University of California, Berkeley, seismologists have produced for the first time a sharp, three-dimensional scan of Earth’s interior that conclusively connects plumes of hot rock rising through the mantle with surface hotspots around the world. A computed to mography, or CT scan, of Earth’s interior, the picture emerged from a supercomputer simulation at the Department of Energy’s National Energy Research Scientific Computing Center (NERSC) at the Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory.
Until now, evidence for the plume and hotspot theory had been circumstantial, and some seismologists argued instead that hotspots are very shallow pools of hot rock feeding magma chambers under volcanoes.
My research beginning back in 2005, had taken note of mantle plumes as related to the Sun-Earth connection. In 2012, I published my new ‘equation’ (first one 1998) which shows not only the increase of solar particles heating the Earth’s core, but the accelerated source of galactic cosmic rays coming from our galaxy Milky Way, is “over-heating” Earth’s core. The core’s natural cyclic reaction is to reduce these thermal spikes in a similar way humans diffuse overheating by sweating through our pores.
Increase Charged Particles → Decreased Magnetic Field → Increase Outer Core Convection → Increase of Mantle Plumes → Increase in Earthquake and Volcanoes → Cools Mantle and Outer Core → Return of Outer Core Convection (Mitch Battros – July 2012)
Mantle plumes have the same function as our perspiring. When Earth overheats, it sweats through its pores until it reaches an ambient temperature. Unfortunately, when Earth goes through its process, it is evidenced by warming oceans that is often the cause of extreme weather – it also creates such things as earthquakes and volcanoes.
I will go further to say the later chapters of this cycle the Earth has seen many times before – will be the formation of a bulge usually somewhere around the equator. As the bulge develops, magnetic north will osculate in significant ways – such as dropping down to 30° latitude as in Texas.
The last chapter of this process is indeed a full magnetic flip. The only thought in question is how far into the process of an estimated 40,000 year cycle are we? Some scientists believe we could witness such an event “in our lifetime” – this is if you are age 20 or younger. My research agrees with this hypothesis and we should all be able to witness the phases over the next 50-60 years.
New Technology Has Better Eyes
The new, high-resolution map of the mantle not only shows these connections for many hotspots on the planet, but reveals that below about 620 miles (1,000 kilometers) the plumes are between 373-620 miles (600-1,000 kilometers) across, up to five times wider than geophysicists thought. The plumes are likely at least 400 degrees Celsius hotter than surrounding rock.
While medical CTs employ X-rays to probe the body, the scientists mapped mantle plumes by analyzing the paths of seismic waves bouncing around Earth’s interior after 273 strong earthquakes that shook the globe over the past 20 years. Previous attempts to image mantle plumes have detected pockets of hot rock rising in areas where plumes have been proposed, but it was unclear whether they were connected to volcanic hotspots at the surface or the roots of the plumes at the core mantle boundary 1,800 miles (2,900 kilometers) below the surface.
“No one has seen before these stark columnar objects that are contiguous all the way from the bottom of the mantle to the upper part of the mantle,” said first author Scott French, a computational scientist at NERSC who recently received his Ph.D. from UC Berkeley.
Senior author Barbara Romanowicz, a UC Berkeley professor of earth and planetary science, noted that the connections between the lower-mantle plumes and the volcanic hotspots are not direct because the tops of the plumes spread out like the delta of a river as they merge with the less viscous upper mantle rock.
The new picture also shows that the bases of these plumes are anchored at the core-mantle boundary in two huge blobs of hot rock, each about 3,100 miles (5,000 kilometers) in diameter, that are likely denser than surrounding rock. Romanowicz estimates that those two anchors – directly opposite one another under Africa and the Pacific Ocean – have been in the same spots for 250 million years.
“These columns are clearly separated in the lower mantle and they go all the way up to about 620 miles (1,000 kilometers) below the surface, but then they start to thin out in the upper part of the mantle, and they meander and deflect,” she said. “So while the tops of the plumes are associated with hotspot volcanoes, they are not always vertically under them.”
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