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Plate Techtonics

  • Date Submitted: 06/14/2011 06:52 AM
  • Flesch-Kincaid Score: 60.9 
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Plate Tectonics and the earth’s cycles

The earth has three very important cycles the work co-dependant with the Plate Tectonic Cycle. They are the hydrologic cycle, atmospheric cycle, and rock cycle.
Plate tectonics as I have read is the movement of the earth’s crust caused by convection currents that occur within the mantle. As hot magma rises from the ocean to the surface it pushes the plates apart. This is known as divergent plates. As the rock cools and becomes denser then the rocks around it, it will sink back into the earth’s mantle. This is known as the convergent plate. Within the convergent plate boundaries show forms of ocean trenches and volcanic mountains. The Marinas trench of the coast of Guam and the Mariana Islands are an example. The San Andreas Fault is an example of a sliding plate boundary.
Rocks that are formed after the cooling of magma or lava are called igneous rock. Hot magma comes to the surface at the diverging plate boundary. As the hot magma flows onto the ocean floor, it forms finely grained igneous rocks. Sedimentary rock from the ocean floor gets pushed down into the mantle. Eventually, the crust will melt and rise to the surface causing what we know as volcanic eruptions. This cycle is an ever constant loop.
Rocks that are formed after undergoing extreme pressure and temperature increase are called metamorphic rock. The temperature change is hot enough to reorganize matter but does not melt it. As hot magma pushes itself to the surface at the divergent and convergent boundaries and heating rocks around it will the change to metamorphic rock occur.
The hydrological cycle is the entire cycle of water. This includes rain water, surface water, and ground water back to water vapor where it collects back in the clouds to fall back to earth. This cycle happens due to the gravity and sun. Gravity makes the water flow and fall, and the sun evaporates the water and returns it back to the clouds. Hydrology causes gradation and...


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