MadSci Network: Earth Sciences

Re: Whatsprocess of subduction as it is operating on the AuzzPlate & Oceanic pl

Date: Thu Sep 14 13:16:49 2000
Posted By: Eder Molina, Researcher PhD, Dept. of Geophysics, Institute of Astronomy and Geophysics - USP
Area of science: Earth Sciences
ID: 966245490.Es

Australia is located at the center of the Indian-Australian plate. This 
plate is limited at its south boundary with Antarctic plate, where the 
boundary is a divergent-type one, at the southeast indian ridge. In this 
region, there should be minor shallow earthquakes and a little submarine 
volcanic activity, related to the sea spreading at the ridge. At the 
southwestern segment, in the Mid-Indian Ridge, the same occurs.

The boundary north is where the Indian-Australian plate collides with the 
Eurasian plate, at the Java trench. At this region, by the oceanic nature 
of the plates, there are many active volcanoes, with frequent earthquakes 
caused by the subduction of the Indian-Australian plate beneath the 
segmente of the Eurasian plate.

In the southeastern region, at the Tonga trench, there are some volcanism 
and earthquakes because of the subduction of the Pacific plate beneath the 
Indian-Australian plate. Some earthquakes should occur in the process.

There is also a segment of collision at the northeastern region, at the 
Solomon Islands, with the associated volcanism and earthquakes.

I guess the best way to see this process is by consulting a good tectonic 
map, that you can easily find in the web. I recommend "Understand Earth", 
by Frank Press and Raymond Siever, Freeman and Company, N.Y. as a good 
reference material.

Best regards

Eder C. Molina
Dept. of Geophysics
Institute of Astronomy and Geophysics
University of Sao Paulo - BRAZIL

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