Internal structure of the Earth

Over time, scientists have been in charge of finding out how the Earth is formed and this has led to the emergence of different methods to be able to analyze and study its layers and components . Our planet is made up of a large number of rocks and is separated in its internal part by different types of mantles, for this reason it is said that it is separated in its internal part by various species of rocky materials. There are three layers that make up the internal structure of the Earth : the crust , the mantle and the core .

What is the internal structure of the Earth?

The internal structure of the Earth refers to the different concentric layers that form the terrestrial structure in which the elements that make up the planet itself alternate .

  • Characteristics of the internal structure of the Earth
  • Physical properties
  • Chemical properties
  • Layers
  • Geochemical Model
  • Dynamic model
  • Components of the internal structure of the Earth
  • Importance

Characteristics of the internal structure of the Earth

The internal structure of the earth is made up of three important layers, each one with its respective characteristics , properties and compositions . All its layers have an important intervention in terms of the processes that occur on the planet, for example, the presence of earthquakes. One way to characterize it would be to compare it with the skin of an onion, when one is removed immediately a new one appears. The layers also possess important and unique chemical and geological properties, including significant changes in temperature and pressure .

Physical properties

When it comes to the physical properties of the internal structure, it talks about the properties of rocks , solids and liquids that can be found in each one of them. Regarding the physical properties, the structure could be divided into several parts that include an inner core, an outer core, the mesosphere , asthenosphere and finally the lithosphere .

Among its main characteristics are the presence of solid and liquid iron, the presence of compressed rocks controlled by pressure and temperature, rocks with little force, weak and easy to deform, and in other places cold, stronger and stronger rocks can be found. rigid.

Chemical properties

Chemical properties with measurements depending on how the rocks can change their density . Its core is characterized by being more dense and is composed mainly of metallic iron , nickel and other elements. In the mantle we find iron and magnesium silicates , they have a lower density and the crust has a type of granite composition .


For differences the layers of the internal structure of the Earth have been established and used two different models. Each of them has a different subdivision, however, some of them also have many similarities in terms of characteristics.

Geochemical Model

According to the geochemical model the layers of the internal structure of the Earth are grouped depending on their seismic discontinuities. In this way, this model divides it as follows:

  • Crust : it is the layer that is located more externally, it is thin and in it tectonic movements are formed that are responsible for carrying out the different external geological processes. There are two types of crust, the oceanic one where there are ridges , abyssal plains and trenches ; and the continental crust , which is thicker and is made up of different sedimentary and igneous rocks . The latter is older and contains cratons and orogens.
  • Mantle : it is located between the core and the crust. Formed by rocks high in levels of silicate and magnesium and its rocks vary depending on temperature and pressure. It can be subdivided into upper and lower mantle.
  • Nucleus : it is considered the innermost part of the Earth and is made up mainly of nickel , sulfur and oxygen . It is divided into internal and external, the latter is the place where convection currents are formed that cause the presence of a magnetic field on the planet.

Dynamic model

This type of model is based mainly on the physical state that can be found in the different layers of the earth and on the mechanical properties that arise in the presence of pressures and temperatures which can alter the density and the state in which they are found. materials inside the Earth. This model divides the planet depending on its discontinuities , which are established through seismic studies, in such a way that the following layers can be found:

  • Lithosphere : this layer is made up of the oceanic and continental crust . It is the part that is located more superiorly and is divided into lithospheric plates in which geological phenomena such as volcanism and seismicity occur . In it, horizontal movements such as plate tectonics or vertical movements can occur, such as isostatic adjustments of the Earth.
  • Mesosphere : it is located below the lithosphere, its state is solid but it also has plasticity which allows it to flow. In it convection currents are formed that make the tectonic plates move.
  • Endosphere : this is the part that is more internally in the Earth, its temperatures are very high generating convection currents that cause the planet’s magnetic field.

Components of the internal structure of the Earth

There are several types of components that can be found throughout the internal structure of the Earth. Depending on the place these can vary considerably and in some places the same types of materials are usually found. In the case of oceanic crusts, you can find mainly granite and basalt rocks , which originate from lava that cools very quickly.

In the mantle, large amounts of solid rock known as peridotite , which is a combination of iron and magnesium silicate , are mainly located . Other types of rock such as calcium titanate can also be found . Finally, components such as cast iron , iron and nickel alloys can be found in the core . It is also common to find other types of components such as water, ammonia, methane, helium, hydrogen, iron sulfide, nitrogen and carbon dioxide.


The internal structure of the Earth is of utmost importance mainly because without it, it would not be possible for the planet to host animal or human life . Thanks to this structure, it is that the earth has the ability to generate terrestrial magnetic currents which makes the planet habitable, without it, it would not be possible to protect ourselves from the intense heat produced by the sun , we would have to face the solar winds and the most particles floating in space would collide with the planet. It also plays a vital role in providing space protection for those who travel to space while allowing off-planet exploration.

It is important because in it you can find a large number of elements that are essential for life such as calcium, potassium, magnesium, oxygen and other vital elements. It is in the internal structure where minerals and rocks are produced, as well as other elements of great importance for life, such as oil. Many of the movements that shape the earth’s crust take place in the internal structure, without them, it would have been impossible for the continents to separate to give rise to the world we know today.

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