Tuesday, November 03, 2009

Yeah, we can change the face of things...

Using newly gathered seismic data from 2005, researchers reconstructed the event to show the rift tore open along its entire 35-mile length in just days. Dabbahu, a volcano at the northern end of the rift, erupted first, then magma pushed up through the middle of the rift area and began "unzipping" the rift in both directions, the researchers explained in a statement today.

New ocean, they say in a million years or so; or maybe next week?

Be a bad time to be crossing the lowlands.

1 comment:

keith said...

Some rifts do grow into oceans others don't, I forget the relative length proportions of the two.

North Atlantic rifting goes a lot further back than the actual opening during the early tertiary. Not being into oil, I'm a bit rusty on the details, but north south striking rifts started about 200M years earlier, with late carboniferous early permian half grabens.

The north sea, separating Britain from continental Europe sits on top of one of the big rifts, and the muddy sediments deposited in it appear to be the source of the oil, the gas at the southern end was believed to be from underlying Carb coal measures.