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3.3 Plates Move Apart . Learn about: Different plate boundaries What happens when plates move apart. How the direction and speed of plates can be measured. Plate Boundaries. There are three kinds of plate boundaries Divergent Convergent Transform

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3.3 Plates Move Apart

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3 3 plates move apart

3.3 Plates Move Apart

Learn about:

Different plate boundaries

What happens when plates move apart.

How the direction and speed of plates can be measured.

plate boundaries
Plate Boundaries
  • There are three kinds of plate boundaries
    • Divergent
    • Convergent
    • Transform
  • Both the kind of boundary and the kind of plate affects how plates interact
divergent boundary
Divergent Boundary
  • Most divergent Boundaries occur on the ocean sea floor.
types of divergent boundaries what happens there
Types of Divergent Boundaries(What happens there?)
  • Oceanic – Oceanic Divergence
    • Mid-Ocean Ridges
    • Rift Valleys
  • Continental – Continental Divergence
    • Rift Valleys

Mid Ocean Ridges

Rift Valleys

oceanic oceanic divergence
Oceanic-Oceanic Divergence

This is where two oceanic plates were diverging forming new crust

oceanic oceanic divergence continued
Oceanic-Oceanic Divergence (Continued)

This is where oceanic plates are being ripped apart magma comes up from deep within the earth’s crust and forms pillow basalts and under water vents

the mid atlantic ridge
The Mid Atlantic Ridge

The Mid Atlantic Ridge is an example of oceanic-oceanic divergence

Over millions of years the continents have moved enough to create an ocean

The ridge also contains the longest mountain chain in the world

(6214 miles long)

(15 miles wide)

(6 miles deep)


review oceanic oceanic divergent boundaries
Review Oceanic-Oceanic Divergent Boundaries
  • With your neighbor, review what happens at Divergent Oceanic-Oceanic Boundaries
  • Remember to put these concepts into your own words.
  • How can you best remember the information?
  • (You have 2 minutes)
continent continent divergence boundary
Continent-Continent Divergence Boundary

Continental plates diverge in the same way as Oceanic plates

Cliffs and ridges are more easily visible in continental divergence

continental continental divergent boundary
Continental- Continental divergent Boundary
  • Same as Oceanic – Oceanic Boundaries rift vallies will occur.
  • What is different?
  • In this case, rift valley’s happen on land.
  • Two piece of land are pulled apart, revealing magma. (it will cool and harden)
  • Creating what is called a continental rift valley (it could fill with water, making a lake.)
east african rift valley
East African Rift Valley

The East African Rift Valley formed when a three way split almost tore Africa apart

Example of a Continental rift valley.

review the difference
Review the difference!

What is the difference between?

  • Oceanic – Oceanic divergence and
  • Continental – Contiental divergance
  • (you have 1 minute)
3 4 convergent boundaries
3.4 Convergent Boundaries


What happens when:

  • two continental plates converge
  • An oceanic plate converges with another plate
  • One plate scrapes past another.
types of convergent boundaries
Types of Convergent Boundaries
  • Continental – Continental Collision
  • Contiental – Oceanic Subduction
  • Oceanic – Oceanic Convergent
continental continental convergence
  • When two continental crusts collide the pressure builds up and they form Mountains
    • Since both plates are approximately equal density neither subducts and no volcanoes are formed
oceanic oceanic convergence
Oceanic-Oceanic Convergence
  • When oceanic plates collide a subduction zone occurs
    • One plate goes under the other deep beneath the ocean floor
      • (creating a deep ocean trench.)

Japan is part of an Island Arc formed by oceanic-oceanic convergence

continental oceanic convergent boundary
Continental – Oceanic Convergent Boundary
  • Occurs when ocean crust and continental crust are pushed together
  • What happens there? (Subduction Zone)
    • Subduction – one plate is pushed under another.

Which Plate always goes under? And why?

subduction zone
Subduction Zone?
  • What kinds of landforms are created at a Subduction Zone?
  • Deep Ocean Trenches
  • Volcanoes (after a long period of time.)
  • Coastal Mountain Ranges (Parallel to the Coast.)
  • (see next slide for an illustration)
transform faults
Transform Faults

Transform faults occur along divergent oceanic and continental plate boundaries

Plates slide past each other building up tension until the tension is released during an earthquake

san andreas fault
San Andreas Fault
  • The San Andreas fault is a surface fault line going through San Francisco
    • In 1906 an Earthquake hit San Francisco setting breaking gas and water lines and causing fires that could not be stopped
hot spots
Hot Spots

Another type of tectonic activity are areas called hot spots

A hot spot is where magma rises to the earths crust melting the land and forming a line of volcanoes as the earth’s crust moves past it


In oceans hot spots form Island chains

Since the hot spot is under mafic rocks the lava flows smoothly down the mountain creating shield volcanoes like Hawaii

yellowstone national park
Yellowstone National Park

Hotspots below continents are highly explosive and form craters called calderas

The force required for Felsic rock is so great the eruption vaporizes the land and sends ash over large parts of continents