News - OD Earth and History of Life

Taking measurements for the archaeo-magnetic survey in the Bruniquel Cave. (Photo: Etienne FABRE - SSAC)
25/05/2016

Constructions in French Cave Indicate Neanderthals Were More Modern than Assumed

post by
Reinout Verbeke

Scientists have found constructions in a cave in the south west of France that are 176,500 years old. This makes them among the oldest known human constructions. Neanderthals built structures with broken stalagmites and used them as fireplaces.

Artist's impression of an Ice Age man (Image: Stephano Ricci)
02/05/2016

Belgian Fossil Represents Earliest Ancestors of Europeans

post by
Reinout Verbeke

A new study analysing the genomes of a few dozens of individuals from the ice age has identified the early ancestors of present-day Europeans. A 35 000 year old humerus from the Goyet caves in Belgium belongs to the earliest ancestors of Europeans.

Map of Belgium with geothermal potential (medium to very deep) and the (natural) geothermal wells. (RBINS, Estelle Petitclerc)
26/02/2016

Our Geologists Map Geothermal Resources

post by
Reinout Verbeke

The internal heat of the Earth can be used to heat houses and to generate electricity. Countries such as Italy, Iceland and Turkey use thermal energy for quite some time, and Greece and Germany are experimenting on a large scale. What is Belgium waiting for?

One of our palaeontologists, Floréal Solé, holding the mandible of the oldest carnivoran mammal of Europe. (Photo: Thierry Smith, RBINS)
19/02/2016

Oldest Carnivoran Mammal of Europe Discovered

post by
Reinout Verbeke

Researchers of our Institute have described the oldest mammalian predator of Europe. Vassacyon prieuri from Northern France is 57 million years old and is considered the earliest ancestor of modern-day cats and dogs.

Human bone fragments from the Goyet caves (Belgium), between 27,000 en 35,000 years old and belonging to haplogroups M or N. (Photo: Eric Dewamme, RBINS)
04/02/2016

European Humans Underwent Hefty Shuffle at the End of Last Ice Age

post by
Reinout Verbeke

European populations changed dramatically at the end of the last Ice Age. This is what scientists have revealed as a result of DNA analysis of more than thirty fossils from six countries.

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