Journey to the Center of the Earth! Information from: http://www.cnn.com/interactive/nature/9903/earth.layers/frameset.exclude.html
Regions of the Earth • The Earth is made up of 2 major regions: • A mostly molten (liquid), central core • A mostly solid outer mantle and crust
Crust (0-35km) • The crust is the top, solid surface layer of the Earth (like the eggshell on the egg) • Oceanic crust is the crust under oceans, and continental crust is the crust under the continents
Hydrosphere • The Hydrosphere contains all bodies of water at or near the surface, including: • Frozen surface water • Liquid surface water • Ground water • Water vapour • 97% of Earth’s water is contained in the oceans
How far do you think we as humans have drilled down into the Earth? • The Kola Superdeep Borehole is the result of a scientific drilling project of the former USSR. The project attempted to drill as deep as possible into the Earth's crust. Drilling began on 24 May 1970 on the Kola Peninsula, using the Uralmash-4E, and later the Uralmash-15000 series drilling rig. A number of boreholes were drilled by branching from a central hole. The deepest, SG-3, reached 12,261 metres (40,230 ft) in 1989, and remains the deepest hole ever drilled.
The Mantle: (35-2900km) • The mantle is the semi-solid layer directly below the crust. It can be broken into 2 major parts: • The Upper Mantle • The Lower Mantle
Quick Fact: • The crust and the upper mantle are part of the Lithosphere! ( the solid portion of the Earth) • The Aesthenosphere is the ductile – semi-liquid part of the Earth located just below the Lithosphere which is made up of the lower part of the Upper mantle.
Crust and Upper mantle = Lithosphere Lower part of Upper mantle = Aesthenosphere
The Upper Mantle:(35- 670 km) • The upper mantle’s boundaries are a bit hard to see . It includes xenoliths, rocks that were shot upward by explosive eruptions (some of which contain diamonds)! • The consistency of the upper mantle is like thick toothpaste! • Things that take place in the upper mantle have significant impact on the crust, some of these are: • Volcanic eruptions • Earthquakes
The Lower Mantle:(670-2900km) • This mostly solid lower mantle makes up nearly 50 percent of the Earth’s Interior. • Rather than staying stagnant, the lower mantle convects slowly creating superplumes, large rising jets of partially molten rock (magma).
The Outer Core: (2900-5200km) • The outer core consists of liquid metal that flows turbulently (iron and nickel) • Together, the outer and inner core seem to make up our geomagnetic field.
The Inner Core: (5200-6371km) • The inner core is solid. It is believed to be metallic iron although no studies have ever been performed on the core. It’s temperature is between 5000 – 6000 degrees!