Advanced computer simulations reveal interesting insights into magma deep in the earth’s surface.

Molecular dynamics snapshot showing the atomic scale structure of hydrous magma under high pressure and high temperature conditions at a depth of 500 km in the transition layer region of the mantle. Colored spheres represent hydrogen (white), oxygen (red), magnesium (blue), or silicon (yellow) atoms, and OH, Mg-O, and Si-O bonds are represented by white bars.Credit: University of Bristol

Unlike the classic Jules Verne science fiction novel “Journey to the Center of the Earth” and the movie “The Core,” humans cannot step inside the Earth more than a few kilometers from the surface of the Earth. But thanks to the latest advances in computer modeling, a team of international researchers led by the University of Bristol shed new light on the properties and behavior of magma found hundreds of kilometers deep on Earth.

The study found that the water-rich (hydrous) magma (very hot liquid rocks) formed in the Earth’s mantle (the layer beneath the crust) is more buoyant and fluid than previously believed. Was shown. This discovery can predict where and how hydrous magma will move inside the Earth. In other words, the amount of water in these areas can be predicted more reliably, and the understanding of the water cycle in the deep part of the earth is deepened.

Dr. James Drewitt, Principal Investigator and Principal Writer at the University of Bristol, said: magma Hundreds of kilometers from our feet. Although previous knowledge is limited, these water-rich molten rocks, called hydrous magmas, are Hard rock Being above them, it forms a huge pool of magma at a depth close to 400 km.

“But, as we know from high-pressure laboratory experiments, we were not convinced by this theory because it relies on a chemical composition that does not represent natural magma. We investigated the properties of hydrous magma and its behavior. And wanted to model the flow, and provide more accurate insights into the deep Earth’s water cycle, which is closely related to Earth’s habitability, where they go after being formed in the deep mantle. for.”

Using ARCHER, the UK’s national supercomputing service, researchers are using temperatures up to 1600 ° C and 250,000 times atmospheric pressure in extreme conditions at the boundaries of the Earth’s upper and lower mantles. I simulated the physical properties of magma. This area is 410-660 km deep Transition zone It contains hard rocks that can store several seas of water.

High water content means that rocks directly above and below the transition zone melt at lower temperatures than elsewhere in the Earth’s mantle, forming moist or “moisture” magma. To do. Physical properties such as density and viscosity, that is, how freely they flow, are mysterious, so little is known about how they work and where they end up. ..

Drewitt said: Upper mantle Towards the surface, like wax rising on a lava lamp.

“By incorporating these findings into the global mantle circulation model, on a geological timescale, water in hydrous magma can be transported from the bottom and center of the mantle to the top mantle to a similar mass. understand. water Found in all oceans of the earth, Mantle Of the present earth. ”

Geophysical observations reveal the distribution and impact of water in the Earth’s mantle

For more information:
James WE Drewitt et al, H2O cycle of deep mantle with melted hydrous silicate, Letter of Earth and Planetary Science (2022). DOI: 10.1016 / j.epsl.2022.117408

Quote: Deep surface (2022 2) taken from on February 14, 2022 by advanced computer simulation. An interesting insight into magma (March 14) was revealed.

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Advanced computer simulations reveal interesting insights into magma deep in the earth’s surface.

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