Another Ocean Beneath the Oregon Coast? Maybe. Sort of

Published 06/15/2014


(Evanstan, Illinois) – The world is abuzz this week about a recent discovery made by researchers from Northwestern University and University of New Mexico that seems to indicate a large reservoir of water beneath the surface of the Earth – some 400 miles below. If the calculations are correct, the discovery made by Northwestern geophysicist Steve Jacobsen and University of New Mexico seismologist Brandon Schmandt means that there is almost literally another ocean down there, with a water mass perhaps three times larger than all the oceans on the surface.

However, before you invoke Jules Verne and start thinking about a surfing expedition to the center of the Earth, this is not a pool of water in the normal sense. Jacobsen and Schmandt are talking about a section of the Earth's crust where pressures are so high water does not exist in the usual forms we are familiar with, like liquid, ice or vapor. Instead, these are water molecules that exist in a state of being fused with the rocks at that depth.

Schmandt and Jacobsen used a network of over 2,000 seismometers positioned around North America – along with a variety of lab experiments. While not an ocean in the literal sense, it seems to mean there is this ocean-like layer beneath the continent, if not the world – and that would include underneath the Oregon coast and the Pacific Ocean.

“The water cycle involves more than just the water that circulates between the atmosphere, oceans, and surface waters,” said the journal Science, describing the findings. “It extends deep into Earth's interior as the oceanic crust subducts, or slides, under adjoining plates of crust and sinks into the mantle, carrying water with it.”

This find sheds more light on how water gets cycled through the Earth and beneath the tectonic plates. Scientists have been looking for this deep - very deep - H20 for decades, having long speculated water exists in large masses in the zone between the upper mantle and lower mantle.

All this could have some impact on theories of how the Earth was formed, including the theory that much of the planet's water came from icy comet impacts.

The water molecules are locked up tight in a mineral called ringwoodite that exists in what is called the “transition” zone between the two mantles. The presence of water was strongly suggested by the fact there is magma – melting rock – in that zone, according to the group's findings. Pressures are so great at that depth that the presence of water molecules would cause the rock to melt to some degree, a process that also squeezes the water out of the rock and sends it elsewhere in or on the Earth.

Jacobsen also theorized this layer of trapped water may help explain why oceans stay the same for millions of years at a time. With so much water present on the Earth, if some of it wasn't trapped beneath the surface, the oceans would be high enough to leave only mountaintops poking out of the seas.

In 2007, another group of researchers found a massive resevoir beneath Asia, and others found more evidence beneath Canada last year.

More on Oregon coast science.







More About Oregon Coast hotels, lodging.....

More About Oregon Coast Restaurants, Dining.....

A famous little family eatery where the seafood practically gets shuffled from the sea straight into your mouth. Soups and salads include many seafood specialties, including cioppino, chowders, crab Louie and cheese breads. Fish 'n' chips come w/ various fish. Seafood sandwiches with shrimp, tuna or crab, as well as burgers. Dinners like pan fried oysters, fillets of salmon or halibut, saut�ed scallops.
Oregon Coast event or adventure you can't miss
Pacific City, Oregon

 


Breathtaking high panoramic beach views from oceanfront rooms, spacious family suites & fully equipped cottages.  Known for gracious hospitality, the sparkling clean Sea Horse features a heated indoor pool, dramatic oceanfront spa, great whale watching, free deluxe continental breakfast, conference room, free casino shuttle & HBO.  Fireplaces, private decks and spas are available in select rooms.  Close to shops, golf, fishing & restaurants.  Pets are welcome in select rooms.  Senior discounts.  Kids 18 and under stay free in their parent's room.  Very attractive rates.
Lincoln City’s only resort hotel built right on the beach with all oceanfront rooms - nestled against a rugged cliffside overlooking a soft, sandy beach. Dine in penthouse restaurant and bar, for casual meal or candlelight dinner. An array of seafood specialties, juicy steaks and other Northwest favorites, including decadent Sunday buffet. Rooms range from bedrooms to studios to 1-bedroom suites with microwaves and refrigerators to full kitchens. Also, wi-fi, spa, saunas, exercise room and year-round heated swimming pool. Kids will love the game room and easy beach access. Full-service conference/meeting rooms for that inspirational retreat; extensive wedding possibilities.

 

LATEST Related Oregon Coast Articles

Eleven Quakes Rattle Off Oregon Coast on Saturday
Scientists say these clusters of quakes are not unusual. Sciences, South Coast
Newport, Depoe Bay in Summer: Oregon Coast July, August Preview
A ton to do during summer in Newport. Even Depoe Bay gets in on the act. Newport events
Latest Deceased Whale on Oregon Coast: Cause of Death Still Not Conclusive
All the test results are not yet in after a week. Seaside Aquarium, science
N. Oregon Coast Summer: July Preview of Astoria, Seaside, Cannon Beach
Astoria, Seaside events and Cannon Beach kick out the jams when it comes to beachy fun
Oregon Astronomy: Summer Solstice Facts, Parties in Coast Range, Portland
Star watching parties in Portland and in the Oregon Coast Range to celebrate
A Summer of Fun at Lincoln City, Oregon Coast: July Preview
Music, food, numerous outdoor excursions, theater, movie matinees, and a look at Bigfoot and Pixieland. Lincoln City events
Water Advisory Expired for One of Oregon Coast's Most Popular Towns - Cannon ...
Expired health advisory, warning against wading in the ocean waters because of fecal matter
Quirky, Mysterious Sides of Depoe Bay Emerge with New Little Oregon Coast Parks
Two places with the same name, some odd finds and some somber ones

Back to Oregon Coast

Contact Advertise on BeachConnection.net
All Content, unless otherwise attributed, copyright BeachConnection.net Unauthorized use or publication is not permitted

 

 

Oregon Coast Lodging
Rentals
Specials

Dining

Events Calendar

Oregon Coast Weather

Travel News

Search for Oregon Coast Subjects, Articles

Virtual Tours, Maps
Deep Details