Lecture 3 - Plate tectonics

Lecture 3 - Plate tectonics - Geol 1100 Principles of...

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Geol 1100 – Principles of Geology (Section 1) Lecture 3 – Highlights 28 January 2008 Paradigm o A prevailing, large-scale model (or theory) providing a viewpoint for scientific investigation o Scientific investigations are guided by the ruling paradigm o Radical changes – paradigm shifts o The 20th century history of geology is a good example Plate Tectonics Theory is the general paradigm for our understanding of the earth, but what is the evidence that supports this theory? “Jigsaw-fit” of coastlines noted since 17th century Alfred Wegner o German meteorologist who suggested several lines of evidence for Continental Drift o Pangaea : A supercontinent (“all land”) that fragmented into today’s landmasses Wegner’s Evidence o The Fit of the continents Coastlines originally fit Continental Shelves show better fit o Paleo-climate Past glaciations Glaciers: “rivers” or sheets of ice Covered larger areas of land in the past: Ice Ages Scrape rocks as they move – these are left in the geological record o Striations o Till: “rock-flour” pulverized by glacier and deposited after glacier melts
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Lecture 3 - Plate tectonics - Geol 1100 Principles of...

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