geoscience 140 — a new course examining natural hazards and disasters — assuming he could draw from current events to teach the science behind the news. But Tobin couldn’t have predicted that hurricanes and wildfires would own the news cycle at the start of the fall semester, and Mexico would see its largest earthquake in a century before September was over.

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In Quanta Magazine: Fossil discoveries challenge ideas about Earth’s start

A series of fossil finds suggests that life on Earth started earlier than anyone thought, calling into question a widely held theory of the solar system’s beginnings.

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Oldest fossils ever found show life on Earth began before 3.5 billion years ago

Researchers at UCLA and the University of Wisconsin–Madison have confirmed that microscopic fossils discovered in a nearly 3.5 billion-year-old piece of rock in Western Australia are the oldest fossils ever found and indeed the earliest direct evidence of life on Earth.

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Cool idea: Magma held in ‘cold storage’ before giant volcano eruption

Here’s a rule of geoscience: The past heralds the future. So it’s not just morbid curiosity that attracts geoscientists to places like Long Valley, California, where a super-eruption occured 765,000 years ago. It’s an ardent desire to understand why super-eruptions happen, ultimately to understand where and when they are likely to occur again.

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