Marine Bio: Chapter 2- Earth Structure and Plate Tectonics
Terms in this set (53)
The hypothesis that states that the continents once formed a single landmass, broke up, and drifted to their present locations
The name of the single landmass that broke apart 200 million years ago and gave rise to today's continents
the single large ocean that covered Earth's surface during the time of Pangea
The formation of layers in a material, with each deeper layer being denser (weighing more per unit of volume) than the layer above.
The thin and solid outermost layer of the Earth above the mantle
Earths crust located under the ocean that is usually thinner but more dense than continental crust
A dark, dense, igneous rock with a fine texture, found in oceanic crust
The portion of the earth's crust that primarily contains granite, is less dense than oceanic crust, and is 20-50 km thick
A usually light colored igneous rock that is found in continental crust
The layer of hot, solid material between Earth's crust and core.
The central part of the earth below the mantle
The direct transfer of heat from one substance to another substance that it is touching.
Process by which, in a fluid being heated, the warmer part of the mass will rise and the cooler portions will sink.
The breakdown of a radioactive element, releasing particles and energy
the process of measuring the absolute age of geologic material by measuring the concentrations of radioactive isotopes and their decay products
A technique used to determine the actual age of a fossil
Method of determining the age of a fossil by comparing its placement with that of fossils in other layers of rock
The ability of a fluid to exert an upward force on an object placed in it
Balanced support of lighter material in a heavier, displaced supporting matrix; analogous to buoyancy in a liquid.
A break in the earth's crust
Charles Lyell's idea that geologic processes have not changed throughout Earth's history.
theory that states that natural disasters such as floods and volcanic eruptions shaped Earth's landforms and caused extinction of some species
A device that reflects sound off the ocean bottom to sense water depth. Its accuracy is affected by the variability of the speed of sound through water.
a current caused by the rising of heated fluid and sinking of cooled fluid
The process that creates new sea floor as plates move away from each other at the mid-ocean ridges
The region at the crest of a mid-ocean ridge, where new crust is being formed by seafloor spreading.
The process by which oceanic crust sinks beneath a deep-ocean trench and back into the mantle at a convergent plate boundary.
in tectonic plates, the site at which an oceanic plate is sliding under a continental plate.
A theory stating that the earth's surface is broken into plates that move.
Large pieces of earths crust that move due to convection currents.
A molten mixture of rock-forming substances, gases, and water from the mantle
A deep valley that forms where two plates move apart
divergent plate boundary
an area beneath the ocean where tectonic plates move away from each other
A type of fault where the hanging wall slides downward; caused by tension in the crust
convergent plate boundary
A tectonic plate boundary where two plates collide, come together, or crash into each other.
a reverse fault in which the hanging wall slides over to the foot wall.
transform plate boundary
Boundary between two plates that are sliding past each other.
tectonic plates sliding past one another (ex. San Andreas fault).
The study of the alignment of magnetic minerals in rock,specifically as it relates to the reversal of Earth's magnetic poles; also the magnetic properties that rock requires during formation
a feather; a rising column of smoke, dust, or water
A very large mantle plume.
the measurement of ocean depths and the charting of the shape or topography of the ocean floor
the shallow sea floor that is located between the shoreline and the deep-ocean bottom
The deepest part of the ocean floor; made up of rolling hills and flat plains.
Edge of a continent along which there is no tectonic activity.
A continental margin that is colliding with another plate and as a result is geologically active
The continental shelf is a shallow, near horizontal seafloor extension from the shoreline to the upper continental slope. This shelf forms the shallow margin of each deep-ocean basin. At the ocean side it is terminated by a pronounced change in bottom gradient (degree of slope).
The abrupt increase in slope at the junction between continental shelf and continental slope.
A deep, V-shaped valley running roughly perpendicular to the shoreline and cutting across the edge of the continental shelf and slope.
the slope between the outer edge of the continental shelf and the deep ocean floor.
a continuous elevated zone on the floor of all the major ocean basins and varying in width from 1000-4000km; the rifts at the crests represent divergent plate boundaries
a large, flat, almost level area of the deep-ocean basin
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