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Readers ask: How did scientists discover seafloor spreading?

In the early 1960s, dating of ocean-core samples showed that the ocean floor was younger at the Mid-Atlantic Ridge but progressively older in either direction, confirming the reality of seafloor spreading.

How did scientists prove seafloor spreading?

The age, density, and thickness of oceanic crust increases with distance from the mid-ocean ridge. The magnetism of mid-ocean ridges helped scientists first identify the process of seafloor spreading in the early 20th century.

What is seafloor spreading and how was it discovered?

The seafloor spreading hypothesis was proposed by the American geophysicist Harry H. Hess in 1960. This spreading creates a successively younger ocean floor, and the flow of material is thought to bring about the migration, or drifting apart, of the continents.

When did scientists discover sea floor spreading?

Harry Hess was a geologist and Navy submarine commander during World War II. Part of his mission had been to study the deepest parts of the ocean floor. In 1946 he had discovered that hundreds of flat-topped mountains, perhaps sunken islands, shape the Pacific floor.

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What are 3 pieces of evidence for the theory of seafloor spreading?

Several types of evidence from the oceans supported Hess’s theory of sea-floor spreading-evidence from molten material, magnetic stripes, and drilling samples.

How does seafloor spreading help scientists explain continental drift?

Seafloor spreading helps explain continental drift in the theory of plate tectonics. When oceanic plates diverge, tensional stress causes fractures to occur in the lithosphere. Older rocks will be found farther away from the spreading zone while younger rocks will be found nearer to the spreading zone.

What is the process of seafloor spreading?

Sea-floor spreading is what happens at the mid-oceanic ridge where a divergent boundary is causing two plates to move away from one another resulting in spreading of the sea floor. As the plates move apart, new material wells up and cools onto the edge of the plates.

Who discovered the seafloor spreading?

Harry Hess: One of the Discoverers of Seafloor Spreading.

What observation first led to the theory of seafloor spreading?

Seafloor spreading was proposed by an American geophysicist, Harry H. Hess in 1960. By the use of the sonar, Hess was able to map the ocean floor and discovered the mid-Atlantic ridge (mid-ocean ridge). He also found out that the temperature near to the mid-Atlantic ridge was warmer than the surface away from it.

What did Alfred Wegener discover?

Lived 1880 – 1930. Alfred Wegener proposed the theory of continental drift – the idea that Earth’s continents move. Despite publishing a large body of compelling fossil and rock evidence for his theory between 1912 and 1929, it was rejected by most other scientists.

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What causes tectonic plates to move?

Tectonic shift is the movement of the plates that make up Earth’s crust. The heat from radioactive processes within the planet’s interior causes the plates to move, sometimes toward and sometimes away from each other. This movement is called plate motion, or tectonic shift.

How did the geologist discover that oceanic crust moves beneath the continental crust?

Geologists collect samples of oceanic crust through drilling at the ocean floor, using submersibles, and studying ophiolites. Ophiolites are sections of oceanic crust that have been forced above sea level through tectonic activity, sometimes emerging as dikes in continental crust.

What is the major evidence that sea floor spreading creates new lithosphere explain your answer?

The record of magnetic reversals is carried away from each side of the spreading center of a mid-ocean ridge, showing that the molten rock is creating new lithosphere.

What is an example of seafloor spreading?

Two examples of seafloor spreading are the East African Rift and the Mid-Atlantic Ridge. The East African Rift is continental rift that is a divergent plate boundary. At this rift, the African Plate is splitting in to two plates called the Nubian Plate and the Somalian Plate.

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