June 14, 2015

Beneath your feet right now there might be up to 10 oceans worth of water. Want to take a swim?

Halemaumau crater on the Kilauea Volcano shows a tiny sliver of this water cycle. A gas cloud is rising from the active Overlook crater, leading to the question “where is the gas in those clouds coming from?”

In other words, over geologic time, the planet recycles water.

The earth’s mantle is enormous, so even a tiny bit of water dissolved in the minerals of the mantle represents a huge amount of water. When gas comes out of a volcano like Kilauea, it is tapping this reservoir of water and releasing it to the atmosphere. When a bit of oceanic crust sinks into the mantle, it is restoring that reservoir of water.
We don’t know exactly how big the reservoir of water in the mantle is, but based on evidence like that diamond it is probably huge. The mantle must hold at least as much water as the oceans on the surface do today and probably several times more – the mantle might even hold 10x as much water as is found in the oceans today. -- Earth's Story

Water, water, every where,
And all the boards did shrink;
Water, water, every where,
Nor any drop to drink.

The very deep did rot: O Christ!
That ever this should be!
Yea, slimy things did crawl with legs
Upon the slimy sea.

About, about, in reel and rout
The death-fires danced at night;
The water, like a witch's oils,
Burnt green, and blue and white.

-- The Rime of the Ancient Mariner

Posted by gerardvanderleun at June 14, 2015 3:50 AM
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"It is impossible to speak in such a way that you cannot be misunderstood." -- Karl Popper N.B.: Comments are moderated and may not appear immediately. Comments that exceed the obscenity or stupidity limits will be either edited or expunged.

"…In the six hundredth year of Noah's life, in the second month, on the seventeenth day of the month, on the same day all the fountains of the great deep burst open, and the floodgates of the sky were opened."
Genesis 7:11
There they are!

Posted by: Leslie at June 11, 2015 3:21 PM

I think I'll pass on the invite to swim, unless it's in the pool.
The oceans and I agree that we don't like each other.

Posted by: Jewel at June 11, 2015 4:15 PM


Yellowstone Park sits directly over a hot spot. The volcano is quiet today, only the geysers and hot springs remind us that there is a huge volcano under the beautiful scenery. Just 600,000 years ago a huge eruption filled the area with lava flows. After the enormous eruption there was a void under the top of the volcano. The weight of the volcano caused the top to come crashing down forming the large Caldera in the park. Since the hot spot remains active, another giant eruption will almost certainly occur. The question is, when?

A new cycle of volcanic activity has begun. The number and strength of earthquakes have increased; new hot springs have appeared and existing ones have grown. A large area to the northeast of Yellowstone Lake has uplifted. Will it erupt again? If so, when? How much damage will it cause?

Not until the thermal imaging units were installed in satellites in the nineties was the scientific community aware that calderas existed. They were simply too large to be seen with the naked eye or any known instruments before that time. It was then that the vast size of the Yellowstone caldera became apparent. On the order of 600 miles by 400 miles scientists were stunned by the magnitude of the forces it contained.

Imagine one of those Betty Crocker dinners. You pour a packet of vegetables into the Pyrex then you dump a can of gravy on it. Then you spoon dollops of gooey dough on top of that, then into the oven at three-fifty for an hour. When its done you have a crispy roof over a boiling vat of gruel. If you poke a hole through the roof the gruel will ooze up from below. This is a Caldera.

The earth is seven-tenths water so it is in keeping that most of the worlds Caldera's are underwater. The largest known Caldera is located approximately four thousand miles west of California in the center of the Pacific ocean and it is called Panthea. Less than one hundred feet below the surface of the sea bottom the temperature of Panthea is estimated at over eight thousand degrees. Steam regulary is emitted from hundreds of surface orifices over Panthea and the surface is constantly moving.

Panthea is estimated to be over two hundred and fifty miles in depth and nine hundred miles in diameter, the largest of all Calderas. Tied to the San Andreas fault on the United States western seaboard Panthea is considered the origin for most of the seismic activity in this region as well as in Alaska and eastern Asia including Japan, China.

Recent readings of Panthea's core temperatures indicate that changes are occuring as the surrounding waters escalate in temperature. Biologists are plotting computer models to try to determine what the ripple effect will be if the caldera roof would collapse due to liquification. The first sign would be Richter machines going off the scale, on the order of fifteen point oh. This alone would disturb the very mantle of the earth itself.

Second, the collapse in volume of the earths surface, the ceiling of the caldera, would cause huge tension release within the oceans body. Think of a large plate of spaghetti with suddenly no plate. When the structure of the ocean floor itself is removed, it is not clear what exactly will happen in other parts of the world.

Suddenly the oceans water would sweep into the new void created by the caldera. This water must come from somewhere, it would come from everywhere simultaneously. Like pouring cold coffee down the kitchen sink. Gone.

The level of the seas would drop six feet in a matter of minutes and coastlines would be scrubbed as massive volumes of seawater were pulled toward the void. Millions of people worldwide would be swept along with the rushing seas. Entire cities would vanish, coastlines too would no longer exist.

Pantheon is roughly the size of the Gulf of Mexico, but two hundred and fifty miles deep. This space would consume large amounts of both the Pacific and Atlantic oceans. In hours the level of the worlds oceans would drop more than 100 feet. Icebergs in the Arctic sea would topple as they touched the sea bed, the Mediterranean sea would be dry. Hydrostatic vacuum would cause all buildings on all coasts to collapse.

As trillions of gallons of seawater drain into the gaping boiling Panthea the water will be instantly heated to eight thousand degrees creating a gaseous explosive mixture of thousands of chemicals simultaneously. The blowback from this will shower the stratosphere worldwide.

Matt Rense is a thirty four year old construction superintendent who lives in the town of Crystal Bay outside Chesapeake, Virginia with his wife Sarah and their two kids Jarrod and Sensia, ages 10 and 8. Sarah is a teacher in a private school named Colloquial First where their kids attend. Matt has a past time as an Ultralight pilot and this may be the key to evacuating his family to safe ground further inland from the coast of their home as pandemonium reigns all around them.

Posted by: ghostsniper at June 11, 2015 6:36 PM

In high school, 45 years ago, a hard case English teacher made me memorize the Rime of the Ancient Mariner. I can still spout large chunks of it.

Thanks for the flashback.

Posted by: Fred Z at June 12, 2015 7:34 AM


Another reason to pass on that swim:


Posted by: Don Rodrigo at June 12, 2015 12:39 PM

gs, thanks for a helluva discourse on Mother Nature's nature. Keep them coming.

Posted by: Howard Nelson at June 12, 2015 3:15 PM

The magnetic poles flip every so often and we don’t even remark on it. Earth’s axis is tilting ever so slowly but certainly, a degree at a time.
Our circumference varies like hemlines. I tell ya, we’re out of whack. The planet is also losing weight. Hard to see but all that metal we been sending up into space does not return.
I know the water is in a closed loop but even so a couple drops here and there, it adds up.

Besides, I’m already furlongs ahead of the game by contemplating the weight loss or gain of our solar system.
I tell ya, this could turn out, eclipse global warming. How’s your helium footprint?

Nine out of ten international experts agree that “Helium, on the other hand, is a different matter. It represents 0.00052% of the volume in our atmosphere, but it's mainly harvested from natural gas using a process called fractional distillation. Helium is becoming scarce in our planet.”

The tenth international expert says: “This planet isn't losing weight. The infall of meteor dust is considerable, forgotten long ago how much, but some very large number of tons per year. It could be in the millions. Maybe even thousands. Who knows, hundreds could be involved.”
*It should be noted that this expert is of the old school, only endorses that which he thought of first.

There are strong arguments for the Earth actually losing weight. This article is one of many that describe several possible causes and concludes that specific elements leaving Earth’s atmosphere will cause weight loss. If I were playing the stocks and commodity markets I would buy shares in helium companies or support research that would allow us to split an atom or two and create more of the stuff.

Posted by: chasmatic at June 12, 2015 8:02 PM

American Digest is the best damn school on the interwebs.

Posted by: Jewel at June 12, 2015 9:13 PM

Gracious as always Jewel.
My uncle Letsgo told me if I ever helped anybody it would probably be by accident.

Posted by: chasmatic at June 13, 2015 11:20 PM

The water problem has California baffled. Why can't they just go to the store and buy more like everybody else?
All the experts at Cal Tech and the Silicon valley ought to be able, find a way to tap into these reservoirs.
A huge source of water can be found just west of Cali.

I know, why don't they buy water from China?

Posted by: chasmatic at June 14, 2015 11:38 AM