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Join date : 2010-10-10

PostSubject: Seafloor spreading   Sat Nov 13, 2010 1:54 am

Seafloor spreading occurs at mid-ocean ridges, where new oceanic crust is formed through volcanic activity and then gradually moves away from the ridge. Seafloor spreading helps explain continental drift in the theory of plate tectonics.

Earlier theories (e.g., by Alfred Wegener and Alexander du Toit) of continental drift were that continents "plowed" through the sea. The idea that the seafloor itself moves (and carries the continents with it) as it expands from a central axis was proposed by Harry Hess from Princeton University in the 1960s.[1] The theory is well-accepted now, and the phenomenon is known to be caused by convection currents in the plastic, very weak upper mantle, or asthenosphere.

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