Plate tectonics

A portfolio of 20 of the best websites on plate tectonics worldwide, selected for you by a professional geologist. With links to related sites on earthquakes and natural disasters.

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Choice: Educational Sites; Link Sites; Other Sites of Interest, Field Examples

Global reconstruction of the age of the ocean floor. For other free downloadable images click on the globe. From NOAA.


Educational Sites
Paleo Project **** (1)
Illustrating the plate tectonic development of the Earth over the past 1100 million years. With animations to be downloaded plus other images.
GPS Time Series **** (2)
GPS data, localities and estimated velocities, with Californian and Global maps showing the actual rates and directions of plate movement. The global map a 'must view' for all geologists.
Plate Tectonics: Geological Aspects *** (3)
Excellent lecture text on the geological aspects such as the mineralogy of the mantle and the nature of the Moho.
Plate Tectonics *** (4)
Excellent educational site with simple explanatory images, fun activity and cartoons.
Continents on the Move *** (5)
Plate tectonics explained on a simple step-by-step basis. Good site for a first introduction to the subject. From Nova Online.
The Expanding Earth *** (6)
Provides a detailed explanation of an alternative hypothesis to plate tectonics.
Puzzles of the Earth *** (7)
The basics of plate tectonics explained for younger students. Includes excellent images.
The Formation of Pangea *** (8)
Lecture text describing the making of a supercontinent.
Plate Motion Around the Earth *** (9)
Guide to direction and rate of plate motion worldwide.
The ABC's of Plate Tectonics *** (10)
A series of basic lessons on Plate Tectonics.
Alfred Wegener *** (11)
The story of the author of one of the most important and far ranging geological theory of all time.
History of Ocean Basins *** (12)
Reviews the contribution of Henry Hess (1962) and the (then) embryonic theory of plate tectonics.
Educators Guide to Convection *** (13)
Text, images and animations illustrating convection, the driving force behind plate tectonics.
Dynamic Planet *** (14)
Major map of Earth's physiographic features, motion of plates, locations of volcanoes & earthquakes to download from the U.S.G.S..
Himalayas ** (15)
A U.S.G.S. article describing the most visible creation of plate tectonic forces.
Sea-Floor Spreading ** (16)
Excellent teachers guide.
Plate Boundary Structure... ** (17)
A new model of the structure of the San Andreas Fault.

Seafloor topography courtesy of NOAA.

Link Sites
Active Tectonics *** (18)
Includes images of active tectonics with mainly links.

Other sites of interest
Relative Plate Motion Calculator *** (19)
Insert the fixed and moving plate names plus the location and get an answer!
Earthquakes & Plate Tectonics ** (20)
Imaginative lesson teaching the basics.
The Ground Beneath **
A basic educational text on plate tectonics.
How to Build a Model... **
How to build a model illustrating seafloor spreading and subduction courtesy of the USGS.

Worldwide Field Evidence

Cretaceous-Paleogene basins of northeast Africa and Middle East - processes controlling their evolution
Peritethyan paleogeography and paleotectonics
Lebanon, Dead Sea transform Fault
Lebanon, the Dead Sea Transform Fault
India/Eurasia plate collision, Displacements and Strain in the India-Eurasia Plate Collision Zone
Himalayas, birth of
The Formation of the Himalayas
Topography, Tectonics, Climate & Erosion in the Himalayas
California, Bodega Head, San Andreas fault, Proof of plate tectonics with photos.
California, Channel islands, Another example of faulting and plate tectonics.
California, Hollister, Calaveras fault, south of San Francisco Bay area, plate tectonics.
California, Monterey Bay, Natural Bridges, Loma Prieta, Marine geology, earthquakes and the San Andreas Fault.
California, San Andreas Fault Zone, Exposed at Palmdale
California, Virtual Field Trip: San Andreas Fault and Hayward Fault, San Francisco Bay Area
California, Sonoma County, Shell Beach, example of subduction zone.
California, Smith River. A Virtual Trip Through The Josephine Ophiolite
Washington, Fidalgo Island, just west of Mount Vernon, Ophiolite sequence

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