The flow of an underground stream of molten iron, located at great depths and passing under the Russian Federation and Canada, is accelerating. The temperature of this river is comparable to that on the surface of the Sun.
A river of iron was discovered by specialists who collected information about underground magnetic fields at a depth of 3 km underground. The indicators were measured from space. The stream has a huge size – its width exceeds 4 meters. It has been established that since the beginning of the current century, the speed of its flow has increased by 3 times. Now it circulates underground in Siberia, but every year it shifts towards European countries by 40-45 kilometers. This is 3 times higher than the speed at which liquid matter moves in the outer core of the earth. The reason for the acceleration of the flow is not currently established. According to experts involved in its study, it is of natural origin, and its age is billions of years. In their opinion, this phenomenon will provide information about the process of formation of the magnetic fields of our planet.
The discovery of the river is important for science, experts say Phil Livermore, who leads the team at the University of Leeds, says the discovery is significant. His team knew that the liquid core revolves around the solid, but so far they did not have sufficient data to detect this river. According to another expert, there is less information about the Earth’s core than about the Sun. The discovery of this flow is an important achievement in the study of processes occurring in the bowels of the planet. The flow was detected using the capabilities of 3 Swarm satellites, which were launched in 2013. They are able to measure the planet’s magnetic field at a depth not exceeding three kilometers from the surface, where the boundary between the molten outer core and the solid mantle passes. According to Livermore, the use of the power of 3 satellites made it possible to separate the magnetic fields of the earth’s crust and the ionosphere; scientists were given the opportunity to obtain detailed information about the oscillations occurring at the junction of the mantle and the outer core. By creating models based on new data, experts determined the nature of changes in fluctuations over time.
underground stream The appearance of the magnetic field of our planet is due to the movement of liquid iron in the outer core. For this reason, the study of the magnetic field makes it possible to obtain detailed information about the processes occurring in the nucleus interconnected with it. Studying the “iron river”, the experts examined two bands of magnetic flux, which have an unusual power. They come from the junction of the outer core and mantle, located underground in Siberia and North America. The movement of these bands was recorded, which is interconnected with the movement of the river. They move solely under the influence of its current, so they act as markers that allow you to follow it. According to Livermore, this tracking can be likened to watching at night the usual river, along which burning candles float. When moving, the “iron” flow carries the magnetic field along with it. The flow itself is hidden from the eyes of the researchers, but they can observe the magnetic stripes.
River formation process The prerequisite for the formation of the “iron” river was the circulation of the flow of iron around the solid core, according to a team of scientists led by Livermore. In the immediate vicinity of the solid core are cylinders of molten iron that rotate and move from north to south. Imprinted in a solid core, they put pressure on it; as a result, liquid iron is squeezed out to the sides, which forms a river. Thus, the origin and the beginning of the movement of two magnetic fields, resembling petals, occurs; the use of satellites made it possible to detect them and establish observation over them. The question of what causes the magnetic flux to increase speed is of great interest. There is an assumption that this phenomenon may be related to the rotation of the inner core. According to the results obtained by experts in 2005, the speed of the latter is slightly higher than that of the earth’s crust. According to Livermore, as the “iron” river moves away from magnetic fields, the rate of its acceleration decreases. Its flow contributes to the appearance of magnetic fields, but subsequently the magnetic field also affects the flow. The study of the river will allow scientists to gain a more detailed understanding of the processes in the Earth’s core and establish what affects the intensity of the planet’s magnetic field.
Polarity reversal Livermore says if scientists can figure out what causes a magnetic field, they can also understand how it changes over time and whether it can be expected to weaken or strengthen. This opinion is supported by other experts. According to them, the more complete the experts’ understanding of the processes taking place in the core, the more likely they are to obtain information about the origin of the magnetic field, its renewal and behavior in the future.