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A brief summary of this long answer can be found by viewing the related question. For more information please read on! This is a complex question and is a subject of continu…ing ongoing scientific research. A summary of some of the hypothesised causal mechanisms of plate movement (based on scientists current understanding of the process) is given below: The primary source of energy for the motion of the lithospheric plates is dissipation of energy from the earth in the form of heat transfer. This heat transfer causes convection within the mantle and this convecting mantle material is hypothesised to exert a drag force on the base of the lithosphere. This is known as Basal Drag and was thought to be an important driver of tectonic plate motion until recently when advances in geophysical imaging techniques (specifically 3D seismic tomography) allowed geophysicists to form a more detailed model of the structure of the mantle but were unable to locate the necessary large scale convections structures. Further to this, geophysicists no longer believe that the asthenosphere has the necessary stiffness or rigidity to cause sufficient friction on the base of the lithosphere to be a significant driver of plate motion. Gravity is also believed to play a role in the driving of plate motions, both at mid-ocean-ridges (MOR) and at subduction zones. Both these mechanisms are also linked to the dissipation of heat and convection in that they are reliant on variations in the buoyancy of the lithosphere as temperature changes occur as described below: When hot (and so low density, buoyant) mantle material rises at an MOR, it is intruded into the pre-existing oceanic lithosphere as well as extruded at the upper surface. This newly intruded material is at a high temperature and cools relatively slowly. As such the newly formed oceanic lithosphere is buoyant and rises relative to the older cooler oceanic lithosphere further from the MOR. Even though this younger lithospheric crust is buoyant it is still significantly denser than the underlying upwelling hot mantle material and so "slides" down away from the crest in a process known as gravitational sliding. This is considered a secondary driving force as it only acts in close proximity to the ridge and does not transmit load into the surrounding lithosphere (it does not "push" the lithosphere away from the ridge, it is instead dragged - the tectonic regime is tensile, not compressive). Another more significant gravitational driving force of plate motion is that caused by the old, cool and so low buoyancy oceanic crust that sinks back into the mantle at subduction zones and acts to drag the attached oceanic lithosphere towards the plate boundary. This is known as slab pull and is thought to be a significant driver of plate motions as it has been observed that tectonic plates with subduction boundaries tend to move with a higher velocity than those without. Subducting oceanic slabs also promote another driving force of plate motion known as trench or slab suction. This is a process where the movement of the downgoing slab promotes flow in the nearby mantle. This flowing mantle material is thought to exert a traction both on the downgoing slab and the overlying non subducting slab, pulling them both towards the subduction zone. It should be noted that not all plates have significant subduction boundaries and yet still undergo plate movements so it is possible that a combination of all these mechanisms influences plate movement (as well as the possibility that there is some as yet undiscovered driving force that has a significant role). The above is a simple summary of a complex topic and as has been stated the causal mechanisms that drive the motions of tectonic plates are not fully understood and as such the reader should remember that this is a current and active area of research in geophysics and so the hypotheses summarised above may be accepted, rejected or modified over time! For more information, please see the related link.
Earth's plates are constantly in motion because of convection currents in the mantle. How this energy translates to individual plates is still not understood. (see the relat…ed question)
A volcano. In the middle of an ocean, it also sometimes forms islands (like Hawaii)
As a result of subduction, the continental crust becomes more compressed and warped by the huge pressures between these two plates. The stressed causes the rock to deform or c…hange shape by bending. Energy was stored in the deformed areas in the form of elastic potential energy, much like when a spring is compressed. When the stress becomes greater then the breaking strength of the rock, a break occurs in the fault. The stored energy within the misshapen plate is suddenly released. When the stress is relieved,that is when when the tectonic plates begin to move under the earths crust.
Plate tectonics affect the Earth's surface in many ways. It forms either mid-oceanic ridges or rift valleys. It also forms compressional boundaries, and it causes volcanoe…s to form and earthquakes
but hit licksn
volcanoes will form. Possibly big enough to form islands, like Hawaii.
The plates (continental and ocean plates) ride atop the asthenosphere, a layer of viscous rock in the upper mantle beneath the crust.
As the plates move they, collide, pull apart, or grind past each other producing spectacular changes in Earth's surface. Ex: Volcanoes, mountain ranges, and deep ocean trench…s
Volcanoes, tsunamis, and earthquakes are caused by Earth's tectonic plate movement.
Various amounts of the pull of the sun, the pull of the moon, the shifting of earths outer core, the forces created by earths rotation on it's axis, and the movement of the oc…ean floor. All of these. Or some of these. To a greater or lesser degree. The fine points are still being hotly debated by scientists, and while the above reasons are reasonably sure to hold the answer, the details of it are not yet understood.
by weather things like mountains,volancoes,earthquakes that it
the movement of plate tectonics forces the earth to shirt and also forms mountains and volcanoes
First, you have to be stupid not to know (which means you are an idiot because you dont. Second, ask your mom, dad, sibings, or science teacher. Third, LOOK IT UP! Lastly, spa…re yourself from looking like an idiot on the internet. Thanx Ashley Rebecca Stewart! ;)
It is still not completely clear how heat rising by convection in the mantle influences the drift of continents and the formation of new crustal plates. But generally the moti…on is a flow in the oceanic plates, which move outward from central rifts and are subducted again beneath the continental plates. The gradual push provided by this type of motion could steer plate movements. Theories of the translation of mantle movement to the crust include -- gravitational sliding from elevated regions of the mantle -- tidal forces from the Sun and Moon -- large-scale effects of the Earth's rotation -- surge tectonics (large channels flowing through the upper mantle) The actual mechanism may be any of these, of any combination of them, because none can be currently identified as the absolute or primary cause. The motion of the plates is generally so slow (0.1 to 5 cm per year) that the processes take many years to observe. (see related question)
Basically, they ARE the Earth's surface; so what they do affects the Earth's surface.