Earth? Scientists Know What Is Inside Book Review

Pages: 4 (1018 words)  ·  Bibliography Sources: 1  ·  File: .docx  ·  Topic: Geography

¶ … Earth?

Scientists know what is inside the Earth primarily through firing waves of energy through the planet and measuring how they are affected through ground sensors. Both P. And S. waves move through the Earth at a certain speed and are either reflected or refracted depending on the material they move through. These actions can be tracked by sensors. Most of the information scientists have about the Earth's structure has been learned from observing these travel times, refractions, reflections, and phase transitions of seismic body waves. Earthquakes help in this way. The body waves move through the liquid layers of the Earth, but P-waves are refracted when they move through the transition between the semisolid mantle and the liquid outer core. This results in a P-wave shadow zone which occurs between 104° and 140°. This zone is where the initial P-waves are not able to be registered on sensory equipment like seismometers. However, S-waves do not travel through liquids, instead, they are absorbed.

2. What can one learn about the interior of Earth by measuring the acceleration due to gravity?

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The acceleration due to gravity tells scientists that the Earth's structure is made up of different densities. At the surface, this number is usually denoted as "g," or 9.8 meters per second squared. This number depends on the density of the object with gravitational pull. Since the Earth's size and weight are known based upon other astronomical calculations, its density can be figured into the equation. When this was accomplished, scientists realized that the Earth must have a very massive iron core in order to explain the "g" force that is exacted upon the planet's inhabitants. Coupled with seismic measurements, scientists can deduce what exact likely elements and temperatures are present within the Earth's structure.

3. Why do rocks deep in the mantle remain solid, while those in the asthenosphere are close to melting?

Book Review on Earth? Scientists Know What Is Inside the Assignment

Rocks deep in the mantle remain solid because of the huge lithostatic pressures associated with this layer. The rocks are under so much pressure and heat that they cannot become less dense and form a liquid. Those rocks in the asthenosphere are close to melting because they are under less pressure and therefore are very close to becoming a less dense fluid.

4. Describe how the angle at which a seismic wave approaches a discontinuity determines whether or not it is reflected or refracted.

As described in the answer to the first question, the P. wave is not refracted when the refractory angle reaches between 104 degrees and 140 degrees. The wave is dissipated in these zones causing a "shadow zone" familiar to most scientists. So depending on the angle of the wave interception, there may or may not be a refraction or reflection of the wave. So if the wave approaches a discontinuity from this angle range, it will not be reflected.

5. What changes does olivine undergo with depth in the mantle?

Olivine, more commonly referred to in gem quality as peridot, is a very common element in the Earth's mantle.… [END OF PREVIEW] . . . READ MORE

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