Model of the Interiors of the Earth. Image: NASA / JPL / Université Paris Diderot and the Institute of Physics Globe de Paris
Hundreds of miles below our feet is an underground mountain ridge with peaks that can compete with the Himalayas, a new study says.
Scientists were able to see incomprehensible structures in seismic waves seized during an earthquake in Bolivia in 1994, according to a study published in .
The Earth's mantle is a dense strip of silicate rock extending from the earth's crust to the core, which is 84% of the size of our planet. At 410 miles from the surface, the border known as the 660-kilometer gap separates the mantle at its upper and lower levels.
Scientists can say that rock is becoming much rude and dense on this site, but it's difficult to read the topography. Detailed border information can help solve many mysteries about the mantle, for example, how many upper and lower layers are mixed together, so that scientists wanted to study it more closely
. seismic waves that are ripples of energy traveling around the planet during major failures such as earthquakes or asteroid strikes. When the waves meet different textures, minerals and structures, they rebound from them like light waves that are reflected from objects. This provides a rough seismic snapshot of the Earth.
"We need large earthquakes to allow seismic waves to pass through the mantle and core, to jump from a 660-kilometer break, as well as to go through Earth at the top of the earth's crust," Jessica Irving, a geophysicist at Princeton University and author of the study, told the Motherboard in e-mail.
Being the second largest earthquake by record ̵
The team enlisted a group of Princeton tiger supercoppers to measure earthquake measurements so that they could reconstruct structures at the border.
Although the statistical model of the study could not determine the exact altitudes, there is a "stronger topography than the Rocky Mountains or the Appalachians" at the border, according to the lead author Wenbo Wu.
"I can not give you an estimated quantity," Irving said, with regard to the altitude in the range. "But the mountains are 660 kilometers
Read more: There is" An Underground Galapagos Deep Within the Earth "
The reliability of the range may be partly due to the accumulation of old pieces of sea bottoms that are absorbed in the mantle, and then descend to the border. There may be ancient relics from the first days of the Earth that were accumulated there as there.
Since the seismic and supercompute & # 39; The electronic methods continue to be elop, scientists hope to know I am more about the mantle mountains.
"I think that future research will be able to teach us more about these topographic mountains and how they are distributed around the planet – we see that some parts of the 660-kilometer border are much smoother than others," said Irving.
The study not only informs current debates about the evolution of the Earth, but also sheds light on the processes and structures that can form other planets.
Get six of our favorite messages about the motherboard every day subscribing to our newsletter .