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Unformatted text preview: pressure) than the upper surfaces. An object will sink if it is heavier than the fluid it displaces (is denser than the fluid it displaces) Isostatic equilibrium occurs when the buoyant force equals the gravitational force equals the gravitational force that opposes it An equilibrium line (like the waterline on a boat) separates the icebergs submerged root from its exposed top 2 Hypotheses proposed to explain the isostasy of Earths crust Airy Hypothesis Blocks of crust have the same density Blocks of crust have different thicknesses Continental blocks are higher than ocean blocks because they are thicker than ocean blocks Pratt Hypothesis Blocks of crust have different densities All blocks of crust sink to the same level (compensation level) Continental blocks are higher than ocean blocks because they are less dense than ocean blocks...
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- Spring '08