Press B – Middle East Watch a new model showing how the Earth was organized as a supercontinent 2.8 million years ago! Now see the details.
Scientists have produced a new map of Earth’s plate tectonics showing organized continents like the first supercontinent, Valpara, which collapsed about 2.8 million years ago.
The team, led by the University of Adelaide, believes the updated model will help provide a better understanding of natural hazards such as earthquakes and volcanoes. Plate tectonics is the gradual drift of continents across the Earth’s surface that causes earthquakes and volcanoes.
Going back millions of years, scientists were able to include new microplates, such as the Macquarie Plate in southern Tasmania, and the Capricorn Microplate that separates the Indian and Australian plates.
Statement: This allowed them to better explain “the spatial distribution of 90% of earthquakes and 80% of volcanoes from the past two million years, while current models capture only 65% of earthquakes.”
To achieve these statistics, Hasrock and his team also added more precise information about the boundaries of the deformation zones: previous models showed these as discrete regions rather than large regions. But the newly demarcated border is much wider, about 1,500 km [932 ميلا], from the narrowed area previously drawn. The other big change is in Central Asia. The new model now includes all areas of deformation in northern India as the plate makes its way into Eurasia.
The last time the plate tectonic model was updated was in 2003.
The panel model can be used to improve risk models of geographic risks; Hasrock said that the phylogeny model helps to understand geodynamic systems and provide a better model of the Earth’s evolution, and the provincial model can be used to improve mineral exploration.
A separate study, published in 2019, supports the new model, finding that plate tectonics began forming about 2.5 billion years ago – shortly before the breakup of Valpara.
To assess when Earth’s plate tectonics set off, geologist Robert Holder of Johns Hopkins University in Baltimore and his colleagues studied metamorphic rocks from 564 sites around the world dating back 3 billion years. Metamorphic rocks are those that form when other types of rocks—those made of sediments or cooled by lava or magma—change either through extreme temperatures or pressures.
By analyzing these rocks, the team can determine the depths and temperatures at which they formed, and build a picture of the changing heat flow at different places across the Earth’s crust – and thus the plate tectonics that control it.
“Some geologists consider the Earth to have had plate tectonics throughout its four and a half billion years of existence,” the paper’s author and Curtin University geologist Tim Johnson said in a statement. Others argue that plate tectonics appeared suddenly about a billion years ago. Using a statistical analysis Simple to the temperature, pressure, and age of metamorphic rocks, we discovered that the movement of tectonic plates evolved gradually over the past 2.5 billion years as our planet slowly cooled.”
Source: Daily Mail
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Watching a new model showing how the Earth was organized
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