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The newfound mid-mantle plume is angling up toward the East African Rift - a chasm in eastern Africa that's been growing due to the African continental plate ripping apart. The study could help scientists understand the characteristics and dynamics of structures in the lower mantle as well as the geology of the southern African region.
Originally posted by Sinter Klaas
reply to post by thedarklingthrush
What is the cause of the rift ? In the Atlantic there is an obvious line where new rock pushes outwards. But the part of Northern Africa is almost going head on with that movement.
The distance from the surface of Earth to the center is about 3,963 miles (6,378 kilometers). Much of Earth is fluid. The mostly solid skin of the planet is only 41 miles (66 kilometers) thick -- thinner than the skin of an apple, relatively speaking.