Skip to content

Beautiful bright blue rocks - may reside deep inside the Earth

By Catholic Online (NEWS CONSORTIUM)
3/13/2014 (3 years ago)
Catholic Online (www.catholic.org)

Ringwoodite minerals may give clue to what lies deep within our planet

Few colors in the spectrum are more wondrous then deep, cobalt blue - immediately soothing and contemplative, they evoke the blue of both the sky and the sea. Now, bright blue rocks that exist deep within the Earth may provide the first direct evidence that there may be as much water trapped in those rocks as in all of the oceans.

A diamond from a 100-million-year-old kimberlite found in Juina, Brazil, have been studied by Professor Graham Pearson of the University of Alberta, Canada, as part of a wider project.

A diamond from a 100-million-year-old kimberlite found in Juina, Brazil, have been studied by Professor Graham Pearson of the University of Alberta, Canada, as part of a wider project.

Highlights

By Catholic Online (NEWS CONSORTIUM)
Catholic Online (www.catholic.org)
3/13/2014 (3 years ago)

Published in Green

Keywords: Ringwoodite, water, Earth, cobalt blue


LOS ANGELES, CA (Catholic Online) - One such diamond, from central-west Brazil, contains minerals that formed as deep as 372 miles down and have significant amounts of water trapped within them. A new study suggests water may be stored deep in the interiors of many rocky planets.

Brought forth from eruptions of deep volcanic rocks called kimberlites, these diamonds provide an intriguing window into the deep Earth.

WISH POPE FRANCIS A HAPPY ANNIVERSARY!

A diamond from a 100-million-year-old kimberlite found in Juina, Brazil, have been studied by Professor Graham Pearson of the University of Alberta, Canada, as part of a wider project.

They noticed that it contained a mineral, ringwoodite, which is only thought to form between 254 and 410 miles beneath the Earth's surface, showing just how deep some diamonds originate.

While ringwoodite has previously been found in meteorites, this is the first time a terrestrial ringwoodite has been seen. But more extraordinarily, the researchers found that the mineral contains about one percent water.

While this amount seems small, as ringwoodite makes up almost all of this immense portion of the inner Earth, this leads to a huge amount of deep water.

"Finding water in such large concentrations is a hugely significant development in our understanding of the ultimate origin of water now present at Earth's surface," Dr. Sally Gibson from the University of Cambridge, not involved in the study, said.

The observation is the first physical evidence that water can be stored in the deep interiors of planets and solves a 25-year-old controversy about whether the deep Earth is dry, wet, or wet in patches.

"The discovery highlights the unique value of natural diamonds in trapping and preserving fragments of the deep Earth," Professor Pearson told reporters.

"It's incredible to think that, as you hold this sample in your hand, the residual pressure at the interface between the diamond and the inclusion is 20,000 atmospheres."

In describing his diamond sample, he said: "It looks like it's been to hell and back, which it has."

Professor Joseph Smyth of the University of Colorado has weighed in and expressed his astonishment over the new find.

"I think it's stunning! It implies that the interior may store several times the amount of water in the oceans. It tells us that hydrogen is an essential ingredient in the Earth and not added late from comets.

"This discovery implies that hydrogen may control the interior processes of the Earth just as it controls the surface processes, and that water planets, like Earth, may be common in our galaxy."

With the ringwoodite's water-bearing capabilities, its abundance at depth, and its beautiful hue, the term "blue planet" seems even more appropriate for Earth.

---


'Help give every student and teacher Free resources for a world-class moral Catholic education'


Copyright 2017 - Distributed by THE CALIFORNIA NETWORK

Pope Francis Prayer Intentions for APRIL 2017
Young People.
That young people may respond generously to their vocations and seriously consider offering themselves to God in the priesthood or consecrated life.


Comments


More Green

Report claims extreme weather on DECLINE - but is someone lying? Watch

Image of The dispute over methodology could be killing us all.

There are claims that extreme weather is on the decline, in spite of claims that global warming is on the rise. The suggestion is global ... continue reading


Decades-old conundrum solved by chance - Can one of nature's squiggly insects change the fate of the world? Watch

Image of Are wax worms the answer to our plastic waste problem?

What if one of the world's more significant issues can be corrected with help from one of the smallest, seemingly insignificant of ... continue reading


Oroville Dam Breach? DWR Investigating Leaking - Hasn't Revealed this to the Public Watch

Image of The green area on the face of the dam suggests water is seeping though the dam.

A Leak in the core of an Earthen Dam is known to trigger catastrophic failure within hours.  Oroville's Earthen Dam has a persistent ... continue reading


Scientists discover a scary Antarctic mystery - how worried should we be? Watch

Image of Antarctica is melting, but without more data, it's too soon to worry.

Antarctica may be melting faster than thought, according to a new study. Antarctica is a region of concern because its ice, if melted, ... continue reading


The Arctic is drowning in plastic, and it could kill us all Watch

Image of A sea lion is tangled in a net, the result of decades of human disregard for the environment.

Our planet is drowning in plastic, and this is becoming obvious, even in the pristine Arctic. Researcher now estimate that up to 1,200 tons ... continue reading


Never Miss any Updates!

Stay up to date with the latest news, information, and special offers.

Catholic Online Logo

Copyright 2017 Catholic Online. All materials contained on this site, whether written, audible or visual are the exclusive property of Catholic Online and are protected under U.S. and International copyright laws, © Copyright 2017 Catholic Online. Any unauthorized use, without prior written consent of Catholic Online is strictly forbidden and prohibited.