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Sir William Thomson On The Center Of The Earth

Sir William Thomson On The Center Of The Earth image
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A remarkable address has been delivered by Sir William Thomson, in the Pbysical Section of the British Association, on the subject of the flnid or solid nature of the earth's kernel. While uot denyiDg that certain portions of the earth's interior are in a molten or fluid state, Sir William Thomson maintained.on various mor or lossrecondite grounds, that no Isrge proportion of the earth's interior can, by any possibility, be in the conditiou of molten fluid. " I may say, with almoat perfect certainty, tbat whatever iaay be the relative densitic-a of rock, solid and melted, at or about the temperature of liquefaction, it is, I think, quite certitin that cold solid rock is denser than hot melted rock ; and no possible degree of rigidity in the crust could prevent il f rom break - ing in piecos and siaking wholly below the liquid lava. Somethiuglike this a ay have gone on, and probably did go on,for thousands of years after solidiflcation commenccd - surface portions of the melted material losing heat, freezing and winkiug immediately, or growing to the thickness of a few meters where ths surface would be cool, and the whole solid dense enough to siuk. This procesa must go on until the sunk portions of the crust build up from the bottom a sufficiently close-ribbed skeleton or framo to allow fresh incrustations to rcmain, bridging across the now small areas of lava pools or lakes." That is a striking picture of the grovth of tho "rouud earth," which was once supposed to have been made from the tirst " so f ast that it cannot be moved." j We are rather sorry to be robbed of the ; belief in the central lavi ocean after all. ■


Old News
Michigan Argus