Introduction to Plate Tectonics Plate tectonics

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1 Quizlet Magnetic stripes along the seafloor are evidence for a) Earth s magnetic reversals b) Seafloor spreading c) Convection currents in the mantle d) Magnetite's ability to orient with a magnetic field Chapter 30: Plate Tectonics- A Model for How the Earth Works 1 2 Introduction to Plate Tectonics Plate tectonics Converge Plate tectonic model Types of plates /ocean Continental Types of boundaries / Converging Diverging Continent Transform / Diverge transform Plates are moving from 1-12 cm per year India: 12 cm per year, Africa: abt. 1 cm/year Distance between North America and Europe increasing about 2 cm/year

2 True or false: The asthenosphere is liquid. A. True B. False C. 90% false and 10% true Problems and answers P. How do s drift through rock? A. They don t. The s are frozen into the lithosphere. The s move with the large chunks of lithosphere called plates. P. Why doesn t the earth get bigger if new crust is being made? A. Part of the crust is pushed down into the asthenosphere where it melts. P. There isn t any force to make them move, is there? A. Yes, there is our good friend gravity The lithosphere is broken into about a dozen large plates (and some smaller ones) that float on asthenosphere 2. Convection currents in the asthenosphere move the plates (1 to 15 cm per year) 3. Gravitational and electromagnetic forces push the plates. 4. Energy comes from radioactive decay of atoms in upper mantle. Plate Margins 10 Divergent Plate Boundaries 1. ic spreading centers. - some volcanic activity (Iceland) - shallow, frequent, mild earthquakes - Hot, less dense ridge material floats higher on asthenosphere - sea floor forming - spreading - abyssal hills - abyssal plains - older rock & thicker sediment as you go away from ridge trench ridge trench 11

3 Divergent Plate Boundaries 2. Continental rift zone - shallow earthquakes and some volcanic activity - eventually a shallow sea - later -- an oceanic ridge (East Africa, Baja - al rifts in process) 13 Partial melting of peridotite in the mantle produces basalt. Why doesn t this process just produce more peridotite? 14 Continental rifts eventually become ocean ridges. Different mineral components in the peridotite melt at different T s What will happen if only a small fraction of the rock melts? Will the melted part have the same composition as the original rock? 15 Continental Rift Zone: East Africa/Red Sea Dead Sea, Red Sea, and Great Rift Valley form a new al spreading center Red Sea already submerged Thought question There are - and Continent- Continent divergent boundaries, so why aren t there any -ocean divergent plate boundaries? 17 18

4 Which type of rock is the most dense? A. Continental crust (granitic) B. ic crust (basaltic) C. Lake sediment D. Hot magma on the surface E. None of these When an oceanic and al plate collide, which should end up on top? A. The al plate B. The oceanic plate C. It is impossible to predict Which kind of plate boundary should produce the deepest earthquake foci? A. ic divergent boundary B. Continental divergent boundary C. Convergence of two al plates D. Convergence of an oceanic plate with a al plate 21 Convergent Plate Boundaries 1. Two oceanic plates more dense plate shoved below less dense plate Benioff or subduction zone formed Partial melting of subducting plate Earthquakes at different depths, severe Volcanic island arcs Trench 22 Convergent Plate Boundaries 2. ic plate and al plate The Cascade Range ic plate more dense Compresses and thickens al edge Volcanic Mountain chain - violent Fold mountain belt Earthquakes, trench ic crust destroyed (Nazca plate - West South America) 23 collision of Juan de Fuca (oceanic) plate with North American (al) plate which plate is being subducted? volcanism Mt. St. Helens, Mt. Rainier, etc. earthquakes 24

5 Convergent Plate Boundaries 3. Two al plates Why are they called folded mount belts? Would you expect volcanoes at this type of boundary? Why? Explain to a neighbor. initially some subduction, but it soon stops compresses and thickens al edges - suture zone fold mountain belts 25 Build-up of North America through time India is now a part of Asia. The Asian has grown Pieces added to western North America in the last 200 million years 29 Transform Faults 1. Transform faults connect segments of spreading centers. 2. They form the boundaries of plates moving past one another. -- The edge of a plate is not usually a straight line. 3. The San Andreas fault in California is a transform fault. -- The edge of California is on a different plate than the rest of the United States. 4. Strong, frequent, shallow earthquakes 30

6 Hot Spot Trails -island chains far from plate boundaries -assume hot spot does not move -as plate slides past, islands are formed -oldest - most eroded on far end of chain -date lava - measure absolute motion of plate -Hawaii, Yellowstone 35 36

7 Major Surface Features of the Earth Name that boundary. 37 Plate Tectonics Anywhere But Earth? Mars: shield volcanoes mark hot spots, but plates don t t appear to move planet too small, cooled quickly? Venus: couldn t see surface until recently new radar maps suggest many scattered volcanoes, but no hot spot trails surface too hot for hydrated minerals needed for tectonics? Why don t t we see tectonic features elsewhere? 38 Summary Plate Tectonics explains what is observed rift valleys, island arcs, fold mount belts, etc. Continents rest on large plates moved by convection forces Gravitation and electromagnetic Fueled by radioactivity in earth s core Features Convergent Plate Boundaries Divergent Boundaries Transform Faults Hot Spots 39 Summary: Plate Tectonics 40

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