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Monday, April 27, 2015

Revealed, Earth ate a Mercury-like body early in its history

In its history, the Earth was once a cannibal, devouring fellow planets. It was revealed in a study of Bernard Wood, a geochemical expert of University of Oxford, that published in the Nature journal this week.

Devouring planet by Earth is now having a positive impact. Earth has a magnetic field into which protects from radiation of the universe. When there is no magnetic field, then the Earth could not possibly support life.
Mercury-like planet might have crashed into Earth to give it its magnetic field. (Picture from: http://bit.ly/1EBiduW)
Wood research is motivated by the question of the origin of Earth's magnetic field. The theory that the Earth formed from objects such as asteroids is not quite satisfactory because it can not explain the origins of the Earth's magnetic field.

To have a magnetic field, a planet must contain radioactive elements such as thorium and uranium. The elements that release heat radiation due to the breakdown.

The problem is, to be able to generate a magnetic field, then the element that must remain in the Earth's core. While, uranium and thorium like combine with oxygen so tend to be mild and would be lifted to the surface of the Earth.

"The elements that are very like oxygen and hate metal, so there was no way they could survive in the Earth's core," Wood said as quoted by the Los Angeles Times on Wednesday, April 15, 2015.

Wood and his colleagues, Anke Wohlers, then realized that there was a way for the radioactive elements to still be able to survive in the Earth's core. The key, the reduced presence of sulfide compounds, sulfur oxygen loss. And indeed, the compounds exist in the Earth's core.

Wood and Wohlers then conduct experiments with high-pressure laboratory equipment. They see the behavior of thorium, uranium, and other elements called rare elements on reduced sulphide-rich environments.

"And we found something to be proud and strong surprise that the uranium is split in sulfide-rich environment and very poor oxygen content," said Wood.

Experiments also answered questions about why the rare samarium elements located closer to the surface than neodymium. Because, neodymium more quicker to hook the iron than samarium, they can be "drowned".

But where the rich oxides Erth at first getting sulfide compound? Scientists think, it was obtained from a collision between the Earth with planets such as Mercury. It resembles the Mercury in the sense of composition. Own mass allegedly approaching Mars.

The collision made the Earth devoured most of the material from the impactor planet. The mass of impactor planet was equivalent to Mars itself is interesting because scientists have long suspected that the Earth collided with a planet ever sort it.

The collision was also interesting because scientists are of the view that the Moon was created from the collision with a Mars-mass planets similar. If a collision does exist, then the impact is two, the first is giving the Earth's magnetic field and the second is to create the Moon.

Richard Carlson of the Carnegie Institution for Science in Washington revealed, further research is needed to truly confirm it. But he said, Wood makes an interesting proof that thorium can indeed join the sulfide in the Earth's core. *** [EKA | FROM VARIOUS SOURCES | IB TIMES]
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