A Finite Difference Model for the Thermal History of the Earth
Received Date: Feb 25, 2014 / Accepted Date: Apr 05, 2014 / Published Date: Apr 08, 2014
The present study is an investigation of the thermal history of the earth using heat transfer modeling. Assuming that the earth was a hot ball at a homogeneous temperature upon its formation, the model makes the following two predictions about conditions 4.5 Ga later (the earth's approximate present age): (i) there will be a geothermal gradient within a range of 1.5-5.0 C per 100 meters in the first km of the earth crust; and (ii) the earth's crust will be about 45 km thick, which is in agreement with average continental crust thickness. The fact that oceanic crust is much thinner (around 5-10 km thick) is explained by convective heat transfer and plate tectonics. The strong agreement between the predicted thicknesses of earth's crust with the average actual continental crust thickness helps confirm the accuracy of the current inner core model of the earth indicating a solid inner core made of iron based on seismological studies.
Keywords: Thermal history; Homogenous temperature; Earth crust; Core; Geothermal gradient
Citation: Heymann Y (2014) A Finite Difference Model for the Thermal History of the Earth. J Earth Sci Clim Change 5: 196. Doi: 10.4172/2157-7617.1000196
Copyright: © 2014 Heymann Y. This is an open-access article distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution License, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original author and source are credited.
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