Kemikali inayounda sehemu ya ndani ya dunia

Wanasayansi nchini Japan wanasema wametambua kemikali ambayo inaunda sehemu ya ndani kabisa ya dunia.

Kemikali hiyo imekuwa ikitafutwa kwa miaka mingi, na inaaminika kuwa sehemu kubwa ya kitovu cha sayari ya dunia, baada ya madini ya chuma na nikeli.

Sasa, kwa kuunda mazingira yenye viwango vya juu sana vya joto na shinikizo sawa na ya sehemu ya ndani kabisa ya dunia, wanasayansi hao wamefanya utafiti ambao unaashiria huenda kemikali hiyo ni silikoni.

Ugunduzi huo huenda ukawasaidia wanasayansi katika kutambua ni jinsi gani dunia iliumbwa.

Mtafiti mkuu Eiji Ohtani, anayetoka chuo kikuu cha Tokyo ameambia BBC kwamba: “Tunaamini kwamba silicon ni sehemu kuu – karibu 5% (ya sehemu ya ndani kabisa ya dunia) kwa uzani huenda ikawa inajumuisha silicon ambayo imo ndani ya mchanganyiko wa chuma na nikeli.”

Unaweza kufikia sehemu hiyo?

Sehemu ya ndani kabisa ya dunia inaaminika kuwa sehemu ngumu ya mduara ambayo ina nusu kipenyo cha takriban kilomita 1,200.

Lakini ni mbali sana na kwa teknolojia ya sasa wanasayansi hawawezi kufikia huko kuchunguza.

Badala yake, wanasayansi hufanya utafiti kwa kuchunguza jinsi mawimbi ya mitetemeko ndani ya ardhi kukadiria yaliyomo.

Kutokana na uchunguzi wa muda mrefu, imebainika kwamba asilimia 85% ya sehemu hiyo kwa uzito ni chuma, na nikeli ni 10%.

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Haikujulikana ni kemikali gani inayounda sehemu ya uzani wa 5%, lakini sasa wanasayansi hao kutoka Japan wanasema huenda ni silikoni.

Prof Simon Redfern wa chuo kikuu cha Cambridge, Uingereza anasema: “Utafiti huu huwa mgumu lakini wa kusisimua sana kwani unaweza kutoa vidokezo vya jinsi sehemu ya ndani kabisa ya dunia ilikuwa baada ya kuundwa kwa dunia miaka bilioni nne unusu iliyopita, sehemu hiyo ya ndani kabisa ilipoanza kujitenga na maeneo ya nje ya dunia.

“Lakini wapo watafiti wengine waliodokeza kwamba huenda oksijeni ikawa moja ya viungo muhimu katika sehemu hiyo ya ndani.”

Prof Redfern anasema kufahamika kwa hilo kutasaidia wanasayansi kuelewa mazingira yaliyokuwepo wakati wa kuundwa kwa dunia.

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