Nobody downloaded yet

Plate Tectonics - Research Paper Example

Comments (0) Cite this document
Summary
According to plate tectonics geological concept, Earth's lithosphere consists of plates that are in motion with respect to one another. The motion of continents, called continental drift, occurs with the movement of the lithospheric plates. Conceptual development of contemporary plate tectonics theory came as a result of scientific debate between advocates of stationary continents theory and theory of continental drift…
Download full paperFile format: .doc, available for editing
GRAB THE BEST PAPER98.2% of users find it useful
Plate Tectonics
Read TextPreview

Extract of sample "Plate Tectonics"

Download file to see previous pages is composed of plates that are in motion with respect to one another and that the majority of the deformation associated with this motion is concentrated along the plate boundaries (Fichter, 2000). Back in 1968, Morgain provided an explanation that plate tectonics constitutes "a kinematic model which describes the relative motion between the rigid plates that make up the outer shell of Earth" (Morgan, 73). Practically, the relative motion between the plates is accommodated by seafloor spreading and the creation of new plates at ocean ridges, subduction of the surface plate at ocean trenches, and strike-slip motion at transform faults which allows plate motion without creating or removing surface plates. The motion of the continents is facilitated by the movement of the lithospheric plates, and this transport of the continents is referred to as continental drift. Plate tectonics on Earth has been determined to have been in operation for at least two billion years and may well have been in operation much earlier (Cawood et al., 5).
theory, with its collisional orogenies and other episodic events, was in some wise dependent or interdependent upon "new catastrophism." That is, though plate tectonics largely relies upon uniformitarianism as a basis of understanding plate motion and subsurface processes, it nevertheless proffers catastrophes and other episodic events that proceed at rates greater than those existing between events. Examples include mountain building, various volcanic processes, and sea-level change resulting from mid-oceanic ridge formation. Between 1908 and 1912, Frank B. Taylor, American geologist, and Alfred Wegener, a German meteorologist and astronomer, working independently, proposed the idea that the continents were not fixed on the surface of the Earth but were slowly moving about. One point of Taylor's argument was that continental drift was needed to account for the folding and compression of the Alps and the Himalayas. Wegener was more influenced by the rough parallelism between the opposing shores of the Atlantic and by evidence of climatic changes through geological time. Later Wegener proposed that all the Earth's land area was at one time "united in a single primordial supercontinent, which he named Pangaea, from Greek meaning 'all land" (Hallam, 93). The continents had shifted, becoming increasingly separated through millions of years. He believed that the continent were made up of light-weight granitic rocks, which like giant ships driven through the heavier basaltic seas (Hallam, 95). Wegener looked upon the continents as flexible masses instead of rigid plates. Some of his work was in error, for example, the amount of time involved in continental drift.
Alfred Wegener established a tradition in geology and geophysics, according to which further development of theory of plate tectonics has been formed within the scientific debate over the ideas of stationary continents and continental drift. For instance, Hallam commented that "interpretation of how science ...Download file to see next pagesRead More
Cite this document
  • APA
  • MLA
  • CHICAGO
(“Plate Tectonics Research Paper Example | Topics and Well Written Essays - 1250 words”, n.d.)
Retrieved from https://studentshare.org/miscellaneous/1525648-plate-tectonics
(Plate Tectonics Research Paper Example | Topics and Well Written Essays - 1250 Words)
https://studentshare.org/miscellaneous/1525648-plate-tectonics.
“Plate Tectonics Research Paper Example | Topics and Well Written Essays - 1250 Words”, n.d. https://studentshare.org/miscellaneous/1525648-plate-tectonics.
  • Cited: 0 times
Comments (0)
Click to create a comment or rate a document

CHECK THESE SAMPLES OF Plate Tectonics

Natural Catastrophes Caused by Plate Tectonics

...?RUNNING HEAD: PLATE TECTONICS Plate Tectonics                                 Alfred Wegener’s Theory (Continental Drift, Evidence) In order to explain the origin and formation of the continents, German geophysicist Alfred Wegener proposed in 1912 an explanation for this: the Continental Drift Theory. The theory states that “the continents had once been joined, and over time had drifted apart in a giant supercontinent called Pangaea.” (Sant, 2010; “Tectonic Plates,” 2011) One of the proofs of the theory is the jigsaw fit that the continents make with those adjacent to it. Another proof of the theory is that coal deposits usually...
3 Pages(750 words)Essay

A close reading of Life is a dream by Pedro Calderon De La Barca

4 Pages(1000 words)Essay

Plate Tectonics

...?Plate Tectonics In 1915, Alfred Wegener, a German geophysicist, published his Theory of Continental Drift to answer why similar plant fossils and geological features were found on either side of the Atlantic. However, Wegener was unable to explain the mechanism that allowed land masses to move and his theory was discredited by his peers. It was not until the 1960s that scientists were able to explain the mechanism, finally answering Wegener's problem, which was that solid continental and oceanic plates floated on a molten rock bed. This became known as Plate Tectonic Theory and has become widely accepted by geologists. This paper explores both Wegener's theory and Plate Tectonic Theory, explaining how the Earth's land masses move... and the...
3 Pages(750 words)Essay

Plate Tectonics and Weathering and Erosion

...?Plate Tectonics Examining modern scientific and technological level of development, it may seem that human potential is boundless and there is absolutely nothing what a person can not overcome. However, watching daily morning news about various and regular acts of God, you start to realize that there is at least one thing for sure that is able to obliterate all humanity. It is all about the nature. For comprehending the significance and power of natural disasters, it is quite enough to recollect the nine-magnitude earthquake that has happened in Japan this year. Hundreds of people were killed, millions of buildings and houses were destroyed, and thousands of victims were left without shelters or any...
2 Pages(500 words)Essay

Plate tectonics

...Jerry Ciacho May 12, Three Types of Convergent Plate Boundaries Tectonic plates are changing the world all the time. They influence the Earth’s crust’s movement unremittingly. Many factors continue to shift and modify the surface of the Earth and all of us, even though we might not always notice it, are constantly affected by the shifting and the repositioning of the plates that are located underground. One movement affects the other and according to the American Musem of Natural History, “it [Earth’s crust] is made up of thick, interconnecting pieces called tectonic plates that fit together like a puzzle.” All the plates...
2 Pages(500 words)Essay

Geology-Plate tectonics

...-oceanic ridge.  Convergent boundaries: Also known as destructive plate boundary is a subduction. It is a deforming region in which two tectonic plates (or lithosphere fragments) move towards each other. Due to collision and friction, mantle heats up and melts plates. This activity is accompanied by earthquakes and volcanoes. Himalayan structure was formed as a result of convergent boundaries. Oceanic-Continental: During this activity an oceanic plate collides with less-dense continental plate. As a result of greater buoyancy of continental plate, the oceanic plate gets thrust underneath the former...
1 Pages(250 words)Assignment

Plate tectonics and geodynamics

... Where does partial melting occur and how do melts reach the magma chamber? Where partial melting occurs Partial melting refers toa process by which a rock does not melt completely. Instead, it is only some part of the parent rock that undergoes the process of melting, producing a hot semi-liquid solution called magma (Best, 2009 p25). The process of partial melting end-up forming rocks that have different composition from their parent rock, since the magma formed during partial melting is less viscous, thus attracts other components which cause it to solidify and form different rocks (Annen & Zellmer, 2008 p49). Rocks are formed of different mineral components, which have different melting points. Therefore, such components... Where does...
2 Pages(500 words)Essay

Plate Tectonics

...Plate Tectonic Theory The plate tectonic theory serves as a reliable explanation to the features evident on the earths surface today. Some of the features observed are the continents, ocean bases, mountains, and earthquakes. Although the theory emerged in 1915, its acceptance occurred in the 1960s. Evidently, over this period, many scientists have focused on explaining how the movement of plates has given rise to many of the geographical features. The paper shall discuss the history of tectonic plate theory, and discuss three geologic features. The three features under analysis in this paper are the Himalayan belt of...
3 Pages(750 words)Essay

Plate tectonics (earthquakes and volcanoes)

...Plate tectonics (earthquakes and volcanoes) Introduction Plate tectonics refers to the theory that earth’s outer layer comprising of plates, which have moved throughout the earth’s background information. The theory reveals on the knowhow behind mountains, volcanoes and earthquakes in ancient times as well as currently. It tells that similar animals may have lived at the same time on what is currently classified as separate continents. The Earth probably would not be recognized 225 million years ago. During that time, all major continents formed one giant supercontinent called Pangaea. Moreover, due the heat that built underneath the vast continent...
2 Pages(500 words)Essay

Plate Tectonics

...Earth and Space Sciences Science is predictable: Continental drift suggested continents had moved in the past Plate Tectonics- It has been established that the earth’s crustal plates are in a constant horizontal motion (Young, Greg p. 14). This motion is attributable to the continental drift. It is now homogeneously agreed that the earth’s lithosphere is in constant movement. The numerous studies of the earth’s layers indicate that plate tectonic events (earthquakes) can be predicted. Science should be testable Plate tectonics- The earth is layered. These layers interact differently. Plate...
1 Pages(250 words)Assignment
sponsored ads
We use cookies to create the best experience for you. Keep on browsing if you are OK with that, or find out how to manage cookies.

Let us find you another Research Paper on topic Plate Tectonics for FREE!

Contact Us