Journey To The Center Of The Earth, Now More Plausible Than Ever

Posted: Mar 24 2011, 12:34pm CDT | by , in News | Technology News


Journey To The Center of the Earth, Now More Plausible Than Ever

Jules Verne was just a few decades off.

Mankind will soon have access to the vast giant mushroom reserves held in the center of the earth. Geologists have designed a high-tech sea drill capable of boring through six kilometers of oceanic crust and reaching the earth's sweet, gooey mantle. While the continental crust is only 30-60 km thick at most points, the mantle is over 3,000 km thick.

Despite the fact that it composes 68% of our planet's landmass, we know very little about the mantle's exact composition. Volcanic events have given us clues to what lies beneath the crust, but this drill will allow scientists to extract the first real samples. Most of the funding for this project comes from the Japanese government. Japan has also made a deep-sea drilling ship, the Chikyu available to researchers.

Drilling a 6.5 kilometer hole is hard enough, but the scientists will also have the difficult task of keeping the Chikyu's drill steady through 4,000 meters of water. In order to complete the hole, the Chikyu will have to remain in one steady position for months on end. And, before any of that can happen, scientists will need to develop new tools capable of surviving 300 Celsius temperatures.

Still- the project is on track for 2020 completion. That gives you just enough time to build a respectable stockpile of arms and ammunition before the mole people come boiling out of the bridge our hubris built between their world and the surface.

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<a href="/latest_stories/all/all/5" rel="author">Robert Evans</a>
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