Will The Evolving Earth Have Its Next Supercontinent?

Mamta Panda
Mamta Panda

Our continents and ocean might seem like they have been around like forever. But when we glance at the Earth’s history of 4.5 billion years history they can be actually regarded as a brand new . Its been only a time range of  about 180 million years ago all the major landmasses were clumped together in a giant supercontinent called Pangea. Not too long ago , earth was a planet that would look totally unfamiliar to us . But Pangea was not the first supercontinent , and it wont be the last either. Geologist have spent decades in modelling the supercontinents using evidence from around the world . They have learned that we have another supercontinent coming all way in the 200 million years or so. Except no one is actually sure about how will it look like or where it will be in long time . The answer to this totally depends on factors owing to what happens inside the earth.

Earth is halfway through latest continental formation

For context supercontinents breaks or forms up because of the Earth’s crust and the tiny bit of its mantle are broken into pieces .  They are better known as Tectonic plates and they move around the planets and are better carried by currents in the mantles . Geologists have further studied on the plates and how do they move with everything from lasers to rock formations to quasars in space. So by this notion we can have a pretty firm understanding of how it works . Thats how we know Pangea existed. And that it was the latest in the long line of supercontinents.  It also a big part on why we believe these landmasses form and break up in cycles.  The cycle seems to last about five to seven million years which inevitably means half way through the current one. But figuring out what the next supercontinent would be is much easier said than done. Scientists have looked at how the tectonic plates have evolved, the increase in the glow of Sun’s brightness and a slightly lower rate of rotation.

These factors could ultimately lead to the  future climate hazards. It would be worth researching to know what Earth’s climate would be expected like in  a long span of future in the time when the continental movements have initiated and have take the planet far distinct from the current configuration of continents. According to the eminent geologist they have explored two possible formations.  One could be Amasia which could be a high latitude northern supercontinent including a mini Antartic subcontinent taking their shape in vaguely about 200 million year since now. Secondly they assumed Aurica which could be a low latitude supercontinent forming over the coming 250 million years by now.

According to the paper- ‘Amasia is essentially an Artic continent which consists an isolated and independent Antartic continent. It means both the poles are covered land while much of that is covered by ice.’

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Expected Major Changes in Long run

A set of researches have explored that the Earth’s future climate by observing the increase in carbon dioxide and solar insolation via time . Other studies show various climate changes as a result of the topography changes of Earth. The high altitude land on Amasia would result in the formation of sheets of ice . Hence it could be assumed that the white supercontinent would reflect more heat of Sun.

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