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(~.~}:= it'' i- :' 1 JOHN VERHOOGEN University of California, Berkeley Energetic so the Earthy NATIONAL ACADEMY OF SCIENCES Washington, D.C. 1980 Hi'
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The National Academy of Sciences was established in 1863 by Act of Congress as a private, non-profit, self-governing membership corporation for the furtherance of science and technology, required to advise the federal government upon request within its fields of competence. Under its corporate charter the Academy established the National Re- search Council in 1916, the National Academy of Engineenng in 1964, and the Institute of Medicine in 1970. Library of Congress Cataloging in Publication Data Verhoogen, John, 1912 Energetics of the Earth. Bibliography: p. Includes index. 1. Earth temperature. 2. Earth-Internal structure. I. Title. QE509.V45 551.1'2 80-17501 ISBN ~309 0307~5 Available from National Academy Press National Academy of Sciences 2101 Constitution Avenue, N.W. Washington, D.C. 20418 Printed in the United States of America
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Preface This is the text, somewhat enlarged, of a series of four lectures deliv- ered at Stanford University in January 1979 by the happy recipient of the 1978 Arthur L. Day Prize and Lectureship of the National Academy of Sciences. Funds are earmarked for publication of the lectures, which according to the terms of the award should "prove a solid, timely and useful addition to the knowledge and literature in the field." Whether the lectures will prove to be solid, timely, or useful is as uncertain as their topic. This topic, which has been of great interest to me for more than 40 years, remains largely speculative. Progress has been slow; there is not so terribly much more to say about temperature at the core-mantle boundary than Francis Birch said in 1952 in his celebrated paper on the constitution of the earth's interior. As the reader will readily perceive, there is still room for considerable differ- ence of opinion on almost every subject. Much of the uncertainty stems from our ignorance of physical prop- erties of terrestrial materials at pressures of a few megabars, such as exist in the lower mantle and core. One may hope that much more information will become available in the next few years, now that static experiments appear feasible in the megabar range. On the other hand, our understanding of thermal events at the time of, or shortly after, formation of the earth will remain speculative for many years to come, as also will the crucial matter of the abundance of radioactive elements in the mantle and core. On the theoretical side, perhaps the greatest step forward in the last four decades or indeed since the discovery of . . .
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iY Preface radioactivity-has been the recognition of convection as the dominant mode of heat transfer in most of the mantle and core. Here, at long last, is something to hang on to. The writer wishes to express deep thanks to all his colleagues at Berkeley who have helped him throughout the years, and particularly to the graduate students who have discussed these matters with him in seminars. He is grateful also to the audience at Stanford University for their warm welcome, and to Professor Allan Cox for the perfection of the arrangements. Berkeley, March 1979