Earth's Interior


Terms to learn:

continental crust     core                                           isostasy

oceanic crust             lithosphere                            MOHO                       

asthenosphere         geothermal gradient        S-wave shadow zone



Topic outline:

  1. Earth's internal structure
    1. Chemical division
    2. Physical division
  2. Isostasy
  3. Earth's magnetism
    1. Magnetic reversals
  4. Internal heat and pressure
    1. geothermal gradient
    2. pressure


Fun places to visit:

Earth's interior and plate tectonics:

Rock Doctor view of the earth's interior:


When you are finished with this topic, you should be able to answer these study questions:

  1. What are the internal layers of the earth?
  2. What causes the internal layered structure of the earth?
  3. What do seismic-wave shadow zones tell us about the earth's interior?
  4. What is the temperature distribution with depth in the earth?