Continental drift was a revolutionary scientific theory developed in the years 1908-1912 by Alfred Wegener (1880-1930), a German meteorologist, climatologist, and geophysicist, that put forth the hypothesis that the continents had all originally been a part of one enormous landmass or supercontinent about 240 million years ago before breaking apart and drifting to their current locations. person who studies space and the universe beyond Earth's atmosphere. Continental drift theory was proposed by Alfred Wegener in 1912. He kept the discussion of the plausibility of the continental drift theory going until his untimely death in 1930 during a meteorologic expedition in Greenland. Worse, the most viable forms of the theory predicted the existence of convection cell boundaries reaching deep into the earth that had yet to be observed. Wegener knew he didn't have a … massive slab of solid rock made up of Earth's lithosphere (crust and upper mantle). Yet Tharp's name isn't on any of the key papers that Heezen and others published about plate tectonics between 1959–1963, which brought this once-controversial idea to the mainstream of earth sciences. who proposed the continental drift theory? [31] (The currently accepted rate for the separation of the Americas from Europe and Africa is about 2.5 cm/year). Let us know if you have suggestions to improve this article (requires login). Heat coming from the interior of the earth triggers this movement to occur through convection currents inside the mantle. [54][55][56]  The best explanation was the "conveyor belt" or Vine–Matthews–Morley hypothesis. If a media asset is downloadable, a download button appears in the corner of the media viewer. all weather conditions for a given location over a period of time. Although Wegener's theory was formed independently and was more complete than those of his predecessors, Wegener later credited a number of past authors with similar ideas:[16][17] Bringing together a large mass of geologic and paleontological data, Wegener postulated that throughout most of geologic time there was only one continent, which he called Pangea. He was the first person to introduce the theory of continental drift. Wegener was the first to use the phrase "continental drift" (1912, 1915)[15][16] (in German "die Verschiebung der Kontinente" – translated into English in 1922) and formally publish the hypothesis that the continents had somehow "drifted" apart. While working with the North Atlantic data, she noted what must have been a rift between high undersea mountains. For one, he was not an expert in the field of science in which he was making a hypothesis, and for another, his radical theory threatened conventional and accepted ideas of the time. There were also alternative theories to counter Wegener’s continental drift theory. UPSC Mains Exam Pattern: Is UPSC Mains MCQ Pattern. Some of the most, The processes of seafloor spreading, rift valley formation, and, Alfred Wegener’s original name for his proposed, ancient continent was “Urkontinent”—. The changing Earth through geologic time, from the late Cambrian Period (, plate tectonics: Alfred Wegener and the concept of continental drift. The answer would be Alfred Wegner. Does the article talk about who gave the theory of continental drift? Also called lithospheric plate. Your email address will not be published. Heezen infamously dismissed his assistant's idea as "girl talk." Various attempts to explain this foundered on other difficulties. [52], Meanwhile, scientists began recognizing odd magnetic variations across the ocean floor using devices developed during World War II to detect submarines. It is believed that Africa soon will break into two parts due to these movements in the tectonic plates. He was the first person to introduce the theory of continental drift. Another theory was that the fossils of temperate species found in the arctic regions were carried there by warm water currents. Ferromagnetic minerals such as magnetite acquire a permanent magnetization when they crystallize as constituents of igneous rock. If no button appears, you cannot download or save the media. According to Continental Drift Theory there existed one big landmass which he called Pangaea which was covered by … Bernauer thought this extension had drifted the continents only 100–200 km apart, the approximate width of the volcanic zone in Iceland. [15] His hypothesis was that the continents had once formed a single landmass, called Pangaea, before breaking apart and drifting to their present locations. The continents are, from largest to smallest: Asia, Africa, North America, South America, Antarctica, Europe, and Australia. Alfred Wegener proposed two different mechanisms for continental drift. Be on the lookout for your Britannica newsletter to get trusted stories delivered right to your inbox. His theory had given most information on continental drift. "Like" us on Facebook or follow us on Wegener observed that the continents and their rock strata fit together like pieces of a jigsaw puzzle, particularly the east coast of South America and the west coast of Africa, specifically the Karoo strata in South Africa and Santa Catarina rocks in Brazil. New magma from deep within the Earth rises easily through these weak zones and eventually erupts along the crest of the ridges to create new oceanic crust. Earth Science, Geology, Geography, Physical Geography. Updates? Another fossil type, that of the ancient reptile Mesosaurus, is only found in southern Africa and South America. These include Pannotia, which formed about 600 million years ago, and Rodinia, which existed more than a billion years ago. Without workable alternatives to explain the stripes, geophysicists were forced to conclude that Holmes had been right: ocean rifts were sites of perpetual orogeny at the boundaries of convection cells. Scientists believe that there were several supercontinents like Pangaea that formed and broke apart over the course of Earth's 4.5-billion year lifespan. This website uses cookies to ensure you get the best experience on our website. Text on this page is printable and can be used according to our Terms of Service. The ocean floor is thus pushed at right angles and in opposite directions away from the crests. Continental drift was a revolutionary scientific theory developed in the years 1908-1912 by Alfred Wegener (1880-1930), a German meteorologist, climatologist, and geophysicist, that put forth the hypothesis that the continents had all originally been a part of one enormous landmass or supercontinent about 240 million years ago before breaking apart and drifting to their current locations. Alfred Wegener suggested continental Drift Theory in the 1920’s. The Earth’s crust is broken up into a series of massive sections called plates. The basics of the continental drift theory for your IAS preparations. By belza0524  |  Updated: Nov. 21, 2020, 8:38 a.m. * Powtoon is not liable for any 3rd party content used. He proposed in 1931 that the Earth's mantle contained convection cells which dissipated heat produced by radioactive decay and moved the crust at the surface. Late in the Triassic Period (which lasted from approximately 251 million to 199.6 million years ago), Pangea fragmented, and the parts began to move away from one another. In a series of papers in 1959–1963, Heezen, Dietz, Hess, Mason, Vine, Matthews, and Morley collectively realized that the magnetization of the ocean floor formed extensive, zebra-like patterns: one stripe would exhibit normal polarity and the adjoining stripes reversed polarity. [33] His Principles of Physical Geology, ending with a chapter on continental drift, was published in 1944. [42] F. Bernauer correctly equated Reykjanes in south-west Iceland with the Mid-Atlantic Ridge, arguing with this that the floor of the Atlantic Ocean was undergoing extension just like Reykjanes. Indications of widespread glaciation from 380 to 250 million years ago are evident in Antarctica, southern South America, southern Africa, India, and Australia. [67] There is also living evidence, with the same animals being found on two continents. Once your Powtoon is ready to be downloaded we’ll send you an email. The Continental Drift Theory was first proposed by German scientist Alfred Wegener in 1915. air containing a large amount of water vapor. In millions of years, slab pull, ridge-push, and other forces of tectonophysics will further separate and rotate those two continents. Di tahun 1912, meteorolog Jerman Alfred Wegener akhirnya mengemukakan gagasan brilian bahwa daratan benua saat ini saling terhubung satu sama lain dan lahirlah Continental Drift Theory.Meski beberapa dekade teori ini masih belum dibuktikan kebenarannya namun pada akhirnya kebenaranlah yang akan menang. Terms of Service |  Video Lectures [40] Criticism of continental drift and mobilism was abundant at the conference not only from tectonicists but also from sedimentological (Nölke), paleontological (Nölke), mechanical (Lehmann) and oceanographic (Troll, Wüst) perspectives. It combines the continental drift theory proposed in 1912 by Alfred Wegener in Germany.

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