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uestion of Marc (01.30.2023)
: How many grains of sand are there on earth?
7.5 trillion grains of sand on Earth, can you believe it?
That's the incredible discovery of Professor Howard C. McAllister of the University of Hawaii. He established this number by using a complex mathematical formula based on kilometers of shoreline, beach depths and average sand grain size.
But Eric Chaumillon, a researcher at the University of La Rochelle, has a different estimate - 200 billion billion billion grains of sand.
How exactly did they make their calculation?
- The first started from the principle that there were 200,000 km of shoreline in the world and that a quarter of them were covered with sand, that the beaches were on average 30 meters long and 5 meters deep, based on a volume of 1mm3 occupied for 1 grain of sand. That is 7 500 000 000 000 000 000 grains of sand (7.5 x 10^18)
- The second one is based on the total volume of sand representing 1% of the Earth's crust, which is itself 1% of the volume of the Earth. That is 200 000 000 000 000 000 000 000 000 grains of sand (2 x 10^26).
This second calculation is also true because the first one does not take into account deserts such as the Sahara. The latter is the largest non-polar desert in the world and covers more than 9,000,000 kmē of North Africa, but most of its surface is a hamada or rocky plateau. The dune fields of the Sahara cover only about 15% of the total desert surface...
What is the real number? That's for you to decide. The world is full of fascinating mathematical puzzles that leave us speechless.
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