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  • Is Earth's core lopsided? Strange goings-on in our planet's interior

    06/05/2021 7:39:36 AM PDT · by BenLurkin · 37 replies
    Phys.org ^ | June 3. 2021
    The faster growth under Indonesia's Banda Sea hasn't left the core lopsided. Gravity evenly distributes the new growth—iron crystals that form as the molten iron cools—to maintain a spherical inner core that grows in radius by an average of 1 millimeter per year. But the enhanced growth on one side suggests that something in Earth's outer core or mantle under Indonesia is removing heat from the inner core at a faster rate than on the opposite side, under Brazil. Quicker cooling on one side would accelerate iron crystallization and inner core growth on that side. This has implications for Earth's...
  • How long is a day on Venus? It's always changing, new study reveals

    05/11/2021 3:47:32 AM PDT · by SunkenCiv · 16 replies
    Space dot com ^ | May 8. 2021 | Meghan Bartels
    Astronomers have long struggled to pin down how long a day lasts on Venus, but new research suggests the difficulty stems not from flawed measurements but from real variations in the planet's spin.In a new study, scientists used a massive radar system to bounce lightwaves off our neighboring planet over the course of more than a decade. As a result, the researchers were able to measure how tilted Venus' axis is, how big its core is, and how long it takes the planet to complete one full rotation...Between 2006 and 2020, the team used this radar system to bounce a...
  • Vast Fragments of an Alien World Could Be Buried Deep Within Earth Itself

    03/25/2021 7:25:59 AM PDT · by Red Badger · 21 replies
    https://www.sciencealert.com ^ | 24 MARCH 2021 | PETER DOCKRILL
    The African LLSVP. (Ward et al., Geochemistry, Geophysics, Geosystems, 2020) NATURE Vast Fragments of an Alien World Could Be Buried Deep Within Earth Itself PETER DOCKRILL24 MARCH 2021 They are among the largest and strangest of all structures on Earth: huge, mysterious blobs of dense rock lurking deep within the lowermost parts of our planet's mantle. There are two of these gigantic masses – called the large low-shear-velocity provinces (LLSVPs) – with one buried under Africa, the other below the Pacific Ocean. These anomalies are so massive, they in turn breed their own disturbances, such as the large phenomenon currently...
  • Scientists Detect Signs of a Hidden Structure Inside Earth's Core

    03/04/2021 10:41:06 AM PST · by Red Badger · 51 replies
    https://www.sciencealert.com ^ | 4 MARCH 2021 | TESSA KOUMOUNDOUROS
    There's probably a fifth layer. (forplayday/iStock/Getty Images) NATURE Scientists Detect Signs of a Hidden Structure Inside Earth's Core TESSA KOUMOUNDOUROS4 MARCH 2021 While most of us take the ground beneath our feet for granted, written within its complex layers, like pages of a book, is Earth's history. Our history. Now researchers have found more evidence for a whole new chapter deep within Earth's past - Earth's inner core appears to have another even more inner core within it. "Traditionally we've been taught the Earth has four main layers: the crust, the mantle, the outer core and the inner core," explained...
  • The spacecraft-killing anomaly over the South Atlantic

    02/20/2021 8:56:06 AM PST · by MtnClimber · 49 replies
    Astronomy ^ | 17 Feb, 2021 | Doug Adler
    A strange dent in Earth’s magnetic field doses orbiting craft with high levels of radiation. It's caused everything from periodic glitches to total mission failure. The European Space Agency’s Swarm satellites measure the strength of Earth’s magnetic field. In this image, cooler colors (blue) mean lower strength than warmer colors (pink). The large dark region is called the South Atlantic Anomaly Radiation is a colorless, tasteless, and odorless enemy to both humans and electronics alike. And, thanks to a quirk in Earth’s magnetic field, a region called the South Atlantic Anomaly (SAA) regularly exposes orbiting spacecraft to high levels of...
  • The Herky-Jerky Weirdness of Earth’s Magnetic Field

    12/23/2020 12:38:01 PM PST · by BenLurkin · 14 replies
    Eos ^ | 21 December 2020 | Jenessa Duncombe
    As astronomers peering into Earth’s interior, there is no way for them to “feel” the true nature of the core. ... Scientists have long been on this quest, sometimes with fatal consequences. Explorers of old perished trying to set up monitoring stations in far-flung locales, like the doomed English explorer Sir John Franklin, whose expedition to take magnetic observations of the North Pole in 1845 ended with 129 men dead and two ships lost. As soon as long-lasting ground observatories sprung up around the world, scientists noticed strange deviations in the field, including for example, that our magnetic North and...
  • Search for MH370 Revealed Ocean Crust Waves

    06/12/2020 11:32:16 PM PDT · by SunkenCiv · 7 replies
    Science News by American Geophysical Union ^ | 8 June 2020 | Kimberly M. S. Cartier
    The scans for MH370 revealed that the ocean crust rises and falls in waves that start at the Southeast Indian Ridge and continue outward. The ridge spreads about 35 millimeters in opposite directions every year, and the wave crests, where crust grew faster, are more than 100 kilometers long and repeat every 10-14 kilometers. The researchers estimated when each wave formed by comparing the bathymetry maps to independent measurements and models of the crust's magnetic field. ...Crustal rocks record the polarity of Earth's magnetic field as they form, allowing scientists to trace the age of different sections of ocean crust....
  • Scientists detect unexpected widespread structures near Earth's core

    06/12/2020 9:24:12 AM PDT · by BenLurkin · 32 replies
    Phys.org ^ | 06/11/2020 | University of Maryland
    Earthquakes generate seismic waves below Earth's surface that travel thousands of miles. When the waves encounter changes in rock density, temperature or composition, they change speed, bend or scatter, producing echoes that can be detected. Echoes from nearby structures arrive more quickly, while those from larger structures are louder. By measuring the travel time and amplitude of these echoes as they arrive at seismometers in different locations, scientists can develop models of the physical properties of rock hidden below the surface. This process is similar to the way bats echolocate to map their environment Using a machine learning algorithm called...
  • Rapid Drift of Magnetic North Explained

    05/19/2020 12:50:10 PM PDT · by yoe · 45 replies
    Earth Sky ^ | May 18, 2020 | Deborah Byrd
    The location of Earth’s north magnetic pole appears to be controlled from deep within Earth by 2 competing blobs in the magnetic field. One is under Canada, and the other is under Siberia. “The Siberian blob is winning,” according to scientists. You probably know that a compass doesn’t point to true north. Earth’s geographic north pole – and magnetic north pole – were first recognized as two different places in 1831. Until the early 1990s, the magnetic North Pole was known to lie some 1,000 miles south of true north, in Canada. Yet, as scientists realized, the location of magnetic...
  • Something Strange Sends Tech Haywire at Earth's Poles, And NASA Wants to Know More

    11/30/2019 7:11:33 AM PST · by BenLurkin · 47 replies
    Live Science ^ | 11/28/2019 | david Nield
    If you venture too close to one of Earth's poles, you'll notice something rather strange happening to any gadgets using radio waves, satellite connections, or GPS. NASA is backing a range of initiatives to investigate the northern polar cusp, a funnel in space that's thought to be behind some of the weird space phenomena happening above the poles. This funnel, and the matching one at the South Pole, allows solar winds from the Sun to get right down to Earth's atmosphere – in other words, here the solar winds aren't reflected back out into space by the Earth's magnetic field,...
  • Scientists model Mercury's glaciers

    12/28/2018 11:08:58 AM PST · by ETL · 17 replies
    Phys.org ^ | December 28, 2018 | Margaret Nagle, University of Maine
    The processes that led to glaciation at the cratered poles of Mercury, the planet closest to the sun, have been modeled by a University of Maine-led research team. James Fastook, a UMaine professor of computer science and Climate Change Institute researcher, and James Head and Ariel Deutsch of Brown University, studied the accumulation and flow of ice on Mercury, and how the glacial deposits on the smallest planet in our solar system compare to those on Earth and Mars.Their findings, published in the journal Icarus, add to our understanding of how Mercury's ice accumulations—estimated to be less than 50 million...
  • Astronomy Picture of the Day -- Gravitational Anomalies of Mercury

    05/05/2015 4:09:19 AM PDT · by SunkenCiv · 4 replies
    NASA ^ | May 05, 2015 | (see photo credit)
    Explanation: What's that under the surface of Mercury? The robotic MESSENGER spacecraft that had been orbiting planet Mercury for the past four years had been transmitting its data back to Earth with radio waves of very precise energy. The planet's gravity, however, slightly changed this energy when measured on Earth, which enabled the reconstruction of a gravity map of unprecedented precision. Here gravitational anomalies are shown in false-color, superposed on an image of the planet's cratered surface. Red hues indicate areas of slightly higher gravity, which in turn indicates areas that must have unusually dense matter under the surface. The...
  • Vast asteroid created 'Man in Moon's eye' crater

    07/20/2016 5:42:28 PM PDT · by MtnClimber · 20 replies
    BBC ^ | Rebecca Morelle
    One of the Moon's biggest craters was created by an asteroid more than 250km (150 miles) across, a study suggests. It smashed into the lunar surface about 3.8 billion years ago, forming Mare Imbrium - the feature also known as the right eye of the "Man in the Moon". Scientists say the asteroid was three times bigger than previously estimated and debris from the collision would have rained down on the Earth. The asteroid was so big it could be classified as a protoplanet - a space rock with the potential to become a fully formed world. Lead author Prof...
  • How Earth's mantle is like a Jackson Pollock painting

    05/21/2019 5:55:20 AM PDT · by BenLurkin · 17 replies
    phys.org ^ | 05/20/2019
    Lambart and her colleagues from Wales and the Netherlands, sought to discover what the mantle looks like before it rises as lava at a mid-ocean ridge. They examined cores, drilled through the ocean crust, to look at cumulate minerals: the first minerals to crystallize when the magmas enter the crust. They analyzed the samples centimeter by centimeter to look at variations in isotopes of neodymium and strontium, which can indicate different chemistries of mantle material that come from different types of rock. The amount of isotope variability in the cumulates was seven times greater than that in the mid-ocean ridge...
  • Earth’s Second Magnetic Field: Satellite Image Reveals Invisible Force From Ocean Currents

    04/12/2018 6:58:36 AM PDT · by DUMBGRUNT · 64 replies
    Inquisitr ^ | 12 Apr 2018 | Mia Lorenzo
    The Earth has a second magnetic field, one generated by ocean currents. Researchers know little about it, but images captured by satellites show this invisible force generated by the world’s salty oceans in perfect detail. ... ESA released a video detailing the changes in the Earth’s magnetic field over a 24-hour period... ...“It’s a really tiny magnetic field. It’s about 2-2.5 nanotesla at satellite altitude, which is about 20,000 times weaker than the Earth’s global magnetic field.”... Oceans may have a small contribution to the magnetic field that protects the planet from harmful cosmic rays, but it remains to be...
  • Exploring The Ocean Basins With Satellite Altimeter Data

    03/28/2005 10:10:48 AM PST · by SunkenCiv · 7 replies · 586+ views
    National Geophysical Data Center, National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration ^ | Tue Nov 25 2004 (apparently) | David T. Sandwell and Walter H. F. Smith
    The reason that the ocean floor, especially the southern hemisphere oceans, is so poorly charted is that electromagnetic waves cannot penetrate the deep ocean (3-5 km = 2-3 mi). Instead, depths are commonly measured by timing the two-way travel time of an acoustic pulse. However because research vessels travel quite slowly (6m/s = 12 knots) it would take approximately 125 years to chart the ocean basins using the latest swath-mapping tools. To date, only a small fraction of the sea floor has been charted by ships. Fortunately, such a major mapping program is largely unnecessary because the ocean surface has...
  • The Search for MH370 Revealed Secrets of the Deep Ocean

    03/12/2017 9:24:01 AM PDT · by MtnClimber · 23 replies
    The Atlantic ^ | 10 Mar, 2017 | SARAH ZHANG
    A remote part of the Indian Ocean has become, by chance, one of the best-mapped parts of the underwater world. The ocean is vast, deep, and unexplored. When Malaysia Airlines Flight 370 disappeared three years ago this week, the search brought the ocean’s vastness into sharp relief. This is how deep and dark it is three miles down. This is how unlikely you are to spot a downed airliner in 120,000 square nautical miles of open ocean. This is how much we know about the ocean floor—less than we know about the surface of Mars. As the search dragged on...
  • Ocean Search for Malaysian Airliner Finds 2nd Shipwreck [MH370]

    01/14/2016 4:13:34 PM PST · by SunkenCiv · 29 replies
    Voice of America ^ | January 13, 2016 | Associated Press
    story from AP, so, not risking an excerpt.
  • MH370 search discovers a shipwreck not the missing plane

    05/13/2015 1:46:03 AM PDT · by naturalman1975 · 19 replies
    news.com.au ^ | 13th May 2015
    THE $90 million search for MH370 has discovered “man made objects” almost four kilometres under the surface of the southern Indian Ocean, but they are not the missing Boeing 777. Instead the debris is thought to be from an ancient shipwreck, comprising an anchor and other items. Australian Transport Safety Bureau Operational Search Director Peter Foley said they were “obviously disappointed” the discovery was not the missing aircraft.
  • The Nippon Foundation-GEBCO Seabed 2030 Project

    12/30/2018 2:55:15 AM PST · by SunkenCiv · 10 replies
    Seabed 2030 Project ^ | October 2018 | unattributed