No, we can’t reach the center of the earth. We only observe it through seismic waves. The very center of the earth contains a solid metallic inner core. And its diameter is about 1220 km.
Why is it that after reaching space and the skies, even after landing on the moon, we couldn’t get to the middle of the Earth itself? What are the secrets of our planet Earth that is hidden deep inside it? There is a lot of curiosity around the center of our planet and why we could only reach till only a few miles below it.
The Center of the Earth is almost 4000 miles (6437.367 KM) below us, We cant dig deep into the Earth for exploration. Whether it is possible? We will find out.
What are the names of different layers of earth and what are they made of?
There are majorly four layers of the Earth.
What do we see when we look around the earth. We see soil and rock on the outermost layer of the earth and that outermost layer is termed as a crust. The crust is just like the skin of an apple. It is made up of granite and basalt rock.
There is Continental crust and Oceanic Crust and it depends on the physical features of the land in an area (topography) of the area. Beneath the oceans the crust is relatively thin ranging from just 3 to 4 miles (4. 82 km). Whereas, below the continents, it goes up to approximately 20 miles. It is brittle and cold, thus solid, being the outermost layer.
What will happen, if we dig so deep to cross the crust?
We will find the second layer of the earth that is a mantle and it is located under the sima. This is the thickest layer out of all four layers that Earth is made up of. It is made up of rocky solids and forms 85% of Earth’s mass and a total of almost 1800 miles(2896.81 km). There are two layers within the Mantle which are the Upper Mantle and the Lower Mantle.
The upper mantle is in direct contact with the crust and has a much lesser temperature as well pressure as compared to the Inner Mantle. Since the Inner Mantle is adjoined with the outer core it is hotter and endures much more pressure.
The Outer Core:
What will happen, if we dig the Mantle?
If we dig the Mantle deep we will find the third layer of earth that is the outer core. The outer core of the earth looks like a ball. It is made up of a super-hot liquid molten substance called Lava made of Iron and nickel. The churning of the liquid metals due to the earth’s rotation on its axis is the reason behind electric currents leading to the magnetic field around the Earth.
The Inner Core
Do you want to know what we will find if we dig the outer core?
If we will dig the outer core of the earth we will find the inner Core. This is also made of iron and nickel. The only difference is that it is in solid form. About 800 miles(1287.48km) in radius with a temperature rising to 6000 degrees, the inner core spins much more than any other part of the Earth.
The temperature in this part is similar to the temperature of the Sun. Along with Iron and Nickel as the primary elements consisting in the Earth’s core, there is a possibility of availability of oxygen and silicon as well. The pressure at the extreme center is much more as compared to the outer layers of the planet and can amount to 360 gigapascals.
Do you ever want to know, Why is the Earth’s core the way it is?
The earth’s core is the way it is because around 4.5 billion years ago, it was formed by the massive collisions in the Solar System leading to dust and rocks pulled by gravity together. The heavy elements like iron got pushed into the center. Initially made of liquid rock, it was hot and toxic with no air. Over the years the planet’s outer crust started to cool down but the inside of it is still extremely hot with temperatures soaring up to 6000 degrees.
Do you know What will happen if the Earth’s core also freezes like the outer crust?
As per Scientist, the earth is no longer hot because the earth started cooling down. And after some times the layers of the Earth has changed from the way it was in the very beginning of the creation of Earth. In the beginning it was too hot but now the crust has solidified and cooled down which has made the life on Earth habitable.
However, it is said that million years from now , the entire Earth will cool down along with its core. There will be various consequences of this development.
- Currently our compasses face North. When the Earth will solidify from the core, the magnetic field will disappear. A compass will no longer face the north as a result.
- The major reason for the atmosphere is the magnetic field and once the magnetic field is not there, it will eventually lead to no atmosphere to blanket the earth. This will anyway make life on Earth extremely a remote scenario.
- As there will be no molten lava beneath the planet , there will rarely be any movement in the mantle. There will be no platonic movements, hence, no earthquakes and volcanic eruptions.
It may sound beneficial as there will not be any destruction across the world from the Earthquakes, especially it’s a boon for people belonging to earthquake prone areas.
But the fact of the matter is that each volcanic eruption that takes place proves to be a soil enriching source due to the availability of immense amount of minerals present in the lava that comes out with it.
Also, it gives out various gases to the air around us and makes it breathable as the air is a mixture of a lot of components.
Do you agree with me that behind Earth’s magnetic field, core is the reason?
Yes definitely, the Earth’s magnetic field is also called the Geomagnetic field. It is caused due to the electric current in the core of the Earth. These electric currents are because of the heat which is within the core.
The molten iron and nickel churns as a result of Earth’s rotation on its own axis and it moves around producing electric currents. The heat which come out from the core mixes up with the solar winds, and creates the magnetic field around the Earth.
Scientists are still trying to find a way to reach to the centre of the Earth. And the deepest man has been able to reach is Kola Superdeep Borehole which is 12.2 kms in Russia. This distance is just 0.2 percent of the Earth’s way to the centre. It took 20 years for that man to reach this deep. Experts are still finding automated technologies to help in research of the earth.