The discovery of the Marianas trench was one of the first puzzle pieces that lead to the understanding of the most massive process that shapes the geology of the Earth; plate tectonics and the creation of new crust in the mid-ocean ridges and its subduction under the continents.
Chile's Atacama Desert is the driest, oldest and deadest desert on earth. Yet it's plays host to living creatures and penguins even thrive nearby. It may provide clues to where to look for life on other, seemingly barren, planets.
A tsunami is a dramatic indicator of geological activity magnifying the impact into extensive coastal destruction. Scientists searching for evidence of past tsunamis to predict when they are likely to recur and how severe they are likely to be uncover a new phenomenon, the mega-tsunami.
The Hawaiian Islands are a study in contradictions. The fastest growing islands on earth are also the fastest disappearing. Made of one of the hardest minerals, it crumbles at a touch. The world's most active volcano is nowhere near the typical volcanic regions. Geologists strive to understand these mysteries.