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Earth's structure

Earth's structure

E400/0017

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Credit

GARY HINCKS / SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY GARY HINCKS / SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY

Caption

Earth's structure. Cut-away artwork of the inside of the Earth. The upper rocky crust is relatively thin. Below it is a layer of near-molten rock called the mantle (red) which extends down to 2900 kilometres (km). As the pressure increases with depth, it thickens and its temperature rises to an estimated 3000 degrees Celsius. A slice at upper right shows an enlarged view of magma rising from the mantle to form new crust in a mid-ocean ridge. Beneath the mantle is the planet's nickel- iron core. It is about 7000 km across and is divided into the molten outer core (yellow) and the solid inner core (white). The temperature at the core may be over 5000 degrees Celsius.

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