Geophysics for Beginners

This article is an introduction to Geophysics with video.

Geophysics is the branch of physics dealing with the Earth and space environment around it. This definition has actually been extended to include other planets as well as the Earth. Some examples are as follows.

Geothermal Physics involves the flow of heat within the Earth and how it affects the Earth. It is a result the cooling of the Earth’s interior slowly. While convection is the main source of heat transfer in the Earth mantel plumes do some heat is transfer. Conduction both in the lithosphere and at the core/mantel boundary is the other main source of heat transfer.

Plate Tectonics is based on the division of the Earth’s crust into segments that are called plates. The meeting pf these plates result in sliding, spreading and subduction. When these plates interact the results are Earth quakes and volcanoes Subduction is basically Plate Tectonics driving mechanism.

One aspect of Geophysics that receives little attention is lunar recession. When Apollo astronauts landed on the moon they left behind reflectors. By bouncing laser off the reflectors so as to accurately measure the distance between the Earth and the moon. They discovered that the moon is receding from the Earth at 3.82 cm per year and in the process it is slowing the earth rotation increasing a day by 1.7 milliseconds per day per century. When this data is plugged into the laws of physics it shows is that the Moon would have been locked in Geosynchronous orbit around the Earth 1.25 billion years ago suggesting that the Earth-Moon system it way younger than 4.5 billion years old. Furthermore no attempt to solve this problem has produced scientifically viable results so this this problem is generally ignored.

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