Tricky Mantle: Intact Pocket of Ancient Earth May Have Escaped Mixing for 4.5 Billion Years

12 Aug

An analysis of isotopes in Arctic basalts indicates that the rocks may originate from a reservoir of ancient mantle that has avoided being recycled in the planet's active interior since Earth's infancy. The survival of such primitive samples from shortly after the formation of Earth, some 4.5 billion years ago, could provide important clues to the planet's composition and early geophysical history. [More]