7 amazing facts about our planet you probably didn't know about
There are many aspects about the 'blue marble' or Earth as we know it that will mesmerise you. US Space Agency NASA recently shared some of these hitherto unknown facts about our planet. Let's see how many you are familiar with.
NASA says that the Earth has a solid inner core that is almost as hot as the surface of the Sun. Earth's core gets as hot as 9,800 degrees Fahrenheit while the surface of the Sun is about 10,000 degrees Fahrenheit
NASA says that dust from the Sahara fertilizes the Amazon rainforest. 27.7 million tons blow all the way across the Atlantic Ocean to the rainforest each year where it brings phosphorus -- a nutrient plants need to grow.
According to NASA, ice in Antarctica looks solid and still, but it is actually flowing. In some places, it flows so fast that scientific instruments can move as much as a kilometer a year.
NASA also says that ice shelves in Antarctica can be as big as Texas. Because they float, they rise and fall with the tide. Floating ice as big as Texas, attached to the Antarctic Ice Sheet, can rise and fall up to 26 feet!
Did you know that melting ice on land makes its way to the ocean. As polar glaciers melt, the water sloshes to the equator and which can actually slow the spin of the Earth.
Here's another amazing fact. Even though it looks flat, the ocean is not level. The surface has peaks and valleys and varies due to changes in height of the land below, winds, temperature, saltiness, atmospheric pressure, ocean circulation, and other factors.
According to NASA, 2020 was the hottest year on record, effectively tying 2016, the previous record. Overall, Earth's average temperature has risen more than 2 degrees Fahrenheit since the 1880s. The effects of rising temperatures are felt around the world.