Research Articles

The Inner Core Translational Triplet and the Density Near Earth's Center

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Science  27 Mar 1992:
Vol. 255, Issue 5052, pp. 1678-1682
DOI: 10.1126/science.255.5052.1678


Four long records from superconducting gravimeters yield evidence of the triplet of translational oscillations of the solid inner core about its central position. Calculations of core oscillation modes allow identification of the three translational resonances at periods of 3.5820 ± 0.0008, 3.7677 ± 0.0006, and 4.015 ± 0.001 hours by their rotational splitting. Each resonance is defined by approximately 20 successive spectral estimates. A new Earth model brings the computed periods into agreement with observation. It has a central density of 12.960 grams per cubic centimeter, inner core radius of 1221.1 kilometers, and a density jump at the inner core boundary of 0.407 grams per cubic centimeter.