The Earth Is Humming

Our blue planet spins suspended in outer space—and it hums, too.

European researchers say the Earth’s incessant hum originates from the bottom of the ocean. This study, published in the journal Geophysical Research Letters in November, gleans material from ocean-bottom seismometer stations, contrasting with previous data from vibration tools based on land.

“It’s like taking a piano and slamming all the keys at the same time,” says Spahr Webb of Columbia University’s Earth Institute, who was not associated with the study. “Except they’re not nice harmonics. They’re oddball frequencies.”

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