The study of the physical processes and properties of the planet Earth. Applicable to many subjects about Earth, such as its shape, its magnetic field, and ocean currents.

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Special conditions at layer F2 ionosphere

I saw this graph about the electrons density in different altitudes and difference between night and day, the difference between the 2 electron densities (day and night) decreases till 300 Km (F2 ...
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2answers
514 views

Plate tectonics and water

In a couple of places already i've read the following assertion: It is believed that plate tectonics might play an important part in maintaining the presence of water on a planet's surface one ...
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1answer
68 views

Is it possible to determine astronomically/astrophysically whether other planets have ever encountered polarity reversal?

We know of geomagnetic flip in Earth's history by studying geologic data. Given other planets in the system also possess a magnetic field leads to the assumption that such polarity reversal may not be ...
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1answer
153 views

Can I estimate the long-term surface heat transfer coefficient based on a temperature difference between the air surface and ground surface?

I want to estimate the long-term or annual heat transfer coefficient for the earth's surface in a particular area where the mean annual air surface temperature is about 13$^\circ$C, and the mean ...
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1answer
458 views

Refraction and Reflection Seismology

So I am wondering if I got the difference right. Both methods use explosives to send waves into the earth's surface. Now reflection seismology tries to get information from the reflected waves; the ...
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2answers
215 views

The earth's magnetic field

This might sound like a silly question. Is it possible for the earth's magnetic field to actually destroy or harm earth? (implosion, crushing etc.)
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1answer
85 views

Gravity measurements above volcanic chamber

I am trying to find out what formula to use for the above issue. If I do a gravity measurement above a volcanic chamber, what do I have to do? I thought about adding the Bouger corrections, as it is a ...
3
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1answer
192 views

How far does typical view of clouds/atmosphere extend?

The specific "sub questions" I'm asking are: When you are looking at clouds just on the horizon, how far away would they be? How wide (in km) is that total field of vision at roughly cloud height. ...
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2answers
614 views

Underground explosions due to plate tectonics and natural gas pockets

I am not sure if anyone has ever researched this but I am curious about underground reservoirs of natural gas and plate tectonics. Specifically, as the Earth's crust gets pulled down to the mantle do ...
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2answers
609 views

Water from Icebergs

Thousands of icebergs are calved from polar regions annually, and melt in the oceans. George Mougin, an entrepreneurial engineer, aspires to tow multi-million ton icebergs to areas of the world ...
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2answers
150 views

Would it be possible for geophysicists/geoengineers to develop an artificial way of trapping carbon in the ocean?

There's a mechanism by which the southern ocean sequesters carbon from the atmosphere. It happens when strong winds displace a large slab of surface water, accumulating in a specific region where the ...
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1answer
120 views

Ratio of horizontal to vertical kinetic energy in ocean

What is the ratio between horizontal and vertical kinetic energy in the ocean and what is the scale dependencies of this ratio ?
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1answer
428 views

How does the inner core relieve stress as the Earth's rotation slows?

One of the surprises for me in working out the answer to this question: Why is the Earth so fat? , is that the core is more elliptical than the surface, the extra ellipticity builds up gradually to ...
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2answers
160 views

What is the most energy-efficient way to crush the hardest bedrock on earth? [closed]

What is the most energy-efficient way to crush the hardest bedrock on earth while assuming it is impossible to use the chain reaction energy from that bedrock? How many energy is needed?
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1answer
257 views

What equations/constants were used to calculate the Kármán Line for Earth?

I am interested in how the original value of ~100 km was calculated for the Kármán line of earth. What equations and constants would need to be used to reproduce this value? Note: By constants, ...
8
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1answer
125 views

Deviation from power law distribution of earthquakes

One of the most accepted frameworks for the relationship between the magnitude and frequency of an earthquake is that of the critical phenomena. In this framework, the magnitude of events must be ...
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4answers
1k views

How do we know that earth is not perfect sphere?

I've just read here that: Equatorial radius = 6378.16 kilometers. Polar radius = 6356.78 kilometers, so the difference in circumference is 71.1 kilometers. It is not a perfect sphere, but kind ...
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2answers
552 views

How does Earth's interior dynamo work?

I'm interested in getting a basic physical understanding of how Earth's magnetic field is generated. I understand that it's a "dynamo" type of effect, driven by convection currents in the molten outer ...
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1answer
3k views

What would happen if the Earth was tidally locked with the Sun?

I'm thinking of writing a short story set on a version of Earth that is tidally locked to the Sun. I'm not exactly sure how to research the topic. Here's a number of questions about what would happen: ...
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1answer
64 views

What sets the length scale of stratified rock formations?

Driving through areas of the American Southwest such as Utah and Arizona, you notice stratified rock formations everywhere. The grand canyon is the best known example. One striking thing is that the ...
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1answer
280 views

Upper limit on the earthquake magnitude

From the Gutemberg-Ricther law we know that the frequency of an earthquake is a power law so virtually any magnitude is possible on earthquake event. But the earth has a finite size so there must be ...
2
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1answer
300 views

How much water is destroyed in photosynthesis, relative to the world's supply?

Water is involved in the photosynthesis. How much water are we talking about compared with the total amount on water on Earth? Is it enough to have an effect on the average age of water molecules?
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1answer
167 views

Earth's magnetic field, could the poles be reversing?

Lately, I've been 'monitoring', if you will, the earths magnetic field, i've come across some strange looking activity periodically. I exchanged some emails with a guy from NASA today, Joseph Gurman, ...
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3answers
5k views

Lowest gravity on Earth's surface?

I am trying to determine which on Earth's surface has the lowest gravity. Googling is not finding anything concrete. My natural inclination would be to think of Mount Chimborazo in Ecuador, being on ...
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2answers
145 views

How does gravity behave outside the geoid?

I was watching a program about the geoid recently and the relative "height" of the Himalayan plateau gave me an idea. It makes sense for the geoid to be "highest" (is that the correct term?) there as ...
4
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1answer
133 views

Why does air contain $Ar$ specifically?

Air consists roughly of $N_2$, $O_2$ and $Ar$. Why is $Ar$ the relatively common noble gas compound and not for example the lighter ones $He$ or $Ne$?
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4answers
399 views

How does water carve rock?

How does water carve rock? And more generally, how does a soft material carve a hard material? Obviously it happens, but is it a continual process (every drop of soft water carries away a minute ...
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2answers
347 views

How to predict sea waves length/height?

I would like to know which are the best methods used to predict sea waves characteristics (particularly predict length/height given water depth and wind speed) and how are they used. My major is ...
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1answer
238 views

Average speed of seismic waves towards the center of Earth

I'm looking at an approximation of the average speed of seismic wave towards the center of Earth. The horizontal path of the waves that affects us directly is well documented, but there is not much ...
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1answer
3k views

What is the source of Earth's magnetic field?

I saw on Discovery channel that the source of Earth's magnetic field is the molten iron and metals in the earth's core. The spinning of these liquid metals produces the same effect as electric current ...
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1answer
50 views

Flood prediction data and code

Is it possible to use the data that is readily available (e.g. of the Shuttle Radar Topography Mission) to predict the flooding of a region? Would it be necessary to use the refined geoid of Gravity ...
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4answers
918 views

Is the earth expanding?

I recently saw this video on youtube: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=oJfBSc6e7QQ and I don't know what to make of it. It seems as if the theory has enough evidence to be correct but where would all ...
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4answers
2k views

Outcomes of earth slowing down spinning on its own axis

What are the possible outcomes if earth slows down spinning on its own axis? To be specific: Can the decrease in the internal centrifugal (or centripetal) force due to slowing down earth's spin: ...
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1answer
47 views

Refraction and scattered light for NLCs

For helping with judging NLC candidates (are they NLC or not) I have a set of formulas to calculate the minimum altitude (in km) of the candidate given an observed altitude (in degrees) of the ...
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6answers
6k views

Why is there a scarcity of lithium?

One of the major impediments to the widespread adoption of electric cars is a shortage of lithium for the batteries. I read an article a while back that says that there is simply not enough lithium ...
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1answer
294 views

How can the Earth's day increase and its rotation slow down at the same time? [closed]

I heard that the Earth rotation is slowing down, but I also heard the Earth's length of day is increasing. Does the two theories go together or conflict with each other?
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2answers
401 views

What is the dominant cause for ocean waves at a beach?

What is the dominant cause for ocean waves at a beach? Are they the result of wind/pressure difference? If so, the waves do seem to exist in similar intensity even during relative quiet times of the ...
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2answers
392 views

A lightning protection device physics

Here is a description of the principle of the operation of a new lightning device: During a storm the ambient electric field may rise to between 10 to 20 kV/m. As soon as the field exceeds a thresold ...
3
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3answers
299 views

Ozone Hole in the South Pole

Perhaps this should be a chemistry question, but it seems to have physics attributes. There's a perennial ozone "hole" around the south pole created by destruction from Cl based chemicals like CFCs. ...
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2answers
119 views

Seismic science questions

We just (20mn ago) suffered from another strong aftershock (of the initial March 11th earthquake) in Japan. I have some questions related to seismic science. Why is there so much time between the ...
41
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7answers
4k views

Why is the Earth so fat?

I made a naive calculation of the height of Earth's equatorial bulge and found that it should be about 10km. The true height is about 20km. My question is: why is there this discrepancy? The ...
3
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1answer
527 views

live Kp index data

I need to create an online service displaying latest Kp index. Where I can take the data? The data should be in machine-readable format, i.e. text files, XML, or CGI gateways, for instance. No ...
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3answers
930 views

How does uranium from supernovae explosions end up in mineral veins in a planet?

The reply to a question about nucleosynthesis, that heavier than iron elements are produced in supernovae explosions, raised for me the following question which I could not answer by googling. ...
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2answers
477 views

Can the earth's magnetic field be generated by heat from a natural nuclear reactor?

I've come upon Dr. J. Marvin Herndon's theory that the earth's magnetic field is generated by a hot nuclear reactor operating in the center of the earth. This is backed by various papers, some of them ...
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2answers
2k views

Physics of tsunami: the relationship between wavelength, sea depth and the height of the water

If I understand correctly, when an earthquake occurs, energy will be transferred to the water, resulting in water waves. As the waves reach seashore, because the sea depth is getting shallower and ...
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3answers
480 views

Why does energy in earthquake waves seem to go up with the three halves power?

My question might be based on a false premise, so here's why I asked. If you look up the meaning of the moment magnitude scale for measuring earthquake size, the articles usually say that each ...
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1answer
154 views

Readings of the detectors at Japan and Izu-Bonin-Mariana Trenches

Given the relevance of this subduction system, I would expect that a wide range of detectors (temperature, vibration, seismometers, whatever) are deployed in the depth of these trenches. What would be ...
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2answers
162 views

How good is current tsunami prediction?

We all know that predicting tsunami and earthquake is difficult, with too many variables involved. But with the advent in data collection and computing power and better models, one should be able to ...
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4answers
2k views

Electro Magnetic Waves can cause matter displacement?

After watching this video: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=j1jIjx0XF_U The experience is made with a speaker that generates a sound wave or mechanic wave. Can you use this to establish a link to ...
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6answers
688 views

Tsunami dampening mechanisms

Encouraged by the zeitgeist let me ask the following: Is it feasible (now or in the future) to build systems a certain distance of a vulnerable coastline which can serve to dampen a tsunami before it ...