BEIJING - The world"s highest mountain is currently officially a small higher, and also that can not it is in the finish of the story. China and Nepal i agree this mainly on a brand-new standard elevation for mount Everest, the rough Himalayan height that straddles their border. As critical as the sounds, geology changes, the complex business of measuring a mountain and varying criteria for determining the world"s greatest peak will likely ensure the concern isn"t settled for good.

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GEOLOGICAL UPS and also DOWNSThe mountain"s elevation changes. The movement of tectonic plates can lift it up ever so gradually, if earthquakes can carry it down. The countervailing pressures may aid maintain a degree of stability over time, stated Dang Yamin, a member that a Chinese team that surveyed Everest"s height previously this year. "Nature has tendency to strike a balance," the told the main Xinhua News Agency. Together an example, Dang cited a massive 1934 earthquake the wiped out 150 year of steady elevation increase in a couple of moments. MEASURING MOUNTAINS There"s more than one way to measure up a mountain. Critical year, a Nepalese team collection up a satellite navigation marker on Everest"s optimal to gauge its specific position via gps satellites. A Chinese team took on a comparable mission this spring, despite it supplied the Chinese-made Beidou constellation of navigating satellites, in addition to other equipment. in ~ the same time, Nepalese crews took dimensions with modern, laser-equipped version of instruments dubbed theodolites, an initial used to gauge the mountain"s height in 1856 by measure up angles utilizing trigonometry. The Nepalese team additionally used ground penetrating radar to measure up the quantity of snow and ice the sits on peak of its greatest rock.

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AND THE prize IS... China and also Nepal together presented a new official figure of 8,848.86 meter (29,031.69 feet) above sea level. The two had diverged because that years end the mountain"s actual height. The brand-new height is 0.86 meters (more than 2 feet) above the greater of the countries" 2 previous figures, that offered by Nepal. The covenant announced Tuesday was heralded together a authorize of the growing political, financial and social ties in between them. Measuring the height over sea level has constantly been tricky since ocean levels vary significantly depending ~ above tides, magnetism and also other factors. Climbing sea levels space creating one more factor for future measurements. HAWAII"S UNDERWATER GIANT how high over sea level is just one method of measuring a mountain"s height. One reason Everest wins the prize is that its base sit high increase on currently lofty foothills. as measured indigenous the Earth"s core, Ecuador"s mountain Chimborazo is the world"s highest, standing much more than 2,072 meter (6,800 feet) over Everest. Because the earth bulges in the middle, mountains along the equator space farther native the core. Measuring native the foot that the hill to the peak, Hawaii"s Mauna Kea is the tallest. Most of it, however, is under the sea.