Thursday, November 27, 2008

Research: Plate Tectonics Started Over 4 Billion Years Ago

Science Daily posts an article that pretty much bases the commonly held time line of when plate tectonics started on Earth: New research suggests that plate tectonics may have started more than 4 billion years ago — much earlier than scientists had believed, according to new research by UCLA geochemists. That puts the first plate activity within the first 500 million years of Earth's history. Many scientists believe that plate activity started 3.5 billion years ago, others that it began even more recently than that. Instead of a hellish, dry, desolate early Earth with no continents, it looks like as soon as the Earth formed, it fell into the same dynamic regime that continues today. This means that early Earth had oceans which may very well have contained life.

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