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Saturday, March 03, 2007

Hold on to your hats, fountains of the deep discovered

In a fantastic news story that is sure to be leveraged by young earth flood proponents, we learn that a giant body of water was discovered beneath Asia with a size of approximately the Arctic Ocean. The news story states:

Scientists scanning the deep interior of Earth have found evidence of a vast water reservoir beneath eastern Asia that is at least the volume of the Arctic Ocean.

The discovery marks the first time such a large body of water has found in the planet’s deep mantle.

The finding, made by Michael Wysession, a seismologist at Washington State University in St. Louis, and his former graduate student Jesse Lawrence, now at the University of California, San Diego, will be detailed in a forthcoming monograph to be published by the American Geophysical Union.


But don't get your hopes up too quickly flood fans! This is not a giant pool of water ready to be unleashed on the earth to kill the next generation of evil people. Although the amount of water contained in this region may be equivalent to the volume of the Arctic Ocean, you would not be able to fill your pool with the water because it's locked up in ancient oceanic crust that has subducted back into the mantle. As the oceanic crust dives back into the mantle, the water contained in the slab is released. Near the subduction zone some of this water is released and lowers the melting temperature of the surrounding mantle causing volcanism above the slab.

Model of a subduction zone showing potential sources of dehydration water from sea-floor sediments (blue), subducting oceanic crust (white) and serpentinized subducting mantle (yellow). Crust and mantle structures (faults and fractures) are shows as red lines. Volcanism will occur as the water lowers the melting point of the surrounding mantle wedge.


In other cases, the slab continues down and the water is released more slowly and incorporated into the surrounding rock. Dubbed the Beijing anomaly because of its prominence there, the water was released during the heating of the subducting slab (see image).

Scientists probing the Earth's interior have found a large reservoir of water equal to the volume of the Arctic Ocean beneath eastern Asia. The left figure is a slice through the Earth, taken from the figure on the right, showing the attenuation anomalies within the mantle at a depth of roughly 620 miles. In both images, red shows unusually soft and weak rock believed to be saturated with water, and the blue shows unusually stiff rock (yellow and white show near-average values). Credit: Eric Chou
Since the water is locked up in the lattice structure of the mantle rock (about 200-500 parts per million in the mineral pyroxene for example), you can't tap into it and use it for drinking and you certainly can't use it for powering the 'fountains of the deep' during the Noachian flood. So, my bet is that creationists, like Walt Brown, will hype this as evidence for the flood and won't bother to tell you all the facts.

Cheers

Joe Meert

9 Comments:

At 2:07 PM, Blogger Yami McMoots said...

Hmm. I knew there was a reason the neighbors looked at me funny when I tried to fill my swimming pool with serpentinite...

 
At 3:42 PM, Blogger Joshua said...

Actually, if memory serves me correctly, the popular theory among YECs nowadays is that there was a cloud of water vapor enshrouding the earth, which then fell and flooded the surface. If anything, they'll probably claim that they've now discovered where the water went after the flood.

Never mind that not one of them had previously predicted the discover of such a subterranean water deposit. I mean, science is about rationalising the data to fit your conclusions... right?

 
At 6:33 PM, Blogger dogscratcher said...

Obviously, god can do whatever she would like with the extra water. Now however, we have clear evidence of where she poured most of it onto the earth's surface:
Right Here!

Washed all the crust right off, she did.

 
At 12:51 PM, Anonymous Flex said...

Noah's Flood?

No way!

This is proof of the existance of Agartha! Poe and Verne, not to mention Lovecraft were not writing fiction after all!

 
At 10:17 PM, Blogger Bruce M. Axtens said...

Your profile states, "My research is aimed at demonstrating the utter lunacy of young earth creationism."

So if there weren't any YECs, what would you do with yourself? Isn't it a kind of lunacy to spend so much time refuting lunatics? Surely there must be something more constructive to do with one's life.

 
At 7:51 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Bruce,

It would help tremendously if you researched a bit before making silly comments.

Cheers

Joe Meert

 
At 6:42 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

If enough people spend time refuting lunatics, maybe there won't be any YECers........ in about 500 years.

Just remember, these people VOTE.

 
At 6:42 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

If enough people spend time refuting lunatics, maybe there won't be any YECers........ in about 500 years.

Just remember, these people VOTE.

 
At 1:11 PM, Blogger dayhawk48 said...

I'm with Bruce. We all know we are here but we all are looking for "how" and "why". I don't need to deny God to appreciate science nor do I need to deny science to prove God. God devised and set in motion the processes we call science. He is what He is. Crack wise if you will about God as "She", it really doesn't matter what gender term you use, I just don't care. I know what I know.

 

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