Title: Is there a nuclear reactor at the center of the Earth?

R.D.Schuiling
Inst.Geosciences
PO Box 80021, 3508 TA Utrecht, The Netherlands
schuiling@geo.uu.nl

Abstract: M.Herndon, in a series of papers, has proposed that a nuclear reactor is operating at the center of the Earth. Part of his hypothesis is based on the idea that the composition of the Earth is not, as usually assumed, essentially chondritic, but has a more reduced composition comparable to enstatite chondrites. The small amount of uranium in the molten metal will, probably in the form of a uranium sulfide, migrate to the center of the core. Herndon also assumes that there is a need for an extra heat source, as the total heat leaving the core is stated to be more than can be accounted for by "classical" heat sources.

In this contribution we will review the different hypotheses by comparing the formation and composition of the Earth as commonly assumed with Herndon's model Earth, and seek to answer the question whether nuclear georeactors at the Earth's center are plausible, or at least possible.