How The Massive Ocean Discovered In Earth's Core Changes Everything

It is believed that there is an ocean three times the size of all the liquid on the Earth's surface situated near our planet's core. This discovery changed everything we thought we knew about how water formed on the surface of the Earth.

When viewing Earth from space, the planet we usually think of as green looks decidedly blue in hue. While we rarely give it much thought, this color stems from the fact that 71% of the Earth's surface is made from liquid (via USGS). It is through this liquid that we are able to sustain life as we know it.

Because water plays such a pivotal role in our survival, scientists are fixated on figuring out where it all came from. Theories regarding the origins of Earth's liquid once ranged from comets and asteroids to just about everything in between. Then, in 2014, a seemingly small discovery in the rocks situated near Earth's core literally turned our world inside out. According to Futurism, science suggests that we are standing over a massive ocean that gradually oozed out from within the planet to create the atmosphere we know as home.

Scientists discovered a grand and powerful ocean near Earth's core

The discovery of Earth's inner ocean doesn't just change our perception of the planet's inner workings. It doesn't just mean we'll have to alter our diagrams and reimagine our scholastic scientific charts. It also clashes with the previously prevalent theory that suggested water was brought to Earth via asteroids and/or comets (via Futurism). The alternative theory now on the rise is one that suggests our planet watered itself using its hidden internal liquid reserve.

How do we know all of this? In short, we don't. This latest discovery is still under scrutiny, but it all started when a team of scientists led by geophysicist Steven Jacobsen was studying the waves of earthquakes that rippled through the Earth's rocks. These waves slowed down in one particular type of rock, scientifically referred to as ringwoodite, due to the presence of water (via New Scientist).

Much like the view of our planet from above, this type of rock is blue in shade and contains molecules of water soaked inside it like a sponge. When scientists say there is probably a massive ocean beneath our feet, they don't mean a flowing mass of liquid like the oceans we usually see — they are describing an ancient ocean preserved inside of these sponge-like rocks contained in the Earth's mantle.

The search to find water trapped inside our planet's core continues

To expound upon this theory-altering find, scientists everywhere are scouring the Earth for signs of oceans trapped within sponge-like rocks. Discover Magazine reports that they are not only searching — they are finding it!

Jacobsen's 2014 discovery sparked a worldwide revolutionary search for underground oceans. According to the researcher, there is likely as much as five ocean masses-worth of water that exists across the Earth's surface, crust, upper mantle, transitional zone, and lower mantle.

So many mysteries are lodged within these liquified regions. Jacobsen notes that the origin of water on Earth is a topic that has been "discussed in all the major religious texts, including the Quran and Old Testament."

Indeed, Surah 2 verse 74 of the Holy Quran (via Quran) speaks directly of rocks from which rivers flow, proclaiming that they are "split open and water gushes forth." Now, as we look to the sky for miracles, we are learning that the secrets of our past might actually be buried just beneath the surface of a world we already know.