Saturday, January 25, 2014

Plate Collision

Deformation, deflection, and detachment are observable when land masses collide. Via the immense pressure of colliding tectonic plates, horizontally deposited sedimentary rock, distinguished by distinctively colored, vertically-stratified slabs, can be:
  1. Squeezed into wavy layers forming synclines and anticlines (right); or
  2. Broken up so that the deeper layers (older) of rock pile on top of shallower (newer) layers. A phenomena called a thrust fault; or
  3. Forced to strike or slip along a plane creating a horizontally detached strike-slip fault.

Piqiang Fault, a strike-slip fault

Piqiang Fault is a dramatic example of a strike-slip fault in the Gobi desert. The sedimentary rock layers are offset by about 2 miles. Pressure from colliding tectonic plates, i.e., the northward moving Indian plate and the Eurasian plate, caused Piqiang Fault.

Civilization exists by geological consent, subject to change without notice.
Will Durant