Brain Post: Which Mountain’s Summit is Furthest from the Center of the Earth?

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Chimborazo, the mountain furthest from the center of Earth
Chimborazo, 20,564’, the mountain furthest from the center of Earth

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We all know which mountain is the highest above mean sea level:  Mt. Everest at 29,028 feet above sea level.

Earth'ss
Earth’s shape in an oblate spheroid = it’s diameter at the equator is larger than it’s diameter pole to pole.

 

Not many know which mountain is furthest from the center of the Earth.  To understand the idea behind this, we have to understand that the Earth is not a perfect sphere.  The Earth is actually bulging along the Equator and flatter at the poles.  This is caused by the spinning of the Earth on it’s axis (as the Earth rotates, centrifugal force is greatest at the equator so it causes a slight outward bulge there, giving that region a larger circumference and diameter).  This type of shape is described as an oblate spheroid, or oblate ellipsoid.

an oblate shperoid
an oblate spheroid ↑

 

The equatorial diameter of Earth is 15 kilometers (9.3 miles) longer than the Earth’s pole to pole diameter.  Thus, a tall mountain right on the Equator would be much further from the center of the Earth than a tall mountain that is far from the Earth’s equator.

Chimborazo in Ecuator
Chimborazo in Ecuador

MOUNTAIN SUMMIT FURTHEST FROM THE CENTER OF THE EARTH:

– Chimborazo is located 1 degree south of the Equator in Ecuador

– Mt. Everest is at 28 degrees north of the Equator (see image below)

– Chimborazo’s Summit at 20,564’ above sea level

– Chimborazo is the mountain furthest from the Earth’s center

– There are several other Andean mountains that are further from the center of the Earth than Mt. Everest as well as Mt. Kilimanjaro in Africa

chimborazo-1

 

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