Plate Tectonics

The Earth | Science Trek

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There is no place like home. Starting with the protective layers of our atmosphere and going all the way down to the deepest core of the planet, each part of the Earth plays a role in creating the planet on which we live.

Pre-1500 Era | Lesson 1: A Sense of Geologic Time

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Scientists divide geologic time into eras, measured in millions of years. Within each named era are periods, and within each period are epochs. Each vast unit of time is defined by the appearance and disappearance of various life forms and climactic conditions on Earth's ever-changing face. Geologists, paleontologists, archaeologists, anthropologists, and historians read the book of time in Nebraska's land. Their shared insights and interpretations can paint a detailed picture of life ten thousand years.

Learn more at NebraskaStudies.org.

Faultlines | Outdoor Nevada

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In this episode host John Burke studies an earthquake fault line in the California Wash

The Mystery of the Eocene’s Lethal Lake | Eons

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In 1800s, miners began working in exposed deposits of mud near the town of Messel, Germany. They were extracting oil from the rock and along with the oil, they found beautifully preserved fossils of animals from the Eocene Epoch. What happened to these Eocene animals? And why were their remains so exquisitely preserved?

Geology | Science Trek

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Geology plays an essential part in our lives. Geologists help us with everyday things in our lives and they keep us safe by studying the land around us. Find out more in this geological adventure.

Mount St. Helens | Science Trek

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This video segment from IdahoPTV's Science Trek features photos of the 1980 Mt. St. Helen's eruption and photos of what it looks like today. Scientist explain why they are monitoring the mountain today and what they hope to discover.

Scientist Profile: Marine Geologist

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This DragonflyTV segment introduces marine geologist Carol Reiss, who works for the U.S. Geological Survey (USGS). She studies tectonic plate movement in order to better understand earthquakes. Also available in Spanish.

Earthquake! When Plates Collide

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This video excerpt from NOVA: "Deadliest Earthquakes" shows how Earth’s crust is made up of rocky slabs, called plates, and how those plates are constantly moving. As molten rock rises from Earth's interior and cools to form new crust, it forces older crust to grind against other plates or sink beneath them. Using ground movement data, scientists are able to calculate stress levels at these plate boundaries. This stress is released in a matter of seconds during an earthquake, sometimes generating as much energy as thousands of nuclear bombs.

This video is available in both English and Spanish audio, along with corresponding closed captions.

Plate Tectonics: An Introduction

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In the early 1900s, most geologists thought that Earth's appearance, including the arrangement of the continents, had changed little since its formation. This video segment, adapted from the "Earth Explorer" episode of Discovering Women, describes the impact the theory of plate tectonics has had on our understanding of Earth's geological history, as we have become aware of our planet's ever-changing nature.

This video is available in both English and Spanish audio, along with corresponding closed captions. 

Volcano Geochemistry: Windows to Earth's Interior | Smithsonian Science How

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Explore volcanoes as windows into the Earth's melted interior. Meet Dr. Elizabeth Cottrell, a geologist at the National Museum of Natural History. Understand how you are connected to the interior of the Earth through cycling of gases and other materials. Uncover the evidence about geologic events contained in volcanic glasses and other eruption products. Think about how plate tectonics have gotten us to where we are today on Earth.

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