High Pressure, Matter at Extreme States, Planetary Science

The properties of hydrogen at extreme pressures and temperatures are of great interest to condensed matter physics, astrophysics, and planetary science due to the element’s putative

High Pressure, Materials, Matter at Extreme States

Our science cannot be accomplished without state-of-the-art instruments. But sometimes the existing tools simply aren’t enough.

High Pressure, Materials, Matter at Extreme States

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.


Washington, DC—Applying big data analysis to mineralogy offers a way to predict minerals missing from those known to science, as well as where to find new deposits, according to a groundbreaking study.

In a paper published by American Mineralogist, Geophysical Laboratory scientists Shaunna Morrison and Bob Hazen report the first application to mineralogy of network theory (best known for analysis of e.g. the spread of disease, terrorist networks, or Facebook connections).


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.

High Pressure, Matter at Extreme States

Washington, DC— A team led by the Geophysical Laboratory's Yingwei Fei, a experimental petrologist, and Cheng Xu, a field geologist from Peking University, has discovered that a rare sample of the mineral majorite originated at least 235 miles below Earth’s surface.

High Pressure, 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.

High Pressure

Washington, DC—Hydrogen is both the simplest and the most-abundant element in the universe, so studying it can teach scientists about the essence of matter. And yet there are still many hydrogen secrets to unlock, including how best to force it into a superconductive, metallic state with no electrical resistance.

High Pressure

Washington, DC— New work from a team including the Geophysical Laboratory's Guoyin Shen and Yoshio Kono used high pressure and temperature to reveal a kind of “structural memory” in samples of the metal bismuth, a discovery with great electrical engineering potential.


Washington, DC—Human industry and ingenuity has done more to diversify and distribute minerals on Earth than any development since the rise of oxygen over 2.2 billion years ago, experts say in a paper published today. The work bolsters the scientific argument to officially designate a new geological time interval distinguished by the pervasive impact of human activities: the Anthropocene Epoch.