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Why Massive Saharan Dust Plumes Are Blowing Into the US

Every summer, an atmospheric event propels desert dust thousands of miles across the Atlantic. This year is particularly bad, and timed terribly with Covid-19.

The Super-Secret Sand That Makes Your Phone Possible

The processor that makes your laptop or cell phone work was fabricated using quartz from this obscure Appalachian backwater.

An Artist Makes the Universe From Sand—And Then Destroys It

The piece required two weeks to create, and seconds to sweep away.

The Deadly Global War for Sand

The global demand for plain old sand is so high that illegal mines are everywhere, and mafias around the world are killing for the stuff.

A Country's Out-of-Control Sprawl, Drawn by a Robot in Sand

After the sand printer has drawn one plan it wipes the sand clean and draws another.

Hunting for Fantastical Creatures in Clouds of Sand

Claire Droppert’s photos of flying beach sand make us recall those times when we were kids and would watch clouds morph into fantastical animals or familiar forms.

7 Modernist Sand Castles, From a Master's Hand

With their exacting geometric shapes and sharp edges, you might these require molds or other helpful gizmos.

Sand Looks Unbelievably Cool Under a Microscope

You probably have no idea how cool that sand you're walking on really is.

Could a Mix of Sand and Pee Be a Super-Green Replacement for Concrete?

Designers and scientists are experimenting with new materials that are structurally similar to concrete while being a helluva lot greener.

Photographers Capture Mysterious, Beautiful Patterns in Sand

A single sand grain is a simple thing. But en mass, grains of sand build, slide and settle into beautiful and mysterious patterns we admire, but cannot always understand. We've gathered some of the strangest and most impressive pictures we could find of sand patterns.

Sand: The Neverending Story -- A Q&A with author Michael Welland

Note: I’m traveling right now (looking at rocks) so I’ve scheduled a few posts from my archives. Below is an edited version of a review and Q&A about the book “Sand”. If you’re a new reader, enjoy! If you’re a long-time reader, enjoy again! I have to admit that when I found out there was […]