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Published by: Tom Burge on Feb 20, 2012
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EATH AND ENVIORMENTAL SCIENCE STUDY NOTES
9.2 TECTOIC IMACTS
:
1. LITHOSPHERIC PLATES AND THEIRMOTION
 
Lithosphere-Outer layer of the Earth.Includes-continental crust/Oceanic crust/the upper mantle.Lies layer of the earth-asthenosphere.Not a uniform layer all around the globe.It consists of a series of plates-lithospheric platesRide/move relative to each other on the partially molten asthenosphere.Created-mid-oceanic ridges/destroyed-subduction zones.
Describe The Characteristics Of Lithospheric Plates
U
pper layer of each plate-composed of crustCrust-either continental crust/oceanic crust.Continental crust-relatively less dense rock (granite).Oceanic crust-more dense rock (basalt).Oceanic crust carries sediments deposited on the oceanic floor.Some-just oceanic crust.Others-oceanic crust/some continental crust.Oceanic crust-thin-usally-5-10 Km.Continental crust-usally25-50 Km.
y
 
U
nder large mountain ranges-can be over 80 Km.Lithospheric plates-up to 70 km-oceanic crust-up to 150 km thick (wherethere is continental crust).
Outline The Motion Of Plates And Distinguish Between The Three Types OfPlate Boundaries (Convergent, Divergent And Conservative)
P
lates move slowly-up to 12cm per year.Divergent plate boundaries:
y
 
M
oves away/new oceanic lithosphere is created to fill the gap.
y
 
U
sually found-mid-ocean ridges/sometimes-rift valleys on continental crustwhere the continent is beginning to divide (the African Rift Valley/the DeadSea Rift Valley.Conservative plate boundaries (transform boundaries):
y
 
Neither created/destroyed.
y
 
P
lates slide past each other along faults.
 
y
 
Near mid ocean ridges-transform faults.
y
 
Continental crust-causes earthquakes (Alpine Fault System-N.Z/SanAndreas Fault-California,
U
SA).Convergent plate boundaries:
y
 
Lithosphere is consumed.
y
 
One plate (usually consisting-oceanic material) is subducted beneath anotherplate.
y
 
Deep Ocean trenches-usually found along continent·s edge when subductionoccurs.
y
 
Often-upper surface of the subducted plate is shaved off-creating foldedsediments at the edge of the overlying plate.
y
 
As subducted plate moves deeper into the asthenosphere-partly melts/thismolten rock rises as it is less dense than the material above it-creatingmagma chambers (hot spots)-from the hot spots volcanoes are produced inthe overlying plate.
Identify The Relationship Between The General Composition Of IgneousRocks And Plate Boundary Type
Divergent boundaries:
y
 
M
afic igneous rocks (basalt/gabbro/peridotites)
y
 
M
afic rocks-dark coloured-contain minerals richer in magnesium/iron(olivine/pyroxene/amphibole/biotite).
y
 
Form-direct upwelling of dense magmas from the asthenosphere-solidifieson contact with cold ocean water.Convergent boundaries:
y
 
Felsic rocks (andesite/rhyolite/granite).
y
 
Felsic rocks-light coloured-contain more feldspar/quartz minerals with moresilica than the dark coloured minerals.
y
 
P
roduced from magmas with higher water content.Conservative boundaries:
y
 
Occasionally a variety of igneous rocks occur-molten rock fills cracks-formintrusions (dykes-sills).
Describe Current Hypotheses Used To Explain How Convection Currents AndSubduction Drive Plate Motion
 Idea 1:
y
 
P
lates move-convection currents in the asthenosphere-transfer heat fromthe lower mantle
the crust.
 
y
 
As the currents move-drag the plates with them. (Shear traction).Idea 2:
y
 
H
igher density of cold rock compared to that of hot rock
the lithosphereto be dragged by gravity (ridge-push).
y
 
From the relatively high mid-ocean ridge
the subduction zone-sinkingdenser lithosphere (slab-pull).Idea 3:
y
 
ensional force is placed on an upper plate-by subduction of the lower plate.
y
 
Subducting zone moves away (called roll-back)-the upper plate-createsecondary volcanic arcs (trench suction).
9
.
2 TECTONIC IMPACTS
:
2
.
MOUNTAIN BUILDING
M
ountains-result of the interactions between plates.
 ypes of mountains formed depend on the type of plate interaction.
Gather, Process And Present Information From Secondary Sources WhichCompares Formation, General Rock Type And Structure Of Mountain BeltsFormed As A Result Of Thermal Uplift And Rifting With Those ResultingFrom Different Types Of Plate Convergence
G
ood way to compare information-structure the information in a table.Well-designed tables assist you to identify useful information/noticetrends/patterns.such as this one:
Mountain beltsformed by:Mountain belt featuresFormation General rocktypeStructure ofmountain beltsthermal uplift andrifting
 
ocean/oceanboundaries
 
ocean/continentboundaries
 
continent/continentboundaries
 

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