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How the Layers Formed
• As earth formed, it was made of hot molten magma and
intense gravity.
• As rocks melted, denser materials sank to the center of the
Earth and became the core.
• Less dense material rose to the surface and became the crust
• The middle layer is the mantle.
• (formation of the Earth, 10 min)
Lithosphere (aka Crust)
• A layer of solid rock that includes both dry land and
the ocean floor.
– Very thin compared to the other layers, like the skin of an
– Thickest under high mountains, thinnest under the ocean
– 5-100 km thick
– Oceanic crust is denser than continental.
The Mantle
• Made of very hot rock.
– Mixture of solid AND liquid! So cool.
– Asthenosphere: Upper mantle
•Spelling - As The No Sphere
•Moves tectonic plates
– Mesosphere: lower mantle that
extends to the core.
The Core
• Outer core:
– molten (liquid) metal.
– Movements in this part of the core causes Earth’s
magnetic field.
• Inner core:
– dense ball of solid metal.
• Both are made of iron and nickel, but the
extreme pressure in the inner core keeps the
metal a solid
Earth’s Interior
The composition and properties of
Earth’s interior are identified by the
behavior of seismic (earthquake) waves.
(formation of the earth video, 5 min)