Tectonic Plates

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Layers of the Earth

Crust ~ solid rock 5-50km deep, split up into plates.

Mantle ~ molten rock with slow-moving currents, 2900km thick.

Outer Core ~ liquid metals, 2200km thick.

Inner Core ~ solid metals, 2500km wide.(http://maggiesscienceconnection.weebly.com/uploads/5/1/0/5/5105330/904278688.jpg?607)

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Why do the plates move?

The earth's hot core heats up the magma

(http://cliparts.co/cliparts/6Tp/ojx/6Tpojxzyc.jpg)

As it is heated it gets lighter and rises

(http://cliparts.co/cliparts/6Tp/ojx/6Tpojxzyc.jpg)

Near the surface it cools and gets heavier (it sinks!)

(http://cliparts.co/cliparts/6Tp/ojx/6Tpojxzyc.jpg)

The convection curants move the magma which causes the plates to move about

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The contrasts between Continental and Oceanic plat

Oceanic Crust:

  • Newer - most less than 200million years old
  • Denser
  • Can sink
  • Can be renewed or destoyed

Continental Crust:

  • Older - most over 1500million year old
  • Less dense
  • Cannot sink
  • Cannot be renewed or destroyed
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Tectonic Plate Boundaries

Where two tectonic plates meet is called a Plate Boundary. This is where volcanoes and fold mountains are formed, and is also where earthquakes and tsnamis often happen.

(http://www.worldatlas.com/aatlas/infopage/tectonic.gif)

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