Geo HW 2

# Geo HW 2 - Geology 2341 A Term 2008 Worcester Polytechnic...

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Geology 2341, A Term 2008 Worcester Polytechnic Institute Homework Assignment 2, Due at 5:00 PM Sep. 5 Part A: Figure 1. Map of major plate velocity Study the map given above. The longer the arrows (vectors) the higher the velocity of the plate at that geographic point. Look at the arrows along the USA and Canadian boundary. Near the spreading center the North American Plate has a north and west component. In the center of the USA the movement is essentially due west. Near the boundary with the Juan De Fuca Plate the movement is to the south and west. Thus, the direction of motion changes across the North American Plate. Questions 1. If the Atlantic Ocean is widening at a rate of 3 cm per year, how far (in kilometers) will it "open" in a million years? In 200 million years? 3/100000 = 0.00003 km/year * 1000000 = 30 km 0.00003 * 200000000 = 6000 km (check: 30 * 200 = 6000) For some of the following questions you will need an atlas. The following map may help. 2. The Plate Motion Calculator will let you make some calculations that lead to a better understanding of present day plate motion. Use the following data and think about the implications. a) The longitude and latitude of WPI are approximately 46 o 16’ degrees North and 71 o 48’ degrees west. What is the velocity of the plate at this locality? Show this movement of WPI with a schematic velocity vector (you don’t have to draw the vector to the scale; see an example for drawing a vector). Look at the map shown in Figure 1 and comment on whether this velocity makes sense? All answers for speed/velocity are given in mm/yr. –x E = x W It gives the speed as 16.8 mm/yr, 3.9 North and -16.5 East. The plate is moving mostly west and a little north, so the velocity values make sense.

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