HomeBookmark Info.comMake Info.com your HomepagePlugins Visit other Info sites:
Info.com - Your independent search platform...

Do the continents move?

Learn about how the continents move and how they started out as one landmass.

The continents do move at an imperceptible rate due to plate tectonics. [©Jupiter Images, 2010]
©Jupiter Images, 2010
The continents do move at an imperceptible rate due to plate tectonics.

In 1912, a German geologist, Alfred Lothar Wegener (1880-1930) theorized that the continents had drifted or floated apart to their present locations and that once all the continents had been a single land mass near Antarctica, which is called Pangaea (from the Greek word meaning all-earth).

Pangaea then broke apart some 200 million years ago into two major continents called Laurasia and Gondwanaland. These two continents continued drifting and separating until the continents evolved their present shapes and positions.

Wegener's theory was discounted but it has since been found that the continents do move sideways (not drift) at an estimated 0.75 inch (1.9 centimeters) annually because of the action of plate tectonics.

American geologist, William Maurice Ewing (1906-1974) and Harry Hammond Hess (1906-1969) proposed that the earth's crust is not a solid mass, but composed of eight major and seven minor plates that can move apart, slide by each other, collide, or override each other. Where these plates meet are major areas of mountain-building, earthquakes and volcanoes.

Related articles

Search the Web

We are not lawyers or legal professionals, nor are we financial counselors or professionals. The content of this Web site is intended to provide general information and advice. Prior to making any legal or financial decision, you should consult a licensed professional. For more information see Terms of Service/Usage Agreement.
Home   |   About   |   Media Comments   |   Legal & Privacy Policy   |   Tell a friend   |   Contact
Copyright © 2012 Info.com – All Rights Reserved.