In geology, subduction is the process that takes place at convergent boundaries by which one tectonic plate moves under another tectonic plate and sinks into the mantle as the plates converge. Regions where this process occurs are known as subduction zones. Rates of subduction are typically measured in centimeters per year, with the average rate of convergence being approximately 2 to 8 cm per year.
For decades, the accepted theory was that the mountain chains running from Alaska to Mexico were created from fragments of land scraped off a huge tectonic plate moving eastwards, called the Farallon, that converged with North America and sunk below it over the past 200 million years or so. But alas, geologists and geophysicists aren’t [...]
Millions of years ago, an ancient tectonic plate called the Farallon oceanic plate used to sit between the Pacific and North American plates. In time, the plate “disappeared” beneath the North American one, however geologists at Brown University have now found physical surface remnants of the plate under sections of central California and Mexico. The Farallon surface [...]
An 8.6-magnitude earthquake and powerful aftershocks struck the coast of Indonesia today, resurrecting fears of a big tsunami like the one responsible for one of the biggest modern disasters ever. However, this earthquake, which struck at 2:38 p.m. local time (4:38 a.m. ET), about 270 miles (435 kilometers) off the coast of the Indonesian island [...]
Scientists who observed an underwater eruption in 2009 concluded they observed a tear in the planetary crust that mimicks the birth of a subduction zone. Subduction takes place at convergent tectonic plate boundaries; basically, one plate slides below the other – an extremely complicated and complex process that drives along a series of other processes, [...]