How Might Convection Currents Cause Plate Movement


How Might Convection Currents Cause Plate Movement?

Convection currents describe the rising spread and sinking of gas liquid or molten material caused by the application of heat. … Tremendous heat and pressure within the earth cause the hot magma to flow in convection currents. These currents cause the movement of the tectonic plates that make up the earth’s crust.

What are the 3 causes of plate movement?

Lesson Summary

Additional mechanisms that may aid in plates moving involve ridge push slab pull and trench suction. In ridge push and slab pull gravity is acting on the plate to cause the movement.

What do you think is the cause of plate movement?

The main driving force of plate tectonics is gravity. If a plate with oceanic lithosphere meets another plate the dense oceanic lithosphere dives beneath the other plate and sinks into the mantle. … The sinking oceanic lithosphere drags the rest of the tectonic plate and this is the main cause of plate motion.

Who proposed that convection currents are the cause of plate movement?

Arthur Holmes

They explained these observations through a sea floor spreading model that shows how new oceanic crust forms along mid-ocean ridges as the two halves of an ocean move apart. In 1928 Arthur Holmes proposed that the mechanisms of thermal convection in the mantel were the driving forces of continental drift.

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How do convection currents cause divergent boundaries?

Seafloor spreading occurs at divergent plate boundaries. As tectonic plates slowly move away from each other heat from the mantle’s convection currents makes the crust more plastic and less dense. The less-dense material rises often forming a mountain or elevated area of the seafloor. Eventually the crust cracks.

What causes convection current?

Convection currents are the result of differential heating. Lighter (less dense) warm material rises while heavier (more dense) cool material sinks. It is this movement that creates circulation patterns known as convection currents in the atmosphere in water and in the mantle of Earth.

What causes convection currents in Earth’s mantle?

Convection Currents in the Mantle

Heat in the mantle comes from the Earth’s molten outer core decay of radioactive elements and in the upper mantle friction from descending tectonic plates. … The temperature difference between the upper and lower boundaries of the mantle requires heat transfer to occur.

What force causes most of the plate movement?

Research has shown that the major driving force for most plate movement is slab pull because the plates with more of their edges being subducted are the faster-moving ones. However ridge push is also presented in recent research to be a force that drives the movement of plates.

What happens when Earth’s plates move?

When the plates move they collide or spread apart allowing the very hot molten material called lava to escape from the mantle. When collisions occur they produce mountains deep underwater valleys called trenches and volcanoes. … The Earth is producing “new” crust where two plates are diverging or spreading apart.

How the convection currents ridge push and slab pull explains the movement of plates?

As the lithosphere formed at divergent plate margins is hot and less dense than the surrounding area it rises to form oceanic ridges. The newly-formed plates slide sideways off these high areas pushing the plate in front of them resulting in a ridge-push mechanism.

How does convection cause the motion of plates that drives plate tectonics quizlet?

Part of the mantle consists of the molten material that circulates in convection currents beneath the earths crust. This process drives plate tectonics. … when two oceanic plates pull apart at a divergent boundary magma rises and new crust is formed on the ocean floor.

How does gravity cause plates to move?

The main driving force of plate tectonics is gravity. If a plate with oceanic lithosphere meets another plate the dense oceanic lithosphere dives beneath the other plate and sinks into the mantle: this process is called subduction. … Such convection cells exist inside the Earth’s mantle.

What are the causes of plate movement describe movement of plates?

The plates can be thought of like pieces of a cracked shell that rest on the hot molten rock of Earth’s mantle and fit snugly against one another. The heat from radioactive processes within the planet’s interior causes the plates to move sometimes toward and sometimes away from each other.

How do convection currents within the mantle lead to divergent plate movement?

Explanation: Convection currents in the magma drive plate tectonics. … Large convection currents in the aesthenosphere transfer heat to the surface where plumes of less dense magma break apart the plates at the spreading centers creating divergent plate boundaries.

How do plates move at convergent plate boundaries?

At transform boundaries plates move past each other. This is one of the most common causes of earthquakes. At convergent boundaries plates move toward each other. They can push together and cause mountain ranges to form.

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How do plates move at divergent plate boundaries?

Divergent boundaries occur along spreading centers where plates are moving apart and new crust is created by magma pushing up from the mantle. Picture two giant conveyor belts facing each other but slowly moving in opposite directions as they transport newly formed oceanic crust away from the ridge crest.

What happens when convection currents occur?

The convection currents tend to move a fluid or gas particles from one place to another. … This happens due to the reason that molecules within liquids or gases are free to move. The heat energy can be transferred by the process of convection by the difference occurring in temperature between the two parts of the fluid.

Which of the following occurs because of convection currents?

Which of the following occurs because of convection currents? Tectonic plates on the crust move.

How does convection occur in the mantle?

The mantle is heated from below (the core) and in areas that are hotter it rises upwards (it is buoyant) whereas in areas that are cooler it sink down. This results in convection cells in the mantle and produces horizontal motion of mantle material close to the Earth surface.

What are the effects of plate movement?

Plate motions cause mountains to rise where plates push together or converge and continents to fracture and oceans to form where plates pull apart or diverge. The continents are embedded in the plates and drift passively with them which over millions of years results in significant changes in Earth’s geography.

What are the 3 different possible causes of plate movement How do they differ from each other?

The movement of the plates creates three types of tectonic boundaries: convergent where plates move into one another divergent where plates move apart and transform where plates move sideways in relation to each other.

What do you think will happen to the Earth if tectonic plates are not moving?

If all volcanism stops so does sea floor spreading—and thus plate tectonics as well. And if plate tectonics stops Earth eventually (through erosion) loses most or all of the continents where most terrestrial life exists. In addition CO2 is removed from the atmosphere via weathering causing our planet to freeze.

How does the movement of the earth’s plates affect the Earth’s appearance?

The movement of Earth’s plates is responsible for changing the landscape in dramatic ways causing earthquakes volcanic eruptions and the formation of mountains ocean trenches and mid-ocean ridges.

Do the earth plates move?

Even though plates move very slowly their motion called plate tectonics has a huge impact on our planet. Plate tectonics form the oceans continents and mountains. It also helps us understand why and where events like earthquakes occur and volcanoes erupt.

What would happen if tectonic plates move faster?

The speed at which plates of Earth’s crust smash into each other determines how big earthquakes can get in the collision zone. … When plates smash into each other at higher speeds more of the crust at the collision sites becomes brittle and that makes the region more prone to large quakes.

What causes the plates to move in slab pull theory?

Slab pull is that part of the motion of a tectonic plate caused by its subduction. Plate motion is partly driven by the weight of cold dense plates sinking into the mantle at oceanic trenches. … This force and slab suction account for almost all of the force driving plate tectonics.

How does slab pull cause plate movement?

“slab pull” As lithospheric plates move away from midocean ridges they cool and become denser. They eventually become more dense than the underlying hot mantle. After subducted cool dense lithosphere sinks into the mantle under its own weight. This helps to pull the rest of the plate down with it.

What are two main aspects of convection that cause plate motion?

Heat is continuously flowing outward from Earth’s interior and the transfer of heat from the core to the mantle causes convection in the mantle (Figure 4.3. 1).

How do convection currents influence plate tectonics quizlet?

Theory that the Earth’s crust is divided into tectonic plates which move around due to convection currents in the mantle. The movement caused within a fluid by hotter and therefore less dense material to rise and colder denser material to sink under the influence of gravity. Plates pull apart and magma rises up.

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How does convection work and how does it move tectonic plates quizlet?

Convection occurs in the mantle underneath Earth’s tectonic plates. … Rising mantle material at mid-ocean ridges creates the potential for plates to move away from the ridge with a this force. Slab pull. When tectonic plates collide the denser plate (slab) will sink into the mantle along a subduction zone.

What is convection quizlet plate tectonics?

Convection. The movement caused within a fluid by the tendency of less dense material to rise and denser material to sink. What causes the movement of crustal plates? The rising and sinking of material in the mantle.

How does gravity affect the movement of plates at mid-ocean ridges?

Gravitational sliding away from a spreading ocean ridge takes place with plate movement driven because of the higher elevation of plates at ocean ridges. As fresh magma wells up at mid-ocean ridges to form new young oceanic lithosphere a higher elevation is formed at spreading ridges.

What are convection currents in geography?

Convection currents that occur within the molten rock in the mantle act like a conveyor belt for the plates. Tectonic plates move in different directions. … The friction between the convection current and the crust causes the tectonic plate to move. The liquid rock then sinks back towards the core as it cools.

How does gravity cause plates to move in a circle around the sun?

All objects attract one another including Earth and the Sun. The force of this attraction—or gravitational pull—depends on the size of the objects. … This means that the planet neither flies out into space nor falls into the Sun. Instead it travels in a nearly circular motion around the Sun creating an orbit.

Plates moving due to convection in mantle | Cosmology & Astronomy | Khan Academy

Plate Tectonics Explained | Plate Boundaries | Convection Currents

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