Scientists Discovered Colossal Ocean 700km Below Earth’s Crust

Researchers from Northwestern University in Illinois have unearthed a reservoir of water hidden beneath the Earth’s surface. This discovery, detailed in a 2014 scientific paper titled Dehydration melting at the top of the lower mantle.

Scientists Discovered Colossal Ocean 700km Below Earth's Crust

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Located approximately 700 kilometers below the Earth’s surface, this vast subterranean ocean is concealed within a mineral known as ringwoodite.

Estimated to be three times larger than all the oceans combined, this hidden reservoir challenges previous theories about Earth’s water sources.

Utilizing an extensive array of 2000 seismographs scattered across the United States, scientists analyzed seismic waves generated by over 500 earthquakes.

By studying the deceleration of these waves as they traversed through Earth’s interior, particularly the core, compelling evidence of the presence of water within the rocks below was uncovered.

Previous hypotheses proposed that Earth’s water may have been delivered through comet impacts. This recent revelation suggests an alternative narrative, that the planet’s oceans may have originated deep within its core.

Steven Jacobsen, the lead researcher, addresses the potential of this discovery, noting that it provides evidence supporting the notion that Earth’s water originated internally.

The concept of water permeating the Earth’s mantle and traversing through rock grains has the potential to redefine our understanding of the planet’s water cycle.

Scientists are eager to gather seismic data from global regions to illuminate the frequency of mantle melting events.

Without this subterranean reservoir, Earth’s water would be confined to its surface, with only mountain peaks visible.

The discovery underlines the critical role of this hidden ocean in maintaining water beneath Earth’s surface.

The discovery of this hidden ocean was made possible through seismic analysis conducted by the research team.

Employing an array of 2000 seismographs deployed across the United States, scientists scrutinized seismic waves generated by over 500 earthquakes.

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By carefully analyzing the deceleration of these waves as they traversed through Earth’s interior, particularly the core, compelling evidence of the presence of water within the rocks below emerged.

The revelation of this subterranean ocean challenges conventional theories regarding the source of Earth’s water.

While previous hypotheses suggested comet impacts as the primary source, this discovery offers an alternative narrative that Earth’s oceans may have originated deep within its core and gradually seeped out over eons.

The properties of ringwoodite, likened to a sponge capable of soaking up water, play a role in trapping vast amounts of water within the Earth’s mantle.

The magnitude of this hidden sea prompts a re-evaluation of Earth’s water cycle, suggesting a departure from theories positing comet impacts as the primary source.

Instead, the notion that Earth’s might have gradually seeped from its core gains prominence. This discovery revolutionizes our understanding of Earth’s geological processes but also show the dynamic interplay between the planet’s interior and surface.

Supported by seismic data and corroborated by previous research findings, the existence of this subterranean ocean underlines the need for further exploration and investigation into Earth’s deep interior.

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