Skip to comments.Earthquakes suggest new tectonic plate is forming
Posted on 09/28/2012 9:05:18 AM PDT by BenLurkin
A new study suggests that two recent earthquakes may indicate a literal seismic shift in our understanding of tectonic plate movements.
Massive earthquakes under the Indian Ocean that took place last spring are the largest of their kind ever recorded. The 8.7 magnitude quake, followed by a 8.2 magnitude aftershock, could signal the formation of a new plate boundary under the Earth.
While not the largest earthquakes ever recorded, the two quakes are notable for their unusual location. The majority of earthquakes are known as thrust faults: massive sheets of rock sliding over or under another block along a fault line. The two earthquakes recorded in April were strike-slip faults, where one block of rock slides alongside another. The April quakes, which took place off the coast of Indonesia, are the largest slip-strike faults ever observed.
Additionally, the two earthquakes took place within a plate, rather than on its edge. According to a study published in the journal Nature, the quakes were part of the breakup of the Indian and Australian subplates under the Indian Ocean. The study also increased the magnitude of the initial earthquake to 8.7 - a significant increase in power as the Richter scale which is used to gauge the magnitude of earthquakes increases logarithmically rather than linearly.
Researchers believe the earthquakes were the result of the Indo-Australian plate rending itself apart. Seismologists have suspected the plate might be breaking apart since the 1980's. But the April earthquakes are the clearest evidence yet of this phenomenon. As one scientist wrote, "The long-term scenario is that a nascent plate tectonic boundary is forming: the Australian plate is becoming detached from the Indian plate."
This detachment will take several million years to complete, but research suggests more earthquakes like the ones in April will become increasingly likely in the future.
I think it is Cthulhu.
Obviously man-made global warming has reached the bottom of the oceans.
I'd keep 'et under me hat, blimey!
Why not, Debbie Stabenow says she feels global warming when she flies.
I knew there was something weird going on in that area with all the earthquake activity over the past couple decades.
Obviously this is caused by global warming. Heat expands and as the world heats, the crust is expanding and cracking. It may also be due to over-population of the West. As the population in the Western Hemisphere grows, it is increasing the weight on that hemisphere pulling it away from the Eastern Hemisphere, causing more cracks. Also, don’t discount how much this is Bush’s fault. Bush’s big oil buddies keep drilling into the crust of Mother Gaia, causing weak points that create cracks.
I forgot to include that this also has to be blamed on the Mohammed Video. Allah (piss be upon him) is punishing the Earth because someone made a video about the prophet Mohammed.
Go back to sleep
“Women and minorities hardest hit!”
Bush’s fault. Bush and those damned SUVs.
Womyn and minorities will be hardest hit.
Obama giving out free phones and tectonic plates. Come an get ‘em! ;-)
Sort of like the New Madrid quakes of 1811-1812.
I'm still waiting for my Free Willy.
Those occurred along a very old fault line. About 600 million years old. It's categorized as a "failed rift".
Obama’s October surprise will be free McDonald’s frys....
"this trend needs to be understood in relation to the increase in seismographs. Certainly, in the last 25 years, more lower intensity earthquakes have been noticed because of a general increase in the number of seismograph stations across the world and improved global communications. This increase has helped seismological centres to locate many small earthquakes which were undetected in earlier decades. Therefore, an upward trend is not unexpected in the graph, although the rise in the number of large earthquakes will be of more significance to our assessment of the trend.
By limiting the range of earthquakes being counted in this report to magnitude 7 or above, it means these earthquakes can easily be identified by a limited number of seismographs, and we have ensured that any increase in frequency for these larger earthquakes cannot be down to the increase in overall detection rates in this 25-year period, as all these larger earthquakes are able to be easily detected with fewer seismograph stations."
Disclaimer: Opinions posted on Free Republic are those of the individual posters and do not necessarily represent the opinion of Free Republic or its management. All materials posted herein are protected by copyright law and the exemption for fair use of copyrighted works.