JUL 12, 2017 07:31 AM PDT

The New Rock on the Block


Well, it's not exactly a new rock, but it's definitely pretty hot. It's a mineral deep inside the earth's mantle and most people may never have heard of it. It's called silicate perovskite and it's chemical formula is (Mg,Fe)SiO3.

Estimates are that its presence is a result of a meteorite that hit the ground in Australia in 1879. It's cube shaped and is a combination of two positively charged elements held together by one negatively charged element. How much of it is there? Some experts put the figure at about 38% of the earth's total volume. It can only exist however, in an environment of extremely high temperatures and pressure. That's why it's so deep under the earth's surface, somewhere between 420 and 1680 miles under our feet. Temps there can reach 5,000 degrees and the pressure is approximately 1.4 million times that of the atmosphere at sea level. Identifying a naturally occurring sample was difficult, but using a sophisticated instruments, it's now been found. It also has a name, bridgmanite. The name is in honor of physicist Percy Bridgman who won the Nobel Prize for Physics in 1946 for his work in high pressure physics and crystallography.
About the Author
  • I'm a writer living in the Boston area. My interests include cancer research, cardiology and neuroscience. I want to be part of using the Internet and social media to educate professionals and patients in a collaborative environment.
You May Also Like
NOV 14, 2019
Plants & Animals
NOV 14, 2019
These Monkeys Thought a Troop Member Died, and Their Reactions Are Heartbreaking
Scientists carefully placed a high-detail animatronic ‘spy monkey’ near the site of a troop’s living quarters in an effort to gather info...
NOV 14, 2019
Plants & Animals
NOV 14, 2019
Watch a Pod of Dolphins Play Catch With a Pufferfish
Playing catch with a ball of some sort is a popular past time for humans, but as it would seem, even dolphins might enjoy partaking in similar behaviors. I...
NOV 14, 2019
Space & Astronomy
NOV 14, 2019
Mars 2020 Rover Carries Full Weight on Wheels for First Time
NASA has been working on an advanced successor to the Martian Curiosity rover for quite some time. Dubbed the Mars 2020 rover, the upgraded SUV-sized auton...
NOV 14, 2019
Plants & Animals
NOV 14, 2019
Everything You Didn't Know About Hyenas
The humble hyena is often depicted as dim-witted, but as the scientific facts would show, that couldn’t be farther from the truth. Despite the negati...
NOV 14, 2019
Clinical & Molecular DX
NOV 14, 2019
Forecasting Chronic Pain
Chronic pain comes in many forms. Over half of those suffering from chronic pain, say they experience life-altering levels of pain on a daily basis. Many s...
NOV 14, 2019
Earth & The Environment
NOV 14, 2019
Sunflowers Inspire Solar Harvesting Technology
One of the most remarkable capabilities of living things is phototropism—in which living organisms track and move with light sources. The most famili...
Loading Comments...