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Chapter 3

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University of Toronto Scarborough
Steve Joordens

Chapter 3 Plate Tectonics What are the major features of earth7 continents make up most of most of the surface Features of the ocean include deep trenches submarine mountain rangesPart of the seafloor have mountains the largest one form islands HawaiiIsland and seamount chains seafloor mountains islands and seamounts that are in long beltsMuch of the ocean floor is moderately very deep and has fairly smooth surfacecalled abysall plainssome continents continue outwards from the shoreline under shallow sea water forming submerged benches narrow flat land called continental shelvesAll continents contain large interior regions with topography Some continents have flat coastal plain while some have mountain around the edgesDeep mountain trenches make up the deeper parts of the ocean Some ocean trenches follow the edge of the continents while others are isolated located near pacific oceanIsland arcs curving chains cross the seafloor Most of them are very reactiveMidocean trenches and there fracture zones encircle much of the globeOcean plateus ocean containing several broad evaluated regions32 Why do Some Continents Have Matching ShapesAlfred Wegener observed the fit of these continents and the hypothesis that he created was the continental driftHe argued that the continental were once together but later drifted apart Were the continents once joined togetherThe southern continents were interpreted to have fit togetherIf the continents were once together this lead to the hypothesis that there were similar rocks and geological structures They found similarities in rocks in southern Australia with the rocks in the AntarcticaGondwana the hypothetical combination of the southern continents into a single large continent Is the Distribution of Fossils consistent with Continental DriftAnother evidence supporting this theory was the correspondence of fossil of plants and land animals on continents that were separated by huge distancesThe dinosaur Mesosarus this animal found not swim in oceans and is currently separated by continentsThe distribution of plants and animal fossils is consistent with the idea that the continents were once joined This explains why identical plants and animal fossil are found on different continents The plants and animals were originally on a single huge continent and then later split into smaller continents Fossil data also incudes that Antarctica was once farther north and away from the South pole 32 How Did Continential Drift Explain Glacial Deposits in Unusual Places
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