Lecture 4 - Plate Tectonics Internal Structure of Earth...

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1/31/10 1 Internal Structure of Plate Tectonics or How the Earth Works Plate Tectonics Plate Tectonics is the true unifying theory of modern geology. It explains: 1. Earthquakes 2. Volcanoes 3. Mountains 4. Locations of the different rock types (igneous, sedimentary, metamorphic) 5. Locations of economic minerals 6. Climate 7. Evolution of species 8. Likely regions of natural hazards Internal Structure of Earth Fig. 2.2b 1. Radius - 6000 km 2. Inner Core - solid, made of very dense iron (Fe), nickel (Ni), sulfur (S), oxygen (O) 3. Outer Core - liquid, similar composition to inner core, average density of core is around 10.7 gm/cm 3 Internal Structure of Earth Fig. 2.2b 4. Mantle - mostly solid but shows plastic movement, minerals, density of around 4.5 gm/cm 3 5. Crust - lightest rocks, about 2.8 - 2.9 gm/cm 3 , wide variety of silicate minerals (O, Al, Si, Na, Ca, K, Fe, Mg) separated from mantle by the Moho Internal Structure of Earth Fig. 2.2b 6. Oceanic Crust - thinner (6-7 km) and denser than continental crust; mainly igneous basalts; convection cells are
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Lecture 4 - Plate Tectonics Internal Structure of Earth...

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