The inner core of Earth is pressurized and hot, so the entire idea of having snow is hard to believe. But it’s what scientists recently discovered. But the snow is made out of tiny particles of iron, which are heavier than snow that’s falling on the surface of the planet. They are dropping from the molten core, and are forming a pile on the top of the inner core.
The metallic core of Earth works just like a magma chamber. This comes from Jung-Fu Lin, who’s a professor in the Jackson School of Geosciences at The University of Texas at Austin. He is also the co-author of the study.
It’s so weird to think about it, because we have some crystals in the outer core that is simply falling down into the inner core, and the distance is of about several hundred kilometers.
The paper compares the iron particles falling with a new different process which takes place inside the magma chambers, that’s near the planet’s surface. It actually involved minerals crystallizing out of the melt. In these magma chambers, the crystals create something named by the scientists “cumulate rock.” In the core of the Earth, the compaction of the iron makes the inner core grow, and it also makes the outer core shrink. This study is critical because it helps us in better understanding how planets formed.
By comparing the model predictions to these observations, we can find out more about the possible compositions of the liquid core, and this way, we can connect all the info with the one we already have about how the planets formed.
“The starting condition is an important factor in Earth becoming the planet we know,” stated Jung-Fu Lin.