Scientists dig toward center of the earth

Jan 16, 2006

A Japanese ship is setting sail on a mission to reveal the origin of life on earth.

The Chikyu intends to drill 4.3 miles below the sea bed and raise to the surface a cylinder that could contain science's first glimpse of a "living" sample of the Earth's mantle, the Times of London reported.

Plans also call for the ship to sink sensors beneath the Earth's crust to provide Japan and East Asia with the first effective earthquake prediction system.

Some scientists theorize life may have originated beneath the Earth's crust at temperatures and pressures unknown on land or sea, the newspaper said. The energy that provoked the first semblance of life may also have been geothermal rather than solar.

By drilling to record-breaking depths below areas where tectonic plates overlap, the ship may have its sensors in place as an earthquake begins and significantly advance the science of seismology, the newspaper said.

Copyright 2006 by United Press International

Explore further: India tests long-range missile from mobile launcher

add to favorites email to friend print save as pdf

Related Stories

Scientists trial system to improve safety at sea

Jan 30, 2015

A space scientist at the University of Leicester, in collaboration with the New Zealand Defence Technology Agency and DMC International Imaging, has been trialling a concept for using satellite imagery to ...

Nordic marine scientists push for way forward

Jan 28, 2015

In a commentary released in Nature Climate Change, a group of 13 scientists argue that the Nordic countries are in a unique position to showcase how to handle the growing pressure on the oceans. However, this relies on a c ...

Recommended for you

Planck: Gravitational waves remain elusive

Jan 30, 2015

Despite earlier reports of a possible detection, a joint analysis of data from ESA's Planck satellite and the ground-based BICEP2 and Keck Array experiments has found no conclusive evidence of primordial ...

Going a long way to do a quick data collection

Jan 30, 2015

Like many a scientist before me, I have spent this week trying to grow a crystal. I wasn't fussy, it didn't have to be a single crystal – a smush of something would have done – just as long as it had ...

How are planets formed?

Jan 30, 2015

How did the Solar System's planets come to be? The leading theory is something known as the "protoplanet hypothesis", which essentially says that very small objects stuck to each other and grew bigger and ...

User comments : 0

Please sign in to add a comment. Registration is free, and takes less than a minute. Read more

Click here to reset your password.
Sign in to get notified via email when new comments are made.