domingo, 27 de febrero de 2011

The Earth's core rotates much more slowly than previously thought

The world is moving at two speeds, and not just on economic issues. New research from Cambridge University confirms that the core of the Earth, located about 5,000 kilometers below the surface, rotates much more slowly than previously thought. Their rotation is still faster than the rest of the planet, something that scientists had thought, but not as expected.

The discovery, published in the journal Nature Geoscience, sheds light on the innards of our planet and how they affect the magnetic fields that protect us, such as solar radiation.

The study provides the first accurate estimate of how much faster you rotate the Earth's core compared to the rest of the planet. Previous research had shown that the heart of the planet has its own pace. So far, it was believed that this variation was a grade each year. However, scientists at the University of Cambridge have discovered that these earlier estimates were inaccurate and that the core is actually moving much more slowly than previously thought, about one degree every million years.

The Earth's inner core, a central area consisting mainly of iron and nickel and has a diameter larger than the planet Mars, grows very slowly as the fluid outer core material, the layer immediately above-ground hardens in surface. During this process, the difference in speed east-west hemispheric this process remains frozen in the structure of the inner core.

For research, scientists use seismic waves that passed through the inner core 5200 kilometers beneath the surface of the Earth, and travel time compared with that of the reflected waves on the surface of the nucleus. Subsequently, the differences observed in the rotation of the eastern and western hemispheres.

Although the inner core is so far from our feet, the effect of their presence is especially important in the Earth's surface. In particular, the heat produced during the solidification and growth of the inner core plays an important role. These heat fluxes generate magnetic fields that protect the Earth's surface from solar radiation. Without them, life on Earth could not exist.

5 comentarios:

  1. Wait, the core rotates as well as the planet? I studied Astronomy for a year and this was never brought up O.o

  2. This was pretty interesting.

  3. Odd that we can have a man made object go to Saturn, but we barely figured this out. lol.

  4. It confuses me how we could have got it so wrong the first time!