how many tectonic plates are there? There are major, minor and micro tectonic plates. There are seven major plates: African, Antarctic, Eurasian, Indo-Australian, North American, Pacific and South American.
What tectonic plate is Africa on?
The African Plate is a major tectonic plate straddling the Equator as well as the prime meridian. It includes much of the continent of Africa, as well as oceanic crust which lies between the continent and various surrounding ocean ridges.
What are the 11 tectonic plates?
Terranes may or may not have originated as independent microplates: a terrane may not contain the full thickness of the lithosphere.
- African Plate.
- Antarctic Plate.
- Eurasian Plate.
- Indo-Australian Plate.
- North American Plate.
- South American Plate.
What are the two tectonic plates called in Africa?
Throughout the East African Rift, the continent of Africa is splitting in two. The African plate, sometimes called the Nubian plate, carries most of the continent, while the smaller Somali plate carries Horn of Africa. The two major rift valley systems of the East African Rift are the Gregory Rift and the Western Rift.
How deep is the African plate?
The African plate includes 0 age oceanic lithosphere created at the Red Sea and Gulf of Aden mid-ocean ridges, 175 Ma oceanic lithospheric, and > 2.5 Ga Archaean cratons that are more than 170 km thick.
Does South Africa have tectonic plates?
As you can see in the image below, Cape Town is located quite in the centre of the African Plate. The African Plate shares boundaries with 7 other plates: The Eurasian plate, North American Plate, South American Plate, Arabian Plate, Indian Plate, Australian Plate and the Antarctic Plate in the South.
Why do tectonic plates move?
The heat from radioactive processes within the planet’s interior causes the plates to move, sometimes toward and sometimes away from each other. This movement is called plate motion, or tectonic shift.
What is the oldest major tectonic plate?
Identification of the oldest preserved pieces of Earth’s crust in southern Greenland has provided evidence of active plate tectonics as early as 3.8 billion years ago, according to a report by an international team of geoscientists in Science magazine.
How fast do tectonic plates move?
They move at a rate of one to two inches (three to five centimeters) per year.
What are the smallest plates?
The Juan de Fuca Plate is the smallest of earth’s tectonic plates. It is approximately 250,000 square kilometers.