Seismologists determined exact dimensions of central part of Earth’s inner core
Australian seismologists have analysed seismic vibrations passing through the entire thickness of the Earth several times, and found that the inner layer of the solid part of the planet’s core has a radius of 650km, according to the research published in the Nature Communications journal, TASS reports
“Earth’s inner core is still the most unexplored part of our planet. We know even less about its isolated central part, whose radius, according to the first estimates of its discoverers, was supposedly about 300km. We used a rare type of seismic vibrations that pass through the entire planet several times, to refine the dimensions and study the properties of this layer, whose diameter turned out to be much larger than the initial estimates, about 650km,” the researchers write.
The bowels of the Earth consist of several layers: a solid earth’s crust, a semi-liquid mantle, and a molten outer and solid inner metal core. In the last two decades, the core’s solid part has been of particular interest to geologists. It is connected with the fact that in the early 1990s, theoretical scientists discovered that the inner core rotates around its axis faster than all the other layers of the Earth. Moreover, back in 2015, American and Chinese seismologists learned that the solid inner core consists of at least two layers that differ in structure and physical properties. This discovery caused controversy about the size of this layer of the core and the differences in its properties from the outer part of the inner core.