The Earth is approximately 4,000 miles (6,400 kilometers) from surface to center.
Earth has layers that have specific conditions and composition.
- Scientists have been able to identify the composition of inner and outer core based on the movement of seismic waves through the Earth's layers. How can scientists do this?
- Scientists have been able to identify the composition of the mantle based on the movement of seismic waves through the Earth's layers as well as materials ejected from volcanic activity. Most lava that erupts during volcanic activity is actually just melted crust and is not material from the mantle and/or the core. How do scientists do this?
- The reason that the inner core is solid, despite being at very high temperatures, is because of the weight of all the other materials above it (crust, mantle, and outer core). The pressure of these layers keeps the inner core solid. How much pressure does it take to make liquid iron and nickel metal into a solid?
- The movement of the inner and outer core results in Earth's magnetic field. What would happen if the inner and outer core stopped moving? How would this impact Earth?