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KS4 Physics. Earth’s Structure. Contents. Earth’s Structure. Earth and earthquakes. Seismic waves. More about plate boundaries. Continental drift. Summary activities. Structure of the Earth. crust. mantle. inner core. outer core. Tectonic plates. .

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KS4 Physics

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Ks4 physics

KS4 Physics

Earth’s Structure


Contents

Contents

Earth’s Structure

Earth and earthquakes

Seismic waves

More about plate boundaries

Continental drift

Summary activities


Structure of the earth

Structure of the Earth

crust

mantle

inner core

outer core


Tectonic plates

Tectonic plates

The Earth’s crust is made of sections called tectonic plates. Where two plates meet is called a plate boundary.

Convection currents in the mantleplates move these tectonic plates, which can move towards each other, move away from each other and or move past each other.


Plate boundaries 1 sliding plates

Plate boundaries 1 – sliding plates

plate A

plate B

Two plates can slide past each other, but this doesn’t always happen smoothly. The large friction forces involved mean that strain builds up and the plates move suddenly when the strain gets too much.

This sudden movement of plates is called an earthquakeand it can be very destructive.


Plate boundaries 1 conservative boundary

Plate boundaries 1 – conservative boundary


Why do earthquakes happen

Why do earthquakes happen?


Features of an earthquake

Features of an earthquake


Cross section of the earth labels

Cross-section of the Earth – labels

Which part of this cross-section of the Earth should each label point to?

crust

outer core

mantle

inner core


Effect of an earthquake

Effect of an earthquake

An earthquake has occurred in the area shown in this picture.

If the plates moved in the directions indicated by the arrows, what would the location would look like after the earthquake?

plate A

plate B


Contents1

Contents

Earth’s Structure

Earth and earthquakes

Seismic waves

More about plate boundaries

Continental drift

Summary activities


Primary and secondary waves

Primary and secondary waves

During an earthquake there are two types of seismic waves that are released from the epicentre. These are called primary waves (P waves) and secondary waves (Swaves).

Primary or P waves are the faster type of seismic waves. They are longitudinal waves and when they hit the Earth’s surface they make objects and buildings vibrate vertically. P waves can travel through solids and liquids.

Secondary or s-waves are the slower type of seismic waves. They are transverse waves and when they hit the Earth’s surface they make objects and buildings vibrate horizontally. S waves can only travel through solids.


Effects of different seismic waves

Effects of different seismic waves

P-waves arrive first and shake buildings vertically.

This causes little damage.

S-waves arrive next and shake buildings horizontally.

This can cause a lot of damage.


Seismic waves inside the earth

Seismic waves inside the Earth

S wave shadow - only P waves are detected in this region.

Waves within a layer change direction gradually because there is a gradual change in density.

earthquake

focus

At a layer boundary there is a big change in direction because there is a big change in density between layers.


Words about seismic waves

Words about seismic waves

The faster type of seismic wave, that is longitudinal and makes buildings vibrate up and down.

epicentre

The location where the shift in plates occurred producing seismic waves.

primary waves

The slower type of seismic wave, that is transverse and makes buildings shake from side to side.

secondary waves


Comparing seismic waves

Comparing seismic waves

Complete this table comparing the properties of the two types of seismic waves.


Questions about seismic waves

Questions about seismic waves

mantle

wave A

wave B

outer core

  • What type of wave is wave A? How can you tell this?

  • Explain the path of wave B in terms of density.

  • What is the S wave shadow?


Contents2

Contents

Earth’s Structure

Earth and earthquakes

Seismic waves

More about plate boundaries

Continental drift

Summary activities


Plate boundaries 2 colliding plates

Plate boundaries 2 – colliding plates

What happens at a plate boundary where an oceanic plate and a continental plate collide?

The thinner, more dense oceanic plate is driven down into the mantle.

This is known as subduction.

thicker, less dense continental plate

thinner, more dense oceanic plate

convection current

convection current

melted oceanic plate


Plate boundaries 2 destructive boundary

Plate boundaries 2 – destructive boundary


Plate boundaries 3 plates moving apart

Plate boundaries 3 – plates moving apart

What happens at a plate boundary when oceanic plates move apart due to convection currents in the Earth’s mantle?

oceanic plate

oceanic plate

Magma moves up to the surface, cools and forms new oceanic plate.

This is known as sea-floor spreading.

convection current

convection current


Plate boundaries 3 constructive boundary

Plate boundaries 3 – constructive boundary


Words about plate boundaries

Words about plate boundaries

The force that causes earthquakes.

subduction

When an oceanic plate is pushed down into the mantle as it collides with a continental plate.

sea-floor spreading

When two oceanic plates move apart to create new crust.

friction


Contents3

Contents

Earth’s Structure

Earth and earthquakes

Seismic waves

More about plate boundaries

Continental drift

Summary activities


What is continental drift theory

What is continental drift theory?

It is thought that all the continents were once joined together in a huge supercontinentcalled Pangaea.

Over millions of years the continents drifted apart because the tectonic plates they were on moved apart due to convection currents in the Earth’s mantle.


Continental drift theory animation

Continental drift theory animation


Evidence for continental drift theory

Evidence for continental drift theory

continent A

continent B

There are a number of pieces of evidence to support the theory of continental drift:

  • The shapes of the continents fit like a jigsaw.

2. The rock strata on separated continents are identical.

3. The fossil records on separated continents are identical.


Contents4

Contents

Earth’s Structure

Earth and earthquakes

Seismic waves

More about plate boundaries

Continental drift

Summary activities


Glossary 1

Glossary (1)

  • continental drift –The theory that millions of years ago all the continents formed a huge supercontinentand have been slowly drifting apart ever since.

  • core –The central region of the Earth below the mantle. The outer part is liquid and the inner part is solid.

  • crust –The thin, rocky, outer layer of the Earth.

  • earthquake –A sudden movement of the Earth’s crust, which causes vibrations that travel through the Earth.

  • mantle –The layer of the Earth, between the crust and the core, which is mostly solid rock that can flow very slowly.

  • P waves – These are the fastest type of seismic waves. They are longitudinal waves and can travel through solids and liquids.


Glossary 2

Glossary (2)

  • plate boundary – An area where two tectonic plates meet.

  • S waves – These are the slowest type of seismic waves. They are transverse waves and can only travel through solids.

  • sea-floor spreading – This occurs under oceans where plates move apart and magma rises to the surface and cools to form new crust.

  • seismic waves – Vibrations that travel through the Earth as a result of an earthquake.

  • subduction – This occurs where plates move together and one of the plates is driven down into the mantle.

  • tectonic plates – Large sections of the Earth’s crust and upper mantle that move slowly over the surface of the Earth.


Anagrams

Anagrams


Multiple choice quiz

Multiple-choice quiz


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