Presentation on theme: "Continental Drift and Plate Tectonics"— Presentation transcript:
1 Continental Drift and Plate Tectonics Birth of a TheoryContinental Drift and Plate Tectonics
2 Wegener’s HypothesisAlfred Wegener proposed that all the continents were once joined together in a single super continent called Pangaea.He proposed that it began to break apart around 200 million years ago.This is the continental drift hypothesis
4 Evidence for his theory Continental PuzzleFossil evidence of several organisms of the same species on different landmasses.( Glossopteris Fern, Mesosaurus Reptile)Rock types and structuresAnd climate evidence.
6 Problems with his theory Couldn’t provide a mechanism for how the continents moved.
7 A new TheoryPlate Tectonic theory- says the earth is made up of rigid plates that contain the crust and upper mantle also known as the lithosphere moving long the asthenosphere.Lithosphere- the crust and upper mantleAsthenosphere- Plastic like layer of mantle beneath the crust
8 Plate BoundariesDivergent boundaries (also called spreading centers) are the place where two plates move apart.Convergent boundaries form where two plates move together.Transform fault boundaries are margins where two plates grind past each other without the production or destruction of the lithosphere.
10 Evidence for Plate Tectonics Mid-Ocean ridges and rift valleys that cause sea floor spreading provided a mechanism for the plate tectonic theory.Seafloor spreading process that produces new oceanic lithosphere.subduction zone occurs when one oceanic plate is forced down into the mantle beneath a second plate.
13 Convergent Plate Boundaries Oceanic-Continental-Continental volcanic arcs form in part by volcanic activity caused by the subduction of oceanic lithosphere beneath a continent.Examples include the Andes, Cascades, and the Sierra Nevadas
20 FaultsNormal faults occur when the hanging wall block moves down relative to the footwall block.Reverse faults are faults in which the hanging wall block moves up relative to the footwall block.Reverse Thrust faults are reverse faults in which hanging wall moves up and over the footwall.Strike-slip faults are faults in which the movement is horizontal and parallel to the trend, or strike, of the fault surface.
22 Earthquakesearthquake is the vibration of Earth produced by the rapid release of energyFocus is the point within Earth where the earthquake starts.Epicenter is the location on the surface directly above the focusFaults are fractures in Earth where movement has occurred
25 Cause of EarthquakesMost earthquakes are produced by the rapid release of elastic energy stored in rock that has been subjected to great forces.When the strength of the rock is exceeded, it suddenly breaks, causing the vibrations of an earthquake.
27 Earthquakes cont.An aftershock is a small earthquake that follows the main earthquake.A foreshock is a small earthquake that often precedes a major earthquake
28 Earthquake WavesSeismographs are instruments that record earthquake waves.Seismograms are traces of amplified, electronically recorded ground motion made by seismographsSurface waves are seismic waves that travel along Earth’s outer layer.
31 Earthquake Waves cont.P waves- push-pull waves that push (compress) and pull (expand) in the direction that the waves travel.Travel through solids, liquids, and gasesTravel the fastest
32 Earthquake Waves Cont.S waves-Seismic waves that travel along Earth’s outer layer.Shake particles at right angles to the direction that they travel.Travel only through solidsSlower velocity than P waves
35 Richter Scale Based on the amplitude of the largest seismic wave Each unit of Richter magnitude equates to roughly a 32-fold energy increaseDoes not estimate adequately the size of very large earthquakes
36 Momentum MagnitudeDerived from the amount of displacement that occurs along the fault zoneMoment magnitude is the most widely used measurement for earthquakes because it is the only magnitude scale that estimates the energy released by earthquakesMeasures very large earthquakes
39 Volcanoes Factors that determine the violence of an eruption Composition of the magmaTemperature of the magmaDissolved gases in the magmaViscosity is the measure of a material's resistance to flow.
40 Factors affecting Eruptions Temperature (hotter magmas are less viscous)Composition (silica contentGasesA vent is an opening in the surface of Earth through which molten rock and gases are released.
44 Volcanic MaterialsPyroclastic materials is the name given to particles produced in volcanic eruptions.Types of pyroclastic materialAsh and Dust- very fine in sizedCinders- Pea SizedBombs- large sized
45 Types of VolcanoesShield volcanoes are broad, gently sloping volcanoes built from fluid basaltic lavasCinder cones are small volcanoes built primarily of pyroclastic material ejected from a single vent.Composite cones are volcanoes composed of both lava flows and pyroclastic materialMost violent type of activity