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Vikings navigated the seas with sunstone crystals

Vikings may have navigated the seas in bad weather by using a "sunstone" crystal which could pinpoint the sun's location behind clouds and fog. In the 1960s, Danish archaeologist Thorkild Ramskou suggested that the Vikings used a sunstone to filter the sunlight so that it all had the same polarization, or

Ancient coral reef found in South Pacific

A 9,000-year-old coral reef found in the South Pacific may provide clues as to what will happen to coral when sea temperatures rise. The samples confirmed that it was indeed coral and radiocarbon dating confirmed its age.Other similar ancient reefs - called relict reefs - have been discovered before, but

Peruvian seashells shed light on historical climate

Ancient Peruvian seashells presented to the dead during ancient funeral ceremonies are allowing researchers to gauge historical climate information as far back as 13,000 years ago. These unlikely sources serve almost as historical calendars filled with data about the conditions of the portions of the ocean in which they lived

Reef fossils used as record of past sea level changes

Fossilized coral reefs in the Great Barrier Reef could reveal to scientists how sea levels have changed over the past 20,000 years. Described as the "trees of the sea", coral have growth rings that show seasonal variations. Researchers say the samples will also shed light on past sea temperatures,