The Earth "swelled" 3 billion years ago: this is how the first continents appeared

Just 1.5 billion years after the formation of the Earth, the mantle is a layer of silicate rock between the crust and the outer

the core that was more active in the past -warmed up. As a result, magma from this layer seeped into fragments of the older crust above it. They served as the "seeds" for the growth of modern continents.

Researchers have found evidence of this surgegrowth hidden in ancient zircon crystals in creek sediments in Greenland. These extremely strong crystals formed during this growth spurt about 3 billion years ago.

Before this period of massive growth, the ancient crustThe earth was much thinner and weaker than it is today. Later, the temperature of the mantle reached a peak due to the radioactive decay of elements such as uranium and potassium in the Earth's core, as well as due to the residual heat that participated in the formation of the planet. The global peak caused the crust to continue to swell for about 200 million years.

At the end of this period, the first continents began to form, ultimately leading to the development of complex life on land about 400 million years ago.

Proof of this surge in steel growthblotches of zircon crystals less than 100 microns in size (less than the width of a human hair) that have been weathered from rocks and accumulated in the sediments of streams in West Greenland. Like trees, crystals have growth rings caused by periods of magma pumping.

The research results can be used to search for new places for mining.

Read more

Abortion and science: what will happen to the children who will give birth

A third of those who have recovered from COVID-19 return to the hospital. Every eighth - dies

Named a plant that is not afraid of climate change. It feeds a billion people