There is something new for geologists to ponder on and it's been called the Beijing anomaly. It's a really vast deposit of water underneath much of China and other parts of the main landmass of Asia.
The discovery is said to be the first for a very large body of water near the Earth's mantle---which definitely conjures up images of Brendan Fraser floating on a raft in a sea underneath the Earth's crust (Journey to the Center of the Earth 3D)---but this is real, not a movie.
The discovery was made by seismologist Michael Wysession of Washington University in St. Louis and former graduate student Jesse Lawrence, who had been analyzing seismic records from China. The area was of particular interest due to it's seismic activity. The two studied 600,000 seismograms from instruments all over the world.
Their findings reveal that much of Asia, particularly the earth underneath Beijing---hence the name of the anomaly--- had a dampening effect on seismic waves. Wysession said that lots of dampening and a little slowing match the predictions for water.
It has been theorized that if a part of the ocean's floor sinks towards the mantle, it would take water down with it, which heats up the deeper it goes, until the rock deteriorates and loses the water.
Wysession explains how the water rises up into the overlying region, which becomes saturated with water. “You would have to put it in the lab to find the water in it.” Wysession estimates that 0.1 percent of the rock that sinks under China is water. The diagram on top shows the rock where much of the water is (red and yellow). The photos on the left are stills from Journey to the Center of the Earth 3D, where Brendan Fraser encounters lots of water and sails in an ocean deep inside the Earth.
While Wysession doesn't mention anything about an underground ocean, there are those who believe that the Earth is hollow.
Join Brendan Fraser in Journey to the Center of the Earth 3D.
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