Forum for Science, Industry and Business

Sponsored by:     3M 
Search our Site:

 

Unexpected discovery about earth’s core

29.08.2003


The core of the earth doesn’t look the way it was expected to. Scientists at the Royal Institute of Technology in Stockholm, Sweden , KTH, can now show that iron, under extremely high pressure, such as that found in the inner earth, takes on unexpected properties, and this can be of importance in understanding the movements of the earth, such as, earthquakes. The results are being presented in the new issue of the British scientific journal Nature.



The core of the earth consists almost exclusively of iron. The iron atoms in a piece of iron, in room temperature, are packed according to a certain structure, in this case called body centered cubic or bcc. This means the atoms are relatively sparsely packed. When the piece of iron is exposed to greater pressure, the iron atoms place themselves differently in relation to each other and take on another kind of structure, so-called hexagonal close packed, or hcp. The become more densely packed, which seems natural, and it has long been assumed that the higher the temperature and pressure iron is exposed to, the more stable the hpc structure will be. Researchers from the department KTH Materials Science maintain, however, that this not the case. With the help of computer simulations, they have now shown that iron, unexpectedly, reverts to bcc structure at extreme temperatures and pressures. Exactly why this occurs is the next question for science to tackle.

Research into the inner parts of the earth has enjoyed a great boom over the last few years, largely owing to the fact that equipment has not been available until today to simulate the conditions down there. It is pure research, and the discoveries are thus far difficult to evaluate in terms of money or practical applications, but it might be possible to use increased knowledge of the construction of the earth in geology to understand the significance of the core of the earth in earthquakes or volcano eruptions.

Jacob Seth Fransson | alfa
Further information:
http://www.kth.se/eng/

More articles from Earth Sciences:

nachricht NASA examines newly formed Tropical Depression 3W in 3-D
26.04.2017 | NASA/Goddard Space Flight Center

nachricht Early organic carbon got deep burial in mantle
25.04.2017 | Rice University

All articles from Earth Sciences >>>

The most recent press releases about innovation >>>

Die letzten 5 Focus-News des innovations-reports im Überblick:

Im Focus: Making lightweight construction suitable for series production

More and more automobile companies are focusing on body parts made of carbon fiber reinforced plastics (CFRP). However, manufacturing and repair costs must be further reduced in order to make CFRP more economical in use. Together with the Volkswagen AG and five other partners in the project HolQueSt 3D, the Laser Zentrum Hannover e.V. (LZH) has developed laser processes for the automatic trimming, drilling and repair of three-dimensional components.

Automated manufacturing processes are the basis for ultimately establishing the series production of CFRP components. In the project HolQueSt 3D, the LZH has...

Im Focus: Wonder material? Novel nanotube structure strengthens thin films for flexible electronics

Reflecting the structure of composites found in nature and the ancient world, researchers at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign have synthesized thin carbon nanotube (CNT) textiles that exhibit both high electrical conductivity and a level of toughness that is about fifty times higher than copper films, currently used in electronics.

"The structural robustness of thin metal films has significant importance for the reliable operation of smart skin and flexible electronics including...

Im Focus: Deep inside Galaxy M87

The nearby, giant radio galaxy M87 hosts a supermassive black hole (BH) and is well-known for its bright jet dominating the spectrum over ten orders of magnitude in frequency. Due to its proximity, jet prominence, and the large black hole mass, M87 is the best laboratory for investigating the formation, acceleration, and collimation of relativistic jets. A research team led by Silke Britzen from the Max Planck Institute for Radio Astronomy in Bonn, Germany, has found strong indication for turbulent processes connecting the accretion disk and the jet of that galaxy providing insights into the longstanding problem of the origin of astrophysical jets.

Supermassive black holes form some of the most enigmatic phenomena in astrophysics. Their enormous energy output is supposed to be generated by the...

Im Focus: A Quantum Low Pass for Photons

Physicists in Garching observe novel quantum effect that limits the number of emitted photons.

The probability to find a certain number of photons inside a laser pulse usually corresponds to a classical distribution of independent events, the so-called...

Im Focus: Microprocessors based on a layer of just three atoms

Microprocessors based on atomically thin materials hold the promise of the evolution of traditional processors as well as new applications in the field of flexible electronics. Now, a TU Wien research team led by Thomas Müller has made a breakthrough in this field as part of an ongoing research project.

Two-dimensional materials, or 2D materials for short, are extremely versatile, although – or often more precisely because – they are made up of just one or a...

All Focus news of the innovation-report >>>

Anzeige

Anzeige

Event News

Expert meeting “Health Business Connect” will connect international medical technology companies

20.04.2017 | Event News

Wenn der Computer das Gehirn austrickst

18.04.2017 | Event News

7th International Conference on Crystalline Silicon Photovoltaics in Freiburg on April 3-5, 2017

03.04.2017 | Event News

 
Latest News

Scientist invents way to trigger artificial photosynthesis to clean air

26.04.2017 | Materials Sciences

Ammonium nitrogen input increases the synthesis of anticarcinogenic compounds in broccoli

26.04.2017 | Agricultural and Forestry Science

SwRI-led team discovers lull in Mars' giant impact history

26.04.2017 | Physics and Astronomy

VideoLinks
B2B-VideoLinks
More VideoLinks >>>