The Earth is full of mystery and fascinating facts that always leaves researcher and scientist intrigued. In a new mystery that is brewing below our feet, scientists have discovered that the Earth’s core is growing lopsided. However, the reason behind this unusual activity at Earth’s core has not been found yet. According to a report in The Independent, seismologists at the University of California in Berkeley found that the iron core right in the middle of the planet has been growing discretionally under Indonesia’s Banda Sea.
The growth on the one side of the molten metal is the products of iron crystals that are formed as the molten iron cools. However, for some unknown reason,the Earth’s outer core or mantle under Indonesia is causing the removal of heat at a faster rate than on the opposite side, under Brazil. This unusual cooling has accelerated the iron crystallization that has resulted in uneven growth of the Earth’s core.
Researchers believe that disparity in the growth of Earth’s core could have implications on Earth’s magnetic field that extends from Earth’s interior out into space and interacts with solar winds. The iron solid Earth core is surrounded by a fluid outer core and then a mantle of hard rock. The heat from the crystallizing iron and hotter rock in the mantle travels higher towards the surface in the mantle and outer core, pushing colder material below. This movement is what generates the magnetic field.
If the inner core is losing more heat in the east than the west, the outer core will also move towards the east causing a shift but whether this shift will cause a change in Earth’s magnetic field concertation or not is yet to be estimated by the researchers.
While the Earth may be more than 4 billion years old, the inner core is only half a billion to 1.5 billion years old. The inner core holds a widely known 30-year mystery that has been long tried to be solved by researchers’. Now, this latest study also throws some light as to why crystallised iron core seem aligned along the rotational axis of the Earth more in the west than in the east? Seismic waves observed to be travelling faster in a north-south direction than along the equator because of the asymmetry of the iron crystals, and this difference in growth is a possible explanation.