It’s possible that a gigantic foe has begun to move against us from underneath our feet.
According to recent findings, the hot iron ball that makes up the inner core of Earth has ceased rotating in the same direction as the rest of the planet and may even be revolving in the other direction. Pluto’s size gives you an idea of how big Earth’s core really is.
This “planet inside the globe” is located around 5,000 kilometers below the surface on which we live, and it is able to rotate freely due to the fact that it floats in the liquid metal outer core.
It has been a point of contention among scientists as to precisely how the inner core spins, and the findings of the most recent study are also likely to be met with opposition.
What little we do know about the inner core comes from the process of monitoring the minute changes in seismic waves as they travel into the center of the Earth. These seismic waves are formed when earthquakes or, sometimes, nuclear explosions occur.
A new study that was just published in the journal Nature Geoscience analyzed seismic waves from reoccurring earthquakes over the course of the past six decades in an effort to trace the motions of the planet’s deep core.
The authors of the study, Song and Yang of China’s Peking University, said that they discovered that the rotation of the inner core “came to a near halt around 2009 and then turned in an opposite direction.” They came to this conclusion after finding that the rotation “turned in the opposite direction.”
According to what they said to AFP, “We think the inner core spins relative to the surface of the Earth in a back-and-forth motion like a swing.”
Based on their calculations, they claim that even a little imbalance between the electromagnetic and gravitational forces might cause the inner core’s rotation to stall or possibly reverse. According to them, this is a periodic occurrence that occurs every seven decades, with the last turning point being in the early 1970s and the current one occurring in 2009/2010 (CNN).