The question is out there but it has never really been answered. Is the earth’s core really cooling? Is it in a steady state? Or is it rather “trending” downard.
What is trending? When I say trending I mean oscillating downward,just as a stock for example will oscillate downwards or upwards over time if it is attaining value. This question is frankly at the heart of many other questions, and could in my opinion be at the heart of the most important question of all right now. That is to say the question of climate change. For a long time I have suspected that the earth’s climate could concievably be regulated by forces within the earth itself. That is to say if the core is trending towards warming then the seas will warm also, and this will make the planet a balmy paradise, as it was sixty million years ago during the reign of the dinosaurs. If on the other hand the planet is trending towards a cool down, then there is reason to believe that the planet may be trending towards a cool climate as well. It will also factor the atmosphere as the evaporation of the atmosphere itself will likely be affected by volcanic events, and the internal heat of the earth. Though, I cannot say exactly how since little in the way of research has been done along those lines. However, there is enough reason to suspect that the internal cycles of the earth’s heating mechanism may well affect the surface climate as well, and yet little to nothing has been written on this matter.
The first question however, is king here. Is the earth cooling or warming, or is it steady state? I suggest two approaches to determining this question. The first would be to calculate the rate of continental expansion over the past sixty million years. If we could empirically determine either a slow down, or a speed up of continental expansion it could with other data help us understand the actual phenomenon. Another element in this determination would be to examine the volcanic history of the earth over that same period. IF the volcanic activity is slowing then there is good reason to believe the earth is cooling. IF not then we would be tempted to think the earth is either steady state, or is warming. The same goes with earthquakes. If seismic activity is increasing then there is good reason to believe that the earth is warming(at least temporarily, again possibly “trending” towards warming) but if volcanic activity is subsiding over a span of sixty million years, then there is a good enough reason to suspect the earth is cooling. However, only an examination of these co-factors can really give us a clue, as well as the correlation with periods of polar glaciation. So that is to say to understand the actual history of the earth’s core we must look at a number of factors, but all of them I think can be known at present, if anyone would bother looking.
My feeling is that a substantial atmosphere or insulating barrier would contribute to keeping the warmth of a celestial body within and therefore allowing for volcanic activity(even volcanic activity caused by water such as on enceladus.)
What is your opininion? Do you have a theory? Do you have any data? Let us know. If an atmosphere can help to preserve a volcanic state within celestial bodies, then there is good reason to believe that global warming on earth could in fact warm up the core. Certainly it would be a worrisome indication.
For an object that drives people crazy with anything from love to rage(lover to a werewolf), an object of universal inspiration or lunacy(no pun intended) the moon is really a pretty cold object. It’s volcanically dead!
Yep, No volcanic activity for billions of years!!! Why? It just does’nt make sense to me. Why it’s so close to earth so pocked with craters, and so large that it should have not cooled down by now(assuming the legitimacy of the theory of original heat at formation), assuming the legitimacy of the theory of aggregation and meteor impacts with high percentages of radioactive elements, assuming the legitimacy of the theory of tidal friction caused by it’s rotation/orbit around the earth, and sun. This heavenly body SHOULD NOT BE COLD!! Ah but it is. Why why why?
How about a little hint!!! IT HAS NO ATMOSPHERE. Has anyone noticed how a little moon like enceladus is gushingly warm enough to spit out a huge guyser of fluid? Why enceladus, a small little moon and not our own great moon?
Could it be, at least in part because while our moon has not had an atmosphere for billions of years, Enceladus still has an insulating sheild from the cold of space. In fact that shield could well be one of the best of all insulating shields:water!!Could it be that volcanic activity is to some degree predicated on the existence of an a non-tenuous atmosphere, and or insulating liquid surface(like that on europa?)
Hey WHY NOT GANYMEDE, JUPITER’S GIANT OF A MOON? CAN ANYONE ANSWER THAT ONE? WHY IS A GIANT OF A MOON ORBITING AROUND A GIANT OF PLANET(KNOWN TO RIP LITTLE ONE’S COMMING TOO CLOSE TO SHREDS DUE TO IT’S MAGNIFICENT GRAVITATIONAL PULL) WHY IS THIS MOON SO COLD?? WHY GANYMEDE OF ALL MOONS, SO COLD,AND BARREN!! WHY WOULD EUROPA HAVE AN ACTIVE VOLCANIC LIFE, AND NOT GANYMEDE? WHY IO, ANOTHER OF JUPITER’S MOONS, YET SMALLER? NOPE IT JUST DOES’NT MAKE SENSE , AH EXCEPT THAT GANYMEDE HAS NO ATMOSTPHERE WHERE THE OTHERS DO.
In fact I know of no body in the solar system that is volcanically active, and does not have an atmosphere of barrier or somekind protecting it’s inner heat from the cold of space. On the contrary I know of know planet with an atmosphere(even a tenuous atmosphere like that of Mars) that does not have evidence of somekind of subsurface activity. Except for small planets. Jupiter on the other hand and the other gasseous giants all seem to be emanating heat. As if the methane, hydogen atmospheres are able to insulate the great planets enough to allow the build up of heat from within. The presence of an insulating atmosphere may allow the planets to build up their core heat!