Tag Archives: plate tectonics

Watch the break up of Pangea!

Geoscientists have created a short video showing the break-up of the giant continent Pangea, beginning 187 million years ago and showing the changes in million year increments.

It is very cool to watch today’s continents slowly come into view. Make sure especially that you watch India as it suddenly starts to fly north at a relatively fast speed to smash into Asia.

A UCLA scientist is proposing that the largest canyon on Mars was formed by plate tectonics

A UCLA scientist is proposing that Valles Marineris — the largest canyon on Mars and the solar system, was formed by plate tectonics.

“In the beginning, I did not expect plate tectonics, but the more I studied it, the more I realized Mars is so different from what other scientists anticipated,” Yin said. “I saw that the idea that it is just a big crack that opened up is incorrect. It is really a plate boundary, with horizontal motion. That is kind of shocking, but the evidence is quite clear. The shell is broken and is moving horizontally over a long distance. It is very similar to the Earth’s Dead Sea fault system, which has also opened up and is moving horizontally.”

The two plates divided by Mars’ Valles Marineris have moved approximately 93 miles horizontally relative to each other, Yin said. California’s San Andreas Fault, which is over the intersection of two plates, has moved about twice as much — but the Earth is about twice the size of Mars, so Yin said they are comparable.