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What discovery helped explain how the continents move?

The theory of continental drift is most associated with the scientist Alfred Wegener. In the early 20th century, Wegener published a paper explaining his theory that the continental landmasses were “drifting” across the Earth, sometimes plowing through oceans and into each other.

What theory caused the continents to move?

Plate tectonics

What are the proposed hypothesis of Alfred Wegener about the formation of continents?

Alfred Wegener proposed that the continents were once united into a single supercontinent named Pangaea, meaning all earth in ancient Greek. He suggested that Pangaea broke up long ago and that the continents then moved to their current positions. He called his hypothesis continental drift.

What was the main reason why Alfred Wegener’s theory about the movement of the continents was dismissed in 1912?

Wegener’s inability to provide an adequate explanation of the forces responsible for continental drift and the prevailing belief that the earth was solid and immovable resulted in the scientific dismissal of his theories.

What happens when two tectonic plates get stuck against each other?

An earthquake is caused by a sudden slip on a fault. The tectonic plates are always slowly moving, but they get stuck at their edges due to friction. The primary boundary between these two plates is the San Andreas Fault.

What is it called when two tectonic plates move away from each other?

A divergent boundary occurs when two tectonic plates move away from each other. Along these boundaries, earthquakes are common and magma (molten rock) rises from the Earth’s mantle to the surface, solidifying to create new oceanic crust. When two plates come together, it is known as a convergent boundary.

Which type of boundaries is seafloor created?

Seafloor spreading occurs at divergent plate boundaries. As tectonic plates slowly move away from each other, heat from the mantle’s convection currents makes the crust more plastic and less dense. The less-dense material rises, often forming a mountain or elevated area of the seafloor. Eventually, the crust cracks.

What is the seafloor made of?

Oceanic crust is about 6 km (4 miles) thick. It is composed of several layers, not including the overlying sediment. The topmost layer, about 500 metres (1,650 feet) thick, includes lavas made of basalt (that is, rock material consisting largely of plagioclase [feldspar] and pyroxene).

Why is the seafloor important?

Seafloor maps help us understand processes, such as ocean currents. So, if we know where these underwater features are, we can more accurately predict where the currents will go and how they will behave. Ocean currents are also very important because they help control our weather and climate.