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Hot Spring at Yellowstone National Park

earth

Life at high temperature

Rocks embedded a few kilometers below the surface are an ideal habitat too: some microorganisms live in tiny interstitial spaces of  rocks which are 3,2 km beneath the subsoil and they are able to tolerate high pressure levels, radiation and…

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earth

Mountains on the Earth

The different landscapes that we analysed in the previous section are distributed in the five continents of the Earth. Observing the Earth, it is possible to notice that most of emerged lands are occupied by mountains (76%), while plains only…

clima_sotterraneo

earth

The climate underground

Going down deep in the Earth’s crust, the temperatures increase gradually (about 3°C every 100 m): this phenomenon is well-known in mines, where very high temperatures are reached in the deep, and where the galleries have to be ventilated to…

Crystal of mineral salt on a white background

earth

A small domestic experiment

In order to understand the number of factors that make a water undersaturated or oversaturated, there is an experiment that we can carry out in the kitchen while we wait for the water to boil before cooking pasta. If we…

citta_popolose

earth

The most populated cities in the world

In the last 50 years the world population has passed from 2.5 billion to 6 billion, and estimates say that it should reach 8 billion in the year 2025. A consequence of this demographic growth was an intense urbanization and,…

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earth

A walk underground

The longest caves in the world are in Kentucky, the caves of Mammoth, which are 560 metres long. Other long karstic landscapes are in China, on the Shan plateau; in Australia, in the Nullarbar region; in North Africa, on the…

cascate_spettacolari

earth

The most spectacular waterfalls

The highest waterfalls in the world are located in Venezuela. The famous Salto Angel is 979 metres high. The widest waterfall is in Asia, in Laos: it is the Khone waterfall and, although it is only 70 m high, it…

vesuvio

earth

Volcanic activity of Vesuvio

One of the most famous volcanic disasters was the eruption of Vesuvio in 79 A.D., which destroyed the cities of Ercolano and Pompei. The stages of the eruption were carefully described by Plinio il Grande: the eruption started with an…

Life in cave

earth

Can you breathe in a cave?

One of the most common beliefs is that in caves the air is often stuffy, unhealthy, low in oxygen content and at times saturated with toxic gases. As a matter of fact, this erroneous belief stems from the confusion between…

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