|Manu||Date: Wednesday, 25-August-2021, 4:46 AM | Message # 1|
|By Daisy Dobrijevic |
Illustration of Earth's internal structure. (Image credit: Tumeggy/Science Photo Library via Getty Images)
The discovery could help explain the discrepancy in Earth's core density.
The liquid outer core of Earth might be the largest reservoir of carbon on the planet.
The percentage sounds small, somewhere between 0.3% and 3%, but once you take into account the size of the outer core (1,355 miles (2,180 kilometers) thick) it equates to a colossal quantity of carbon — somewhere between 5.5 and 36.8 yottagrams. (That's the number followed by 24 zeros!)
This carbon estimate could help solve the mystery surrounding the density of Earth's core, scientists said.
"Understanding the composition of the Earth's core is one of the key problems in the solid-earth sciences," study co-author Mainak Mookherjee, an associate professor of geology in the Department of Earth, Ocean and Atmospheric Science at Florida State University, said in a statement. "We know the planet's core is largely iron, but the density of iron is greater than that of the core.
The scientists believe there must be lighter elements — such as carbon — in the core that reduce its density.
According to the researchers, this is not the first time scientists have attempted to quantify the amount of carbon in the outer core. But it is the first study to refine the carbon estimate range by taking into account other light elements — such as oxygen, sulfur, silicon, hydrogen and nitrogen — to estimate Earth's outer core composition.
Read more/full article/source - https://www.livescience.com/earth-outer-core-carbon-reservoir.html