This year, scientists uncovered some of Earth’s best kept secrets. They found hidden rivers, fragments of lost continents and remnants of ancient rainforests, and depicted the planet’s ancient history using cutting-edge techniques. Who knows what they’ll find out next! While we wait to find out, here are 10 of the 10 geological discoveries that have rocked our world in 2020.
Historical Superception in Yellowstone
The Yellowstone Hotspot lies beneath the geysers and hot springs of the National Park, and the volcano erupted about 9 million years ago. Two historical blasts, Scientists found. After analyzing ancient volcanic rock tracks and volcanic deposits in the area, the team uncovered evidence of two previously unknown eruptions, which they named the McMellen Creek Superreception and the Gray’s Landing Superreception. Gray’s landing explosion broke the Yellowstone hotspot’s record as the largest ever; About 8.72 million years ago, the eruption was about 8,900 square miles (23,000 square kilometers) now covered with volcanic debris in southern Idaho and northern Nevada.
The demonic drops near the Earth’s core are larger than we thought
Continuous-sized drops of rock sit on the boundary of the Earth’s solid mantle and liquid outer core, and now, scientists must be Bigger than we ever thought. According to previous estimates, the two largest blobs are 100 times taller than Mount Everest if drawn on the planet’s surface. But after decades of seismic data of earthquakes, scientists now speculate that a large drop below the Pacific Ocean may actually be far more monstrous. For example, a new structure along the edge of the blob, measured over 620 miles (1,000 kilometers).
Lost islands in the North Sea cause widespread tsunamis
About 8,000 years ago, a tsunami hit a ground between Great Britain and the Netherlands, submerging much of the region. But research suggests that some islands may contain Abandoned tsunamiProviding homes to Stone Age humans for thousands of years. Although they remained above the water for some time after the tsunami, rising sea levels submerged the islands nearly 1,000 years later. Scientists learned that the lost islands survived the tsunami only after collecting sediment from the seashore near the eastern English mouth of the Tsunami River.
related: Transforming the Earth: 7 Ideas to Geoengineer Our Planet
Earth’s core is one billion years old
Earth’s solid inner core – 1,500 miles wide (2,442 kilometers) of iron ball – is likely to form 1 billion to 1.3 billion years ago, Scientists estimate. By re-creating the conditions found in a tiny, small-scale core, the team was able to calculate how long it would take for a single drop of molten iron to build up to the current size of the core. The time window of about 1 billion years is well above ground with historical fluctuations in the planet’s magnetic field, which were significantly strengthened between 1 billion and 1.5 billion years ago. The crystallization of the inner core may have promoted magnetism, as this process would have released heat to the liquid outer core; The heat drives a churning motion in the liquid which then powers the magnetic field.
related: Earth’s core is one billion years old
Piece of a lost continent under Canada
Some 150 million years ago, a now-lost continent broke into huge pieces – and a large part was recently discovered Lurk under canada. Scientists studied a type of diamond-holding volcanic rock known as kimberlite, which was collected from about 250 miles (400 km) below Baffin Island in northern Canada. Kimberlite’s mineral chemistry matched the long-lost continent, making the sample location the deepest point where evidence of the continent was ever found.
related: Piece of Lost Continent under Canada
Underwater rivers are found near Australia
This year, scientists Discovered rivers on a large scale Cold, salty waters that flow from the Australian coast into the deep sea. The rivers, which the researchers found using autonomous underwater vehicles, lose heat during the winter when shallow waters near the coast. Evaporation during the summer months makes this shallow water salty compared to deep water, so when it is cold, dense, salty water sinks and snakes through the ocean as an underwater river. These rivers span thousands of miles and carry nutrients, plant and animal substances and pollutants into the ocean.
related: Huge underwater rivers were discovered off the coast of Australia
Ancient rainforest is found under Antarctic ice
Antarctica may be the last place you would expect to find Ruins of an ancient rainforest, But this is exactly what scientists found below the western part of the continent. The remains of the forest were discovered in a sediment core drilled from a seabed near Pine Island Glacier. One layer of sediment within the core stood out from the rest, as its color was clearly different from those around it; Upon closer inspection, scientists found ancient pollen, spores, pieces of flowering plants and a network of roots within the crust. The sample dates back to the mid-Cretaceous period of 90 million years, when the now-frozen Antarctic had a much longer climate.
related: Remains of 90 million year old rainforest discovered under Antarctic ice
Ancient seashores are buried 400 miles below China
A seabed that was once found burying the lower part of the Pacific Ocean Hundreds of miles under China, Where it keeps descending towards the Earth’s mantle transition zone. The slab of rock once sat on the outermost layer of the Earth’s surface above the oceanic lithosphere, but when it is called a subduction event, it collided with the neighboring tectonic plate and pushed downward. At depths between 254 and 410 miles (410 to 660 km) underground, scientists had never detected a sub-event so deep below the planet’s surface.
related: Ancient pieces of the Pacific Ocean were found buried 400 miles below China
Lost Tectonic Plate Resurrects?
Scientists digitally Rebuilt a tectonic plate And showed that its motion gave rise to an arc of volcanoes in the Pacific Ocean about 60 million years ago. In the past, some geophysicists argued that a plate known as the resurrection never existed. But if it existed, the plate would have been pushed under the earth’s crust millions of years ago; So using computer reconstruction, scientists reversed that motion, virtually pulling it and other ancient plates back to the surface. He found that the resurrection would fit like a piece of an exact puzzle, to the east of two plates called Kula and Farallon, and that its edge corresponded to ancient volcanic belts in Washington State and Alaska.
related: T Lost ‘tectonic plate called the resurrection is hidden under the Pacific
Tower Coral Structure Dwarf Empire State Building
First different coral reef The search is taller than the Empire State Building in over 100 years. At 1,640 feet (500 m) high from base to tip, the coral tower stands independently of the rest of the Great Barrier Reef off the coast of Australia. The blade-like structure is 1 mile (1.5 km) wide at its base and its summit is about 130 feet (40 m) below the sea surface.
related: The Coral ‘Tower’ is taller than the Empire State Building which is off the Australian coast
Originally published on Live Science.