|Massive section of ocean floor off the|
Portugal coast beginning to fracture.
(Picture from: http://www.sciencedaily.com/)
In the past, European and American continents were once joined in a supercontinent called Pangaea before it split into two different continents. But later, some 220 million years, the two continents will collide and merge into one continent.
The dire predictions are the result of a new study that published in the Geology journal. Researchers from Monash University in Melbourne, Australia, said that the broad range of the Atlantic ocean, which now separates Europe from America, is just a geology phase.
The study was based on the findings of researchers team who have identified a subduction zone off the coast of Portugal. The zone that recall the entire continent of Europe to North America and will trigger a clash of the two continents about 220 million years from now.
|Evidence of a newly active subduction zone off the coast of Portugal has caught the interest of geologists eager to witness what the beginning of a great continental shift looks like in the preliminary stage. The image above represents the Juan de Fuca plate colliding with the North America plate along the Washington coast. (Picture from: http://www.natureworldnews.com/)|
Subduction zone occurs when a tectonic plate sinking down another plate. Subduction usually takes place at the speed of 2-8 centimeters per year. The researchers say that they saw the beginning of a new subduction zone in the Atlantic seabed maps. The region is unstable because it is a border point separating the two tectonic plates that form the earth's surface.
According to Monash researchers also, that the plate that separates the Atlantic in Portugal's corner was "sleeping" for thousands of years until 1755, when a devastating earthquake that shook Lisbon and killed 60 thousand people.
|The tectonic plates of the world. (Picture from: http://www.wired.co.uk/)|
It could mark a larger planets trend, ie the beginning of a new phase in the Wilson Cycle, which is open and closed in response to the Earth's oceans rise of rock and magma from the earth's layers.
This phase, which was first mentioned by Canadian geophysicist John Tuzo Wilson, lasting for millions of years and left the continent surface structure changed dramatically. Wilson last three cycles gradually destroys the supercontinent Pangaea become seven continents spread across the earth to this day. Originally, Pangaea combines North America and Europe into one to make them separate Wilson Cycle and the Atlantic Ocean basin formed between them. *** [EKA | FROM VARIOUS SOURCES | SCIENCEDAILY | ERWIN Z | KORAN TEMPO 4262]