Latest #chihuahualovers Posts
- I will unabashedly continue to post spring wildflower pics since I don't live somewhere where I can post magical snow pics all through winter.
While I've been exploring mountains, scientists in Norway have been exploring the deep sea. For the first time ever, researchers have been able to peek deep into the mantle of the Earth under an ultraslow mid-ocean ridge, where they have been able to observe mantle melting and growth of the Earth's crust!
The researchers studied a specific type of mid-ocean ridge called an ultraslow-spreading ridge. This is where plates are moving apart extremely slowly, less than 20 millimetres per year. In contrast, velocities measured at different parts of the Pacific plate show movements of more than 150 mm per year.
More than 30 per cent of the mid-ocean ridges in the world are ultraslow-spreading ridges. But for all of that, geologists know very little about them. The ridge that the team studied is called Mohns Ridge.
Here, the oceanic crust is very thin and there's a prominent black smoker field in an area called Loki's Castle. Black smokers are vents on the seafloor that release a steady stream of extremely hot, mineral-rich seawater. Black smokers are also a prime location for deposition of deep-sea minerals.
Researchers were able to detect the plumbing system for deeply circulating seawater that forms mineral deposits at Loki's Castle and see what's happening where the two plates are spreading apart, which is what the scientists were most curious about.
The technology worked so well they were able to create images down to 120 km below the seafloor. Their findings could help explain the mapped structures beneath the ridge and also to understand fundamental processes that create ultraslow ridges. So much more to learn about our planet!
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- The a team lol Lilly Lola and Lou Lou