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New Concepts in Global Tectonics Newsletter, no. 58, March, 2011
M. Ismail BHAT
Christian SMOOT
Dong R. CHOI

_Recent issues of the NCGT Newsletter carried criticism of the surge tectonics.  _The critiques are either half attempts (Karesten Storetvedt) or superficial (Peter  James).  _While our response to Storetvedt should equally apply to James’ comment, we would  however very briefly address his comment separately.  _Using this opportunity we shall also ask a question or two to those who advocate  oceanization.  _And finally, we present a little puzzle for expanding Earth proponents. 
Karesten Storetvedt – Criticism off the mark  _Storetvedt (NCGT issue no. 57) denounced surge tectonics -- in favor of his wrench  tectonics -- as unable to account for geological history.  _Our intention here, however, is not to pick holes in wrench tectonics or to defend  surge tectonics.  _That is for the readers and time.  _We would instead argue what we believe is the scientifically most logical basis  for enunciation of surge tectonics.  _Storetvedt writes “As I see it, the [surge tectonics] hypothesis has ignored too  many data that didn't fit the box (just as has been the situation for Wegenerian  drift and plate tectonics).  _To me many of the arguments sounded strained and constructed for the purpose.”  _But, except for one (tropical-subtropical conditions in Antarctica; see below), he  neither identifies those “ignored” data nor tell the reader what arguments sound  “strained” or “constructed for the purpose.”  _Isn’t that truly unscientific?  _Anyhow, one can’t be more off the mark.  _Surge tectonics isn’t being proposed as a model which is then beefed up and  confirmed by data (something Storetvedt seems to prefer); instead it evolves from  known data.  _Here is the story for those who haven’t read or heard about it.  _The evolution of surge tectonics happened through a series of articles by Arthur A. Meyerhoff and his coworkers that began in 1972 and culminated in the first  presentation of the concept in 1989 at a conference sponsored by the Smithsonian  Institute and Texas Tech University.  _The proceedings of the conference, including the surge tectonics concept, were  later published in 1992.  _In 1995 Journal of Southeast Asian Earth Sciences published its application under  the title ‘Surge-tectonic evolution of southeastern Asia: a geohydrodynamics  approach’ as a single paper issue.  _So, it was not just the enunciation of a concept but its testing as well.  _The year 1996 saw the consolidation and publication of the whole idea and its  application in book form with one additional topic on magma floods.  _The book has just six chapters including a very short one on conclusions. 
>_It begins with a brief discussion of former and current concepts of Earth  dynamics, including Earth contraction concept, which incidentally provides the  basic framework for the surge tectonics.
 _Pros and cons of each concept are presented, concluding with why there is need for  a new hypothesis.  _Next it presents a short description of the history and evolution of techniques  for data gathering. 
>_It is followed by a long discussion of 29 data sets that remain unexplained by all the current geodynamic models.
>_The spread of these data sets is worth noting: from the smallest (like dip and  strike, joints and lineations) through hydrothermal manifestations, linear  anorogenic belts, distribution of world evaporites, vortex structures, deep  continental roots, morphology and seismic characters of different tectonic elements  (rift zones, ocean ridges, island arcs, mountain belts), ocean floor bathymetry,  oceanic basement, heat and microearthquake bands, Benioff zones, antipodal  arrangement of oceans and continents, continental margin phenomena,  seismotomography and convection, magma floods to presence or absence of certain  tectonic elements in particular parts of globe (like island arcs and ocean island  chains).
 _The basic data in all these cases is sourced from published literature,  predominantly by plate tectonicists.  _Does the whole spectrum look like “constructed for the purpose?”  _What is most significant here is the identification of a common denominator that  defines all these 29 tectonic elements and how it lays the foundation for a new  concept. 
>_That common denominator is the presence in the lithosphere of magma channels at  various depths rising from asthenosphere across all tectonic elements and across  all plate tectonic settings – rift, ridge, subduction zone and mountain belts. 
>_The magma channel is shown to be either active or fossilized with characteristic  P-wave velocity range of 7.0 to 7.8 km/s.  _Next comes the construction of surge tectonics hypothesis. 
>_It begins with a discussion of the seismic velocity structure of the Earth and  evidence for deep continental roots. 
>_Then we have discussion of eleven pieces of geological and geophysical evidence  for a differentiated, cooling Earth, one of which also provides a neat explanation  for the existence of asthenosphere:  >“As the Earth cools, it solidifies from surface downward. 
>_Because stress states in cooled [lithosphere] and uncooled [strictosphere, i.e.  mantle below asthenosphere] parts are necessarily opposite one another, compression  above and tension below, the two parts must be separated by a surface or zone …  called the level of no strain.” 
>_This is followed by discussion of why the original contraction hypothesis fails as a viable geodynamic concept and how the presence of surge channels in an  environment of compressive stresses of lithosphere does away with all the valid  objections to the Earth contraction concept. 
>_That is to say, the contraction concept is revived in a new form that addresses  all the known objections to its original form. 
>_Also, evidence for the flow of fluid (magma) under each tectonic element is  presented and shown to control and define structural and morphological features of  all the data sets. 
>_We then have the introduction of surge channel concept.

 _In order not to give any impression of ownership to the idea of surge channels and  give due credit to where it belongs to, literature review of the concept of surge  and related concepts in Earth-dynamic theory is presented. 
>_Geotectonic cycle of surge tectonics is also briefly introduced here followed by  geophysical and other evidence for the existence of surge channels, their geometry,  demonstration of tangential flow, mechanism of eastward flow, their classification,  geophysical/ geological criteria for their identification and their examples in  different tectonic settings as well as how their variable thickness are controlled  are presented and discussed. 
>_Next we see application of surge tectonics hypothesis to SE Asia and origin of  magma floods.

 _Quoting from the surge tectonics book -- Meyerhoff et al. 1996 -- and ignoring  references to the cited literature as well as figures/tables, the broad framework  of the hypothesis is thus: 
>_“Surge tectonics is based on the concept that the lithosphere contains a worldwide network of deformable magma chambers (surge channels) in which partial magma melt is in motion (active surge channels) or was in motion at some time in the past (inactive surge channels)… 
>_The presence of surge channels means that all of the compressive stresses in the  lithosphere are oriented at right angles to their walls. 
>_As this compressive stress increases during a given tectonic cycle, it eventually  ruptures the channels that are deformed bilaterally into kobergens [bilaterally  deformed foldbelts]… 
>_“Surge tectonics involves three separate but interdependent and interacting  processes. 
>_The first process is the contraction or cooling of the Earth. 
>_The second is the lateral flow of fluid, or semifluid, magma through a network of  interconnected magma channels in the lithosphere [the cooled outer shell]. 
>_We call these surge channels. 
>_The third process is the Earth’s rotation. 
>_This process involves differential lag between the lithosphere and the  strictosphere (the hard [still hot but cooling] mantle beneath the asthenosphere  and lower crust), and its effects – eastward shifts.”

 _No other geodynamic concept touches this aspect.  _Again quoting from the surge tectonics book, and ignoring references to the cited literature as well as figures/tables, here is how geotectonic cycle is envisaged under surge tectonics:
>_“The asthenosphere alternately expands (during times of tectonic quiescence) and  contracts (during tectogenesis). 
>_Thus when the asthenosphere is expanding, the surge channels above it, which are  supplied from the asthenosphere, also are expanding; and when tectogenesis takes  place, the magma in surge channels is expelled. 
>_Tectogenesis is triggered by collapse of the lithosphere into the asthenosphere  along 30o-dipping lithosphere Benioff zones. 
>_The following is [the] interpretation of the approximate sequence of events during a geotectonic cycle. 
>_1. The strictosphere is always contracting, presumably at a steady rate, because  the Earth is cooling. 
>_2. The overlying lithosphere, because it is already cool, does not contract, but  adjusts its basal circumference to the upper surface of the shrinking stictosphere  by (1) large-scale thrusting along lithosphere Benioff zones, and (2) normal-type  faulting along the strictosphere Benioff zones. 
>_These two types of deformation, one compressive and the other tensile, are  complementary and together constitute an example of Navier-Coulomb maximum shear  stress theory. 
>_3. The large-scale thrusting of the lithosphere is not a continuous process, but  occurs only when the lithosphere’s underlying dynamic support fails. 
>_That support is provided mainly by the softer asthenosphere and frictional  resistance along the Benioff fractures. 
>_When the weight of the lithosphere overcomes the combined resistance offered by  the asthenosphere and Benioff-zone friction, lithosphere collapse ensues. 
>_Because this process cannot be perfectly cyclic, it must be episodic; hence tectogenesis is episodic. 
>_4. During anorogenic intervals between lithosphere collapses, the asthenosphere  volume increases slowly as the lithosphere radius decreases. 
>_The increase in asthenosphere volume is accompanied by decompression in the  asthenosphere. 
>_5. Decompression is accompanied by rising temperature, increased magma generation, and lowered viscosity in the asthenosphere, which gradually weakens during the time intervals between collapses. 
>_6. Flow in the asthenosphere is predominantly eastward as a consequence of the  Earth’s rotation (Newton’s Third Law of Motion). 
>_Magma flow in the surge channels above the asthenosphere also tends to be  eastward, although local barriers may divert flow in other directions for short  distances. 
>_Coriolis force also must exert an important influence on asthenosphere and surge- channel flow, which by its nature is Poiseuille flow. 
>_Therefore, the flow at the channel walls is laminar and is accompanied by viscous, or backward drag. The viscous drag produces the swaths of faults, fractures, and fissures (streamlines) that are visible at the surface above all the active tectonic belts.  _These bands or swaths are example of Stokes’ Law (one expression of Newton’s  Second Law of Motion). 
>_7. During lithosphere collapse into the asthenosphere, the continentward (hanging  wall) sides of lithosphere Benioff zones override (obduct) the ocean floor. 
>_The entire lithosphere buckles, fractures, and founders. 
>_Enormous compressive stresses are created in the lithosphere. 
>_8. Both the lithosphere and strictosphere fracture along great circles at the  depth of the strictoshere’s upper surface. 
>_Only two partial great circle fracture zones survive on the Earth today. 
>_These include the fairly extensive, highly active Circum-Pacific great circle and  the almost defunct Tethys-Mediterranean great circle. 
>_9. When the lithosphere collapses into the asthenosphere, the asthenosphere- derived magma in the surge channels begins to surge intensely. 
>_Whenever the volume of the magma in the channels exceeds their volumetric  capacity, and when compression in the lithosphere exceeds the strength of the  lithosphere that directly overlies the surge channels, the surge-channel roofs  rupture along the cracks that comprise the faultfracture-fissure system generated  in the surge channel by Poiseuille flow before the rupture is bivergent, whether it  forms continental rifts, foldbelts, strike-slip zones, or midocean rifts. 
>_The fold belts develop into kobergens, some of them alpinotype and some of them  germanotype. 
>_The tectonic style of a tectonic belt depends mainly on the thickness and strength of the lithosphere overlying it. 
>_10. Tectogenesis generally affects an entire tectonic belt and, in fact, may be  worldwide, the worldwide early to late Eocene tectogenesis is an example. 
>_This indicates that the lithosphere collapse generates tectogenesis and transmits  stresses everywhere in a given belt at the same time.

 _Thus Pascal’s law is at the core of tectogenesis. 
>_Sudden rupture and deformation of surge channels may therefore be likened to what  happens when someone stamps a foot on a tube full of tooth paste. 
>_The speed or rapidity of tectogenesis, then, is related to the number of fractures participating in the event, as well as to the thickness of lithosphere involved, the size of the surge channels or surge-channel system, the volume and types of magma involved, and related factors. 
>_11. Once tectogenesis is completed, another geotectonic cycle or subcycle sets in, commonly within the same tectonic belt.” 
>_Summarising, surge tectonics views the Earth as “a very large hydraulic press. 
>_Such a press consists of three essential parts – a closed vessel, the liquid in  the vessel, and a ram or piston. 
>_The collapse of the lithosphere into the asthenosphere is the activating ram or  piston of tectogenesis. 
>_The asthenosphere and its overlying lithosphere surge channels – which are  everywhere connected with the asthenosphere by vertical conduits – are the vessels  that enclose the fluid. 
>_The fluid is magma generated in the asthenosphere. 
>_The magma fills the lithosphere channels. 
>_When the piston (lithosphere collapse) suddenly compresses the channels and the  underlying asthenosphere, the pressure is transmitted rapidly and essentially  simultaneously through the worldwide interconnected surge-channel network, the  surge channels burst and the tectogenesis is in full swing.

 _The compression everywhere of the asthenosphere compensates for the fact that the  basaltic magma of the surge channels is non-Newtonian.”  _In conclusion, it is evident that the evolution and enunciation of surge tectonics  as a viable geodynamic concept follow the most appropriate scientific approach –  from basic data to process to encompassing framework (hypothesis).  _And, most importantly, that the concept “draws on well-known laws of physics,  especially those related to the laws of motion, gravity, and fluid dynamics,” which  are discussed throughout the text and again presented and explained in the  appendix.  _As to its application to the geological past, that needs working out time-series  information about increase in lithospheric thickness.  _Having said this, we do not claim surge tectonics to be the panacea for geodynamic  problems.  _As Donna Meyerhoff-Hull wrote in her editor’s postscript (Meyerhoff et al., 1996),  “He encouraged his colleagues to continue thinking about the hypothesis and wanted  them to continue to improve it with their own data and idea”.  _However, we strongly believe, it addresses nearly every geological and geophysical  piece of data currently available.  _After the enunciation of surge tectonics in 1992 and his death in 1994, numerous  evidence supporting surge tectonics have continually emerged, many of which have  been documented in our own platform, NCGT Newsletter: The data mainly come from  field geological data, earthquake study, satellite altimetry and seismic  tomography.  _They provide much clearer picture of surge tectonics. 
>_Some salient points are: 1) The outer core-sourced energy possibly in the form of  heat, volatiles, or electromagnetics rises to the shallow Earth and transmigrates  laterally along major fractured and porous zones – tectonic zones and orogenic  belts, which trigger volcanic eruptions and major earthquakes by heating magmas and  the upper mantle/lower crust. 
>_The well-tested and proven Blot’s energy transmigration phenomena (1976) and  Tsunoda’s VE process (2009) testify to the presence of energy migration channels or  surge channels. 
>_2) Seismo-tomographic profiles across the Pacific Ocean show the correlation  between the distribution of Jurassic and Cretaceous basins and that of faster  mantle velocity down to 330 km depth, which in turn is underlain by slow mantle  (Choi and Vasiliev, 2008; Fig. 1), while the continents are generally underlain by  fast mantle through to the core-mantle boundary. 
>_These facts are in harmony with the cooling of the shallow mantle model – already  cooled lithosphere and cooling strictosphere. 
>_Cooling of the Earth surface is also supported by earthquake focal mechanism  studies; compressional in the shallow quakes and tensional in intermediate to deep  quakes (Suzuki, 2001; Tarakanov, 2005). 
>_Figure 1. Mantle profile across the Pacific Ocean from Russia to South America  (Choi and Vasiliev, 2008) compiled from tomographic images by Kawakami et al.  (1994). 
>_Note the coincidence between the Mesozoic basin distribution and that of the fast  shallow mantle (to 330 km), suggesting the cause-effect relationship between the  cooling of shallow mantle and subsidence. 
>_There are numerous indisputable data that the oceanic areas had formed land until  Mesozoic. 
>_K-K TZ = Korea-Kamchatka Tectonic Zone; T-K TZ = TanLu-Kamchatka Tectonic  Zone; A-H line = Aleutian- Hawaiian Islands Line.

 _Stroretvedt states that “surprisingly low heat flow, the problem of finding anticipated magma chambers, a nearly complete lack of active volcanism, predominantly low-temperature mineral alteration, and a frequent occurrence of serpentized peridotites” along ocean ridges are “'deadly weapons' against seafloor spreading as well as surge tectonics.”  _No, these are not the data that discount either sea floor spreading or surge  tectonics; indeed, also not expanding Earth.  _It is discomforting to see surge tectonics being clubbed with the concept that it  is anti-thesis of.  _His statement is based both on denial of evidence and misunderstanding. 
>_Denial because, as stated above, there is a whole range of evidence that are marshalled (and cited with full publication details) for the existence of magma channels both under ocean ridges and elsewhere. 
>_Also, relevant literature gives data for heat flow exceeding 55 mW/m2; again, this includes ocean ridges.

 _No concepts including plate, expanding and surge tectonics advocate 24x7 magma  eruption along ocean ridges.  _Per year spreading rates given by plate tectonicists (and used also by expansionists) does not mean magma is erupting on daily or even yearly basis.  _These are supposed to be averages reduced to annual basis from those that are  inferred from dating of magnetic stripes.  _As to low temperature mineral alterations, this problem has been discussed by  several publications.  _We would specifically recommend the paper by W.S.D. Wilcock and J.R. Delaney  (1996, Mid-ocean ridge sulfide deposits: Evidence for heat extraction from magma  chambers or cracking fronts? Earth and Planetary Science Letters, v. 145, p. 49- 64).  _Although they use plate tectonics framework, it is more important to notice the  conditions and processes they envisage remain broadly applicable irrespective of  their broader tectonic model. _Yes, ST doesn't talk of evolutionary history but where does it come in the way of its application to that question.  _We would challenge Storetvedt to explain just a few of the data sets that we have  listed – like, e.g., morphology of the ocean ridges, steamlines, 7.0-7.8 km/s  anomalous layer, formation of asthenosphere, geographic distribution of island  arcs, angular difference in lithospheric and strictospheric Benioff zones – using  his wrench tectonics.  _Returning to Storetvedt’s comments.  _He laments surge tectonics ignoring “mention of the protracted tropical- subtropical conditions in Antarctica.”  _Climatic conditions -- current or past -- are not primarily a direct consequence of Earth dynamics but can be thought of as proxy for certain processes (e.g., erosion) and physiographic features of the Earth.  _Therefore, expecting a geodynamic model to be erected on such data is too much of  a misplaced expectation. 
>_However, for the sake of completeness, it needs be mentioned that in the same year (1996) when book on surge tectonics was published, Meyerhoff et al. (1996) published a monumental piece of work titled ‘Phanerozoic faunal and floral realms of the Earth; the intercalary relations of the Malvinokaffric and Gondwana faunal realms with the Tethyan faunal realm.’
 _It was published by the Geological Society of America as GSA Memoir 129. 
>_As can be gauged from the title, this publication discusses all available faunal  and floral data – including from Antarctica -- to discount any mobilistic concept.
 _We have already stated that we do not intend to criticize Storetvedt’s “Wrench  Tectonics theory – which [he believes] is an attempt to unify the various facets of  Earth history.”  _Again, that is for readers and time.  _However, before any one worries about testing his theory against Earth’s history,  we would draw Storetvedt’s attention to one current, existing fact.  _On page 45 of the latest NCGT Newsletter (Issue #57) he presents a 3-D satellite  view of “two tectonic 'whirlpool' junctions on the East Pacific Rise”.  _Though he doesn’t name the two “whirlpools,” the bigger one is the Easter Island  and the smaller one is Juan Fernandez Island, both located on the East Pacific Rise  in the eastern part of the central Pacific.  _Easter Island’s geological feature has been fairly well researched and discussed.  _Without describing their geological or geophysical characters, Storetvedt explains  them away as the products of interaction of Easter Fracture Zone and Chile ridge  with the East Pacific Rise.  _He writes: “It looks as if shear stress has produced a torque ripping off micro- blocks at the two cross-cutting junctions, after which the detached crustal units  have been subjected to tectonic rotation.”  _(Notice the wishful language!)  _You can’t imagine a more simplistic approach when actual facts are taken into  consideration.  _Figure 2 shows the structural geometry, deduced from side-sonar images and high- pass GEOSAT altimetry data.  _Notice the vortical morphology; it shows the Easter Island like an elliptical ring  on the ocean bottom.  _And notice the feature is enveloped within the two axes of the East Pacific Rise –  the “overlapping spreading centers” of plate tectonics. 
>_Some plate tectonics literature describes the Easter Island as rotating  microplate.
 _Some descriptions include: “Enclosing the core of microplate, the inner  pseudofaults form a pattern resembling the meteorological symbol for a hurricane”  (Larson et al., 1992); and “The result is a feature that appears much like a  geological “hurricane” embedded in the crust of the earth” (Bird and Naar, 1994;  Leybourne and Adams, 2001). 
>_Surge tectonics calls such structures as vortex structure.
 _One might say there is so far no apparent conflict with wrench tectonics if Storetvedt’s wrench tectonics can produce the observed structural geometry.  _But that ends when you consider a complete gradation in form and style between  overlapping spreading centers (incipient vortices of surge tectonics) and fully  developed vortices so well documented in the surge tectonics book. 
>_More importantly, what would be the wrench tectonics explanation for similar  overlapping spreading center-like structure like, e. g. the East African Rift  Valley system (Fig. 3) or full-blown vortices like Dasht-i-Lut (Fig. 4) or Banda  Sea vortex (Fig. 5)?
 _Which of the intersecting fracture zones or ridges or shear belts would be invoked  in these cases? 
>_Figure 2. Vortex structure in the Easter Island (for source reference see  Meyerhoff et al., 1996).
 _A typical symbol of atmospheric hurricane in the Earth’s crust. 
>_Figure 3. East African rift-valley system (for source reference see Meyerhoff et  al., 1996).
 _Another example of a continental tectonic vortex along a continental rift  geostream. 
>_Figure 4. Dasht-i-Lut vortex structure, Iran (for source reference see Meyerhoff  et al., 1996), a typical continental vortex along a fold belt.
 _The orientation of the structures show that motions beneath the vortex were  counterclockwise. 
>_Figure 5. Bathymetry (left) and 3-D bathymetric view of Webber Deep in the Banda  Sea (Leybourne and Adams, 1999).
 _Storetvedt writes: It is my opinion that the only way into the future is through  application of well-established facts, primarily based on rock evidence and various  other surface data1.  _But to go from there to aspects of real understanding we need a functional thought  construction – a Theory! _And a theory is an invention, invented for the purpose of explaining the diversity  of observations and phenomena – and their interrelationship2.  _Therefore, a successful theory of the Earth will automatically establish an  extensive phenomenological prediction confirmation sequence, spanning at least a  major part of geological history. 
>_The ability of such a system must be its capacity to evolve in one direction only – from the characteristics of the Archaean to the features of the modern Earth3 for  which uplift of mountain ranges worldwide probably stands out as the most prominent  event. 
>_Such an irreversible self-organizing development scheme is what my Global Wrench  Tectonics is thought to delineate.” (Italics and superscript numbers by us.)

 _With reference to the italicized point no. 1, we would say if Storetvedt did not  find this approach in surge tectonics, for sure he has either not read it or he is  definitely not talking about geological/geophysical facts.  _As to point no. 2, well, we have given a sampling of the 29 data sets.  _If they do not represent diversity of “observations and phenomena -- and inter- relationship”, again, for sure these very words must mean something unknown to us.  _Finally point 3: Let us wait to see how Global Wrench Tectonics explains the  question we ask in relation to his “whirlpools” before we worry about how this  “Theory” fares in Archaean.

Bird, R.T. and Naar, D.F., 1994. Intratransform origins of mid-ocean ridge microplates. Geology, v. 22, p. 987-990
Blot, C., 1976. Volcanisme et séismicité dans les arcs insulaires. Prévision de ces phénomènes. Géophysique, v. 13, Orstom, Paris, 206p.
Choi, D.R. and Vasiliev, B.I., 2008. Geology and tectonic development of the Pacific Ocean. Part 4, Geological
interpretation of seismic tomography. NCGT Newsletter, no. 48, p. 52-60.
Kawakami, S., Fujii, N. and Fukao, Y., 1994. Frontiers of the earth and planetary sciences: A galley of the planetary world. Jour. Geol. Soc. Japan, v. 100, p. I-VIII.
Larson, R.L., Searle, R.C., Kleinrock, M.C., Schouten, H, Bird, R.T, Naar, D.F., Rusby, R.I., Hooft, E.E. and
Lasthiotakis, H. 1992. Roller-Bearing Tectonic Evolution of the Juan-Fernandez Microplate. Nature, v. 56,
no. 6370, p. 571 -576.
Leybourne, B.A. and Adams, M.B., 1999. Modeling mantle dynamics of the Banda Sea: Exploring a possible link to El Nina Southern Oscillation. MTS Oceans ’99 Conference, Seattle, Sept 1999, p. 955-966.
Leybourne, B.A. and Adams, M.B., 2001. El Nino tectonic modulation in the Pacific basin.
In: Proceedings of the OCEANS, 2001. MTS/IEEEConference and Exhibition, Honolulu, HI, USA, 5 – 8 Nov, 2001, v. 4, p. 2400-2406 doi: 10.1109/OCEANS.2001.9683.
Meyerhoff, A.A., Taner, I., Morris, A.E.L. and Martin, B.D., 1992. Surge tectonics. In, Chatterjee, S. and Hotton, N., III, eds., “New concepts in global tectonics”. Texas Tech Univ. Press, Lubbock, p. 309-409.
Meyerhoff, A.A., Taner, I., Morris, A.E., Agocs, W.B., Kamen-Kaye, M., Bhat, M.I., Smoot, N.C. and Choi, D.R.,
edited by Meyerhoff-Hull, D., 1996. Surge tectonics: A new hypothesis of global geodynamics. Kluwer Academic
Publishers, Dordrecht. 323p.
Meyerhoff, A.A., Boucot, A.J., Meyerhoff-Hull, D. and Dickins, J.M., 1996. Phanerozoic faunal and floral realms of
the Earth: The intercalary relations of the Malvinokaffric and Gondwana faunal realms with the Tethyan faunal
realm. Geol. Soc. America Mem. 189, 69p.
Smoot, N.C. and Tucholke, B., 1986. Multi-beam sonar evidence for evolution of Corner Rise and Cruiser Seamount Groups, Eos, Transactions, American Geophysical Union, v. 67, no. 44, p. 1221.
Storetvedt, K., 2010. Facts, mistaken beliefs, and the future of global tectonics. NCGT Newsletter, no. 57, p. 3-10.
James, P.M., 2010. New concepts and the paths ahead. NCGT Newsletter, no. 56, p. 3-5.
Suzuki, Y., 2001. A geotectonic model of South America referring to the intermediate-deep earthquake zone. NCGT Newsletter, no. 20, p. 17-24.
Tarakanov, R.Z., 2005. On the nature of seismic focal zone. NCGT Newsletter, no. 34, p. 6-20.
Tsunoda, F., 2009. Habits of earthquakes. Part 1: mechanism of earthquakes and lateral thermal seismic energy
transmigration. NCGT Newsletter, no. 53, p. 38-46.
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New Concepts in Global Tectonics Journal, V. 4, No. 3, September 2016. 353
Dear Editor,
Inertia-triggered global tectonic stresses and polar wander

In recent letters (NCGT 2015, p. 104-105; 2016, p. 3-4), Peter James has speculated on whether the driving forces invoked to operate my global Wrench Tectonics – the sum of inertial effects caused by Earth’s variable rotation – indeed are strong enough for having a noticeable effect on Earth’s surface structure. Based on his geotechnical experience he apparently regards my inferred inertia-triggered torque hopelessly inadequate for the task –allegedly pointing to “the enormous forces that would be required to twist a continental unit like Australia”. Nevertheless, numerous GPS velocity studies demonstrate that Australia is in fact currently undergoing relatively fast counter-clockwise torsion – consistent with the inferred system of latitude-dependent inertial ‘crustal’ wrenching (cf. Storetvedt and Longhinos, 2014; Storetvedt, 2015). Furthermore, Peter James alleges that I have discussed rotation of Australia in Devonian/Carboniferous times, but this allegation is wrong. Crustal wrenching, giving rise to episodic inertial rotation of continental blocks, is only a feature of the last 100 million years (or so) of Earth history. The rotational instability of the modern continents, which are still taking place, apparently began as a dynamo-tectonic consequence of accelerated processes of crustal oceanization and deep sea formation which was the prerequisite of the Alpine tectonic revolution.

The superdeep Kola drill hole (to a depth of some 12 km) gave the surprising results that fracture spacing increases exponentially versus depth in the upper crust, and similar unexpected observations have been obtained in the 9 km deep crustal drilling site in SE Germany (KTB). A most unexpected discovery of the two continental sections was that the characteristic system of open fractures was filled with hydrous fluids which, under pressure and temperature conditions predicted for the middle and lower crust, would be in its strongly buoyant supercritical state (cf. Storetvedt, 2013 for references and discussion); hence, the strong buoyancy of supercritical hydrous fluids is likely to be the main cause of the increasing fracture volume versus depth in the continental crust. In fact, it appears that the crust does not represent a solid carapace but constitutes rather a highly fractured and increasingly fluid/gas-filled cover layer. Thus, even for the upper crust, the shear strength is likely to be much lower than what traditionally has been assumed. Accordingly, conventional estimates of tectonic twisting forces are clearly outdated; such guesses have little, if any, significance.

In an earlier paper in this journal (Storetvedt, 2011), I took a critical look at the origin and development mode of the Earth. I concluded that “The Earth is apparently still in a relatively un-degassed state, which may be the very reason for its ceaseless dynamo-tectonic activity. Furthermore, the physico-chemical struggle towards internal equilibrium may be expected to have resulted in episodic reworking of the primitive surface layer – in accordance with the variegated [and jerky] geological history”. According such a development scheme, reorganization of the interior mass must have given rise to periodic changes of the Earth’s moments of inertia – including events of true polar wander, which are likely to have been a principal dynamic driver of the planet’s pulse-like geological history. An event of true polar wander represents a relatively fast turning-over of the Earth’s body relative to the astronomical rotation axis – resulting in migration of the equatorial bulge and the zones of polar flattening, naturally imposing significant stress changes on the crust.

Therefore, polar wandering events may serve as a kind of hydraulic pump forcing pressurized hydrous fluids (from the upper mantle) into the expanding fracture system of the overlying crust; in this process, the crustal shear strength is likely to have been greatly reduced periodically – perhaps by orders of magnitude. Owing to the slow magnetization processes in nature, qualified palaeomagnetic studies would only capture the more significant long-term (‘first order’) polar wander events (cf. Storetvedt, 2016) while a recent interesting study of orientation of ancient cultic objects (Grigoriev, 2015) seems to have been able to define a transient Holocene polar track – representing a time span of only tens of thousands of years. Nevertheless, wrenching deformation of the crust – as demonstrated by palaeomagnetism and supported by GPS velocity studies – would have been episodic like everything else in global tectonophysics.

Peter James suggests that crustal stresses brought about by polar wander events would tectonically be much more effective than inertial forces. I fully agree that polar wander, with its associated global-extent crustal stresses, is likely to be a very important factor in crustal wrenching processes; but in order to explain the overall pattern of crustal torsion it is necessary to bring in also the effects of planetary inertia – for which the regulating tectonic stresses would be towards the equator and westward (for references and discussion, see Storetvedt, 2015). This is in fact the mobilistic principle of my wrench tectonics – originally based on a reconsideration of global palaeomagnetic data and subsequently supported by the overall scheme of estimated crustal GPS velocities.

Grigoriev, S.A., 2015. Orientation of ancient cultic objects and polar drift. NCGT Journal, v. 3, no. 4, p. 416-431.
Storetvedt, K.M., 2011. Aspects of Planetary Formation and the Precambrian Earth. NCGT Newsletter, no. 59, p. 60-83.
Storetvedt, K.M., 2013. Global Theories and Standards of Judgement: Knowledge versus Groundless Speculation. NCGT Journal, v. 1, no. 3, p. 55-101.
Storetvedt, K.M., 2015. Inertial forces on the lithosphere. NCGT Journal, v. 3, no. 3, p.259-262.
Storetvedt, K.M., 2016. A Personal History of the Remagnetization Debate: Accounting for a Mobilistic Earth. NCGT Journal, v. 4, no. 2, p. 322-344.
Storetvedt, K.M. & Longhinos, B., 2014. Australasia within the Setting of Global Wrench Tectonics. NCGT Journal, v. 2, no. 1, p. 66-96.
Karsten M. Storetvedt
University of Bergen, Norway


NCGT Journal, v. 1, no. 3, September 2013.
Institute of Geophysics, University of Bergen, Bergen, Norway
“There is no inductive method which could lead to the fundamental concepts…in error are those theorists who believe that theory comes inductively from experience.” Albert Einstein, in: Philosophy of Science (1934)
“The dispassionate intellect, the open mind, the unprejudiced observer, exists in an exact sense only in a sort of intellectualist folk-lore; states even approaching them cannot be reached without a moral and emotional effort most of us cannot or will not make.”
Wilfred Trotter, in: Instincts of the Herd in Peace and War (1916)
Abstract: In the history of global geology, it has become customary either to ignore problems that do not fit a favoured model, or alternatively to deal with them, in an ad hoc manner, one by one. This means that the geological community has never had the advantage of a functional master theory. The lack of a real overarching plan has clearly hampered a sound development of the Earth sciences, and during the reign of plate tectonics the situation in global geology has perhaps become more chaotic than ever. In an attempt to get out of this deadlock, the search has begun for erecting a new theoretical framework – a functional platform to account for Earth’s diverse expressions, its phenomenological interconnections and development pattern. As a result of these endeavours, a certain ‘battle’ is presently taking place between two incompatible global tectonic proposals: surge tectonics versus wrench tectonics – both being variably linked to planetary rotation. It is concluded that surge tectonics is too narrow in scope and does not have the necessary predictive-explanatory power to serve as a next generation global geological theory.
Keywords: philosophy and sociology of science, requirements of functional theories, global dynamics, surge tectonics,
wrench tectonics
Science as a human enterprise

In a number of books, articles, essays and letters I have, in recent years, taken up a multitude of pressing problems in global geology (Storetvedt 1997; 2003; 2005a, b; 2007; 2009, 2010a, b; 2011a), and in some co-authored works (Storetvedt et al. 2003; Storetvedt and Longhinos 2010, 2011; Storetvedt and Bouzari, 2012) the topical discussion has been greatly extended. In addition to purely geo scientific aspects, I have also paid attention to the diversity of distracting human nature interventions – including intellectual laziness, wishful thinking, blind commitment, and the herd instinct (Storetvedt, 2005a; 2008; 2009; 2011b; 2013a); these non-scientific factors are of particular importance when it comes to discussion of global tectonic theories, which, relative to the mini-theories of specific geological disciplines, have their very special cognitive and heuristic functions. Thus, ‘big picture’ thinking – in general having been acquired through reiteration processes, social relationship or by the powers of indoctrination or persuasion – forms the weakest part of all sciences. For example, ad hoc provisions generally flourish at mini-scale research but rarely on the basic tenets of a particular science with which the majority of scientists is largely unfamiliar. Scientific discussions are often packed with observation statements regarded as verified facts.
Updates / NCGT 45 LITH.EV.
« Last post by Admin on March 02, 2017, 06:08:51 am »

34 New Concepts in Global Tectonics Newsletter, no. 45, December, 2007
A NEW HYPOTHESIS FOR EARTH LITHOSPHERE EVOLUTION James G. A. CROLL Professor of  Civil Engineering University College London, London WC1 E 6BT, England

ABSTRACT: The past 50 years have seen a profound shift in the modelling of the  processes believed to have shaped the continental and oceanic crust of our planet,  with Plate Tectonics (PT) now providing an almost universally accepted paradigm.  There are however, increasingly acknowledged problems with the PT model. This paper  briefly summarises what appear to be some of the more substantial areas of weakness  of PT. It then outlines a new hypothetical model that seemingly overcomes these  weaknesses.

___It argues that long period fluctuations in the levels of insolation energy,  similar to those thought to be responsible for the ice ages, are directly and  indirectly the cause of major changes in the thermal conditions within the crust.  Widespread changes in the disposition of surface water and ice result in temporal  and spatial variations in the insulation to both the inward flow of solar radiation  energy and particularly the outward flow of geothermal energy. The results are  significant fluctuations in the thermal conditions within the crust, with the  associated restraints to lateral expansion and contraction inducing massive  ternations of tension and compression loading. This cycle of thermal loading is  suggested to act as a form of tectonic pump, driving the many processes currently  explained by PT.
Most of the known characteristics of the Earth’s lithosphere can be explained by  this dynamic model, and, significantly, it will be demonstrated how this new model  is capable of resolving many paradoxes of PT and especially might help to explain  the processes that cause long term vertical movement of both continental and ocean  crust.
Keywords: contraction, expansion, lithosphere, tectonic forces, thermal energy,  lithosphere, dynamics

From the author’s perspective, outwith [without?] the earth sciences, it would  appear that plate tectonics (PT) has become the almost universally accepted  paradigm. It seems to explain what it was in the past that shaped the Earth’s crust  and presently continues to drive the dynamic processes determining the  relationships between the continental land masses and the oceans. To pick up  virtually any textbook underpinning curricula in the earth sciences around the  world there seems to be a consistent and it has to be said compelling model being  promulgated (see for example: McLeish, 1992; Skinner and Porter, 1995; Spencer,  1977; Wicarder and Monroe, 1999). Even if there is still lack of clarity and  agreement as to what is actually providing the driving force, there appears to be  relatively few who question the basic validity of the PT model. At first sight the  growing body of evidence does seem to be overwhelming in support of the PT model,  as illustrated by for example the very easy to read and excellent summary of the  evidence by Sullivan (1991). The topological fits between the continental shelves  on opposing sides of the various oceans would seem to be too close for pure chance.  That the sediments immediately above the first basalt layers get older as the  distances from the mid-oceanic “spreading zone” increase, strongly supports the  idea of new ocean crust being formed from an upwelling of magma into the fissures  being created when the “plates” are torn apart. Evidence of matching bands of new  crust either side of the “spreading zone”, located in time by changes in magnetic  signatures that have been locked-in when the magma solidified, is by many  considered the pivotal evidence that the “plates” are being prised apart to allow  the creation of new mid-ocean crust. The concentrations of seismic and volcanic  activity around the spreading zones and their complementary “subduction zones”,  where the newer ocean crust is thought to be pushed beneath the relatively older  continental crust, is consistent with the fundamental ideas of PT. So too are the  some of the matches in certain floral and faunal fossil remains within the  continental crusts on opposing sides of oceans, believed to have once formed part  of a larger continental land mass split asunder by the processes of PT. In some  cases there are even matches in existing living species on continents too far apart  to have allowed natural spreading. All of this and much other carefully gathered  evidence provide a model that is beguiling in its simplicity and convincing in its  consistency. And yet there are increasingly recognised factors that do not seem to  fit into this apparently self-consistent and compelling model. In the following  some of the serious geological evidence that does not appear to fit in with the  basic ideas of PT will be briefly summarised. This critique has relied upon the  excellent summaries of critics such as Meyerhoff et al. (1996). It has also been  bolstered by the increasing body of evidence being presented by Choi, Dickins,  Smoot et al. in the publication New Concepts in Global Tectonics Newsletter (NCGT),  an e-publication explicitly set-up to allow the airing of evidence that is contrary  to the ideas of plate tectonics and which it seems has too often been suppressed by  the dominant publications in the field. Pratt (2000) has provided an easy to read  and much more extensive summary of much of this contrary evidence. Some of the  alternative explanations that have been put forward for the source of energy  required to drive the dynamic processes that have so clearly influenced the  evolution of the Earth’s crust will also be briefly touched upon. However, the main  purpose of this note is to put forward an alternative model for the processes that  might in the past have been at work and which continue to shape the Earth’s crust.  It will be argued that this new model is not only able to account for most of the  processes and observations currently cited as evidence in support of PT but is also  seemingly able to overcome most of its identified serious deficiencies.

___In particular, this new model will be demonstrated to be consistent with the  evidence that vertical crustal motions are and have been as critical as horizontal  motions in shaping our planet. Furthermore, the horizontal movements required for  this new explanation are considerably less than those needed for PT. At temporal  and spatial scales many orders less it will be suggested that similar dynamic  processes continue to form periglacial environments both on Earth and some of the  other planets and their satellites within the solar system.

Reassembling the continental jigsaw puzzle: One of the factors that first excited  attention to the possibility of continental drift, and the rifting apart of early  super-continents to form the present disposition of land masses, was the remarkably  close fit that appears to exist between the shapes of the eastern seaboard of the  Americas and the western coastline of Africa and Europe. Sophisticated topological  fits have been proposed, vast numbers of papers written and conferences have been  dedicated to the task of perfecting the levels of fit achieved by these models.  Sceptics have on the other hand questioned many aspects of these fits (Voisey,  1958).

___It would seem that although there is strong geological evidence for plate  movements of up to a few hundred kilometers (Jeffreys, 1976) there is little to  support the notion that the crustal plates have moved upwards of 9000 km as  required by PT. There are it appears also rather too many inconsistencies in the  various fits for this evidence to be taken as definitive proof of PT. As  highlighted by Meyerhoff et al. (1974), there are at least 3.5 million square  kilometres that fail to fit in with the Bullard et al. (1965) computer generated  emergence of the Americas, Africa and Europe from the super continent of Pangaea.  It seems there are similar difficulties arising from the supposed break-up of  Gondwanaland in the southern hemisphere, as postulated by Smith and Hallam (1970)  and Dietz and Holden (1970), to account for the formation of the southern land  masses of the Antarctic, Australia and the highly mobile India. India is supposed  to have dislodged itself from Gonwanaland and been propelled on a 9000 km northward  journey to collide with the Asian plate with such force as to form the Himalayan  mountain range. It appears however, there is very strong geological and  palaeontological evidence that India has been an integral part of Asia well before  its hypothesised northward journey from Antarctica and Australia (Chatterjee et  al., 1986; Ahmad, 1990; Meyerhoff et al., 1991) with which it shares very little  floral and faunal similarities.Indeed, as Pratt (2000) so eloquently  puts it, “the supposed ‘flight of India’ is no more than a flight of fancy”. ___Biogeographic boundaries based upon floral and faunal distributions that  would follow from PT models are often in strong contradiction with those actually  existing. Indeed, it would appear that the known palaeontological data on the  distribution of fossils is rather more consistent with current distributions of  continental land mass than those upon which PT is predicated (Smiley, 1992).

In a major global study based upon floral and faunal distributions, Meyerhoff et  al. (1996) concluded that current biogeographical boundaries are seriously out of  step with the boundaries that would be anticipated from plate tectonic models. They  comment that “what is puzzling is that such major inconsistencies between plate  tectonic postulates and field data, involving as they do boundaries that extend for  thousands of kilometers, are permitted to stand unnoticed, unacknowledged, and  unstudied”. It seems that all is not as simple as is often suggested.

Ocean sediment age: A fundamental notion in PT is that of sea-floor spreading. In  this process new oceanic crust is created around the oceanic ridges, or “spreading  zones”, where molten material from the Earth’s interior is extruded up into  fissures caused by the tearing apart of the plates. This new crust is characterised  as gradually moving across the ocean floor, like a “conveyor belt”, until it comes  into contact with the relatively thicker continental crust.

___At these collision zones the relatively thinner oceanic crust is said to be  forced down into trenches, “subduction zones”, where the newer oceanic crust is  lost back into the molten interior.
If these notions are correct then one would anticipate the sedimentary layers  deposited upon this new ocean crust to increase in age the further one moves away  from the spreading zone. Very extensive deep sea drilling programmes have been  undertaken to test this hypothesis, with seemingly great success. It was found in a  NSF study (1969-73) that the ages of sediments immediately overlying the first  basalt rock, supposed to be the new ocean crust being forced out from the spreading  zone, do indeed display a gradual increase in age as the distance from the  spreading zone increases.

___Once again, however, there appear to be grounds for supposing that the evidence  on sea-floor geology has been chosen selectively to support the hypotheses of PT.  Smoot et al. (1995) have demonstrated that most of the published charts showing the  ocean floors have been drafted using the data that supports the ideas of PT. They  suggest that much of the accurate information currently available has been ignored  because it is at odds with the notions of PT. For example, they show that from  side-scanning radar images there is evidence that the mid-oceanic ridges are cut  with thousands of long and straight, ridge parallel, fissures and fractures that  have older crustal rock between them. There are also numerous areas in all the  oceans of the world where seabed rock, of continental origin and up to 3.74 Ga in  age, are located where PT would suggest the rock should be of an age at least 2  orders of magnitude younger (Timofeyev, 1992; Udintsev, 1996). Dickins et al.  (1992) undertook a detailed survey of the evidence relating to the existence of  large continental crust within the present oceans, and concluded that “we are  surprised and concerned for the objectivity of science that such data should be  overlooked or ignored”. There are also strong and well founded suspicions that had  the deep sea drilling boreholes been able to penetrate through the first layers of  basalt, older sedimentary layers would be found to overlay possibly even older  horizontal layers of basalt.
On the basis of the above cited survey, Dickins et al. (1992) opined that “there is  a vast need for future Ocean Drilling Program initiatives to drill below the base  of the basaltic floor crust to confirm the real composition of what is currently  designated oceanic crust”. As will be argued later there are other possibly more  convincing models for how these finds on sedimentary age could be explained.

Magnetic anomaly evidence: It has been claimed that stripes of newly formed oceanic  crust roughly parallel to the spreading zones, display reversals in magnetic  polarity that are reasonably symmetrical about the oceanic ridges (Sullivan, 1991).  These magnetic signatures are believed to have been captured when the molten magma  being extruded into the spreading zone solidified. For some curious reason these  newly created widths of magnetised rock are believed to be split into equal halves  and propelled off in opposite directions to create bands of magnetised rock that  display symmetry about the spreading zones. It has been pointed out that the  evidence of this symmetry and chronology of spreading, supporting PT, is rather  less convincing than is sometimes implied. The licourice-allsort appearance of some  of the text book summaries of this evidence fails to indicate the many serious  anomalies.

___Magnetic stripes of magma intrusions display very imperfect symmetry, and indeed  often occur in sequences that do not represent a linear time-wise evolution  (Meyerhoff et al., 1974). The stripes often occur within seabed rock that is very  much older and sometimes of continental origins (Grant, 1980; Choi et al., 1992),  and furthermore these stripes have been shown to display anisotropy with depth. It would appear that here too much of the data is open to alternative  explanations.

___Evidence of tension and compression: At many locations within the Earth’s crust  there is evidence of both tensile and compressive actions having occurred at  different times (Storetvedt, 1997). This is perhaps particularly in evidence at the  mid-ocean “spreading zones” where the crust is supposed to be torn apart by a  tension field normal to the stripe of new crust being formed by the intrusion of  magma into the fissures. As previously observed these fissures occur in bands that  are broadly parallel to the mid-oceanic ridge. And yet the existence of a ridge or  mid oceanic mountain ranges, sometimes involving folded sedimentary deposits, is  strongly suggestive of a compression field action normal to the ridge, and Antipov  et al. (1990) have suggested that thrust faults adjacent to the mid-Atlantic ridge  are more likely to have been caused by compression rather than tension. Fracture  patterns are also suggestive of compression related failures in the vicinity of the  spreading zone. Zoback et al. (1989) demonstrated that earthquake data at  midoceanic ridges is more strongly supportive of compression action than as  supposed by PT from tension behaviour. It would appear that alternations of both  tension and compression actions are experienced in locations where PT would  indicate steadily developing tensile failure.

Vertical tectonics: It should not take long for even an untrained geologist to  become concerned about the fact that[/color]
___many of the highest continental mountain ranges and some of the most extensive  continental plateaus are formed from sedimentary rock that was once laid down at  the bottom of an ocean floor.

Often these vast regions are remote from any supposed plate boundaries or are  within the interiors of continental crust (Beloussov, 1990; Chekunov et al., 1990).  Equally, as observed above considerable areas of deep ocean floor are composed of  rock whose palaeontological evidence alone indicates that it once formed part of a  continental land mass (Spencer, 1977). PT appears to have only partially addressed  these issues and seemingly would be hard pushed to provide an explanation for much  of this very clear geological reality.

___That marine sediments and fossils can be found near the highest peaks of the  Himalayas or that shallow sediments and even land based fossils can be recovered  from the depths of ocean crust, are difficult to reconcile with existing notions  that form part of PT (Spencer, 1977; Wezel, 1992). Explanations based upon changes  in sea level, believed to be brought about by increased volumes of uplift at the  mid-oceanic ridges, has been suggested by an acknowledged supporter of PT to be an  inadequate explanation, and that the scale of these movements “fit poorly into  plate tectonics” (van Andel, 1994).

There is convincing evidence that the Earth’s crust has undergone periodic changes  with timescales, both very long measured in 100’s of Ma, and shorter measured  in10’s or 100’s Ka. Over the very long term continents would on a periodic basis  seem to sink to become ocean floors and ocean floors rise to become new continents.  How many such cycles have occurred during the circa 4.5 Ga of the Earth’s existence  and when exactly a significant crust of the form we know it today actually formed  to make such movements possible, seem to be largely unresolved. However, it appears  conceivable that the number of such very long-term cycles could be many. It also  seems clear that the PT model, dominated as it is by the tangential motions of the  crust, would find it difficult to explain the occurrence of these very long-term  vertical tectonic cycles. Within these long-term geological cycles there seem to be  other shorter timescale processes at work. These shorter period processes could be  responsible for the alternations between compressive and tensile actions occurring  within the crust. Before going on to outline a model that could provide an  explanation for this dynamical system, involving as it appears to do both  horizontal and vertical motions, accompanied by both tensile and compressive  actions, it may be useful to consider some of the previously postulated  explanations, other than PT, that have been advanced for the development of the  Earth’s crust as we know it today. One major differentiation of Earth models is  between those that take the line that what we see today has been the result of a  gradual evolution in which the processes at work in the past should be evident from  those that are at work today. This so called “uniformist” model contrasts with  those that see the evolution in terms of more discrete and often cataclysmic  changes. Among the latter were those that tried to explain the Earth as we find it  today in terms of a Biblical flood. This idea, prevalent in the 18th and early 19th  C, incorporated the growing recognition that the match between the coastlines of  the Americas and Africa/Europe was due to a rifting apart of the Atlantic following  the flood referred to in the Bible. Others have suggested that the spin-off of the  Moon left a great hole in what is now the Pacific Ocean with the great void so  created being filled by the splitting apart of Americas and Europe/Africa to form  the Atlantic Ocean (this view is associated with George Darwin nephew of Charles).  Various other ideas have included the colliding or near colliding bodies, taking  different forms but including the idea that the gravity field generated by the  Earth’s capture of the Moon developed at an early stage the forces needed to drag  the continents towards the equator, creating enormous mountain building forces  (Taylor, 1910). A variant was the idea that the close approach of Venus created the  gravity field needed to drag the Moon from the Earth (Baker, 1914), with other  orbital interactions being elaborated by Velikovsky (1950). In the former, more  traditional, uniformist, view the models have included the shrinkage (contraction)  model relying upon the idea that the shrinkage of the Earth’s interior against the  crust created the compression forces needed to build mountains. This idea appears  to have been first put forward by Newton (1681) using the analogy of the wrinkling  of the skin of an ageing apple (must have come a few days after his gravity  observations from the falling apple!). Jeffreys (1976) too has argued that since  its inception the Earth as a whole has contracted while cooling. These models fail  to account for the clear evidence that in certain places and during some periods,  the crust has been and continues to be torn apart by tensile actions. To  accommodate the very clear evidence of tensile stretching action, and at the other  extreme, the expansion model advocates that the tearing apart of the oceans has  been the result of a massive increase in the diameter. Carey (1958) argued that the  diameter of the Earth could have been increased by as much as 100%. How these  expansions occurred has been explained in a number of ways. It has been suggested  that this expansion could have been caused by changes in phase or molecular  composition of the Earth’s matter to less densely packed molecules, or on a more  modest level through a gradual decline in the strength of the gravity force (Dicke,  1962). Each of these uniformist models fail to account for the massive compressions  needed to either explain upward folding and mountain building or the downward  folding to form ocean trenches. None of the models appear to be able to account for  strong spatial and temporal evidence of periodic cycles of tension and compression  being involved. An attempt to reconcile the clear evidence of periods of tension  and other periods of compression, the mixed shrinkage and expansion, recognises  that during the earliest period of the Earth’s formation the largely gaseous  materials gradually changed phase to become liquid and some to eventually become  solid. This gradual compaction of the molecules would have been accompanied by a  massive decrease in the diameter of the Earth. When later these dense liquids and  solids were broken-down into less compact molecular forms the volume would once  again be increased. This latter period would cover the formation of the Earth’s  crust, during which the breakdown in molecular forms would have started to produce  the water that now forms such an important ingredient in the dynamics of the Earth.  This view (see for example MacDonald, 1959) is attractive but is more concerned  with the period prior to the dynamic crust of present interest. It would suggest  however, that underlying any shorter periodicities there may continue to be a  gradual expansion occurring as the average thickness of the crust and the  associated volumes of free water and other low density molecules increase. Along  similar lines the so called antimobilists believe that the Earth’s crust has been  shaped by cycles of heating and cooling, causing expansion and contraction of the  land masses. They took the opposite view to the mobilists who supported Wegener’s  notions of continental plates in motion. The concept of a pulsating earth has also  been advocated by Wezel (1992) and Dickins (2000).

___The truth, if and when found, will undoubtedly find that most of these models  contain elements required to explain what has occurred.

It seems evident that certain phenomena are associated with sudden and cataclysmic  changes. It seems equally clear that other phenomena have been the result of  gradually emerging processes. It is also very clear that whether one adopts a  steady state or a transient model, the evolution of the Earth’s crust has been and  remains a highly dynamical process. There is strong evidence that at a given  location the crust has at times experienced tensile action and at others  compression. This is incompatible with either the uniformist view or many of the  prevailing notions of the nature of the Earth as a dynamical system. There is also  unquestionable evidence that the various regions of the Earth’s crust have  experienced, on a periodic basis, major changes in vertical elevation, which is  also at odds with most of the past models including PT. What therefore might be an  alternative model that could explain all of the essential processes known to have  taken place and which continue to take place in the shaping of the Earth’s crust?

While it might at first sight seem of peripheral relevance to the modelling of  crustal dynamics, the following aims to clarify how a fascination with the effects  of solar induced thermal cycles on the development of various surface morphological  features may provide an alternative dynamic model of how some features of the  earth’s crust have evolved.

Surface morphologies and solar cycles: Drying mud develops well recognised crack  polygonal forms, similar to those shown in Figure 1. In this case the energy  release associated with the tension fields developed during the restrained  shrinkage is maximised by the development of the characteristic polygonal forms. In  a similar way the
==Figure  1. Polygonal crack patterns developed in drying mud.
cooling of asphalt pavements can result in the development of characteristic  polygonal crack networks, which often develop into permanent forms of pavement  failure. During any period of cooling the asphalt layer will experience the build- up of in-plane tensile stress as a result of the constraint to the contraction that  would otherwise occur. With asphalt being relatively brittle at low temperatures  this tensile energy is commonly relieved by the development of polygonal crack  networks which serve to maximise the release of the stored tensile energy. Any  surface detritus entering the cracks will mean that they will not be fully closed  when the asphalt sheet is heated, with the result that significant levels of  compressive stress develop. Over many cycles of heating and cooling the asphalt  under certain conditions is observed to develop the well known and serious form of  pavement failure known as “alligator cracking” (Croll, 2006 & 2007c), like that  shown in Figure 2. A closely related thermal ratchet process is widely recognised  to be responsible for the development of ice-wedge polygons in areas of permafrost  both on Earth (Lachenbruch, 1962; Mackay and Burn, 2002), and also on the frozen  regions of other planets and their satellites (Yoshikawa, 2000). Figure 3 shows  some examples of terrestrial ice-wedge polygons in northern Canada. Just as for the  asphalt polygonal cracks, the seasonal lowering of temperature will be associated  with the development of tension stress fields within the permafrost due to the  restraint to the contraction wanting to occur. With ice being
==Figure 2. Alligator cracking in asphalt pavement.
==Figure 3. Ice-wedge polygons in northern Canada.
weak in tension, patterns of fracture cracks will be generated that maximise the  release of stored energy. These cracks will fill with moisture which will freeze so  that upon warming the expansion strains will be restrained and almost immediately  start developing compression stresses. The spatial scales of the ice-wedge polygons  reflect the depth to which the annual seasonal thermal cycles penetrate into the  frozen ground. Other forms of periglacial morphologies, such as stone and rock  circles, polygons, nets, stripes, etc, see Figure 4, would appear to be driven by  closely related but usually shorter term thermal cycles occurring within seasonally  frozen ground or even the surface layers that undergo circadian cycles of freeze- thaw (Croll and Jones, 2006; Croll, 2008). (a) (b)
==Figure  4. Examples of (a) stone circles, and (b) stone polygons.
Under certain circumstances an asphalt layer when constrained by its interactions  with its surroundings will when heated develop characteristic uplift bulges, such  as those shown in Figure 5. Because during the warming phase the asphalt has  relatively low elastic-visco-plastic stiffness, the in-plane compression induced  uplift buckles will experience relatively high levels of creep. On account of the  higher elastic-visco-plastic stiffness at low temperatures these uplift buckles  will not be fully recovered when the temperature drops. Each cycle of increase and  decrease in temperature above certain critical thresholds could be expected to  result in a further ratcheting upward of the bulge deformation (Croll, 2005a &  2007b). It would appear that closely related mechanics could be involved in the  initiation and growth of many other forms of periglacial morphologies.
==Figure  5. Asphalt bulges caused by cyclic thermal loading.
Around the periphery of the ice-wedge polygons shown in Figure 3, can be seen  raised ramparts that result from the compression shoving accompanying the outward  expansion during the heating phase of the seasonal cycle. The possibility that the  seasonal thermal cycle could be contributing to the upward growth of pingos in  areas of recently aggrading permafrost, was first discussed (Croll, 2004) in the  context of theoretical mechanics. Typical pingos are shown in Figure 6. The  mechanics for their growth as a result of seasonal thermal cycles, has been  elaborated
==Figure  6. A pair of pingos emerging from permafrost in northern Canada.
(Croll, 2005b) and extended to other forms of seasonal and perennial periglacial  surface mound formations (Croll, 2006 & 2007a,d), some of which are shown in Figure  7.

___For each of these uplift bulge formations, the growth mechanism relies upon the  ice or ice rich ground being strong in compression but weak in tension. Tension  cracks formed when the frozen ground contracts upon cooling will attract moisture  which will turn to ice. This means that like the ice-wedge polygons the cracks will  not be fully closed when the frozen ground is warmed. Under certain conditions the  significant in-plane compression stresses associated with the restrained thermal  expansion will be sufficient to induce a form of uplift, ratchet, and buckling.
This new view of how many surface morphologies develop is suggested to provide a  model, albeit on different spatial and temporal scales, of some of the important  long-term dynamical processes at work within the Earth’s crust.
==Figure  7. Hummocks formed within peat.

Thermal cycle of Earth’s crust: Changes in the eccentricity of the Earth’s orbit  around the sun together with the inclination and precession of the axis of spin  relative to the orbital plane, are regarded as the chief sources of the massive  changes in climate that have seen inter alia the periodic ice-ages. The Croll- Milankovic model is widely regarded as a major source, but by no means the only  one, for the very large changes in level of solar radiation reaching the Earth’s  surface (Croll, 1864; Milankovic, 1920), and as will be suggested in the following  also responsible for associated large changes in temperature gradient through the  earth’s crust. While the periodic ice ages over the past 2 Ma or so years are the  most obvious symptoms of this cyclic process there is considerable evidence to  suggest that similar cycles have been occurring, possibly with even more extreme  variations in temperature, for very much longer than this. With periods of around Δ  tp = 20 Ka for the cycle of changes in precession and Δ ti = 40 Ka for the cycle of  inclination of the axis of spin, and around Δ to = 110 Ka for the changes of  eccentricity of the elliptic orbit, the intensity of the temperature changes at a  given location on the earth’s surface are expected to show a time dependence like  that shown in Figure 8. It seems probable that average surface temperature changes  of up to 20oC at periods of 20 to 110 Ka would penetrate deep into the Earth’s  crust. Increasing
==Figure  8. Typical variations of average Earth surface temperatures.
the temperature through the earth’s crust will mean that the rock wants to expand  laterally. However, the crust is restrained from lateral expansion by its  interaction with the relatively stiff inner mantle and core. The level of lateral,  or in-plane, compressive stress developed during the warming cycle will of course  depend upon the average temperature increases and their profile within the crust.  Similarly, high tensile stress would develop during the cooling phase of the  thermal cycle. While direct changes in temperature due to fluctuations of  insolation may be significant, it is probable that the indirect effects of these  surface thermal cycles could exert even greater changes to the thermal regime  within the crust. The changes in the disposition of surface water and ice  accompanying the thermal cycles are likely to have even more profound effects. The  proportion of incoming solar energy reflected back into space will be greatly  effected by the build-up of surface snow and ice. Changes in sea level may alter  ocean currents and cause major changes in the geothermal energy flux. Any  associated build-up of continental ice sheets will also cause major changes to the  degree of thermal insulation to the conduction of geothermal energy. These are  likely to induce even more significant changes in thermal conditions within the  earth’s crust. A sheet of continental ice will for example, significantly lower the  rate of geothermal energy flow through the crust. This will be reflected by a  lowering of the geothermal gradient as suggested in Figure 9. Over a period of time  sufficient to re-establish thermal equilibrium this would result in very  considerable reductions in temperature, which would become increasingly significant  with depth. Alongside these temperature reductions would be massive lateral tensile  stress fields building up as a result of the restraint to the in-plane contractions  wanting to occur. Even at the elevated temperatures experienced at depth the  relatively brittle nature of the rock would be expected to result in considerable  seismic activity associated with the greater incidence of tensile and shear  fractures relieving this tensile energy build-up. Similar effects could arise from  any substantial changes in sea level. With one of the most significant sources of  geothermal heat flow in the oceans arising from the convection processes associated  with ocean currents, any change in this convection process will also be likely to  affect the long term geothermal gradients. Were a long term lowering of sea level  to occur, possibly as a result of ice build-up on the continental ice sheets, then  constrictions to the ocean convection currents could result.
==Figure  9. Effects of increasing surface insulation on geothermal heat flux and  geothermal gradient, and the resulting decreases in crustal temperature and  associated development of tensile stress.
Due to perhaps ocean freezing or the development of land bridges any such  constriction would severely reduce the flow of geothermal energy. A lowering of the  geothermal gradient similar to that shown in Figure 9 would therefore be expected  to induce very substantial decreases in deep crust temperature, with similar  consequences for the build-up of tensile energy especially in the lower crust.  Melting of the ice sheets and an associated rise of the sea level might be expected  to have the opposite effects. As suggested in Figure 10 the steepened geothermal  gradient occurring over very long time frames would cause substantial increases in  temperature, especially at lower levels. Constraint of the expansions wanting to  occur will induce massive additional levels of in-plane compression stress. This  compressive energy would be expected to induce other forms of failure such as  crushing, folding, shearing and uplift of the crust.

The effects of the thermal cycle: As suggested above long term fluctuations in  surface temperature, arising from Earth’s interactions with the Sun, could as a  result of the changes in the disposition of water and ice be greatly magnified by  the interaction of these surface processes with the flow of geothermal energy.  Moderate levels of surface warming could give rise to greatly magnified increases  in temperature at depth, resulting in massive build-ups of inplane compressive  stresses. Taking the rock of the crust to have a coefficient of thermal expansion  of α =12.5x10- 6m/m/oC, then an increase in average surface temperature of say 20oC  would if unrestrained induce a tensile strain of 250x10-6. Over a continental  landmass of roughly circular shape, having an in-plane radius of say a=3000 km,  this unrestrained expansion would give rise to an outward, in-plane, radial  movement of 750 m. With similar outward movement of the adjacent crust a total of  1.5 km of relative motion would be available for distorting and crushing of the  crust; significant potential for tectonic activities in each thermal cycle. But as  discussed above the indirect effects of fluctuations of surface temperature could  be even greater. As an indication of just how large these in-plane stresses and  strains could be consider the effects of an increase of 200oC at a particular  level, deep within the crust. Taking the rock at this level to have a coefficient  of thermal expansion α =12.5x10-6m/m/oC, then the increase temperature of 200oC  would, if unrestrained, induce a strain of 2.5x10-3. Again, over a continental  landmass of roughly circular shape, having an in-plane radius of a=3000 km, this  unrestrained expansion would give rise to an outward, in-plane, radial movement of  around 7.5 km. If the adjacent landmass is being similarly deformed there would be  a total relative in-plane motion of 15 km available to fold,
==Figure  10. Effects of decreasing surface insulation on geothermal heat flux and  geothermal gradient, and the resulting increases in crustal temperature and  associated development of compressive stress.
shear, or otherwise distort the earth’s crust when this crust is thermally loaded  during the heating or compression cycle. Such distortions would undoubtedly occur  selectively as will be discussed later. They could certainly account for the  kinematics involved with upward folding or mountain building, or downward folding  into trenches, or the shearing of crustal layers one over the other as appears to  happen in many areas, including ocean trenches or so called “subduction” zones. The  levels of distortion actually reached would in turn depend upon the forces needed  to fail the particular volume of crust, whether by folding, shearing, or whatever.  But with no failure to relieve the compressive strain of 250x10-6, required at the  surface to restrain the outward expansion, or 2500x10-6 at depth, a relatively hard  rock having an elastic modulus of E = 40x10+3 MPa, will develop compressive  stresses of between 10 MPa (1000 ton for every 1 square meter of rock) and 100 MPa  (10,000 ton for every 1 square meter of rock). While at the surface these levels of  stress may be lower than those needed to crush the rock they could, when integrated  over substantial thickness, certainly be sufficient to induce various forms of  geometric failure such as folding and faulting. At lower levels the stresses could  easily be enough to contribute to the crushing failure and other processes  producing metamorphosis. The differential straining with depth could also be  responsible for various forms of shear failure, particularly at relative weak  sedimentary layers. During the warm-up phase the compressive related distortions  and sudden releases of stored energy would be associated with compressive related  failure modes, occurring when the strain build-up reaches the levels required for  failure to be induced; they could be expected to be progressive and cumulative, and  to occur at different locations at different times over the entire period of the  warm-up. At the end of the warm-up period it might be anticipated that the greater  part of the compressive energy will have been transferred into the distortions  characterising the various failure modes, whether they be mountain building,  crustal over-riding or downward folding to generate ocean trenches. By the start of  the next cooling period the crust would consequently contain very little thermally  derived residual compressive stress. As the crust cools during the cooling period  it will want to contract. Being again prevented from doing so by the effectively  rigid inner core and mantle, tensile stresses will be developed. This cooling  period could be termed the tension cycle. Reversing the above scoping calculations,  a drop in average temperature of 20oC will produce tensile stresses of around 10  MPa, which even at the surface would be sufficient to cause tensile cracking of the  rock. At lower levels the greatly increased drops of temperature could open up  massive fractures and rifts into which high pressure magma would be intruded. It is  likely that the tensile fractures would be concentrated in those areas where the  crust is at its weakest. With oceanic crust being apparently so much thinner than  that of continental crust, at least in the present phase of the dynamic tectonic  cycle to be elaborated later, it would be expected that most, but by no means all,  of these fractures would be located on the ocean floors. While the dominant  fractures might be anticipated to be largely polygonal, in order that energy  release should be maximized, it is likely that the heterogeneity of the crust  thickness will see the fracture patterns concentrated within oceanic crust and any  weakened zones within the more massive continental crust.

The periodic reversals of heating and cooling, and importantly the associated  compression and tension cycles, seem to be consistent with the evidence upon which  PT is predicated. With periods of 20 Ka to 110 Ka the crust, particularly at depth,  will experience significant cycles of compression and tension. Figure 11 provides a  cartoon of a typical cycle of heating and cooling. At the various times indicated  in Figure 11(a), the stress state and the nature of the expected failure within the  crust are shown in Figure 11(b). After a prolonged period of cooling and allowing  for the time lag for the cold thermal wave to reach the lower crust, (1) the crust  and especially the areas of relative weakness on the ocean bed will experience  tensile fractures. Magma will be extruded into these fractures and spill out onto  the seabed, forming new basaltic crust. Following the subsequent warming phase (2)  the massive compressions would in each cycle propagate the failures such as folding  and mountain building, or crustal over-riding and shear faulting or downward  folding at oceanic trenches or “subduction” zones. At the end of the next cooling  phase (3) these compression failure distortions would not be reversed by the  development of tension forces. Instead, during the tensile phase extensive cracking  and rifting could again be expected with, in many cases, molten magma being  extruded into the tensile fissures. These progressive alternations of horizontal  motion, driven by the thermal cycle, would for the same reason as the motions  involved in the development of say ice-wedge polygons, result from the differential  failures properties of rock in compression and tension.
==Figure  11. Long term thermal cycles producing cycles of crustal tension and  compression with associated failure mechanisms.
New crust would be forming at the mid-oceanic rift or “spreading” zones or any  other zones where tensile failures are concentrated, as suggested in Figure 11(b).  This could appear as stripes of new basalt that may or may not be in a symmetric  sequence about the “spreading” zone, and into which magnetic time signatures could  be frozen. However, the present model would be entirely consistent with older,  possibly continental crust, existing where PT would anticipate much younger  sediments, as observed by Timofeyev (1992), Udintsev (1996) and Dickins et al.  (1992), and for the magnetized basalt stripes to be interspersed with older rock,  possibly of continental origin as recorded by Grant (1980) and Choi et al. (1992).  It would also be entirely consistent with non-sequential and asymmetric stripes of  magnetized basalt (Meyerhoff et al., 1974). It is these features that have been  observed to be problematic with the PT model. Magma pillows extending from these  mid-oceanic fractures could be expected during some of these extrusions, with a  statistical probability that those spreading furthest would have occurred longest  ago. Each of these pillows of magma, formed during one of the tension cycles, would  be overlaid with sediments that would have accumulated over the subsequent  compression (warming) cycles, during which the rates of fluvial erosion of the  continental landmass would be at their highest. This would mean that the age of the  sediment at the first basalt layer might become progressively older as the distance  from the spreading zone increases. However, the present model would be consistent  with the suspicions of Dickins et al. (1992) and many others that were deep sea  drilling to penetrate through the first layer of basalt older sedimentary layers  would be discovered beneath. Indeed, it might be anticipated that a succession of  increasingly ancient alternating layers of basalt and sedimentary rocks would be  found. Such a finding would be a serious embarrassment to PT, but a strong  probability for the present cyclic expansion and contraction, compression and  tension, model. At the mid-oceanic fracture or rift zones the heating period will  lead to compression forces being developed in the now integral new crust. Under  certain conditions these compressions will be enough to initiate local folding,  shearing, faulting or general uplift of the crust. These uplifts or ridges would be  expected to grow during each of the heating cycles, as suggested in Figure 11(b).  It is one of the problem areas of PT that the ridges, characteristic of compression  action, should occur where the spreading is said to result from a steady tensile  rifting. No such problems occur in the present cyclic model. Over the 4.5 Ga or so  of Earth’s existence, many thousands of thermal cycles will have been experienced.  Some will have been very much more extreme than others, depending upon the  particular forms of the orbit and spin characteristics. Many will have occurred  prior to the formation of a significant crustal layer as we know it today. But the  effects of these cycles could be likened to a thermal pump. Each heating  (compression) cycle will lead to processes that tend to concentrate crust into  folded mountains, mid-oceanic ridges, or over-riding shear and folding typical at  the trenches or so-called subduction zones. In each cooling (tension) cycle the  distortions from these compression failures will not be reversed, but, as a result  of the differential properties of rock in tension and compression, will result in  tension fractures, shear dislocations and rifts opening up to be intruded with  magma that upon solidification forms new crust. By this means a new, integral,  crust will present itself for the process to be continued during the next heating  (compression) cycle. The process is closely analogous to the processes controlling  the development of ice-wedge polygons in permafrost, Mackay et al. (2002), the  behaviour recently hypothesized for pingo development, Croll (2004) and also that  recently described for certain motions of glacial ice, Croll (2007e). In each of  these cases it is the water rather than the molten magma that solidifies after  filling the tension cracks. But in all these and other cases the thermal ratchet  has its origins in the different failure properties of the materials in tension and  compression, and of course the different periodicities of the thermal cycles  brought about by the Earth’s interaction with the Sun.

In the circa 4.5 Ga years it has taken to develop the Earth’s crust and its  associated water volume, the average thickness and therefore the volume of the  crust has been gradually increasing. It might be safe to assume that over a shorter  time frame, measured in terms of say a few million years, the crustal volume  remains effectively constant. Hence, the cyclic creation of new crust, often near  mid-oceanic “spreading zones”, must be balanced by the loss of older crust.  However, this does not necessitate a model envisioned by PT where the new crust is  being continuously pushed out only to be lost again in subduction zones by being  thrust back down into the molten magma. Instead, the present model suggests a very  different form of mass balance that could help to explain the very long period  vertical motions experienced by both continental and sea floor crust. It could  provide an explanation for why ocean floors sink and become thinner, and then  build-up, rise and become continents again, only to be eroded and sink back to  become ocean floor. Vertical movements of continental and oceanic crust are clearly  on time scales that are orders of magnitude greater than the periodic thermal cycle  described above in terms of the ratchet action driving horizontal motions. Whereas  the latter can be measured in 100’s of thousands of years the vertical motions  would appear to occur at time scales of one to two orders of magnitude greater.  That being so many hundreds of thermal cycles could go into the development of the  vertical motions of crust. However, it will be suggested that at least some of the  driving force for these vertical motions could also derive from the thermal cycles  arising from the changes in orbital eccentricity and axis of spin of the Earth. The  following briefly describes how the thermally derived components of this driving  mechanism might work. As discussed above even a moderate drop in surface  temperature leading to the growth of a continental ice sheet will, in addition to  the simple increase in weight of the overburden, result in considerably larger  decreases in temperature at the lower levels of the crust. As suggested in Figure 9  this change in thermal regime could give rise to aggradation of solidified magma at  the lower crust boundary. With this solidified magma having a lower density than  the magma from which it derived, buoyancy considerations would suggest that this  lower surface aggradation would produce a rise of the upper surface of the crust.  Whether the rise due to lower surface aggradation of crust would be greater than  the fall due to increased ice overburden would be dependent upon the thermal  conductivity and the thickness of the crust and the ice overburden. An additional  factor that could influence the rise and fall would be the strain state associated  with the cyclic changes in thermal regime within the crust. The large drops in  temperatures at the lower levels would, if no tension fractures occurred, result in  build-up of tension stress having a profile similar to that shown in Figure 12(a).  This would be equivalent to loading the crustal plate with a resultant tensile  force and a moment which will tend to deform the plate into a downward concave  shape, as shown in Figure 12(b). Tensile fractures relieving these stresses would  be greatest at the lower surface of the crust so that any intrusion of magma that  subsequently solidifies would tend to lock-in the downward deformation, of the  crust giving rise to a general lowering of the upper surface of the crust. Again,  the relative importance of these thermally induced stress fracture effects would be  dependent upon the nature of the crust.
==Figure  12. How long term crustal cooling would generate average tensile forces  that could contribute to the vertical depression of crust.
Surface warming could be expected to have the opposite effects upon the rise and  fall of crust. The loss of ice overburden would as is generally recognized to have  been occurring in Scandinavia following the most recent ice age, produce an uplift  of the crust. The thermal effects discussed above could in contrast add to this  inter-glacial rebound or give rise to a lowering of the upper surface of the crust.  As discussed in Figure 10 the non-uniform heating of the crust could result in  remagmafication of crustal material at the lower boundary. Due to the increased  density of the magma this would be anticipated to result in thinning and sinking of  the crust. In contrast, and as suggested in Figure 13, the non-uniform increases in  temperature with depth would give rise to compressive stresses that are greatest at  the lower boundary. To accommodate the failures and enhanced creep at the lower  levels of the crust associated with the higher compressive stresses and the higher  visco-plastic strains, an upward dishing of the crust is likely to occur. This  upward deformation could be thought of as a form of upheaval buckling induced by  the high compressive force and its eccentricity encouraging an upward deformation.  So the thermal effects could either be adding to the rebound during an inter- glacial, or under different conditions working to produce a sinking of the crust.  Similar effects would be experienced within oceanic crust being subjected to major  changes in its thermal regime as a result of perturbations in the surface  temperature and any associated changes in the thermal insulation. Over large  numbers of thermal cycles a number of possible outcomes could occur. Possibly  triggered by a prolonged period of cold surface conditions, ocean crust could  gradually rise or fall and not be recovered by say a shorter intervening period of  warm surface conditions. The reverse would be true of prolonged periods of warm  surface conditions followed by shorter intervening periods of cold. In this regard  it is interesting to speculate that the Earth’s rate of spin at different times of  its 4.5 Ga history may have been very different to what it is today. Might there  have been geological epochs during which Earth may have almost ceased spinning and  even undergone reversals in direction? Such changes could start to account for very  considerable antipodal differences in the thermal gradients through the Earths  crust. With the associated prolonged periods of either intense cold or heating it  would be possible to envisage a situation where crust becomes intensely heated on  one side of Earth and intensely cold at the antipode. This could possibly account  for the well recorded observation that continental crust and oceanic crust have a  strong tendency to occur as antipodal opposites.
==Figure  13. How long term crustal warming would generate average compressive  forces that could contribute to the vertical elevation of crust.
Potentially massive changes in thermal energy within the earth’s crust have been  suggested to give rise to tectonic forces capable of producing either rises or  falls of both ocean and continental crust. Once again the mechanisms for the  alternations of thermal energy have been suggested to derive from the long term  cycles of solar radiation reaching the earth’s surface and magnification of the  thermal regimes brought about by the consequential changes in the levels of surface  insulation to the outflow of geothermal energy. Credible mechanisms have been  described which under certain conditions would be expected to result in a long term  rise of oceanic crust to eventually become continental crust and vice versa. That  such vertical motions have occurred is fairly clear from the evidence available. It  is the failure to explain such vertical changes in crustal disposition and indeed  its assumption that they have generally not occurred that is one of the major  shortcomings of PT as currently formulated.

It has been suggested that there are some fundamental problems with plate tectonics  (PT), the now dominant paradigm that underpins much of current geologic thinking.  Most of these problems are overcome by a new model that attributes the tectonic  forces required to drive the formation of the Earth’s crust to the periodic changes  in thermal conditions. Some of these thermal changes are suggested to derive from  variations in the Earth’s orbit around the Sun and to a lesser extent the periodic  changes in the orientation of the Earth’s axis of spin relative to the orbital  plane. Restraint of the expansions wanting to take place when the crust warms will  induce massive compressive forces. During the cooling cycle these same restraints  will act to induce a dominantly tension field. This cycle of thermal loading has  been suggested to act like a form of tectonic pump driving the many processes  currently explained by PT. But importantly, it has been reasoned that this new  model is capable of resolving many paradoxes of PT and in particular could help to  resolve the issue upon which PT is noticeably silent, namely, the processes that  cause long term vertical movement of both continental and ocean crust (“plates”).  This cyclic, thermal, model has been shown to be capable of explaining: the  vertical upheaval of thickened oceanic floor to form continental land masses; the  vertical depression of eroded continents to form new ocean floors; the formation of  mid-oceanic mountain chains often adjacent to mid-oceanic rifts and “spreading  zones”; and the processes whereby mountains continue to be formed on continental  land masses. While direct evidence to prove or disprove this new model would appear  to be unavailable, its consistency with much of what is known would seem to  recommend it for serious consideration. Future evidence may show that it is  incorrectly founded. This risk is surely outweighed by the consideration that the  present model is already known to be at odds with too much fundamental empirical  data to be retained. We are clearly in need of fresh thinking. It is hoped that  this contribution could form part of this fresh thinking.

ACKNOWLEDGEMENT: Presentation of this paper at the American Association of  Petroleum Geologists, European Conference, Athens, 17-20 November, 2007, was made  possible by a Leverhulme Research Fellowship grant number RF/RFG/2006/0087. This  support is gratefully acknowledged.

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26 New Concepts in Global Tectonics Newsletter, no. 42, March, 2007
... The Rifts Fallacy
The first page of another 1970 Freund publication was also found on the internet  and reveals that while he helped establish the Dead Sea Transform legend, he also  warned the Red Sea could not be opened by ignoring what was then known as the big  Afar triangle (Fig. 4):
Nature 228, 453 (31 October, 1970); doi:10.1038/228453a0
Plate Tectonics of the Red Sea and East Africa
Department of Geology, The Hebrew University, Jerusalem.
I WOULD like to comment on some of the assumptions and results of a recent letter  by McKenzie et al. They reconstruct the pre-movement position of Arabia and Africa  by fitting the two coast lines of the Red Sea, assuming that the entire space  between the coasts is occupied by newly formed oceanic crust. This assumption  ignores the existence of the Danakil horst, which consists of continental crust  (Pre-Cambrian, Jurassic) and which is some 80 km wide, in between these two coast  lines in the southern Red Sea depression. It seems impossible to close the gap of  the Red Sea without leaving the space required for this continental block.
These words were the pivotal moment in the whole history of Plate Tectonics, but  Circus Maximus ignored this crucial warning and proceeded to pick the lock at the  mouth of the Red Sea. In fact, their darkest secret was that the Red Sea must be  seen to be opening wide and connecting with the Mediterranean, otherwise the whole  region is a closed system and the axe of oceanization hangs over their heads (Fig.  5).
So the Red Sea had to be a rift and the dark continent of Africa was then perfect  for establishing the illusion of forking rifts (Fig. 6) where nobody could possibly  suspect the existence of forking ENIGMAS (Fig. 7).
Despite plentiful signs of the ENIGMA in the form of triangles (Fig. 8) and all  over the 1976 Gravity Map of Australia (Fig. 9), the illusion of the forking rift  spread from Africa right around the world to become the biggest fiasco in the  history of man's intellectual endeavours and far too hot for the media in 1999 and  2004.
While the biggest offset in Australia is quite small (Fig. 10), the 105 km shift  along the DST was needed to confirm that the whole Levant was on the move, that the  Red Sea was about to open, and Africa was about to be torn apart, yet there was not  a scrap of evidence of this actually happening anywhere on the planet, despite  “finding” many platelets. New Concepts in Global Tectonics Newsletter, no. 42,  March, 2007 31
Figure 5. The utter absurdity of Plate Tectonics was obvious decades ago. The  Mediterranean and Red Sea are really zones of closed subsidence being reworked by  oceanization, and access has been produced by waterfalls cutting through basement  ridges at Gibraltar and Istanbul. Gibraltar means that all the inland seas were  caused by oceanization and Continental Drift is a giant farce.

Figure 6. In the land of multiple illusions, opening the Red Sea was a fiasco as it  was always obvious the Afar end is completely closed and locked. The high elevation  (left) is shown in red and contains the best known rifts of east Africa. The  cartoon (center) impatiently anticipates the rifting away of this whole section,  yet there is no evidence for any actual opening in any continent, and the fallacy  that African rifts fork (right) makes this a mega fiasco. 32 New Concepts in Global  Tectonics Newsletter, no. 42, March, 2007
Figure 7. Rifts were invented by Plate Tectonics in the dark data-less continent of  Africa. The initial concepts were wildly spurious and varied from tension to  compression and even oscillations. In Australian gravity ENIGMA ridges fork (bottom  left), and the forking African rift (bottom right) is an illusion which explains  why they have all failed to open and why no continent has ever broken up (Anfiloff,  1989).

Figure 8. The illusion of the forking African rifts hides the ENIGMA. The  compression-driven compartmentalized Polycyclic Rifting process (Anfiloff, 1992)  shows how bifurcating ridges weave in and out of a row of triangular troughs and is  the bane of oil exploration. But the term “rift” should now be completely removed  from the lexicon of tectonics!New Concepts in Global Tectonics Newsletter, no. 42,  March, 2007 33
Figure 9. The difference between African rift tectonics and Australian ENIGMA  triangle tectonics needs to be investigated. The crux of the Plate Tectonics  illusion lies in the complete absence of any continent actually breaking apart  cleanly anywhere in the world despite the finding of numerous “platelets”. They  often slice through triangles but no offsets are to be seen anywhere along these  alleged cracks in the crust. Nor does the ENIGMA involve much offset in the  formation of its triangles which have a very specific slope towards the ridge (Fig.  8).

Figure 10. This is the only tangible offset in the magnetics of Australia and it  does not continue into the Yilgarn Shield.
Nor was there any evidence of an incipient opening process in any deep penetrating  geophysical data, and after a dozen big fiascos, all this culminated decades later  in the tectonic banana fiasco (Fig. 11). This figure shows where Plate Tectonics  started and ended, and the grist of all the fiascos in between lies in the  difference between Africa and Australia (Fig. 9). To avoid this, Circus Maximus has  used transforms to slice tectonic triangles down the middle as if they are  cucumbers, without showing any offsets, and without explaining why they even exist  (Fig. 12).
Two of these triangular cucumbers were eventually studied in detail and they called  them pull-apart basins but that only created more fiascos and points to an  underlying problem which Plate Tectonics could not solve: the subduction  contradiction.
The Nemah fiasco
The new generation has never seen a vertical tectonic structure because they were  deleted from schools and even books on oil exploration. This culminated in the  Nemah fiasco. More than a decade after the complete ENIGMA was revealed (Anfiloff,  1992), oil explorers still have no idea they are standing on top of one on the  Nemah Ridge and that the whole of the legendary Mid Continent Rift is really a  string of highly evolved ENIGMAS (Fig. 13).
This again shows the fiasco of the big rift model illusion in Figure 11 which while  taught all over the internet, has never been tested anywhere with real data.
The GPS fiasco
For decades the DST legend was never properly tested and was propped up by the  automatic citation process. Then GPS measurements of creep created the insidious  merry-go-round of the locked fault, whose logic is: we know the whole thing was  moving, but it paused while we were measuring it!


Morning session Co-Chairs: S. T. Tassos, K. Storetvedt and D. Choi
Introductory Remarks: Karsten Storetvedt
Five Para-Myths and One Comprehensive Proposition in Geology: The Solid, Quantified, Growing and Radiating Earth
Stavros T. Tassos, Institute of Geodynamics, National Observatory of Athens, PO Box 200 48, Athens 118 10
Greece, phone: +30 210 34 90 169,
Five propositions in Geology, namely Plate Tectonics, Constant Size Earth, Heat Engine Earth, Elastic Rebound, and the Organic Origin of Hydrocarbon Reserves are challenged as Para-Myths because their potential truth is not confirmed by Observation, and/or Experiment, and/or Logic. In their place the Excess Mass Stress Tectonics - EMST, i.e., a Solid, Quantified, Growing and Radiating Earth and its implications, such as the Inorganic Origin of Hydrocarbons, claims to be a
Comprehensive Proposition.

Space is the infinite source of all mass that becomes measurable as energy - unpaired standing or travelling waves and matter-paired standing waves, i.e., waving space itself at 299792458 m/s. Energy and matter are sine waveforms of local anisotropy in the elastic, large-scale isotropic continuum, which is lossless and has infinite elasticity to any velocity < light speed, and infinite rigidity at vc. Gravity is tension and its inverse quantity is ‘mass'-space density. All wave-particles contain a constant quantum of tensional elastic potential, irrespective of wavelength, as per E=hf. Due to constant linear stretching, the total tensional elastic energy (E), i.e., frequency, raises proportionally counteracting entropic dissipation, whilst local space density (m), inversely and proportionally increases, as one entity, thus the constancy of the square root of their ratio. In the context of Excess Mass Stress Tectonics – EMST, Earth is a quantified solid black body that appears to grow with time. Earth's inner core is an equilibrium high-tension/high-frequency location, wherein energy-unpaired standing or travelling waves transform into matter-paired standing waves, so that the conservation principle is not violated. Form new elements, i.e., ‘Excess Mass', which are added atom-by-atom, the greater bulk concentrically, whereas the ‘active' part rises in the cold and increasingly rigid with depth mantle, as the seismic wave velocity data indicate. Upon oxidation-decompression the reduced form releases its ‘excess' electrons. Iron with the highest nuclear binding energy of 8.8 MeV should be the last element to form; thus the absence of true oceanic crust older than 200 m.y. High temperatures and melting are local and episodic phenomena, sourced by radiant heat, i.e., electron resonance in 10-6 m micro-cracks at 1014 Hz, at depths lower than 5 km; the maximum depth horizontal micro-cracks can remain permanently open. In the context of Excess Mass Stress Tectonics – EMST, hydrocarbons are energy sources produced abiotically through a process whereby hydrogen and carbon, but also oxygen, nitrogen, sulphur and trace-elements being formed in the Earth's core, rise through radial fracture trails in the solid and cold mantle to the Earth's surface. If their rise is blocked compose bigger compounds, e.g., kerogen, that can transform by radiant heat in the upper 5 km or so of the Earth's interior, into gas, oil and coal, at temperatures <200, 100-50, and <50oC, respectively. In the absence of trapping and/or above 200oC, the temperature at which porphyrins are destroyed, they are released as methane gas, like in Titan today, and/or are fully oxidized to CO2 and H2O. Oil and gas reserves mature in basins adjacent to deformed Precambrian shields and platforms, mostly during the last 200 m.y., when wide and deep oceans and a complex pattern of uplifts and sedimentary basins developed, thus providing the reservoirs and the structural and/or stratigraphic traps. They associate with moderate seismic and volcanic activity, free-air gravity, geoidal, and heat flow anomalies, and large igneous provinces, i.e., Excess Mass. 62 New Concepts in Global Tectonics Newsletter, no. 45, December, 2007 Depending on the “virtual” temperature gradient and in the absence of migration, gas, oil and coal should be found at greater, intermediate, and shallower depths, respectively. For example, with 200oC at 4 km depth, temperature gradient 50oC/km, thermal conductivity 2 W/m.oC, and heat flow 100 mW/m2 gas, oil, and coal should be found at about 3, <2, and <1 km, respectively.
Updates / Choi
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582 New Concepts in Global Tectonics Journal, V. 4, No. 4, December 2016.
Great deep earthquakes and solar cycles
Dong Choi1 and John Casey2
International Earthquake and Volcano Prediction Center, Canberra, Australia, Orlando, Florida, USA
Abstract: Great deep earthquakes (300 km or deeper with magnitude 7.0 or greater) are considered the first tangible appearance of the Earth’s outer core-derived thermal energy, which later generates a series of shallow earthquakes. Therefore, a right understanding of great deep earthquakes is pivotal in predicting catastrophic earthquakes at the shallow Earth. It is also important to understand Earth’s geodynamic processes and their interaction with other planets, such as the Sun. Historically the great deep earthquakes have occurred sporadically, zero to four per year since 1970 only in some limited areas in the Pacific Ocean and its surroundings. They were almost absent prior to 1984, but suddenly increased in 1990 onwards when the Schwabe (11 year) solar cycle 22 peaked; after which solar activity has been continuing to decline – implying the arrival of a major prolonged solar low cycle or an hibernation stage possibly comparable to the Dalton Minimum (1790-1830) or the Maunder Minimum (1645-1715); both of which had accompanied historic catastrophic earthquakes and volcanic eruptions. The great deep earthquake fluctuation is mainly controlled by two combined cycles, the 11-year Schwabe cycle and a longer 22 year Hale cycle, but obviously longer term solar cycles, such as 100 and 206 year cycles, are also affecting. Further study is required. Since 1990 the Earth’s core is considered to have entered an active phase and has been discharging powerful thermal energy into the mantle. The recent spate of unusually strong earthquakes worldwide support this assertion. We expect this trend to continue and strengthen for the coming 20 to 30 years.
Keywords: earthquake-solar cycle anticorrelation, 11-year solar cycle, 22-year solar cycle, great deep earthquake, Eddie Minimum, thermal energy transmigration
(Received on 7 October 2016. Accepted on 26 December 2016)
Our studies on the Sun-Earth interaction on the basis of earthquakes/volcanic eruptions and solar cycles have clarified many intriguing relationships between the Sun and the Earth. Choi and Maslov (2010) established a reversed correlation between the solar activity and earthquakes (Fig. 1) after the extensive data analysis and review of published references. Casey (2010) noted that the strongest volcanic and seismic activities in the continental USA in the last 300 to 350 years have occurred during the major solar minimums. Some earlier works such as Simpson (1967) also noted the increased earthquake activity during the solar declining period. The anticorrelation between the Sun and seismic/volcanic activities has been supported by many recent studies by the present Authors and other researchers (Choi and Tsunoda, 2011; Choi et al., 2014; Casey et al., 2016).
An underlying physical mechanism of this Sun and Earth interaction requires further study: Gregori (2002) attributes to Earth’s core being a leaky capacitor or a battery; when solar activity is high, the Earth’s core is charged, whereas when the Sun’s activity is in low phase, the core in turn discharges energy.
Figure 1. Solar cycle (left) and the earthquake-solar cycle anticorrelation (right) for strong, shallow earthquakes.
On the other hand, an improved understanding of earthquake mechanism and precursory signals has led to many successful earthquake predictions by a team of International Earthquake and Volcano Prediction Center and other colleagues in recent years, as demonstrated in many papers on the September 2015 M8.3 Chile Earthquake (Césped, Choi and Casey, Davidson, Straser et al., Venkatanathan et al., U-Yen, and Wu, - all in NCGT Journal, v. 3, no. 4, p. 383-408, 2015). The April 2016 Kumamoto Japan earthquake was linked to a swarm of deep quakes in 2010 in the Celebes Sea, Philippines (Tsunoda and Choi, 2016). This quake also revealed several critical precursors and was successfully predicted (Cataldi et al., 2016; Hayakawa and Asano, 2016; Wu, 2016).
These successful predictions and improved understanding of earthquake generation mechanisms tell us; 1) important role of deep earthquakes, 300 km or deeper, with magnitude, 7.0 or greater, in generating catastrophic earthquakes at shallow Earth, validating the thermal transmigration concept by Blot (1976) (see also Grover, 1998), and 2) the interaction between planets and Earth, especially the Sun and Earth and their cycles in triggering shallow earthquakes (Kolvankar, 2011; Gregori, 2015; and others).
Because the deep (300 km or deeper) great earthquakes (magnitude 7.0 or greater) are considered the first tangible appearance of the Earth’s outer-core discharged thermal energy, they are considered to directly reflect the activity of the outer core which is intricately interacting with the solar activity and its cycle. We consider the great deep quakes, particularly in the South Fiji –Lau Basins, Southwest Pacific, most sensitively respond to the outer core activity, because the region is the site where thermal plume rises directly from the outer core according to the mantle tomography (Kawakami et al., 1996).
The clarification of the solar cycle and great deep quakes is all the more important today as we have entered a major solar low cycle, which is comparable to the Dalton Minimum (1790-1830) or Maunder Minimum (1645-1715), or solar hibernation (Casey, 2010 and 2014; Casey et al., 2016), which had accompanied strongest earthquakes and volcanic eruptions.
All the earthquake records used in this study come from the IRIS archives (, with reference to the USGS archives for verification. There are some minor discrepancies between them, especially in magnitude assignment.
Deep and great earthquakes are distributed mostly in the western Pacific region and Southeast Asia. They also occur in South America (Fig. 2). The most frequent occurrence is the South Fiji Basin – Lau Basin, Southwest Pacific where superplume rises from the Earth’s outer core (Kawakai et al., 1994). In all areas deep earthquakes distribute linearly, implying the control by deep-seated fracture systems (Choi, 2005).
Figure 2. Great (M6.5+) earthquakes in the western Pacific/SE Asia (left) and South America (right). Generated from IRIS website ( For greater clarity only quakes deeper than 300 km are displayed on the left map. The right map includes all depths. Note linearly arranged distribution, suggesting the involvement of deep fracture systems reaching the upper mantle.
1) South Fiji Basin and Lau Basin, Southwest Pacific
The following table (Table 1) lists the great deep earthquakes used for this study. Their depth-year diagram is shown at the top of Fig. 3. The record shows no M7.0+ deep earthquakes from 1970 to 1984 in the region. This quiescence was interrupted in 1985-86, but then became quiet again until 1991. After that the region has become seismically very active up until today, 2016.
Table 1. List of deep and very strong earthquakes in the Fiji region, Southwest Pacific. Quakes with magnitude 6.5 or greater and depth deeper than 350 km were extracted.
Year Month Day Time UTC Mag Lat Lon Depth km Region
1985 8 28 20:50:49 6.6 -21 -178.99 628.8 FIJI ISLANDS REGION
1986 5 26 18:40:45 6.8 -21.78 -179.1 590.2 FIJI ISLANDS REGION
1986 6 16 10:48:27 7.1 -21.93 -178.96 557.1 FIJI ISLANDS REGION
1987 2 10 0:59:30 6.5 -19.36 -177.52 409.7 FIJI ISLANDS REGION
1991 9 30 0:21:47 6.9 -20.9 -178.57 579.5 FIJI ISLANDS REGION
1992 7 11 10:44:20 7.2 -22.5 -178.39 381.6 SOUTH OF FIJI ISLANDS
1993 4 16 14:08:38 6.9 -17.76 -178.85 563.6 FIJI ISLANDS REGION
1994 3 9 23:28:04 7.5 -17.95 -178.43 533.9 FIJI ISLANDS REGION
1994 3 31 22:40:51 6.5 -21.99 -179.52 570.5 FIJI ISLANDS REGION
1994 10 27 22:20:27 6.6 -25.81 179.35 506.3 SOUTH OF FIJI ISLANDS
1996 8 5 22:38:20 7.3 -20.72 -178.29 531.2 FIJI ISLANDS REGION
1996 10 19 14:53:47 6.9 -20.41 -178.44 572.6 FIJI ISLANDS REGION
1997 9 4 4:23:35 6.8 -26.5 178.32 608 SOUTH OF FIJI ISLANDS
1998 1 27 21:05:42 6.5 -22.46 179.12 588.1 SOUTH OF FIJI ISLANDS
1998 3 29 19:48:12 7.1 -17.66 -178.99  499.6 FIJI ISLANDS REGION
1998 5 16 2:22:02 6.8 -22.21 -179.5 570.5 SOUTH OF FIJI ISLANDS
2000 12 18 1:19:21 6.5 -21.15 -179.12 617.7 FIJI ISLANDS REGION
2001 4 28 4:49:51 6.9 -18.06 -176.94 340.6 FIJI ISLANDS REGION
2002 6 30 21:29:36 6.5 -22.24 179.24 626.5 SOUTH OF FIJI ISLANDS
2002 8 19 11:01:02 7.6 -21.7 -179.46 587.7 FIJI ISLANDS REGION
2002 8 19 11:08:22 7.7 -23.87 178.45 649.9 SOUTH OF FIJI ISLANDS
2003 1 4 5:15:05 6.5 -20.65 -177.63 390.4 FIJI ISLANDS REGION
2004 7 15 4:27:13 7 -17.7 -178.77 560 FIJI ISLANDS REGION
2004 11 17 21:09:09 6.6 -20.05 -178.72 592.2 FIJI ISLANDS REGION
2006 1 2 22:13:40 7.1 -19.97 -178.11 584.1 FIJI ISLANDS REGION
2006 2 2 12:48:43 6.7 -17.83 -178.28 599.6 FIJI ISLANDS REGION
2007 5 6 21:11:53 6.5 -19.47 -179.33 678.6 FIJI ISLANDS REGION
2007 10 5 7:17:54 6.5 -25.2 179.45 521.3 SOUTH OF FIJI ISLANDS
2007 10 16 21:05:43 6.6 -25.74 179.5 501.2 SOUTH OF FIJI ISLANDS
2008 1 15 17:52:16 6.5 -21.99 -179.58 597 FIJI ISLANDS REGION
2009 11 9 10:44:54 7.3 -17.27 178.45 591.3 FIJI ISLANDS
2011 2 21 10:57:52 6.5 -26.14 178.39 558.1 SOUTH OF FIJI ISLANDS
2011 7 29 7:42:23 6.7 -23.8 179.75 532 SOUTH OF FIJI ISLANDS
2011 9 15 19:31:04 7.3 -21.61 -179.53 644.6 FIJI ISLANDS REGION
2013 11 23 7:48:32 6.5 -17.1 -176.56 377 FIJI ISLANDS REGION
2014 3 26 3:29:36 6.5 -26.09 179.28 493.1 SOUTH OF FIJI ISLANDS
2014 5 4 9:15:52 6.6 -24.61 179.09 527 SOUTH OF FIJI ISLANDS
2014 7 21 14:54:41 6.9 -19.83 -178.46 616.4 FIJI ISLANDS REGION
2014 11 1 18:57:22 7.1 -19.7 -177.79 434.4 FIJI ISLANDS REGION
2016 5 28 5:38:51 6.6 -22.02 -178.16 416.8 SOUTH OF FIJI ISLANDS
2016 9 24 21:28:42 6.8 -19.84 -178.27 594.5 FIJI ISLANDS REGION
Their depth-year plot is shown below, Fig. 3. The concentration is seen in the 500 to 600 km depth range. Note the M7.0+ quakes which have increased from 1992; they are almost absent prior to 1992 except 1985.
Fig. 3. Depth- time (year) diagram of the M6.5+ deep quakes since 1970. Note the absence or sparsity of samples prior to 1984, and an overall increase from 1990.
2) Solomon - Papua New Guinea
The following table (Table 2) is a list of M6.5+, deep quakes in this region (Fig. 2). Only five quakes with a depth range of 386–500 km have been registered; three of them in the years from 2010 to 2016. Only one quake has a magnitude over 7.0+. Because of the small number of samples and isolated, narrow occurrence, this area is excluded in Figs. 3 and 6.
It is noted; 1) no samples deeper than 490 km, and 2) no quakes prior to 1988 and frequent occurrence from 2010 onwards, which follow the trends observed in other deep quake regions.
Table 2. List of deep, very strong earthquakes in the Bougainville-New Ireland region.
Year Month Day Time UTC Mag Lat Lon Depth km Region
1989 8 21 18:25:40 6.5 -4.1 154.49 482.7 SOLOMON ISLANDS
1995 6 24 6:58:08 6.8 -3.96 153.91 403.8 NEW IRELAND REGION, P.N.G.
2010 3 20 14:00:50 6.6 -3.38 152.28 418.9 NEW IRELAND REGION, P.N.G.
2013 7 7 18:35:30 7.3 -3.92 153.92 386.3 NEW IRELAND REGION, P.N.G.
2016 8 31 3:11:36 6.7 -3.69 152.79 499.1 NEW IRELAND REGION, P.N.G.
3) Southeast Asia
Many earthquakes in the studied categories have been registered in the Southeast Asia; Flores Sea, Java Sea, Banda Sea and Celebes-Mindanao (Fig. 4). They are listed in Table 3.
This area follows the same trend as others; sparsity or total absence of great deep quakes prior to 1990, and the peak activity in 2009 to 2011 (Fig. 3).
Figure 4. Deep great earthquakes in the Southeast Asia.
Table 3. Deep (350 km+) and very strong (M6.5+) earthquakes, Southeast Asia (Indonesia and Philippines) from 1970 to 2016 extracted from the IRIS website.
Year Month Day Time UTC Mag Lat Lon Depth km Region
1972 4 4 22:43:06 6.6 -7.47 125.56 -375.5 BANDA SEA
1984 3 5 3:33:51 7.3 8.17 123.77 -656.1 MINDANAO, PHILIPPINE ISLANDS
1991 6 7 11:51:24 6.9 -7.11 122.76 -505.4 FLORES SEA
1992 8 2 12:03:20 6.6 -7.12 121.76 -484.4 FLORES SEA
1994 9 28 16:39:53 6.6 -5.76 110.42 -660.5 JAVA SEA
1994 11 15 20:18:11 6.5 -5.62 110.26 -567.7 JAVA SEA
1996 6 17 11:22:18 7.7 -7.11 122.61 -589.5 FLORES SEA
2000 8 7 14:33:56 6.5 -6.98 123.43 -666.1 BANDA SEA
2003 5 26 23:13:31 6.8 6.77 123.81 -586.9 MINDANAO, PHILIPPINE ISLANDS
2004 7 25 14:35:17 7.3 -2.49 103.97 -581.9 SOUTHERN SUMATERA, INDONESIA
2005 2 5 12:23:18 7 5.29 123.44 -540.4 MINDANAO, PHILIPPINE ISLANDS
2006 1 27 16:58:54 7.5 -5.45 128.19 -403.6 BANDA SEA
2009 8 28 1:51:19 6.9 -7.2 123.46 -640.1 BANDA SEA
2009 10 4 10:58:00 6.6 6.67 123.51 -635 MINDANAO, PHILIPPINE ISLANDS
2009 10 7 21:41:14 6.8 4.09 122.54 -586.8 CELEBES SEA
2010 7 23 23:15:09 7.5 6.74 123.33 -633.7 MINDANAO, PHILIPPINE ISLANDS
2010 7 23 22:51:13 7.7 6.42 123.58 -584.7 MINDANAO, PHILIPPINE ISLANDS
2010 7 23 22:08:11 7.3 6.71 123.49 -610.2 MINDANAO, PHILIPPINE ISLANDS
2010 7 24 5:35:01 6.6 6.17 123.56 -564.7 MINDANAO, PHILIPPINE ISLANDS
2010 7 29 7:31:56 6.6 6.56 123.36 -615.8 MINDANAO, PHILIPPINE ISLANDS
2011 2 10 14:41:58 6.5 4.08 123.04 -525 CELEBES SEA
2011 2 10 14:39:27 6.5 4.2 122.97 -523.2 CELEBES SEA
2011 3 10 17:08:36 6.6 -6.87 116.72 -510.6 BALI SEA
2011 8 30 6:57:41 6.9 -6.36 126.75 -469.8 BANDA SEA
2014 12 2 5:11:31 6.6 6.09 123.13 -614 MINDANAO, PHILIPPINE ISLANDS
2015 2 27 13:45:05 7 -7.29 122.53 -552.3 FLORES SEA
2016 10 19 0:26:01 6.6 -4.86 108.16 -614 JAVA SEA
4) Offshore South Japan, Sea of Japan and Okhotsk Sea
Numerous deep quakes with magnitude 6.5 or greater have been registered in these regions (Fig. 5). Like other areas, the quakes in this category burst from 1984 onwards. Before 1984, on the contrary, quake occurred rarely.
As noted earlier, the quakes in this category directly reflect the orthogonal deep fracture patterns formed in early stage of the Earth’s formation, Precambrian (Choi, 2005).
It should be noted that a strongest deep quake (M8.4) since 1970 occurred in the northernmost Okhotsk Sea in 2013 (Fig. 3 and Table 1, yellow highlight). This energy is expected to reappear at shallow depth in 2017 to 2018 offshore Kamchatka as gigantic earthquakes.
Figure 5. Very strong earthquakes (M6.5+) around Japan and the Okhotsk Sea. Note linear and orthogonal distribution of deep earthquakes, which reflects the occurrence of deep quakes along deep-seated fault zones.
Table 4. List of earthquakes included in analysis of this study.
Year Month Day Time UTC Mag Lat Lon Depth km Region
1970 8 30 17:46:08 6.5 52.36 151.64 -643 SEA OF OKHOTSK
1973 9 29 0:44:00 6.5 41.93 130.99 -567.4 NORTH KOREA
1978 3 7 2:48:47 6.9 31.99 137.61 -440.6 SOUTH OF HONSHU, JAPAN
1984 1 1 9:03:40 7.2 33.62 136.8 -386.4 NEAR S. COAST OF WESTERN HONSHU
1984 3 6 2:17:20 7.4 29.35 138.92 -454.2 SOUTH OF HONSHU, JAPAN
1985 4 3 20:21:36 6.5 28.27 139.55 -475.4 BONIN ISLANDS REGION
1986 2 3 20:47:36 6.5 27.87 139.51 -526.8 BONIN ISLANDS REGION
1987 5 7 3:05:48 6.8 46.75 139.22 -417.1 NEAR SOUTHEAST COAST OF RUSSIA
1987 5 18 3:07:34 6.8 49.24 147.69 -545.6 SEA OF OKHOTSK
1988 9 7 11:53:25 6.7 30.31 137.5 -501.8 SOUTH OF HONSHU, JAPAN
1990 5 12 4:50:08 7.2 49.05 141.88 -602.5 SAKHALIN ISLAND
1991 5 3 2:14:18 6.7 28.09 139.67 -471.4 BONIN ISLANDS REGION
1992 1 20 13:37:04 6.7 27.93 139.47 -521.3 BONIN ISLANDS REGION
1992 10 30 2:49:50 6.5 29.95 139.1 -418.5 SOUTH OF HONSHU, JAPAN
1993 1 19 14:39:26 6.6 38.68 133.56 -446.6 SEA OF JAPAN
1993 10 11 15:54:22 6.8 32.05 137.97 -366.7 SOUTH OF HONSHU, JAPAN
1994 7 21 18:36:30 7.3 42.37 132.91 -458.8 NEAR SOUTHEAST COAST OF RUSSIA
1996 3 16 22:04:06 6.7 28.97 138.98 -481.5 BONIN ISLANDS REGION
1998 8 20 6:40:56 7.1 28.93 139.36 -442.8 BONIN ISLANDS REGION
1999 4 8 13:10:34 7.1 43.61 130.41 -564.1 E. RUSSIA-N.E. CHINA BORDER REG.
2000 8 6 7:27:14 7.3 28.8 139.6 -416.9 BONIN ISLANDS REGION
2002 6 28 17:19:30 7.3 43.76 130.67 -568 E. RUSSIA-N.E. CHINA BORDER REG.
2002 11 17 4:53:55 7.3 47.77 145.99 -483.9 SEA OF OKHOTSK
2003 7 27 6:25:31 6.8 47.1 139.21 -467.5 NEAR SOUTHEAST COAST OF RUSSIA
2007 7 16 14:17:37 6.8 36.86 134.82 -349 SEA OF JAPAN
2008 7 5 2:12:06 7.7 53.95 152.86 -646.1 SEA OF OKHOTSK
2008 11 24 9:03:00 7.3 54.22 154.29 -505.3 SEA OF OKHOTSK
2009 8 9 10:55:56 7.1 33.15 138.06 -302.2 SOUTH OF HONSHU, JAPAN
2010 2 18 1:13:18 6.9 42.6 130.7 -573.7 E. RUSSIA-N.E. CHINA BORDER REG.
2010 11 30 3:24:41 6.8 28.39 139.24 -485 BONIN ISLANDS REGION
2011 1 12 21:32:53 6.5 26.97 139.88 -512 BONIN ISLANDS REGION
2012 1 1 5:27:55 6.8 31.46 138.07 -365.3 SOUTH OF HONSHU, JAPAN
2012 8 14 2:59:38 7.7 49.8 145.06 -583.2 SEA OF OKHOTSK
2013 5 24 5:44:48 8.4 54.89 153.22 -598.1 SEA OF OKHOTSK
2013 5 24 14:56:31 6.7 52.24 151.44 -624 SEA OF OKHOTSK
2013 9 4 0:18:24 6.5 30.01 138.79 -407 SOUTH OF HONSHU, JAPAN
2015 5 30 11:23:02 7.8 27.83 140.49 -677.6 BONIN ISLANDS REGION
5) South America
As seen in the list below (Table 5) and the depth-year diagram (Fig. 8), there are no M6.5+ quakes in the 300-500 km depth window in South America. Their depths are concentrated around 600 km. Like other areas, the quakes are sporadic prior to 1983, after which steady appearance is seen.
Table 5. List of deep, very strong earthquakes analysed in this study. See Figs. 2 and 3 for geographic and depth-year distributions, respectively.
Year Month Day Time UTC Mag Lat Lon Depth km Region
1970 7 31 17:08:05 6.5 -1.46 -72.56 -653 COLOMBIA
1983 12 21 12:05:06 7 -28.13 -63.15 -591.9 SANTIAGO DEL ESTERO PROV., ARG.
1985 5 1 13:27:57 6.6 -9.21 -71.22 -612.6 PERU-BRAZIL BORDER REGION
1985 10 31 21:49:19 6.5 -28.69 -63.14 -588.9 SANTIAGO DEL ESTERO PROV., ARG.
1989 5 5 18:28:40 7 -8.28 -71.39 -605.9 WESTERN BRAZIL
1990 10 17 14:30:15 7 -11.01 -70.77 -625.9 PERU-BRAZIL BORDER REGION
1991 6 23 21:22:29 7.1 -26.75 -63.3 -558.4 SANTIAGO DEL ESTERO PROV., ARG.
1994 1 10 15:53:50 6.9 -13.34 -69.41 -604.9 PERU-BOLIVIA BORDER REGION
1994 4 29 7:11:29 6.9 -28.25 -63.22 -554.4 SANTIAGO DEL ESTERO PROV., ARG.
1994 5 10 6:36:28 6.9 -28.51 -63.02 -604.2 SANTIAGO DEL ESTERO PROV., ARG.
1994 6 9 0:33:16 8.2 -13.87 -67.51 -640 NORTHERN BOLIVIA
1994 8 19 10:02:51 6.5 -26.6 -63.38 -558.3 SANTIAGO DEL ESTERO PROV., ARG.
1997 11 28 22:53:42 6.6 -13.77 -68.8 -599.8 PERU-BOLIVIA BORDER REGION
2000 4 23 9:27:23 7 -28.29 -62.94 -603.6 SANTIAGO DEL ESTERO PROV., ARG.
2002 10 12 20:09:09 6.9 -8.32 -71.67 -516.4 WESTERN BRAZIL
2003 6 20 6:19:40 7 -7.63 -71.71 -572 WESTERN BRAZIL
2005 3 21 12:23:53 6.9 -24.94 -63.46 -576.6 SALTA PROVINCE, ARGENTINA
2006 11 13 1:26:36 6.8 -26.16 -63.29 -581.9 SANTIAGO DEL ESTERO PROV., ARG.
2010 5 24 16:18:28 6.5 -8.12 -71.64 -582.1 WESTERN BRAZIL
2011 1 1 9:56:58 7 -26.8 -63.14 -576.8 SANTIAGO DEL ESTERO PROV., ARG.
2011 9 2 13:47:09 6.7 -28.4 -63.03 -578.9 SANTIAGO DEL ESTERO PROV., ARG.
2011 11 22 18:48:16 6.6 -15.36 -65.09 -549.9 CENTRAL BOLIVIA
2012 5 28 5:07:23 6.7 -28.04 -63.09 -586.9 SANTIAGO DEL ESTERO PROV., ARG.
2015 11 24 22:45:38 7.6 -10.55 -70.9 -600.6 PERU-BRAZIL BORDER REGION
2015 11 24 22:50:53 7.6 -10.05 -71.02 -611.7 PERU-BRAZIL BORDER REGION
2015 11 26 5:45:18 6.7 -9.19 -71.29 -599.4 PERU-BRAZIL BORDER REGION
1) General trends in great deep quake occurrence
This section compares the solar cycle and the great deep earthquakes scanned through in the foregoing pages. A summary figure of the depth-year diagram is shown in Fig. 3, and that of the frequency-year in Fig. 6.
Each region has some distinctive trends, but on the whole the following trends are recognized.
- The complete absence or sparsity of great deep earthquakes throughout the globe prior to 1984.
- A peak in 1984 followed by a relative quiescence from 1985 to 1989. Note here that the M7.0+ quake
peak in 1984 in IRIS archive (Fig. 6) is not seen in USGS archive (see Fig. 7) – they were downgraded below 7.0 magnitude in the latter.
- Another outstanding peak in 1994 which is seen in all study areas. It is followed by an overall active
phase until 1998, which is particularly well observed in South Fiji-Lau Basins. A quiet period ensued
from 1999 to 2001.
- A sudden burst in 2002 which is followed by a relatively active phase until 2010.
- A peak in 2015 which is seen commonly in Southeast Asia, Sea of Japan and South America, but it is
not seen in Fiji.
In terms of the depth of hypocenters, most regions (Fiji, SE Asia and South America) have a concentration in 550 and 620 km, but the South of Japan, Sea of Japan and Okhotsk Sea areas are slightly shallower, 400 to 600 km. As stated earlier, it is worthy to note - the narrow hypocentre range (around 600 km) and the complete absence of South American deep quakes between 300 and 500 km.
2) Comparison of great deep quake trends and solar cycles
The solar cycle and earthquake frequency are compared in Fig. 6. If we see the peaks of magnitude 7+ shocks with three or more per year in the second top figure, the spikes are, 1984, 1994, 2020, 2010 and 2015. All of them are located at the start of the lowering cycle, during the lowering period, or the later stage of the trough.
The Southwest Pacific record is most remarkable. All of the high activity periods represented by M6.5+ quakes almost perfectly correlate to the solar cycle lows or troughs. However, other areas, do not necessary follow this trend, although overall trend remains the same – heightened activity during the trough. Here the highest activity in 2010 in Southeast Asia is most outstanding. Note here a disturbed solar cycle trend between cycles 23 and 24; unusually longer lowering cycle. In South America 2015 was the most active year – which corresponds to the early lowering period after the cycle 24 peaked in 2012.
As illustrated in the M7.0+ quake fluctuation from 1970 to 2016 (Fig. 6, second figure from the top), the overall frequency of the great deep quakes became much more active after 1994 with a precursory minor peak in 1990. This fact coincides with the declining solar curve started from the cycle 22 peak, 1990 (Fig. 6 top figure), which is still continuing today, and expected to last 20 to 30 years more – coined solar hibernation by Casey (2014). Recently the solar physics community named the expected solar minimum covering solar cycles 24, 25 and 26, the “Eddy” Minimum (
Figure 6. Histogram of M6.5+ quakes with emphasis on M7.0+ quakes and their comparison with the solar cycle curve. The list in this figure is solely based on the IRIS registered earthquakes which are somewhat different from the USGS data base as seen in Fig. 7. The “Earth core active phase” from Choi and Maslov (2010), and “seismo-volcanic quiescence” from Choi (2010) and Tsunoda et al. (2013). Blue shade indicates the lowering and trough of solar cycle.
The heightened seismic activity possibly coming from the increased core activity (“Earth core active phase”) since 1990 has been discovered by Choi and Maslov (2010). It has been also summarized by Choi
et al. (2014) based on the worldwide seismic and volcanic eruption records. This is best illustrated in Fig. 7, in which clear correlation is seen in the coincidence between the “Earth core active phase” and the sudden increase in seismic activity from 1990.
Figure 7. Earthquakes and solar cycle. Cited from Choi et al. (2014). This figure is solely based on USGS NEIC archives. Note a sudden increase in both shallow and deep seismic activity started from 1990 which coincides with the “Earth core active phase” by Choi and Maslov (2010). All of the California’s M7.0+ quakes have occurred exclusively after 1991. Note, 1) major volcanic eruptions occurred at the second peak or the early stage of lowering cycle, and 2) deep precursory quakes of Japan’s M9.0 quake in 2011 occurred in 2005 to 2007 (Choi, 2011) which belong to the lowering period of cycle 23.
Great deep earthquakes show correlation with the combined cycles: 1) the 11 year Schwabe cycle, and 2) the 22 year Hale cycle which coincides with the peak of the 11 year cycle 23. The latter is most conspicuous – prior to 1990, almost no great deep quakes, except for a peak in 1984 indicated in the IRIS archive (note: this peak is not present in the USGS archive).
Since this analysis covered the period 1970 to 2016, the possibility exists for the influence of longer
duration solar cycles than the 11 and 22 year cycles upon the frequency and extent of deep earthquakes.
Further analysis is required. For example previous work by Casey (2010, 2013 and 2014) has shown a 100 and 206 year cycle in solar activity.
1. The Earth’s core activity has entered an active phase since 1990 as seen in the sudden appearance of
great deep earthquakes after 1990.
2. This 1990 is the starting year of unusual behaviour of solar activity – lingering lowering period of the 11-year cycles (between cycle nos. 23, 24 and 25), and declining peaks of cycles.
3. We expect the stronger release of thermal energy from the outer core to continue for the coming 20 to 30 years, which would generate catastrophic earthquakes and volcanic eruptions throughout the globe.
4. Regional differences in the timing, intensity, and depth of deep quakes indicate the presence of other factors in deep quakes and solar activity.
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NCGT Journal, v. 1, no. 3, September 2013. 2
Earthquakes and surge tectonics
As some of you may be aware, in February of this year the International Earthquake  and Volcano Prediction Center (IEVPC) warned of possible strong earthquakes in  Yunnan, South China ( This was based on various signals we had  detected from the region since late last year. In accordance with our prediction,  an M6.6 quake occurred on 20 April 2013 in Sichuan near the predicted area. More  than 150 people died. Immediately after the quake, Chinese National TV interviewed  John Casey, Chairman of the IEVPC, at the head office in Florida, and broadcast it  in real time throughout their country. The second quake (M5.8) occurred on 31  August 2013 in northernmost Yunnan. Since then the region’s seismo-electromagnetic  activities have been gradually abating.

___Our comprehensive geological-seismological analysis conducted for this  particular prediction confirmed a very interesting fact: the presence of a live  surge channel occupying the Yunnan and Sichuan region (originally described by  Meyerhoff et al., 1992 & 1996).
Since the 1970s it has hosted a series of strong earthquakes along a major NE-SW  tectonic belt that connects to the Tan-lu Fault in North China and, further  northwards, a deep tectonic/seismic zone in the Okhotsk Sea.

___Along the Myanmar-South China segment of this tectonic zone, three major  earthquakes have occurred since late last year – an M6.8 quake in central Myanmar  in November 2012 (IEVPC colleagues successfully predicted it with pinpoint  accuracy),
an M6.6 in Sichuan in April 2013, and an M5.8 in northernmost Yunnan in August  2013. Their geological significance in relation to the Yunnan surge channel is  discussed on pages 45-55 of this NCGT issue.
The Yunnan surge channel develops on the axis of the northern end of the Borneo- Vanuatu Geanticline, which has been heavily oceanized in the SW Pacific and  Southeast Asian region.

___As stated in my article in this issue (pages 45-55), the Borneo-Vanuatu  Geanticline is a trunk surge channel through which the energy derived from the  superplume in the SW Pacific migrates northward, and the process occurring in the  Yunnan surge channel can be regarded as an incipient stage of oceanization.
The IEVPC’s continuing successful earthquake predictions are the result of  combining the right seismo-tectonic model with medium- and short-term signal  detection tools.

___The new earthquake model is based on thermal energy derived from the Earth’s  outer core, its transmigration along deep fracture systems and surge channels, trap  structures, geological history represented by orogenic events, and local and  regional geology.
Thermal energy (or perhaps more properly, thermal-electromagnetic energy)  transmigration is the heart of the IEVPC’s working model. Hence a good knowledge of  local and regional geological structure is essential in predicting in which  direction the generated energy will flow, particularly in areas where strong deep  earthquakes have occurred. In this context, surge tectonics is instrumental in our  prediction approach. Earthquakes as well as volcanic activities cannot happen  without heat input into the upper mantle and the crust.

___Like hydrocarbons, migrating or flowing thermal energy accumulates in structural  highs with effective seals in the upper mantle. We therefore assume that earthquake  belts have underlying channels through which thermal energy can flow – they are  often developed in ancient or young orogenic/mobile belts that form structural  highs in the mantle.
As a practising field geologist, I am convinced that surge tectonics is a  comprehensive and workable tectonic concept that can explain most of what we  observe at the Earth’s surface and in its interior, although some updates are  needed to incorporate new data that have appeared since 1996, when the most recent  version of surge tectonics was published. In this issue Karsten Storetvedt presents  a critique of surge tectonics and a defence of wrench tectonics (p. 56-102), to  which David Pratt (p. 103-117) and Arthur Meyerhoff’s children (p. 117-121) reply.  Another response by Taner et al. will be published in the next issue. We welcome  this open debate in the pages of the NCGT Journal.
Meyerhoff, A.A., Taner, I., Morris, A.E.L., Martin, B.D., Agocs, W.B. and  Meyerhoff, H., 1992. Surge tectonics. In:
Chatterjee, S. and Hotton, N. III (eds.), New Concepts in Global Tectonics, Texas  Tech Univ. Press, Lubbock. p. 309-409.
Meyerhoff, A.A., Taner, I., Morris, A.E.L., Agocs, W.B., Kamen-kaye, M., Bhat,  M.I., Smoot, N.C., Choi, D.R. and
Meyerhoff-Hull, D. (ed.), 1996. Surge tectonics: a new hypothesis of global  geodynamics. Kluwer Academic
Publishers, 323p.
NCGT Journal, v. 1, no. 3, September 2013.

An Archean geanticline stretching from the South Pacific to Siberia, Dong R.  CHOI………………………………..45
(The Borneo-Vanuatu Geanticline was found to connect to the Siberian Craton via the  East Asia Reflective Axial Belt in China. This super antilinal trend forms one of  the most outstanding Archean structural elements on the Earth’s surface together  with the “North-South American Superantilcine”, an antipodal counterpart in the  western hemisphere)
NCGT Journal, v. 1, no. 3, September 2013.
Dong R. CHOI
International Earthquake and Volcano Prediction Center
Canberra, Australia
Abstract: The Borneo-Vanuatu Geanticline reported earlier by the author was found  to connect to the Siberian Craton via the East Asia Reflective Axial Belt in China.  This geanticlinal trend, here called the South Pacific-Siberia Geanticline” (SPSG),  forms one of the most outstanding Archean structural elements on the Earth’s  surface, together with the “North-South American Geanticline” (NSAG), an antipodal  counterpart in the western hemisphere.

___The SPSG has been subject to strong magmatic and tectonic activities in the  Proterozoic and Phanerozoic, notably in the South Pacific and Southeast Asia region  where uplift and oceanization-induced subsidence took place in the Cenozoic.
The Yunnan surge channel in South China, characterized by a kobergen and well- developed low-velocity layers in the upper mantle and the lower crust, sits on this  geanticline.

___The fact that the framework of these two global-scale geanticlinal trends is  still preserved almost intact flatly contradicts large-scale horizontal movement of  the Earth’s crust and mantle, and provides constraints on geodynamic models of the  Earth.
Keywords: Borneo-Vanuatu Geanticline, East Asia Reflective Axial Belt, Yunnan surge  channel, N-S American Geanticline, Siberian Craton, Earth’s geodynamics
1. Introduction
While studying the geology of China to facilitate earthquake prediction for the  Yunnan-Sichuan area, the author came across a significant tectonic feature  regarding the northern extension of the Borneo-Vanuatu Geanticline (Choi, 2005 and  2007) through China and Mongolia to the Siberian Craton.

___This geanticlinal trend hosts the Yunnan surge channel identified by Meyerhoff  et al. (1992 and 1996), where very active seismic activity has been occurring in  recent times.
Together with the North-South American counterpart that is situated in an antipodal  position, the existence of this global-scale geanticlinal trend has wide  ramifications in understanding geodynamic processes and the history of the Earth.  Here I briefly report these new findings, focusing on the northward tectonic link  of the BVG. A more detailed account of the Yunnan surge channel and its geological  significance will be given on another occasion (Choi et al., in preparation).  Another paper on mineral deposits along the Geantincline is also in preparation  (Michaelson and Choi).
2. Borneo-Vanuatu Geanticline (BVG)
The Borneo-Vanuatu Geanticline was first proposed by the author of this paper  (Choi, 2005 and 2007).

___Its presence was detected on a free-air gravity map (to degree 10) published by  the Circum-Pacific Council for Energy and Mineral Resources (1985), Fig. 1; it is  considered to show the density contrast from the surface to the core-mantle  boundary, 2,900 km. This linear mantle high sits on a high-velocity anomaly zone in  the deep mantle tomographic images by Fukao et al. (1994), thus it is undoubtedly  deep rooted, reaching the core-mantle boundary. The gravity peaks are situated in  the North and South Fiji basins, New Guinea and Borneo: the axial area (several  thousand km wide) is characterized by high heat flow, especially in the Fiji Basins  (Tuezov and Lipina, 1988), mantle-origin ultramafic or ophiolitic rocks (New Guinea  Island and Banda Sea), and Precambrian-Lower Paleozoic rocks or granite (Borneo).  On both wings of the BVG, deep-seated fault zones with swarms of deep earthquakes  are developed (Fig. 2). Today the BVG is very active, characterized by both uplift  and subsidence (where oceanization has occurred). It is a trunk channel for thermal  energy that originates from the outer core and passes through a superplume under  the South Pacific (Fiji-Tonga) region to the northern area, Southeast Asia, China  and the western Pacific including Japan (Tsunoda et al., 2003).

==Figure 1. Free-air gravity to degree 10 around the Australian continent and the  axis of the Borneo-Vanuatu Geanticline. This map is considered to show the density  contrast from the surface to the core-mantle interface (2,900 km; Circum-Pacific  Council for Energy and Mineral Resources, 1985). Cited from Choi (2005).
==Figure 2. Tectonic framework of the BVG in relation to deep earthquake belts and  major tectonic zones (Choi, 2005). EARA Belt = East Asia Reflective Axial Belt  redefined by Zhang and Wang (1995). Note well-developed deep earthquake zones on  both wings of the BVG. Lineaments and ore deposits in the Australian continent from  O’Driscoll (1986).
3. Northern extension of the Borneo-Vanuatu Geanticline
1) China

___As seen in Yanshin et al.’s (1966) map, Fig. 3, the BVG obviously connects  northward with the Yunnan-Guizhou Anticline (brown stripe in the map); it is a N-S  trending Proterozoic anticline at the western margin of the Yangtze Platform.

==Figure 3. Tectonic map of the South China and Indochina area. Base map by Yanshin  et al. (1966). Major earthquakes in 2012 to 2013 are shown. The BVG runs through  the Yunnan-Guizhou Anticline (coloured brown) and extends northward.
The Yunnan-Guizhou anticline extends further northward as the East Asia Reflective  Axial Belt (EARAB) redefined by Zhang and Wang (1995) – earlier it was called the  “North-South Trending Belt” or “North-South Zone” by Yin et al. (1980), Wang (1985)  and Ma (1986), Fig. 4. The axial area of the EARAB is about 200 to 250 km wide.
___Zhang and Wang described it as a “natural crustal boundary” situated  between the western and eastern China crustal blocks;
the eastern part of the boundary belongs to the Circum-Pacific mineral province,  whereas the western part belongs to the Tethys mineral province. The central axial  belt has a mixture of both mineral provinces.

___The axial belt is a notable earthquake belt too (Ma, 1989); Zhang and Wang  (1995) further remarked that earthquakes on the central axial belt migrate  isochronally and equidistantly from south to north or north to south. This is an  important observation that implies the energy flow occurring under the axial belt.  East of the EARAB has higher heat flow and thinner crust than the west as  summarized in Meyerhoff et al. (2006).
The EARAB runs through the western wall of the Ordos Basin where patches of Archean  and Proterozoic crustal blocks are exposed (Fig. 6). The bouguer gravity anomaly  map (Fig. 5) shows a large low-anomaly trough to the west of the EARAB. This is  supported by the magnetic anomaly map too (Fig. 6 right side figure). The original  structures along the EARAB are clearly very early Proterozoic or more likely  Archean (Meyerhoff et al., 2006).
==Fig. 4. Tectonic mosaic map of China by Zhang and Wang (1995). The BVG extends  northward as the Yunnan-Guizhou Anticline and the East Asia Reflective Axial Belt.  Major earthquakes (M6.5+) since 2010 and the Yunnan surge channel are superimposed.  Filled stars occurred from late 2012 to 2013. Surge channel by Meyerhoff et al.  (1992 and 1996).
==Figure 5. Bouguer anomaly map of China from Wang (1983). Note the strong high- gravity anomaly in the border area with Mongolia situated on the axis of the EARAB.
2) Mongolia and Russia
In Mongolia the axis of the EARAB extends northward. Near the Chinese border, a  gigantic copper-gold deposit, Oyu-Tolgoi deposit (Fig. 6;, is  situated on the eastern boundary fault of the EARAB. The area is characterized by a  number of Permian intrusives as well as Tertiary extrusives, clear
==Figure 6. Geanticlinal trend in China, Mongolia and Russia. Left – geological map  by Jatskevich et al., 2000, and right – magnetic anomaly map by Korhonen et al.,  2007. Archean and Proterozoic distribution emphasized in the west of Ordos Basin.  AR=Archean, PR=Proterozoic.
evidence of prolonged magmatic activity (Michaelson, personal communication,  September 2013). Near Ulaan Baatar, a swarm of Mesozoic granites which intruded the  Middle-Upper Paleozoic sedimentary rocks are indicated on the Yanshin et al. (1966)  geological map. Then, the EARAB runs through the western margin of Lake Baikal and  enters the Siberian Craton to reach the Anabar Massif where the Archean is exposed  (Fig. 6). Pavlenkova (2005) illustrated the deep root of the Siberian Craton over  300 km. The EARAB seems to extend further north to the Severnaja Zemlja in the  Arctic Ocean.
4. Yunnan surge channel
Another discovery was the Yunnan surge channel (Meyerhoff et al., 1992 and 1996)  situated exactly on the axis of the BVG-EARAB (Fig. 4). It is also related to  orthogonal structures, Ct4/Ct5 and Tt3/Tt4 structural belts as illustrated in Figs.  4 and 8. Historically strong earthquakes have occurred inside or around the surge  channel (Fig. 8). Most of the major quakes occurred in the NE-SW Ct4 tectonic zone  which is a deep-seated tectonic zone connecting with the Tan-lu Fault in the North  China and Okhotsk Sea, along which deep earthquakes are nested. Further study is  needed to clarify the relationship between earthquake loci and distribution of  low-velocity layers in the mantle and the crust (Fig. 7); this will provide a  valuable insight into the energy flow along surge channels and the tectonic  processes causing earthquakes and volcanic eruptions (Choi et al., in preparation).
==Figure 7. Yunnan surge channel (top right) by Meyerhoff et al. (1992 and 1996):  kobergen (top – A; Wang and Chu, 1988), and seismotomographic sections (B and C;  Liu et al., 1989) showing low-velocity layers. See Fig. 8 for details of geologic  structure. The kobergen has been uplifting very actively in Cenozoic time.
==Figure 8. Crustal wavy mosaic structure (Zhang and Wang, 1995), surge channel  (Meyerhoff et al., 1992 and 1996), and East Asia Reflective Axial Belt. See Fig. 7  for seismotomographic sections.
Strong earthquakes with magnitude 6.5 or greater since 1973 are also shown. The  August 2013 M5.8 quake in the northernmost Yunnan is indicated too. Circled stars  are earthquakes occurred in late 2012 to 2013. Note five strong quakes that  occurred in a single year, 1976 (filled red star) on the Ct4 tectonic zone. 1976  was the bottom cycle year between solar cycles 20 and 21.
5. N-S American Geanticline
The author (1999) wrote about the South American Geanticlinal trend characterized  by Archean cores and emphasized their structural continuation into oceanic areas:  the Caribbean and Gulf of Mexico in the north, and the Rio Grande Ridge, South  Atlantic Ocean, in the south. The latter has been proved by dredging and  submersible observation on the Rio Grande Ridge, as reported in the last issue of  NCGT Journal (v. 1, no. 2, p. 2).

___The northern extension of the South American Geanticline is confirmed by the  Caribbean dome (Choi, 2010). The Gulf of Mexico is a Pennsylvanian thermal dome  that has collapsed since the Permian, according to Pratsch (2008 and 2010).
The northern extension into the North American continent can be placed in the  collapsed basin areas (Fig. 6): N-S troughs surrounded by the Ordovician and  younger strata in the southern part of the continent or the United States.

The distribution of Paleozoic units in the region suggests that the collapsed  structure was formed after the deposition of the Ordovician and prior to the  Silurian. In the area of the Canadian Shield, the axial collapse may have occurred  prior to the Ordovician. It is noteworthy that the Cambrian units are almost  missing in the Shield, implying a subaerial environment during the Cambrian. The  distribution of Proterozoic rocks suggests that the incipient axial depression  formed in the Early Proterozoic, and the depression became most distinctive prior  to the Ordovician.
To summarize the above, the axis of the North American Geanticline can be placed in  the N-S trending axial area of the Canadian Shield which has formed basins since  the Proterozoic to Early Paleozoic as seen in Fig. 9.
==Figure 9. Global geanticlinal trends superimposed on the magnetic map by Korhonen  et al., 2007. They are antipodal to each other.
6. Discussion
The presence of a global-scale geanticlinal structure stretching from the South  Pacific to Siberia, or the South Pacific-Siberia Geanticline (SPSG) is of  particular significance and has wide ramifications in constraining the geodynamic  history of the Earth. The Borneo-Vanuatu Geanticline (BVG), the southern segment of  the SPSG, is characterized by active rise in Cenozoic time (Ollier and Pain, 1980  for example), which simultaneously has been subject to oceanization that resulted  in active subsidence to form insular and oceanic basins.

___The BVG is considered the trunk conduit for thermal energy transmigration from  the superplume under the Fiji-Tonga-Vanuatu region to the north, Southeast Asia,  China, and the western Pacific margins (Tsunoda et al., 2013).

Detailed tomographic mapping of low-velocity layers along the BVG is required to  clarify the actual mechanism of thermal transfer along the low-velocity layers.
Another interesting fact is that the tectonic position of the Yunnan surge channel  situated at the junction of SPSG and other two orthogonal fracture systems.

___Active energy release through the low-velocity layers at structural culminations  or junctions of deep fracture systems can be regarded as an incipient stage of the  oceanization process
The antipodal relation between the SPSG and the N-S American Geanticlines is of  special interest. This intriguing tectonic relationship must be investigated.  Obviously they have affected the tectonic development of the Earth throughout the  Proterozoic to the Phanerozoic.

___From a historical perspective, the area of the Yunnan surge channel coincides  with the Permian Emeishan Large Igneous Province (Fig. 10; Ukstins-Peate and Bryan,  2008), suggesting that the Yunnan surge channel has a long history of magmatic  activity since at least the Permian.
On the basis of extensive literature search and study, Meyerhoff et al. (2006)  concluded the most intense surge-channel activity in the Red River channel was  between late Proterozoic and Late Triassic time. This is applicable to the northern  segment of the SPSG in Mongolia where numerous Permian to Mesozoic intrusives with  Tertiary extrusives, as stated earlier.
==Figure 10. Permian Emeishan volcanic deposits. Ukstins-Peate and Bryan, 2008. The  inner zone is included in the present-day surge channel.
As seen in Figs. 4, 8 and 9, the SPSG is not affected by NE and NW orthogonal  structures which disturb Proterozoic structures. Because the former involves  Archean basements, the Geanticline was formed earlier than the formation of  orthogonal structures (Fig. 6). This is applicable to the N-S American Geanticline  too.

___These facts suggest that the Geanticlines were formed in the Archean, probably  when the Earth’s surface was still hot and prior to the cooling which led to the  formation of the pervasive orthogonal structure in the Proterozoic.

7. Conclusions
This paper described one of the most outstanding geological structures seen at the  Earth’s surface; a global-scale, deep-rooted geanticlinal structure extending from  the South Pacific to the Siberian Craton. It was formed in the Archean and,  together with the antipodal N-S American Geanticline, undoubtedly affected the  structural and magmatic development of the Earth. Together they place constraints  on global tectonic models. The Yunnan surge channel sits on the axis of the  Geanticline.

___It is one of the most active surge channels today, characterized by strong  energy discharge (earthquakes) and active rise in the Cenozoic. These activities  can be regarded as the early stage of the oceanization process. The existence of  such large-scale, deep-rooted, Archean-origin geological structures on opposite  sides of the globe, both without large horizontal dislocation, means that no  large-scale horizontal movement of the crust and mantle as claimed by plate  tectonics has occurred since Proterozoic to Cenozoic time.

Acknowledgements: The author’s sincere thanks are offered to; Chris Pratsch for  geology the Gulf of Mexico, Nina Pavlenkova for geological information about the  Siberian Craton, and Per Michaelson of Nordic Geological Solutions for Mongolian  and Chinese geology and mineral deposits as well as valuable general comment. The  author’s thanks are extended to David Pratt for English editing.
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Borneo-Vanuatu Geanticline and the tectonic framework of Southeast Asia and the  Indian Ocean, Dong R. CHOI…….….18
Dong R. CHOI
Raax Australia Pty Ltd
6 Mann Place, Higgins, ACT 2615, Australia;
Abstract: Borneo-Vanuatu Geanticline (BVG) is a NW-SE trending deep-mantle high in  SE Asia and the western Pacific. In combination with the perpendicular NE-SW linear  trend, represented by the Laurantian-2 Trend, it has determined the tectonic  framework and paleogeographic development of the region. SE Asia is positioned at  the junction of these two trends and another global lineament Tethyan-1 Trend; it  is currently tectonically one of the most active regions in the world mainly due to  the rapid subsidence of the Indian and Pacific Oceans along a NE-SW block developed  between the Laurentian-2 Trend and the relatively stable Kerguellen-Australia- Hawaii block.
Keywords: Borneo-Vanuatu Geanticline, Lauratian-2 Trend, Kerguellen-Australia- Hawaii block, SE Asia, Indian Ocean

In one of recent papers, I described a major NW-SE trending deep mantle high  structure extending from SE Asia to the Western Pacific (Fig. 1; Choi, 2005).  During the study of this outstanding tectonic feature, I came to realize that this  structural high is one of the most active and fundamental tectonic features on the  globe, and is strongly related to the makings of the tectonic framework of SE Asia  and the Indian Ocean. Here I am going to briefly describe some of the highlights of  my ongoing study.
1. Borneo-Vanuatu Geanticline
This arcuate mantle high structural trend (Fig. 1; Choi, 2005) develops in the  oceanic areas to the north and east of the Australian continent, stretching in NW- SE direction from north of New Zealand (Kermadec Islands), through Vanuatu, New  Guinea and Borneo, to Indochina, with a total length around 10,000 km and a width  3,000 km. Here I name this trend, Borneo-Vanuatu Geanticline (BVG). It is clearly  defined by free-air gravity data (to degree 10) which is considered to show the  density contrast from the surface to the core-mantle boundary, 2,900 km (Circum- Pacific Council, 1985). This mantle high sits on a high-velocity anomaly zone in  the deep mantle tomographic image by Fukano et al. (1994; Fig. 2). Undoubtedly the  Geanticline is deep rooted, reaching the core-mantle boundary. The gravity peaks  are situated in the North and South Fiji basins, New Guinea and Borneo: the axial  area is characterized by high heat flow, especially in the Fiji Basins (Tuezov and  Lipina, 1988), mantle-origin ultramafic or ophiolitic rocks (New Guinea Island and  Banda Sea), and Precambrian-Lower Paleozoic rocks or granite (Borneo).

___The BVG runs locally parallel with one of the global lineaments, Tethyan-1 (T-1)  Trend by O’Driscoll (1980 and 1992; Figs. 2 and 4), but on the whole, it runs N40- 50W (= N40W orientation of De Kalb, 1990). Interestingly, the distribution of the  300-km seismic discontinuity in the mantle in the western Pacific region (Williams  and Revenaugh, 2005; Fig. 3) is almost identical with that of the BVG. This  coincidence strongly suggests that the discontinuity is related to the raised  mantle structure,
but not to ancient subducted oceanic crusts entrained in Earth’s mantle, as  Williams and Revenaugh speculate. However, apart from their tectonic  interpretation, their conclusion based on geochemical analysis that the  discontinuity is generated by SiO2-stishovite formation in an eclogitic assemblage  is worthy of note in considering the upper mantle processes under the mantle high  block. The northern extension of the BVG is not clear, but patches of this seismic  discontinuity in the Western Siberian Platform make it tempting to connect the BVG  to that region at least at the shallow mantle level.
==Figure 1. Free air gravity to degree 10 around the Australian continent (Circum- Pacific Council for Energy and Mineral Resources, 1985) with the Borneo-Vanuatu  Geanticline superimposed New Concepts in Global Tectonics Newsletter, no. 42,  March, 2007 19
==Figure 2. Mantle tomography between 700 and 1700 km by Fukao et al. (1994) and  Borneo-Vanuatu Geanticline. Also O’Driscoll’s global lineaments are added. Modified  from Choi (2005). The Geanticline is situated in the high-velocity anomaly area. A  = Tan-Lu – Kamchatka Tectonic Zone, B = Susong-chon – Lake Biwa – Mariana Islands  T.Z., C = Shan Boundary – West Malaysia – Java Sea T.Z., D = New Zealand – Fiji  T.Z., E= West Brazilian Shied T.Z.
2. Relation to the tectonic framework of SE Asia and the Indian Ocean.
Now let’s examine the Geanticline on a global scale. I superimposed the BVG on a  gravity anomaly map generated by the DEOS program (  and global lineaments in Figs. 4 and 5.
As can be seen on Fig. 4, the Geanticline is parallel with the Mid-Indian Ocean  Ridge (Carlsberg - Mid-Indian - SE Indian Ridges). Some rudimentary parallelism is  also seen in the Kerguellen – Madagascar Ridge trend in the southern Indian Ocean.  Also parallel is the Hawaiian Ridge-Emperor Sea Mount trend. A very distinctive,  broad (3,000 km) gravity-low anomaly zone lies between the BVG and the Mid-Indian  Ocean Ridge in the eastern Indian Ocean. This low gravity zone as a whole extends  from India, crossing Australia, to the South Pacific. This zone had formed  paleolands until Jurassic (Jatskevich, 2000; Blot and Choi, 2006; Choi, 2006; Figs.  5 and 6), but subsided at the end of Jurassic. This is evidenced by the extensive  development of Cretaceous sedimentary basins in this gravity-low zone which forms a  flat deep-sea plain, 5,000 to 7,000 meters deep (Fig. 6).
The BVG is perpendicularly crossed by another set of lineaments – represented by  Lauratian-2 (L-2) Trend (Figs. 4 and 5), which is roughly N50E in the predominant  direction (= N50E orientation of De Kalb, 1990). The L-2 Trend is situated roughly  at the boundary between the northern continental and the southern oceanic blocks.
___The latter, about 3,000 km wide, started to subside at the end of the  Jurassic, and the subsidence is still actively progressing in the Cenozoic.
The 2004 Boxing Day earthquake in northern Sumatra occurred on this line (Figs. 5).  The recent spates of large earthquakes (Blot and Choi, 2006) as well as the  continuing mud volcano eruptions (United Nations, 2006) in Indonesia are  indications that the strong stress accumulation along ridges is mainly due to the  active subsidence of the Indian Ocean and the Pacific margins coupled with deep  energy discharge from the BVG.

___The subsided zone south of the L-2 Trend has a structural high block which was  shown in one of my previous papers (Blot and Choi, 2006; Fig. 5).
Note this structural high stretching from the SW Indian Ridge-north Kerguellen  Plateau to Sumatra is slightly oblique to the L-2 Trend and controlled the  distribution of the Cretaceous sedimentary basins in the eastern Indian Ocean  (Figs. 5 & 7). Of special interest is the locality of the Jura-type Indoysian fold  belt discussed by Wezel (1988): It is situated near or on the L-2 Trend between Sri  Lanka and Ninety East Ridge. Considering the geologic profiles coupled with thick  sediments in the north (Bengal fan), the region is undoubtedly of economic interest  for industry. There is another NE-SW trending crustal block (4,000 km wide)  stretching from Kerguellen Plateau through Australia and Hawaii to the NW coast of  USA (Fig. 4). This is a relatively stable block without deep trenches (Choi, 2005).
3. Summary
The BVG is a deep-mantle-rooted structure and has helped to frame the tectonics of  SE Asia and the Indian Ocean.

___The recent extremely intense tectonic activities in the Indonesian region can be  explained by processes occurring under the BVG and its perpendicular blocks related  to the L-2 Trend which is causing active subsidence in both the Pacific and the  Indian Ocean sectors. All geological and geophysical data clearly show that a large  part of the Indian Ocean had formed paleolands until the Jurassic to Cretaceous,  that the composition of the “oceanic crust” is continental (Shipboard Scientific  Party, 1989; Jatskevich, 2000; Blot and Choi, 2006; Seychelles National Oil  Company, 2006, Fig. 9; Vassiliev and Yano, 2006), and that the mid-Indian Ocean  ridges finally submerged only in the Neogene to Quaternary time.

A correct understanding of tectonics and geological development of SE Asia and the  Indian Ocean is essential in mineral resources exploration as well as in scientific  prediction of natural disasters such as earthquakes. There is an urgent need for  Jatskevich’s Geological Map of the World to be updated and for paleogeograhic maps  of the study areas throughout the Phanerozoic to be compiled by a multidisciplinary  team of scientists from all surrounding countries. I hope the current short paper  will become a first step in this direction. 20
==Figure 3. Distribution of the 300 km seismic discontinuity by Williams and  Revenaugh (2005). They speculate that the distribution indicates the residue of  ancient subducted oceanic crusts within the upper mantle. The superimposed red line  is the Borneo-Vanuatu Geanticline. Obviously the seismic discontinuity has  something to do with the mantle high structure. Compare this with tomography in  Fig. 2 which shows the state of the mantle at much deeper section. Recapture of  this figure by permission from Geological Society of America.
==Figure 4. Gravity anomaly map (equi rectangular) with major global linear trends  superimposed. M-L Line = Mediterranean-Lake Baikal Tectonic Line (new name). SE  Asia is positioned at the junction of BVG, Lauratian-2 Trend and the Tethyan-1  Trend; and the Mediterranean Sea Tethyan-1 Trend and M-L Line.

___Note parallelism among BVG, Mid-Indian Ocean Ridge, Keguellen-Madagascar trend  and Hawaii-Emperor Sea Mount chain (pink lines).

Acknowledgement: I thank J. Hutabarat of Indonesia for information about mud  volcano in Java, Howard De Kalb for lineament data, and T. Yano for information on  continental rocks in the Indian Ocean. Patrick Joseph of Seychelles National Oil  Company kindly provided the author with exploration data of the Seychelles Plateau.  Discussion with Vadim Anfiloff was helpful. David Pratt’s editorial review greatly  improved the quality of this paper.

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Fukao, Y., Maruyama, S., Obayashi, M. and Inoue, H., 1994. Geologic implication of  the whole mantle P-wave tomography. Jour. Geol. Soc. Japan, v. 100, no. 4-23.
Jatskevich, B.A. (ed.), 2000. Geological map of the world. 1:15,000,000. Ministry  of Natural Resources of Russian Federation, Russian Academy of Sciences.
Meyerhoff, A.A. and Meyerhoff, H.A., 1974. Tests of plate tectonics/ In Kahle, C.E.  (ed.), “Plate tectonics – assessments and reassessments”. AAPG Mem., no. 23, p. 43 -145.
O’Driscoll, E.S.T., 1980. The double helix in global tectonics. Tectonophysics, v.  63, p. 397-417.
O’Driscoll, E.S.T., 1992. Elusive trails in the basement labyrinth. In: Rickard  M.J., et al. (eds.), “Basement tectonics”, no. 9, p. 123-148. Kluwer Academic  Publishers, Dordrecht.
Seychelles National Oil Company, 2006. Petroleum Potential & Exploration  Opportunities. CD-ROM.
Shipboard Scientific Party, 1989. Introduction. Proc. CDP. Init. Repts., v. 120, p.  7-23.
Tuezov, I.K. and Lipina, E.N., 1988. Heat flow map of the Pacific Ocean and the  adjacent continents. Inst. Tectonics and Geophysics, Far East Branch of the USSR  Academy of Sciences, Khabarovsk. 1:10,000,000 scale with an explanatory note by  Tuezov, I.K., 33p.
United Nations, 2006. Environmental assessment: Hot mud flow East Java, Indonesia.  UNEP/OCHA Environment Unit. 52p.
Vassiliev, B.I. and Yano, T., 2006. Ancient continental rocks discovered in the  ocean floors. The Journal of Science Education, v. 49, no. 7, p. 25-41 (in  Japanese).
Wezel, F.-C., 1988. A young Jura-type fold belt within the central Indian Ocean?  Bollettino di Oceanologia Teorica ed Applicata, v. 6, no. 2, p. 75-90.
Willimas, Q. and Revenaugh, J., 2005. Ancient subduction, mantle eclogite, and the  300 km seismic discontinuity. Geology, v. 33, p. 1-4.
Yeates, A.N., Bradshaw, M.T., Dickins, J.M, Brakel, A.T., Exon, N.F., Langford,  R.P., Mulholland, S.M, Totterdell, J.M. and Yeung, M., 1986. The Westralian  Superbasin: An Australian link with Tethys. Intern. Symp. on Shallow Tethys 2,  Wagga Wagga, p. 199-213.
Updates / Re: MF 2/28-3/1
« Last post by Admin on March 01, 2017, 12:55:44 pm »
Tuesday, February 28, 2017 8:42 PM
Hi Lloyd,
Oard does a good analysis of Walter Brown's Flood model.  In doing so, he makes several points that best fit the Shock Dynamics model: 1) "the woolly mammoth population increased rapidly to millions in the first few hundred years after the Flood."  These and many other animals replaced the dinosaurs, and spread to their preferred habitats on the post-Flood protocontinent before it was divided.  And the timing of the SD event is about 300 years after the Flood, in the "days of Peleg" (Septuagint); 2) in SD, Siberia was forced far north in one day by the collision of India and Southeast Asia with the Asia mainland, producing the sudden cold climate Brown referred to without rolling the whole Earth, for which there is no evidence; 3) "The woolly mammoths were buried in loess (wind-blown silt), commonly found up to 60 m (200 ft) thick in the lowlands of Siberia and Alaska."  That is an enormous amount of wind-blown silt suddenly burying mammoths.  The SD event is an ideal generator of such a storm, and it is hard to imagine any other source.

I have no interest in contacting Michael Oard.  The basic Shock Dynamics theory was published in the Creation Research Society Quarterly in 1992, and there was no response from any of the readers.  I presented it at the Third International Conference on Creation in 1994, being on stage as the second piece of comet Shoemaker-Levy 9 was falling into Jupiter, quite a coincidence for a meteorite-impact theory, and there was no interest from anyone at the conference.  Everyone was enthralled, however, with the rollout of Catastrophic Plate Tectonics by 5 creationist Ph.D.s at that conference, and the YEC love affair with it continues.  I was not allowed to submit either of two papers on SD at the next conference, being told by creationist Ph.D. reviewers that it would just "confuse" the people.  My discussions with YEC speakers at the 1994 conference had no consequence, except with Wycliffe Bible translator Bernard Northrup.  He told me that he had been struggling without success for years to convince YEC leaders that they were packing too much Earth history into the Flood event.  He showed me his biblical time line of events, and I found SD fit his post-Flood catastrophic requirements.  Bernard died a few years ago without having made a difference in creationist thinking.  I am not going to waste my time with members of the creationist intelligentsia.  Their severe oppression by the evolutionist establishment over decades seems to have hardened their positions against any significant changes, even those proposed by allies.  I am content to have SD explained on the internet, open to "new wineskins" who run across it.  Regrettably, very few people know enough about geology to judge it fairly, and most who do know something were taught it in the context of Plate Tectonics theory.


3/1/17; 2:41 PM
Hi Mike. If the SD impact raised the Colorado Plateau 300 years after the Great Flood, was the Grand Canyon eroded during the Flood, or at the time of the SD event? Oard said the upper strata were eroded by sheet erosion. Would that have occurred during the Flood? And then would the rest of the Grand Canyon have eroded during the SD event? Oard said Grand and Hopi Lakes didn't exist and much more water was needed to erode the Canyon than what would have been in those lakes. The SD impact should have caused a lot of flooding, so is that how the Canyon eroded? Do you know how to determine whether the upper strata at the Grand Canyon were eroded during the Great Flood or during the SD event?

Dong Choi sent me several PDF files. The first one showed their findings that the global temperature was gradually rising until about 1996, then there was a sudden jump several tenths of a degree Celsius, then it continued to rise gradually since then. They show that #4-6 earthquake activity jumped about two years earlier and followed the same trends. They show a map of Earth heat, mostly from the ocean ridge system, which they say is responsible for Earth's temperature. I posted their map and graphs at where you can view them. The map shows Antarctica and Greenland as rather warm too, so I don't understand that. I guess I need to ask Mr. Choi about that. Or do you understand it?

They also showed graphs indicating that major quakes and volcanic eruptions have occurred during low sunspot periods, esp. during little ice ages. Today Mr. Choi sent me more stuff. This includes a paper on the New Madrid fault. The paper has a world map showing two major anticlines in the western and eastern hemispheres. See the same post link above. The eastern one runs along near the northern edge of the Australian plate through Indonesia then north to the central tip of Siberia. The western anticline runs from SE of Brazil NW to the Gulf of Mexico, then north through New Madrid and up through Hudson's Bay and Baffin Island I think. They call the anticlines antipodal. Can you see the map of the two anticlines? They have very nearly the same shapes. Do you have an idea how they were formed? Would they have formed before, during or after the SD event? If you can figure out the likely cause of those two anticlines, we could probably make a better impression on Mr. Choi for the SD model.

I'll try to send an attachment soon of their New Madrid paper.
LK2 Fossils & Dating / MO/MAMMOTHS
« Last post by Admin on February 28, 2017, 12:38:48 pm »
Were woolly mammoths quick frozen early in the Flood?

I find numerous problems with Brown’s hypotheses for the woolly mammoths in Siberia, Alaska, and the Yukon Territory. I only have space to deal with the major issues. The first one is the timing of the mammoth material: did they die very early in the Flood or at the end of the post-Flood Ice Age?
Evidence the woolly mammoths died during the ice age

Undoubtedly many different elephant types existed before the Flood, likely including various mammoths and mastodons, and so I would expect to find elephant fossils buried by the Flood. However, the bones and tusks of woolly mammoths under consideration are found in the surficial sediments all across the mid and high latitudes of the Northern Hemisphere, not just in the far north. In many of these areas, they are found in post-Flood contexts, such as tar pits, river terraces, glacial till, and local flood sediments. In the higher latitudes the woolly mammoths, as well as other mammals, are found in the permafrost, permanently frozen sediments. So, why should Brown separate the two groups, the ones in the far north very early in the Flood and those in the mid latitudes from the Ice Age? Furthermore, they are also found in caves on St Paul Island of Alaska47 and on top of glacial till in northwest Siberia48, which are all clear post-Flood contexts at high latitudes.

If buried early in the Flood, they should be buried near the bottom of the sedimentary layers. But, a huge number of woolly mammoth remains lie in the surficial permafrost of the New Siberian Islands on top of thick sedimentary rocks that include carbonates, marine fossils, and coal.49 In Brown’s prediction No 20, he states: “One should not find marine fossils, layered strata, oil, coal seams, or limestone directly beneath undisturbed rock ice or frozen mammoth carcasses.”50 Although this seems like a good prediction, Brown really means that woolly mammoth carcasses will not be directly above marine fossils, layered strata, oil, coal seams, or limestone. The prediction likely fails in the New Siberian Islands, but it would be difficult to prove since one would have to drill below the few carcasses found (the vast majority of woolly mammoths are bones and tusks) on the islands. Given the widespread, thick sedimentary rocks below the surface of the New Siberian Islands, the few carcasses would have to be on top of igneous or metamorphic rocks to fulfill the prediction.
Figure 11. Woolly mammoth distribution (redrawn by Daniel Lewis with Eurasia from Khalke, 1999, figure 13).

Figure 11. Woolly mammoth distribution (redrawn by Daniel Lewis with Eurasia from Khalke, 1999,62 figure 13).

Further evidence that the mammoths were associated with the post-Flood Ice Age is that they are rarely found in the central and northern portions of areas covered by the continental ice sheets during the Ice Age (the exceptions can be explained within the post-Flood Ice Age model). Figure 11 shows the distribution of woolly mammoths in the Northern Hemisphere. This suggests that the ice prevented woolly mammoths from colonizing those areas because of the existence of ice sheets. Otherwise, if the woolly mammoths were buried early in the Flood, there should also be an abundance of woolly mammoth remains in post-Flood glaciated areas as well.
Further problems with the quick freeze idea

Although the quick freeze idea in which mild temperatures suddenly fall to below –90°C (–150°F) is a reasonable idea that was suggested almost 200 years ago by George Cuvier, it has a few problems. Brown postulates that the woolly mammoths lived before the Flood in a temperate climate at mid latitudes and were quick-frozen in extremely cold muddy hail very early in the Flood. Then later in the Flood, when the mountains uplifted in his great plate crunch, the earth rolled 35 to 45°, sending the frozen woolly mammoths northward to high latitudes where we find them today. Besides grave doubts on the possibility of such an Earth roll, the details of which have not been worked out, one would expect to see a huge number of woolly mammoth and other animal carcasses in the far north. However, the number of carcasses, defined by any scrap of flesh, is less than 100. Brown even has an excellent map of their locations, and as of 1999, there are only 58 of them.51 The tens of thousands of woolly mammoths discovered so far are practically all bones and tusks, indicating a time for decay of the flesh.

A second piece of evidence against the quick freeze is that the carcasses have been partially decayed.52

Third, fly pupae are associated with the bones and carcasses, showing that flies were able to lay eggs and maggots to be hatched, which would take some time.51

Fourth, signs of scavenging occur on some carcasses, such as Blue Babe which Dale Guthrie of the University of Alaska at Fairbanks has analyzed.53

Fifth, when the vegetation of their stomachs is analyzed, it indicates different seasons of death.54,55 In a quick freeze, death is instant and the stomach contents should record one season of death.

And lastly, since half-digested stomach contents is said to be evidence for a quick freeze, partially decayed vegetation is found in the stomach and intestines of mastodons found in unfrozen peat, the remains of old bogs, in the northeast and north-central United States.56 Thus, the state of preservation of the vegetation could be caused by the low amount of bacteria in a cold environment and the fact that elephants digest their food after the stomach, which serves as a large storage pouch in which the vegetation is partially broken down by acids and enzymes.57,58 Table 2 summarizes the evidence against a quick freeze of the woolly mammoths early in the Flood.
Part of a Northern Hemisphere Ice Age steppe (grassland) community
Found in surficial sediments, not at the bottom of thick sedimentary rocks
Found in a cave on St Paul Island in the Bering Sea (cave wall is of Flood origin)
Found on top of glacial till northwest Siberia
Rarely found within central and northern areas that were glaciated during the Ice Age
Carcasses rare, while they should be abundant if quick frozen and buried by muddy hail (bones and tusks abundant)
Carcasses partially decayed with fly pupae in both carcasses and the bones
Some carcasses scavenged
Stomach vegetation indicates different seasons of death
Half-decayed vegetation also found in US mastodons of the Ice Age

Table 2. Summary of the evidences against Brown’s hypothesis that the woolly mammoths in the high latitudes of the Northern Hemisphere died early in the Flood by a quick freeze.
An ice age model for the life and death of the woolly mammoth

After adding up as many facts as available, I have determined the evidence shows the woolly mammoths lived and died during the Ice Age.59 To make a long story short, the woolly mammoth population increased rapidly to millions in the first few hundred years after the Flood. Early in the Ice Age, Siberia had very mild winters and cool summers with heavy precipitation caused by warm onshore flow of mild, moist air from the Arctic and North Pacific Oceans. Forests must have grown in the unglaciated lowlands of Siberia early in the Ice Age. By the middle of the Ice Age, the area had dried enough for a grassland to be widespread, as part of the great Northern Hemisphere Mammoth Steppe.60 Millions of woolly mammoths and many other mammals spread into Siberia, Alaska, and the Yukon. But at the end of the Ice Age, winters became much colder than today as summers warmed. The ice sheets and mountain ice caps melted, the Arctic Ocean froze over with sea ice developing far south in the North Pacific and Atlantic Oceans. Dry, cold, windy storms were typical, causing monstrous dust storms. The woolly mammoths were buried in loess (wind-blown silt), commonly found up to 60 m (200 ft) thick in the lowlands of Siberia and Alaska. The slumping of this loess in hilly or mountain terrain mixed trees, vegetation, and animals remains, which has been called muck by gold miners and is not a mysterious substance. When the permafrost formed, abundant ice lenses and wedges formed, which is also not mysterious. The wind-blown silt is able to explain many of the mysteries associated with the woolly mammoths, such as the well-preserved nature of bones, tusks, and carcasses, how they were entombed in permafrost, why some are in a general standing position, why some suffocated, and why some animals have broken bones.
Artificial comparison table

Since Brown compared my hypothesis with his, along with the poor uniformitarian and non-creationist catastrophist ideas in his Table 12,61 it gives me a chance to evaluate his comparison table, which should be indicative of other comparison tables that always portray Brown’s model as vastly superior, although he does admit the subjective nature of these tables. I will only compare a few of the categories. Taking number one, the abundance of food, Brown scores himself high and me low. But Brown explains the abundant food as originating at mid latitudes where the woolly mammoths were living at the time in a warm climate. Then the earth rolled 35 to 45° north to place the frozen carcasses at high latitude. This is massive conjecture, or one could say special pleading, especially when there is no physical evidence to support such a claim. So, without demonstrating the feasibility of such a poleward shift, which seems impossible by his mountain uplift mechanism, he scores high because of the greater abundance of food in the mid latitudes. I would conclude that this high score is artificial and actually depends upon him first demonstrating the feasibility of such a roll. I would explain the abundance of food from the mid Ice Age drying of Siberia caused by cooler sea surface temperatures, less evaporation, and downslope foehn winds off the ice sheet to the west. So, the area would be a grassland, part of Guthrie’s Northern Hemisphere Mammoth Steppe,52 a grassland like Midwest North America today.

In the second category, a warm climate, he gets the same high rating and I get the same low rating. His warm climate is because the animals were living at lower latitudes. So, it is the same issue as the first category—he needs to prove his roll idea first. In my model, the winter temperatures were not warm but mild compared to Siberian winters today and were caused by a lack of sea ice, warm ocean water, and copious latent heat given off during atmospheric condensation.

In the fourth category, yedomas and loess, he gives himself the highest score and me the lowest. He explains loess as from the mud in the hail, while I would explain it as true wind-blown silt late in the Ice Age (see above). The yedomas are essentially hills in the permafrost, caused by the partial thawing of the permafrost around the hills during the warming right after the Ice Age. The mammoths are mostly left frozen in the loess hills, while many of the bones and carcasses likely decayed in the thawing part of the permafrost. Yedomas are no mystery.

Besides being artificial, his comparison table sometimes has categories of questionable significance, such as the fifth one, elevated burial. This is because the animals are found in yedomas or loess hills, which is not all that significant for any hypothesis since it is a feature of partially thawed out permafrost.
He has set up a straw man and hacked it down.

He scores high in some categories because the categories are deductions of his model, such as the ad hoc idea of the great Earth-roll in categories one and two. He compares his model to models that are of poor quality, such as the Lake Drowning Hypothesis for the extinction of the woolly mammoths. And based on my scores, I can conclude that he does not understand my model well enough to evaluate it, although in some cases he has some valid criticisms. He has set up a straw man and hacked it down.
Summary evaluation

As a result of my analysis of Brown’s HPT model for the Flood, I do not consider his model a viable Flood model for the general and specific reasons summarized above. It seems to rely on the deductive method of science in which an idea is first considered and then a whole host of data is fitted into the model. Great errors can occur with this approach as geologist Chamberlin warned. A better method is the inductive method of science in which one lets the observations speak for themselves and sees if the model can survive critical analysis. Contrary data should lead to the rejection or modification of the model. We can safely say the big picture points to the Flood as the origin of sedimentary rocks, fossils, and surface features, but as for a Flood mechanism and an explanation of diverse phenomena, Brown’s model falls far short.
Related Articles

    Genesis and catastrophe
    Flood models: the need for an integrated approach
    The extinction of the woolly mammoth: was it a quick freeze?
    Flood models and biblical realism
    A receding Flood scenario for the origin of the Grand Canyon
    The paradox of Pacific guyots and a possible solution for the thick ‘reefal’ limestone on Enewetok Island


    Wise, K.P., Austin, S., Baumgardner, J., Humphreys, D.R., Snelling, A., and Vardiman, L., Catastrophic plate tectonics: a global Flood model of earth history; in: Walsh, R.E. (Ed.), Proceedings of the Third International Conference on Creationism, technical symposium sessions, Creation Science Fellowship, Pittsburgh, PA, pp. 609–621, 1994. Return to text.
    Brown, W., In the Beginning: Compelling Evidence for Creation and the Flood, eighth edition, Center for Scientific Creation, Phoenix, AZ, 2008. Return to text.
    Tyler, D.J., Recolonization and the Mabbul; in: Reed, J.K. and Oard, M.J. (Eds.), The Geological Column: Perspectives within Diluvial Geology, Creation Research Society Books, Chino Valley, AZ, pp. 73–88, 2006. Return to text.
    Bardwell, J., The Flood Science Review, Return to text.
    Oard, M.J., An impact Flood submodel—dealing with issues, J. Creation 26(2):73–81, 2012. Return to text.
    Chamberlin, T.C., The method of multiple working hypotheses, The Journal of Geology 103:349–354, 1995. Return to text.
    Chamberlin, Ref. 6 , p. 351. Return to text.
    Oreskes, N., Shrader-Frechette, K., and Belitz, K., Verification, validation, and confirmation of numerical models in the earth sciences, Science 263:641–646, 1994. Return to text. Return to text.
    Moho is shorthand for the Mohorovičić discontinuity, which is the boundary between the Earth’s crust and the mantle. Return to text.
    Brown, Ref. 2, p. 150. Return to text.
    Here I think Brown’s model is superior to Austin’s model of Grand Canyon, since Austin’s third Lake, ‘Vernal Lake’ in northeast Utah, was not a post-Flood Lake, as the evidence is overwhelming that the sediments of the putative lake, the Green River Formation were deposited during the Flood—see Oard, M. J. and Klevberg, The Green River Formation very likely did not form in a postdiluvial lake. Answers Research Journal 1:99–108, 2008. Return to text.
    The effect of the temperature of a surface resulting from solar radiation on one side and a lack of solar radiation on the other side on the pressure exerted on it in a near vacuum, caused by the effect on the momentum transferred to gas molecules colliding with the surface. Return to text.
    Brown, Ref. 2, p. 114. Return to text.
    Brown, W.T., The fountains of the great deep; in: The Proceedings of the First International Conference on Creationism, Basic and Educational Sessions, Creation Science Fellowship, Pittsburgh, PA, pp. 23–38, 1986. Return to text.
    Brown, W., What triggered the Flood? Creation Research Society Quarterly 40(2):65–71, 2003. Return to text.
    Brown, Ref. 2, p. 153. Return to text.
    Whitmore, J.J., Modern and ancient Reefs; in: Oard, M.J. and Reed, JK. (Eds.), Rock Solid Answers: The biblical Truth Behind 14 Geological Questions, Master Books, Green Forest, AR, pp. 149–166, 2009. Return to text.
    Brown, Ref. 2, pp. 153, 359. Return to text.
    Brown, Ref. 2, p. 129. Return to text.
    Brown, Ref. 2, p. 112. Return to text.
    Brown, Ref. 2, pp. 126–127. Return to text.
    Brown, Ref. 2, p. 123. Return to text.
    Brown, Ref. 2, p. 332. Return to text.
    Brown, Ref. 2, p. 155. Return to text.
    Brown, Ref. 2, p. 174. Return to text.
    Faulkner, D.R., An analysis of astronomical aspects of the hydroplate theory, Creation Research Society Quarterly 49(3):197–210, 2013; Return to text.
    Brown, Ref. 2, p. 199. Return to text.
    Brown, Ref. 2, p. 200. Return to text.
    Oard, M.J., The origin of Grand Canyon Part V: Carved by late Flood channelized erosion, Creation Research Society Quarterly 47(4):271–282, 2011. Return to text.
    Fisher, R.D., The Best of Mexico’s Copper Canyon, Sunracer Publications, Tucson, AZ, 2001. Return to text.
    Oard, M.J., The origin of Grand Canyon Part III: a geomorphological problem, Creation Research Society Quarterly 47(1):45–57, 2010. Return to text.
    Oard, M.J., Flood by Design: Receding Water Shapes the Earth’s Surface, Master Books, Green Forest, AR, 2008. Return to text.
    Oard, M.J., Mt. Everest and the Flood; in: Oard, M.J. and Reed, J.K. (Eds.), Rock Solid Answers: The Biblical Truth behind 14 Geological Questions, Master Books, Green Forest, Ar., pp. 19–27, 2009. Return to text.
    Schmidt, K.-H., The significance of scarp retreat for Cenozoic landform evolution on the Colorado Plateau, U.S.A., Earth Surface Processes and Landforms 14:93–105, 1989. Return to text.
    Oard, M.J., The origin of Grand Canyon Part II: fatal problems with the dam-breach hypothesis, Creation Research Society Quarterly 46(4):290–307, 2010. Return to text.
    Rowley, P.D., Mehnert, H.H., Naeser, C.W., Snee, L.W., Cunningham, C.G., Stevens, T.A., Anderson, J.J., Sable, E.G., and Anderson, R.E., Isotopic ages and stratigraphy of Cenozoic rocks of the Maryvale Volcanic Field and adjacent areas, west-central Utah, U.S. Geological Survey Bulletin 2071, U.S. Government Printing Office, Washington, D.C., 1994. Return to text.
    Brown, Ref. 2, p. 191. Return to text.
    Austin, S.A., How was Grand Canyon eroded? In: Austin, S.A. (Ed.), Grand Canyon Monument to Catastrophism, Institute for Creation Research, Dallas, TX, pp. 83–110, 1994. Return to text.
    White, J.D.L. Depositional architecture of a maar-pitted playa: sedimentation in the Hopi Buttes volcanic field, northeastern Arizona, U.S.A., Sedimentary Geology 67:55–84, 1990. Return to text.
    Dallegge, T.A., Ort, M.H., McIntosh, W.C., and Perkins, M.E. Age and depositional basin morphology of the Bidahochi Formation and implications for the ancestral upper Colorado River; in:Young, R.A. and Spamer E.E. (Eds.), Colorado River Origin and Evolution: Proceedings of a Symposium Held at Grand Canyon National Park in June, 2000, Grand Canyon Association, Grand Canyon, AZ, pp. 47–51, 2001. Return to text.
    Brown, Ref. 2, pp. 201–202. Return to text.
    Oard, M.J., The Missoula Flood Controversy and the Genesis Flood, Creation Research Society Monograph No. 13, Chino Valley, AZ, 2004. Return to text.
    O’Conner, J.E., Hydrology, Hydraulics, and Geomorphology of the Bonneville Flood, Geological Society of America Special Paper 274, Geological Society of America, Boulder, CO, 1993. Return to text.
    Alt, D., Glacial Lake Missoula and Its Humongous Floods, Mountain Press Publishing, Missoula, MT, 2001. Return to text.
    Oard, M.J., The origin of Grand Canyon Part IV: the Great Denudation, Creation Research Society Quarterly 47(2):146–157, 2010. Return to text.
    Oard, M.J., New woolly mammoth dated 5,725 BP on St Paul Island, Alaska, J. Creation 24(2):6–7, 2010. Return to text.
    Sher, A.V., Late-Quaternary extinction of large mammals in northern Eurasia: A new look at the Siberian contribution; in: Huntley, B., Cramer, W., Morgan, A.V., Prentice, H.C., and Allen, J.R.M. (Eds), Past and Future Rapid Environmental Changes: The Spatial and Evolutionary Responses of Terrestrial Biota, Springer, New York, p. 323, 1997. Return to text.
    Fujita, K. and Cook, D.B., The Arctic continental margin of eastern Siberia; in: Grantz, A., Johnson, L., and Sweeney, J.F. (Eds.), The Geology of North America: Volume L-The Arctic Ocean Region, Geological Society of America, Boulder, CO, pp. 289–304, 1990. Return to text.
    Brown, Ref. 2, p. 246. Return to text.
    Brown, Ref. 2, p. 230–231. Return to text.
    Sutcliffe, A.J., On the Tracks of Ice Age Mammals, Harvard University Press, Cambridge, MA, p. 113, 1985. Return to text.
    Guthrie, R.D., Frozen Fauna of the Mammoth Steppe—The Story of Blue Babe, University of Chicago Press, Chicago, IL, 1990. Return to text.
    Guthrie, Ref. 53, pp. 1–44. Return to text.
    Ukraintseva, V.V., Vegetation cover and environment of the “Mammoth Epoch” in Siberia, Mammoth Site of Hot Springs Inc., Hot Springs, South Dakota, 1993. Return to text.
    Lepper, B.T., Frolking, T.A., Fisher, D.C., Goldstein, G., Sanger, J.E., Wymer, D.A., Ogden III, J.G., and Hooge, P.E., Intestinal contents of a Late Pleistocene mastodont from midcontinental North America, Quaternary Research 36:120–125, 1991. Return to text.
    van Hoven, W., Prins, R.A., and Lankhorst, A., Fermentation digestion in the African elephant, South African Journal of Wildlife Research 11(3):78–86, 1981. Return to text.
    Haynes, G., Mammoths, Mastodonts, and Elephants, Cambridge University Press, Cambridge, MA, 1991. Return to text.
    Oard, M.J., Frozen in Time: The Woolly Mammoths, the Ice Age, and the Biblical Key to Their Secrets, Master Books, Green Forest, AR, 2004. Return to text.
    Guthrie, Ref. 53, pp. 1–323. Return to text.
    Brown, Ref. 2, p. 12. Return to text.
    Khalke, R.D., The History of the Origin, Evolution, and Dispersal of the Late Pleistocene Mammuthus-Coelodonta faunal complex in Eurasia (Large Mammals), Mammoth Site of Hot Springs South Dakota, Inc., Hot Springs, SD, 1999. Return to text.

LK1 Sedimentation / MO/GRAND CANYON
« Last post by Admin on February 28, 2017, 12:33:56 pm »
Analysis of Walt Brown’s Flood model
by Michael J. Oard
Published: 7 April 2013


Of the variety of Flood models in existence, all need extensive work, which is actually a healthy state according to the principle of multiple working hypotheses when there are many unknowns. All of us must guard against holding Flood models too tightly. Dr Walter Brown’s Flood model is first summarized from chapter one of Part II of the eighth edition of his book: In the Beginning: Compelling Evidence for Creation and the Flood. Then the next 7 chapters of Part II, which amplify major aspects of his model, are summarized. In my general comments, I point out his questionable initial conditions, lack of in-depth analysis, the arbitrary fitting of data to his model, questionable references and analogies, the dubious significance of his predictions, and problematic comparison tables.

After adding brief comments on his model, I provide more specific comments in the areas that I know best: (1) the origin of Grand Canyon and (2) the life and death of the woolly mammoths in Siberia, Alaska, and the Yukon Territory. In regard to the origin of Grand Canyon, I emphasize the lack of block faulting of the Grand Staircase and the Roan and Book Cliffs of the Colorado Plateau; the lack of enough water to erode 300 m (1,000 ft) of strata over the whole Grand Canyon area and then carve Grand Canyon; that the lakes did not breach at the low points across the Kaibab Plateau; the lack of evidence for the existence of the lakes because there are no shorelines, raised deltas, or bottom sediments; and the inability of the dam-breach hypothesis to explain long, deep, narrow tributary canyons. Two of the numerous problems with the woolly mammoth data in high northern latitudes are the evidence the mammoths died at the end of the post-Flood Ice Age and not at the beginning of the Flood, and evidence against the quick freeze hypothesis. Since Brown compares my model for the woolly mammoth data with his, it gives me a chance to show how artificial these comparison tables are.

Models attempt to be a representation of reality. Historical science is filled with models dealing with some aspect of the past. These models can include past climate models attempting to estimate future global warming, groundwater flow models, plate tectonics models, solar system formation models, etc. Models vary in sophistication from numerical computer models to simple deductions based on a set of observations.

In this web article, I will analyze Dr. Walt Brown’s hydroplate model. I will first summarize the model from Part II of his book, and focus on the areas of study most familiar to me: the origin of Grand Canyon and the life and death of the woolly mammoths in Siberia, Alaska, and the Yukon. I will give only brief comments on other aspects of his model with which I am less familiar.
Creationist flood models

Creationists have several Flood models, which vary in their degree of sophistication, and how much they explain of the pre-Flood, Flood, and post-Flood periods of biblical earth history. These models vary considerably in their mechanisms for the Flood and the locations for the Flood/post-Flood boundary and the pre-Flood/Flood boundary. The most sophisticated model is the Catastrophic Plate Tectonics (CPT) model, which uses a comprehensive computer program that attempts to simulate runaway subduction and rapid horizontal plate movements over thousands of kilometres.1 Probably the most comprehensive Flood model is Walt Brown’s Hydroplate Theory (HPT) because it purports to explain numerous events and observations of the earth and solar system.2

Flood modelers need to know which rocks and fossils are from the Flood. Therefore the location of the pre-Flood/Flood and Flood/post-Flood boundary is important to any model, as these locations determine geological activity before, during, and after the Flood. So, models that place the Flood/post-Flood boundary in the Precambrian or Palaeozoic attempt to place most of the sedimentary rocks and fossils after the Flood.3 An excellent resource for examining the state of Flood models is the recently completed ebook on models, called the Flood Science Review.4 The general conclusion of this review is that all extant models need much work.

By way of aside and declaring my own bias in this, I would have loved to work on and support one of the existing models, like CPT or HPT, and work exclusively on Ice Age and Flood challenges. However, in examining Flood models, I have come across numerous problems with those models, which need addressing and research by advocates of those models. So, as a result of my frustration with these other models, I have begun working on a comprehensive Flood model that is in the building stage, called the impact/vertical tectonics (IVT) model, which I believe has great potential.5
There are so many unknowns and we all see through a glass dimly (1 Corinthians 13:12a) when it comes to interpreting the past.
Principle of multiple working hypotheses

Many Christians are confused on why there are different Flood models. There are also different creationist cosmological models. The reason is that there are so many unknowns and we all see through a glass dimly (1 Corinthians 13:12a) when it comes to interpreting the past. Actually it is a healthy tendency when there are varying models as long as they pass peer review (unlike Dr Brown’s model). All the unknowns within earth science in general can be shown just by the huge volume of research published every year attempting to fill in the many blanks. Reading some of these research papers, one easily discovers how much remains to be discovered. Science is very specialized, so that any one specialist knows little about other specialties. And even in one particular specialty within a subfield of a field of earth science, no one researcher knows all or even a majority of the available data. The problem is extreme in the historical aspects of earth science, as these depend upon one’s worldview with no observations of the events that laid down the rocks and fossils.

The geologist T.C. Chamberlin wrote a provocative but sobering essay in 1897 in The Journal of Geology, which was reprinted as an historical essay in 1995.6 In it, he suggests that having multiple working hypotheses in the face of many unknowns is healthy for science. Ideally with time, hypotheses are revised or rejected. It is especially dangerous for there to be a ‘ruling hypothesis’, which stifles research and causes researchers to attempt to pigeon-hole observations within the one model or paradigm. It retards science and causes the original researcher to be too attached to the model. Chamberlin colorfully discusses this problem:
We must guard against this tendency to hold our models dear to us.

    “The moment one has offered an original explanation for a phenomenon, which seems satisfactory, that moment affection for his intellectual child springs into existence, and as the explanation grows into a definite theory his parental affections cluster about his offspring and it grows more and more dear to him. … There springs up also unwittingly a pressing of the theory to make it fit the facts and a pressing of the facts to make them fit the theory. … The theory then rapidly rises to a position of control in the processes of the mind, [sic] and observation, induction and interpretation are guided by it. From an unduly favored child it readily grows to be a master and leads its author whithersoever it will.”7

We must guard against this tendency to hold our models dear to us. Models are supposed to be held lightly, since they are difficult to validate or verify.8 One unaccounted-for variable in a model (especially with historical models) can result in a completely different solution.

... General comments

Brown’s hydroplate model purports to explain an enormous number of observations and past events. It seems fantastic that one model with one assumption and the laws of physics can explain so much. But there is an old saying that “if it’s too good to be true, it probably is.” I find much of Brown’s model and many of his explanations of phenomena lacking detailed evidence. Sometimes aspects of his model are unclear or incomplete, leading to difficulty understanding some of it. For instance, I was unsure of whether the muddy hail that fell from space froze only the woolly mammoths and other animals that are now found at high latitudes.
The initial condition

One of the first problems is his initial configuration of the pre-Flood Earth and the condition of his subterranean chamber increasing in temperature and pressure with time due to tidal pumping. This is a very special, arbitrary initial condition that has no evidence, as far as I know. It also raises the question of whether God would have created a world that He called ‘very good’ which already had a ‘ticking time bomb’ which, in time, will explode. It also seems to me that he does not have only one assumption in his model, as claimed, but seems to make further assumptions continually in order to make his model fit the observations of rocks, fossils, and the solar system.
Lack of in-depth analysis

Brown’s book has much good information and brings up many conundrums of earth science. These include the fact that the fit of the continents across the Atlantic Ocean is not as good as most people believe. In the famous Bullard fit, Africa had to be shrunk 35%; Central America, southern Mexico, and the Caribbean Islands had to be removed; the Mediterranean Sea was reduced in size; Europe was rotated counterclockwise; Africa rotated clockwise; and North America and South America were rotated relative to each other.14
Dr. Brown does not analyze many phenomena in depth and gives a broad brush analysis without connecting details of his mechanism with the phenomena to be explained.

Although he has seven chapters amplifying aspects of his Flood model, Brown does not analyze many phenomena in depth. Instead he gives a broad brush analysis without connecting details of his mechanism with the phenomena to be explained. Examples will be given in the section on specific comments. He also does not subject the steps in his model to peer review and publication in the creationist technical literature, although he did publish a broad brush of his model at the International Conference on Creationism15 and in the Creation Research Society Quarterly.16 Each step in his model should have been justified by peer review and publication.

For instance, he points out that some atolls in the central Pacific, such as Eniwetok Atoll, have a thick carbonate cap, but because of insufficient analysis does not realize that many of the surrounding guyots, which he calls tablemounts, in the region of atolls also have a thick carbonate cap: “The depths of tablemounts below sea level increased rapidly; otherwise most would have coral growths rising near sea level.”17 He also thinks that the carbonate cap on Eniwetok (and presumably other atolls) is a reef, composed of corals almost a mile deep: “Eniwetok Atoll, composed of corals, lies in the tablemount region and rests on a tablemount.”16 There is much evidence that the carbonate on Eniwetok and other atolls is not from a reef,18 showing Brown’s incomplete analysis of reefs.
Fitting his model to the data

He often seems to make his model fit the data. For instance, he says that the basaltic, pre-Flood lower crust was eroded by strong horizontal currents in the subterranean chamber, adding 35% of the particles to the Flood sediments with the other 65% of the particles coming from the crushed granite. This just happens to match estimates made of the particles in sedimentary rocks by Mead in 1914 and Twenhofel in 1961.
Questionable references

Brown seems to rely on legends and myths too much, for instance a Hopi Indian legend claiming that the mid-ocean ridge in the Pacific was once above sea level,19 which supports his idea that sea level was at least 4.6 km (2.9 mi) lower than today after the Flood. To support his idea of an Earth roll, he sometimes uses questionable sources, such as Charles Berlitz, who wrote on tribal mythology, physic studies, ancient astronauts, and archeology, but is most well known for perpetrating the massive Roswell aliens hoax in his coauthored book, The Roswell Incident.20
Questionable analogies

I find that he uses analogies a lot, but some give the wrong impression because they do not compare well with the phenomenon to be explained, for instance in the following:

As the continental plates met resistance, they crashed (or quickly decelerated), crushed, and thickened, similar to a thick sheet of snow sliding down a mountainside in an avalanche.”16

Thickening snow as an avalanche comes to a stop is an easily understood phenomenon, but the analogy makes one think that granite can easily pile up upon deceleration of hydroplates. So, the analogy does not apply except in a superficial sense. The question really is, “What should we expect if granite hydroplates came to an abrupt halt?” and “Is there evidence for this?” which should be abundant. Finding isolated chevron folds in the Rocky Mountains21 or dikes in Black Canyon and the inner gorge of Grand Canyon22 are not significant evidence for the halting of granite hydroplates.

Brown also uses the analogy of a buckling upward spring as an analogy of the Mid-Atlantic Ridge buckling up nearly 16 km (10 mi).23 But the analogy only applies in the most superficial sense. The analogy is misleading in that one gets the impression that the buckling upward of the MAR is quite easy.

Brown makes a number of predictions for his model, which are summarized in Part III in Frequently Asked Questions.24 Some are bold, like a prediction should be, such as prediction 6: “A 10-mile-thick granite layer (a hydroplate) will be found a few miles under the Pacific floor and inside the ring of fire and others.”25 Other predictions seem insignificant, such as prediction 10:

    “Corings taken anywhere in the bottom of any large lake will not show laminations as thin, parallel, and extensive as the varves of the 42,000-square-mile Green River Formation, perhaps the world’s best known varve region.”26

The Green River ‘varves’ are especially thin and widespread, very likely formed during the Flood12, while post-Flood lake rhythmites (not necessarily varves that are defined as rhythmites with couplets of one-year duration) are not expected to be the same because of the different mechanism and environments of formation.

He claims to have confirmed four out of 39 predictions: (1) pooled water under mountains, (2) hidden canyon under the Bosporus, (3) salt on Mars, and (4) carbon-14 in ‘old’ bones. I am uncertain how significant these ‘hits’ are, but from a creationist point of view we would predict carbon-14 in a lot of ‘old’ material.
Questionable comparison tables

I found his comparison tables artificial in that he compares his model to poor or old uniformitarian and catastrophic hypotheses. Since my ideas on the life and death of the woolly mammoths in Siberia, Alaska, and the Yukon Territory of Canada were compared in his chapter on woolly mammoths, I will have more to say about comparison tables in the section on the woolly mammoths.
Specific comments

I will give only a few specific comments on Brown’s model outlined above, and delve deeper into the subjects I know best, which are: (1) the origin of Grand Canyon, and (2) the life and death of the woolly mammoth. His two chapters on this subject are examples of what can be said about his other chapters after an in-depth analysis of other aspects of Brown’s model and the phenomena that he purports to explain.
The HPT mechanism

Probably a whole book could be written on every aspect of the HPT mechanism. Much more details are needed to fill in the many gaps. For instance, would a quantitative analysis of pre-Flood tidal pumping heat the subterranean water chamber enough to cause it to burst? And why would it burst in a linear fashion along the MORs and not through one or several openings through the upper granite crust, as one would expect: It seems that if one heats a bottle full of water, the bottle will burst at one locality.

I especially question that there would have been sufficient force for the jets of water to do what they are claimed to have done. Namely, to break through the MOR, jet through the atmosphere, and shoot water and rocks into outer space to form meteoroids, asteroids, and comets, plus put these solar system bodies into precise orbits. The mechanisms of ‘fluttering’ and ‘water hammers’ seem much too weak to overcome the Earth’s gravity. A lot of quantitative calculations are required to show the sufficiency of the ‘rupture phase’.

Creationist astronomer Danny Faulkner has done several back-of-the-envelope calculations in examining Brown’s ideas on comets and asteroids. He finds numerous problems. For instance, passing enough water and solids up through the atmosphere at Mach 150 is not possible.27 Furthermore, he shows that long-period comets do not have enough time since the Flood to return close to the Earth in order to be detected, so we should not have seen any long-period comets yet. Faulkner also questions Brown’s claim that the composition of comets means they had to have come from the Earth. He finds errors in many other of Brown’s assertions in regard to astronomical data, and concludes that the hydroplate model cannot explain the origin of comets and asteroids.

The mechanism to produce the Flood sediments starts with the crushing of the rock around the MORs and the erosion of the basaltic lower crust below the water chamber. Then the sediments in just the right proportions of 35% basalt and 65% granite are spread over the hydroplates by water. But the hydroplates are shallow compared to the Pacific Ocean that is buckling downward. One wonders whether the sediments would end up in the Pacific Ocean, especially considering the relative high velocity of the hydroplates. More details of sedimentation would be nice.

His mechanisms for the formation of salt and carbonates are similarly too good to be true. Why should carbonates and salt act differently, as he describes? How does gypsum, a major precipitate often found with salt layers, fit into his model? The thick and widespread salt deposits in the Gulf of Mexico and adjacent coastal areas are much more than 640 km (400 mi) from the Mid-Atlantic Ridge. So, the salt in the subterranean water chamber would not be exposed for sediments to pile on top of, unless the deposits formed after the continental drift phase. Chalk has been demonstrated to be organic, made up of coccoliths, a marine microfossil.

The whole idea of liquefaction to sort sediments and fossils must be demonstrated to be workable on any scale other than very local. How could such liquefaction sort on a worldwide scale? It seems that liquefaction would tend to mix sediments instead of separating different types of sediments such as carbonates, muds, sand, silt, clay, etc., as well as the types of fossils seen in the geological column. There are also no details of how liquefaction can produce the phenomena that it purports to explain.

The continental drift phase needs much filling in of detail. Is the removal of 10 miles (16 km) of granite at the MORs sufficient to cause the basalt lower crust to rise up almost that distance? And given the tremendous horizontal distances, would the granite upper crust slide away from the Mid-Atlantic Ridge to where we see the continents today? Then there is the issue of what happened at other MORs; it seems that the same rise should have happened on the East Pacific Rise, the ridges in the Indian Ocean, and others, which would mess with the formation of trenches that are mostly around the Pacific Ocean. Then how could such buckling upward of the Mid-Atlantic Ridge cause a sucking in of the Pacific plate forming trenches and the ring of fire on the edges? Much more evidence is demanded on how the Earth’s outer core could liquefy, and that magnetite could sink and align in the solid inner core to form the magnetic field and change the length of the day. (The Earth’s magnetic field and its decay are understood quite well as the result of a circulating current in the liquid outer core).

The evidence for the compression event is minuscule in the form of isolated chevron folds and dikes in the Rocky Mountains, while such features should be widespread. The rise of the mountains to perhaps twice their current height needs to be demonstrated, and most especially that such a rise can cause a roll of the planet of up to 45°. Quantitative details are absent. He attempts to explain warm climate fossils in high northern latitudes, but what about the warm climate vegetation, coal, and dinosaur fossils on Antarctica?

His ideas on the formation of radioactive elements equally suffer from a lack of quantitative evidence. Furthermore, Brown’s mechanism of fluttering or waving of upper granite crust and water hammers seems orders of magnitude insufficient to cause radioactive elements.
Is Brown’s version of the dam-breach hypothesis for Grand Canyon viable?

Brown’s motivation for postulating his dam-breach hypothesis is mainly because he sees the Flood as inadequate for the job of carving Grand Canyon. He believes that if the Flood drained from all over the earth, there should be hundreds of other Grand Canyons,28 and the Flood water could not rise 1,830 m (6,000 ft) to flood the Colorado Plateau.29 I am sure he feels that the Flood is inadequate to explain many other geological features. It is dangerous to conclude that the Flood could not produce a particular feature carved by water in the past, especially since we have extremely few facts in geology and paleontology to work with and we are not nearly smart enough to put the known facts together. It takes great long-term, in-depth analysis to produce a hypothesis for the Flood origin of any feature, and even then we are rarely privy to all the information in order to make an informed decision.

I do not think Brown has thought through his Flood objections very well. The depth of an erosional canyon during channelized Flood runoff will depend upon many variables, including the amount of water being channelized, the velocity of flow, the type of rock eroded, the intensity of the uplift of the land, and the amount of sinking of the continental margin. In the case of Grand Canyon in a model of Flood runoff, flow converged at the location of eastern Grand Canyon from drainage of the entire Colorado Plateau.30 With the strong rise of the Colorado Plateau and the sinking of the continental margin off California, a deep canyon would be expected. Brown should have worked out the details of his assertion and published it in the creationist technical literature. Besides, there are many other deep canyons across the earth, such as Copper Canyon in the Sierra Madre Occidental Mountains of northwest Mexico, which is deeper than Grand Canyon and only 965 km (600 mi) south.31,32

As far as the impossibility of the Flood water covering the Colorado Plateau, Psalm 104:6–9 indicates that the land rose up out of the Flood water.33 This is similar to the canard that the Flood water could not cover Mount Everest. However, the Himalayas and all the mountains of the world rose up out of the Flood water.34 In fact after deposition, of the thick sediments on the Colorado Plateau, an average of 2,500 to 5,000 m (8,500 to 16,500 ft) of sediments and sedimentary rocks was eroded, based on eroded anticlines.12,35 How would this happen after the Flood?

Brown’s dam-breach hypothesis has numerous problems, as do all dam-breach hypotheses.36 One major problem is he needs to erode around 3,000 m (10,000 ft) of strata from the whole Grand Canyon area because that is the approximate amount that once lay over the area based on the dipping strata of the Grand Staircase (figure 4). Such erosion occurred in the late Cenozoic because of the Marysvale Volcanics on top of the fifth stair that once extended far south and dated as late as early Miocene.37

In regard to the Grand Staircase, as well as the Roan and Book Cliffs, Brown states that these are east-west faulted escarpments and so he does not need to erode 3,000 m (10,000 ft) of strata but only 300 m (1,000 ft) over an area of 25,500 km2 (10,000 mi2). Brown stated:

    “Large blocks, when lifted, became cliffs and block-faulted mountains. North of the Grand Canyon are many examples: Utah’s Book Cliffs, Roan Cliffs, the Grand Staircase (Vermillion Cliffs, White Cliffs, Grey Cliffs, Pink cliffs), and many others.”38

However, these cliffs are obviously erosional escarpments, especially seen at contacts between strata in north-south valleys that penetrate the ‘stairs.’ They are not fault scarps. The major faults in the region are orientated north-south.
Not enough water for erosion

Let us for sake of discussion assume that he needs to erode only 300 m (1,000 ft) of soft strata. One problem is that this soft strata had a hard cap of rock on top, as shown by three erosional remnants in the Grand Canyon area: Red Butte (figure 6), Cedar Mountain, and Shinumo Altar. Regardless, the total volume of rock eroded by sheet flow would be 8,500 km3 (2,000 mi3). The volume of Brown’s two lakes east of Grand Canyon was only about 12,000 km3 (2,930 mi3). That is a little more than a cubic km of water to erode a cubic km of sediment, which seems like too little water, just to erode the 300 m (1,000 ft) of sediments before Grand Canyon was even carved!

Furthermore, all the water would have to be available all at once. When a lake breaks through hard rock, it slowly lowers the outlet, such as happened during the Bonneville flood, when pluvial Lake Bonneville overtopped Red Rock Pass in extreme southeast Idaho. It is estimated that about 100 m (330 ft) of rock was eroded in about 8 weeks before the flood ended. Although a uniformitarian estimate, I believe it because the flood landforms in the Snake River Valley of southern Idaho are quite small, especially compared to huge flood landforms in eastern Washington caused by the Lake Missoula flood. In the latter flood, a large percentage of the 2,200 km3 (540 mi3) of water in glacial Lake Missoula was available all at once because of the breaking of the ice dam. In fact, that much water only eroded about 200 km3 (50 mi3) of soft silt and hard basalt along the flood path. That is about a 10 to 1 ratio of water to erosion with water velocities locally around 96 km/h (60 mph), which again shows that the volumes of Brown’s Grand and Hope Lakes are much too low to erode so much rock over northern Arizona, before about 3,500 km3 (800 mi3) of rock was eroded to form Grand Canyon. If Brown is hoping to add a substantial amount of released ground water, see the discussion below on ground water supposedly carving tributary canyons and other features of the southwest Colorado Plateau.
The lakes did not breach at the low points

Lakes breach at low points along their edge, such as what happened during the Bonneville flood. In all the versions of the dam-breach hypothesis, the breaching that carved Grand Canyon breached the south-sloping Kaibab Plateau at about 2,500 m (8,000 ft) on the North Rim and 2,200 m (7,000 ft) on the South Rim. However, the lowest points of the Kaibab Plateau are about 1,750 m (5,750 ft) on the northern end and 1,920 m (6,300 ft) on the south end of the Kaibab Plateau. Why didn’t the lake breach occur at these low points?
Figure 8. The narrow valley of the Little Colorado River Valley at a scenic overlook at milepost 285.7 on highway 64. The canyon at this point is a slot-like canyon about 365 m (1200 ft) deep.

Figure 8. The narrow valley of the Little Colorado River Valley at a scenic overlook at milepost 285.7 on highway 64. The canyon at this point is a slot-like canyon about 365 m (1200 ft) deep.

Austin has suggested that piping, water flow through cracks or tunnels in the rock, caused the initial breach through solid rock.38 However, the Redwall Limestone, which has a few caves, would have been many hundreds of meters below the bottom or edges of the lakes and the piping would have to extend over 160 km (100 mi) to the west.
Fatal problem no. 1: no evidence for the lakes

There are numerous other problems with any dam-breach hypothesis, but two really stand out and seem fatal to the hypothesis.35 The first is the lack of evidence for the two lakes. There are no lake bottom sediments, no shorelines, and no raised deltas where streams would have entered the lakes, while pluvial lakes of the nearby Great Basin and the ephemeral glacial Lake Missoula have abundant bottom sediments, shorelines, and raised deltas.

Sedimentation of lakes occurs along stream or river deltas and along the bottom by the sinking of fine particles, as well as downslope flow of turbidity currents and debris flows. The sediments are relatively soft around the putative lakes east of Grand Canyon, so there should have been thick sediments on the bottom of the lakes, but there are none. The Bidahochi Formation has been considered by a few creationists to be bottom sediments of ‘Lake Hopi’,39 but these sediments and sedimentary rocks are practically all volcanic or laid down by moving water.40,41 Besides, the Bidahochi Formation is currently near the top of, and even above, the lake surface of ‘Lake Hopi’. Any thick bottom sediments could not have been scoured out during the dam breach because the outlet of ‘Lake Hopi’ is a narrow slot canyon (figure 8) and so could not pass enough water fast enough to cause significant bottom-eroding currents in the greater part of the large ‘Lake Hopi’ (figure 9).

Brown has suggested reasons why there should be no shorelines,42 but these do not stand up to scrutiny.35 He first stated that after the Flood, the Colorado Plateau rose more than 1.6 km (1 mi), while the Rocky Mountains sank. Such uplift of the Colorado Plateau altered the shapes of the basins and caused the shorelines to shift. This shifting caused the water level also to shift so that it would not be at any one location long enough to etch a shoreline. Pluvial Lake Bonneville was just west of the proposed lakes and has abundant large shorelines. So, why wouldn’t Lake Bonneville also be affected by such great vertical uplift? Besides being a very unlikely scenario, such tectonic instability would not have been conducive to lake formation nor for long-term maintenance—the lakes should have lost their water much earlier than the dam-breach hypothesis predicts.
Figure 9. Schematic of theoretical currents in ‘Lake Hopi’ and the Little Colorado River Canyon. The current would have been strong through the Little Colorado River Canyon because of its slot-like shape but much weaker away from the entrance to the drainage point. Thick arrows show high velocity, and thin arrows show relatively low current velocities (drawn by Peter Klevberg).

Figure 9. Schematic of theoretical currents in ‘Lake Hopi’ and the Little Colorado River Canyon. The current would have been strong through the Little Colorado River Canyon because of its slot-like shape but much weaker away from the entrance to the drainage point. Thick arrows show high velocity, and thin arrows show relatively low current velocities (drawn by Peter Klevberg).

Brown suggested that oscillations in the lake waters would further erode any shoreline features, but these same movements would have caused the lakes to overflow their natural rock barriers, or render them mechanically unstable. Also, there is no field evidence of such dramatic crustal motions or of such lake oscillations at nearby pluvial Lake Bonneville to the west, which should have been affected by such tectonic instability, being so close to the lakes on the Colorado Plateau. Furthermore, Brown admits that the volume of Grand and Hopi Lakes would have increased rapidly after the Flood, which means that the lakes would have been even more unstable and very likely to have sloshed over their lowest rim and breached too early.

Brown secondly suggested that Lakes Bonneville and Missoula probably breached centuries after Grand and Hopi Lakes. Therefore, thunderstorms would have more time to erode the shorelines of the latter lakes. However, this deduction suffers from incomplete analysis. Grand and Hopi Lakes likely lasted 200 to 500 years. On the other hand, glacial Lake Missoula probably broke about 500 years after the Flood, after filling for about 80 years with each year’s stillstand forming a shoreline.43 It must have taken less than a year to etch each shoreline of glacial Lake Missoula, all the lower shorelines were then protected under the water and were able to be preserved.

Pluvial Lake Bonneville rose throughout this time and broke through Red Rock Pass a little before the Lake Missoula flood44, since the deposits of the Bonneville flood are below those of the Lake Missoula flood around Lewiston, Idaho. Lake Bonneville dropped over 100 m (330 ft) during the Bonneville flood. The highest and second highest shorelines are very distinct. So, the highest shoreline of Lake Bonneville must have been made within 500 years of the Genesis Flood, and since the lake was rising to that level in that time, the shoreline was made in much less time. It does not take long to make a shoreline, which means that shorelines should be abundant at many levels of the former basins of ‘Grand and Hopi Lakes’.

Although Brown cited erosion of shorelines by frequent summer thunderstorms, he cannot explain why that erosion is not observed affecting other preserved features across the Western United States, such as the abundant shorelines associated with the pluvial lakes. Moreover, shorelines cut into slopes would be more protected from the worst erosion, which comes from water accumulating in lower areas and flooding down gradient. Moreover, climatic conditions in Montana are just as, if not more, conducive to erosion by heavy snow runoff and summer thunderstorms, yet the remnants of glacial Lake Missoula are still plainly there.

Brown also appealed to elevated groundwater flow after the lakes emptied to destroy the shorelines. He believes that powerful springs would be so pressurized that shorelines would not only be destroyed, but cliffs formed from groundwater shooting high into the air. Such a scenario seems impossible, or at the least impossible to substantiate. But the shorelines of Grand and Hopi Lakes, if they existed, would often be found at high altitudes once the lake emptied. The shorelines probably would also be well above the water table. This would make it tough for groundwater discharge, as proposed by Brown, to reach such altitudes. Therefore, shorelines at higher altitudes should be preserved.

Brown did not utilize this argument, but it is possible to claim that shorelines would more easily erode on the Colorado Plateau because the sedimentary rocks are less consolidated. The problem with this is that glacial Lake Missoula’s shorelines are preserved on both hard and soft rock.45 Furthermore, many of the rocks beneath the proposed lakes on the Colorado Plateau are consolidated; certainly hard enough to preserve shorelines from minimal erosion over 4,000 years.
Fatal problem no. 2: long tributary canyons
Figure 10. Four long tributary canyons of the Colorado River through Grand Canyon that gradually descend to the level of the Colorado River (drawn by Peter Klevberg).

Figure 10. Four long tributary canyons of the Colorado River through Grand Canyon that gradually descend to the level of the Colorado River (drawn by Peter Klevberg).

There are three long tributary canyons that start far from Grand Canyon and descend down to the level of Grand Canyon (figure 10). These are Kanab canyon, about 80 km (50 mi) long, Havasu Canyon, about 97 km (60 mi) long, and Peach Springs Canyon, about 32 km (20 mi) long. The canyon of the Little Colorado River does not count in this analysis since it is proposed to have been carved by the breaching of ‘Lake Hopi’. The first two enter the Grand Canyon in 1.6 km (1 mi) deep slot canyons.

These canyons, not fault related, had to form at the same time as Grand Canyon so water from the dam-breach had to start in the headwaters of those canyons, suggesting that the waters of the dam-breach were at least 180 km (110 mi) wide. Brown’s version of the dam-breach hypotheses possibly could account for Kanab Canyon after the supposed sheet erosion of the 300 meters (1,000 ft) of strata over northwest Arizona. However, it would have been extremely difficult to erode Havasu and Peach Springs Canyon which enter Grand Canyon from the south.

Brown attempts to explain the erosion of these tributary canyons, plus add more water to erode Grand Canyon, by the catastrophic flow of a huge amount of ground water trapped within the sediments after the Flood. The problem with this ad hoc idea is that ground water cannot rush out of the sediments fast enough to cause significant surface flow and erosion. Furthermore, the sediments were consolidated and so water would move slowly through the pores of mainly the sandstones and possibly through caves in the limestone. The evidence for consolidation of the sediments at the time of the dam breach is the sides of Grand Canyon and side canyons, which would have slumped or bowed into the canyon if unconsolidated. The vertical walls of all the canyons provide direct evidence that the rocks were consolidated when Grand Canyon and its tributaries formed.
There are numerous problems with the dam-breach hypotheses for the origin of Grand Canyon … Two of these problems, the lack of evidence for lakes and the existence of long, deep tributary canyons, seem fatal to the hypothesis.

There are numerous problems with the dam-breach hypotheses for the origin of Grand Canyon, as listed in Table 1. Two of these problems, the lack of evidence for lakes and the existence of long, deep tributary canyons, seem fatal to the hypothesis. There are many more specific problems that can be brought forth against Brown’s version of the dam-breach hypothesis, but the above are enough to show that his hypothesis won’t work.

A much better hypothesis for the origin of Grand Canyon is late Flood channelized erosion. The Grand Canyon is essentially a long water gap and so must be explained within the field of geomorphology in regard to the origin of water gaps.31 There are thousands of water gaps across the earth, 1,700 in the Appalachian Mountains of the eastern United States alone. These water gaps can easily be explained by channelized runoff of the Flood water flowing perpendicular to a barrier and channelizing.32 The 3,000 m thick layers of sedimentary rock removed from the Grand Canyon area, called the Great Denudation by uniformitarian geologists, can be explained by wide currents flowing from west to east early in the Recessive Stage of the Flood (the direction of flow shown by paleocurrent directional indicates in the lag Rim Gravel).46 Then the southern Rocky Mountains uplifted and the Flood current turned 180° toward the west and channelized in what uniformitarian geologists call the Great Erosion. This is when Grand Canyon formed.29
No evidence for the lakes (no shorelines, raised deltas, or bottom sediments)
Long, deep, narrow tributary canyons (Kanab and Havasu Canyons)
Rapid rise of lake water after the Flood would have caused a dam breach at the low points
Piping unlikely
A simultaneous release of most of the water required
Not enough water for sheet erosion or channelized erosion
Large crustal uplift and block faulting not supported by field evidence
Lack of flood features, such as bars and slackwater rhythmites, as seen with Lake Missoula flood
Lack of a massive gravel bar at the mouth of Grand Canyon

Table 1. Summary of evidences against the dam-breach hypothesis for the origin of Grand Canyon, the first two of which are judged to be fatal to the hypothesis.



    Wise, K.P., Austin, S., Baumgardner, J., Humphreys, D.R., Snelling, A., and Vardiman, L., Catastrophic plate tectonics: a global Flood model of earth history; in: Walsh, R.E. (Ed.), Proceedings of the Third International Conference on Creationism, technical symposium sessions, Creation Science Fellowship, Pittsburgh, PA, pp. 609–621, 1994. Return to text.
    Brown, W., In the Beginning: Compelling Evidence for Creation and the Flood, eighth edition, Center for Scientific Creation, Phoenix, AZ, 2008. Return to text.
    Tyler, D.J., Recolonization and the Mabbul; in: Reed, J.K. and Oard, M.J. (Eds.), The Geological Column: Perspectives within Diluvial Geology, Creation Research Society Books, Chino Valley, AZ, pp. 73–88, 2006. Return to text.
    Bardwell, J., The Flood Science Review, Return to text.
    Oard, M.J., An impact Flood submodel—dealing with issues, J. Creation 26(2):73–81, 2012. Return to text.
    Chamberlin, T.C., The method of multiple working hypotheses, The Journal of Geology 103:349–354, 1995. Return to text.
    Chamberlin, Ref. 6 , p. 351. Return to text.
    Oreskes, N., Shrader-Frechette, K., and Belitz, K., Verification, validation, and confirmation of numerical models in the earth sciences, Science 263:641–646, 1994. Return to text. Return to text.
    Moho is shorthand for the Mohorovičić discontinuity, which is the boundary between the Earth’s crust and the mantle. Return to text.
    Brown, Ref. 2, p. 150. Return to text.
    Here I think Brown’s model is superior to Austin’s model of Grand Canyon, since Austin’s third Lake, ‘Vernal Lake’ in northeast Utah, was not a post-Flood Lake, as the evidence is overwhelming that the sediments of the putative lake, the Green River Formation were deposited during the Flood—see Oard, M. J. and Klevberg, The Green River Formation very likely did not form in a postdiluvial lake. Answers Research Journal 1:99–108, 2008. Return to text.
    The effect of the temperature of a surface resulting from solar radiation on one side and a lack of solar radiation on the other side on the pressure exerted on it in a near vacuum, caused by the effect on the momentum transferred to gas molecules colliding with the surface. Return to text.
    Brown, Ref. 2, p. 114. Return to text.
    Brown, W.T., The fountains of the great deep; in: The Proceedings of the First International Conference on Creationism, Basic and Educational Sessions, Creation Science Fellowship, Pittsburgh, PA, pp. 23–38, 1986. Return to text.
    Brown, W., What triggered the Flood? Creation Research Society Quarterly 40(2):65–71, 2003. Return to text.
    Brown, Ref. 2, p. 153. Return to text.
    Whitmore, J.J., Modern and ancient Reefs; in: Oard, M.J. and Reed, JK. (Eds.), Rock Solid Answers: The biblical Truth Behind 14 Geological Questions, Master Books, Green Forest, AR, pp. 149–166, 2009. Return to text.
    Brown, Ref. 2, pp. 153, 359. Return to text.
    Brown, Ref. 2, p. 129. Return to text.
    Brown, Ref. 2, p. 112. Return to text.
    Brown, Ref. 2, pp. 126–127. Return to text.
    Brown, Ref. 2, p. 123. Return to text.
    Brown, Ref. 2, p. 332. Return to text.
    Brown, Ref. 2, p. 155. Return to text.
    Brown, Ref. 2, p. 174. Return to text.
    Faulkner, D.R., An analysis of astronomical aspects of the hydroplate theory, Creation Research Society Quarterly 49(3):197–210, 2013; Return to text.
    Brown, Ref. 2, p. 199. Return to text.
    Brown, Ref. 2, p. 200. Return to text.
    Oard, M.J., The origin of Grand Canyon Part V: Carved by late Flood channelized erosion, Creation Research Society Quarterly 47(4):271–282, 2011. Return to text.
    Fisher, R.D., The Best of Mexico’s Copper Canyon, Sunracer Publications, Tucson, AZ, 2001. Return to text.
    Oard, M.J., The origin of Grand Canyon Part III: a geomorphological problem, Creation Research Society Quarterly 47(1):45–57, 2010. Return to text.
    Oard, M.J., Flood by Design: Receding Water Shapes the Earth’s Surface, Master Books, Green Forest, AR, 2008. Return to text.
    Oard, M.J., Mt. Everest and the Flood; in: Oard, M.J. and Reed, J.K. (Eds.), Rock Solid Answers: The Biblical Truth behind 14 Geological Questions, Master Books, Green Forest, Ar., pp. 19–27, 2009. Return to text.
    Schmidt, K.-H., The significance of scarp retreat for Cenozoic landform evolution on the Colorado Plateau, U.S.A., Earth Surface Processes and Landforms 14:93–105, 1989. Return to text.
    Oard, M.J., The origin of Grand Canyon Part II: fatal problems with the dam-breach hypothesis, Creation Research Society Quarterly 46(4):290–307, 2010. Return to text.
    Rowley, P.D., Mehnert, H.H., Naeser, C.W., Snee, L.W., Cunningham, C.G., Stevens, T.A., Anderson, J.J., Sable, E.G., and Anderson, R.E., Isotopic ages and stratigraphy of Cenozoic rocks of the Maryvale Volcanic Field and adjacent areas, west-central Utah, U.S. Geological Survey Bulletin 2071, U.S. Government Printing Office, Washington, D.C., 1994. Return to text.
    Brown, Ref. 2, p. 191. Return to text.
    Austin, S.A., How was Grand Canyon eroded? In: Austin, S.A. (Ed.), Grand Canyon Monument to Catastrophism, Institute for Creation Research, Dallas, TX, pp. 83–110, 1994. Return to text.
    White, J.D.L. Depositional architecture of a maar-pitted playa: sedimentation in the Hopi Buttes volcanic field, northeastern Arizona, U.S.A., Sedimentary Geology 67:55–84, 1990. Return to text.
    Dallegge, T.A., Ort, M.H., McIntosh, W.C., and Perkins, M.E. Age and depositional basin morphology of the Bidahochi Formation and implications for the ancestral upper Colorado River; in:Young, R.A. and Spamer E.E. (Eds.), Colorado River Origin and Evolution: Proceedings of a Symposium Held at Grand Canyon National Park in June, 2000, Grand Canyon Association, Grand Canyon, AZ, pp. 47–51, 2001. Return to text.
    Brown, Ref. 2, pp. 201–202. Return to text.
    Oard, M.J., The Missoula Flood Controversy and the Genesis Flood, Creation Research Society Monograph No. 13, Chino Valley, AZ, 2004. Return to text.
    O’Conner, J.E., Hydrology, Hydraulics, and Geomorphology of the Bonneville Flood, Geological Society of America Special Paper 274, Geological Society of America, Boulder, CO, 1993. Return to text.
    Alt, D., Glacial Lake Missoula and Its Humongous Floods, Mountain Press Publishing, Missoula, MT, 2001. Return to text.
    Oard, M.J., The origin of Grand Canyon Part IV: the Great Denudation, Creation Research Society Quarterly 47(2):146–157, 2010. Return to text.
    Oard, M.J., New woolly mammoth dated 5,725 BP on St Paul Island, Alaska, J. Creation 24(2):6–7, 2010. Return to text.
    Sher, A.V., Late-Quaternary extinction of large mammals in northern Eurasia: A new look at the Siberian contribution; in: Huntley, B., Cramer, W., Morgan, A.V., Prentice, H.C., and Allen, J.R.M. (Eds), Past and Future Rapid Environmental Changes: The Spatial and Evolutionary Responses of Terrestrial Biota, Springer, New York, p. 323, 1997. Return to text.
    Fujita, K. and Cook, D.B., The Arctic continental margin of eastern Siberia; in: Grantz, A., Johnson, L., and Sweeney, J.F. (Eds.), The Geology of North America: Volume L-The Arctic Ocean Region, Geological Society of America, Boulder, CO, pp. 289–304, 1990. Return to text.
    Brown, Ref. 2, p. 246. Return to text.
    Brown, Ref. 2, p. 230–231. Return to text.
    Sutcliffe, A.J., On the Tracks of Ice Age Mammals, Harvard University Press, Cambridge, MA, p. 113, 1985. Return to text.
    Guthrie, R.D., Frozen Fauna of the Mammoth Steppe—The Story of Blue Babe, University of Chicago Press, Chicago, IL, 1990. Return to text.
    Guthrie, Ref. 53, pp. 1–44. Return to text.
    Ukraintseva, V.V., Vegetation cover and environment of the “Mammoth Epoch” in Siberia, Mammoth Site of Hot Springs Inc., Hot Springs, South Dakota, 1993. Return to text.
    Lepper, B.T., Frolking, T.A., Fisher, D.C., Goldstein, G., Sanger, J.E., Wymer, D.A., Ogden III, J.G., and Hooge, P.E., Intestinal contents of a Late Pleistocene mastodont from midcontinental North America, Quaternary Research 36:120–125, 1991. Return to text.
    van Hoven, W., Prins, R.A., and Lankhorst, A., Fermentation digestion in the African elephant, South African Journal of Wildlife Research 11(3):78–86, 1981. Return to text.
    Haynes, G., Mammoths, Mastodonts, and Elephants, Cambridge University Press, Cambridge, MA, 1991. Return to text.
    Oard, M.J., Frozen in Time: The Woolly Mammoths, the Ice Age, and the Biblical Key to Their Secrets, Master Books, Green Forest, AR, 2004. Return to text.
    Guthrie, Ref. 53, pp. 1–323. Return to text.
    Brown, Ref. 2, p. 12. Return to text.
    Khalke, R.D., The History of the Origin, Evolution, and Dispersal of the Late Pleistocene Mammuthus-Coelodonta faunal complex in Eurasia (Large Mammals), Mammoth Site of Hot Springs South Dakota, Inc., Hot Springs, SD, 1999. Return to text.

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Readers’ comments
Dennis H., United States, 8 April 2013

Mr. Oard, I’d like to thank you for the enormous amount of time and effort you have contributed to this review of Dr. Brown’s work. However, I still like Dr. Brown’s model and for the most part, find it very plausible.

I believe God sees from the beginning to the end and knew of His’ judgements on the Earth long before he ever created it. He made a world that was ‘very good’ for His purposes, a world that He knew He would both judge with the global flood, and even dispose of, at the end of the age. It may have been a waste to create a ‘perfect’ world considering the judgements that would follow. Did the LORD build the ‘time-bomb’ into the initial creation? That is not implausible for me.

Dr. Brown’s description of the Earth’s crust cracking open and super jets of water and debris spewing high into the atmosphere seem to ring true to the Biblical description of the fountains of the great deep being opened. While I also pause at the idea of giant portions of the Earth being jettisoned into space by these plumbs, I still don’t fine it implausible.

This was a destructive event large enough to destroy all mankind and every breathing creature, except those on the ark of Noah. I think it’s fair to believe the entire land surface of the Earth would have had at lease some population by the time of the flood. So the magnitude of destruction had to have made an event like Krakatoa of 1883 look like a firecracker by comparison. Parts of the Earth ejected into space, Wow, that’s hard to imagine, yet that would explain a lot of what we see today.

So God bless you and Dr. Brown. I surely do not know who is right on every point but I give a mighty salute to both of you for your great work in defending the literal truth of the Scriptures.
Dennis H., United States, 8 April 2013

This is my favorite site on the web, God bless you all for your fine work !
Matthew G., Canada, 8 April 2013

I agree with this article, I always thought Hydroplate Theory sounded odd. Thoughts like this come up while reading HPT: "whats the purpose of supposing that?" "Why would we want to supposed that before the Flood?" I think Catastrophic Plate Tectonics is a much better model, I realize it *is* a model and has it's own problems but it makes so much sense, scientifically, and logically also biblically. I was actually thinking of that type of Flood model on my own thinking as a kid before I even read about any Flood models.
Joseph M., United States, 8 April 2013

The author complains that "Brown’s hydroplate model purports to explain an enormous number of observations and past events." Well, we can all agree that a global flood did occur, and such an event had an enormous effect on the whole world. When we eventually see the truth clearly, it indeed SHOULD explain everything. Also, the author addresses Brown's initial assumption of an underground water chamber: "This is a very special, arbitrary initial condition that has no evidence, as far as I know." That's because it is an assumption, as Brown clearly states in his book. By the way, this assumption agrees with scripture:

Ge 7:11 In the six hundredth year of Noah's life, in the second month, the seventeenth day of the month, the same day were all the fountains of the great deep broken up, and the windows of heaven were opened.

Ge 7:12 And the rain was upon the earth forty days and forty nights.

Things occurred in a particular order-the fountains broke open, the atmosphere could not contain all the water, and the water fell back to earth as rain. Finally, the author questions whether God designed the earth to eventually be flooded: "It also raises the question of whether God would have created a world that He called ‘very good’ which already had a ‘ticking time bomb’ which, in time, will explode." This argument can be used against every event that has occurred since the fall, and often is by atheists. What God created as very good has become corrupt by sin. Who knows, maybe mankind had a hand in breaking open the fountains of the great deep, in the same way man is always destroying what was once good?

I don't agree with Brown on every detail of his theory, but do think many aspects of it are quite plausible. Just my 2 cents worth!
Glen B., United States, 8 April 2013

Mostly this article is a critique of Brown's hypotheses concerning the formation of Grand Canyon, and the freezing of mammoths. Perhaps these aspects of Brown's work are "all wet", as it were. But the rest of the article hardly respesents a peer-review of Hydroplate Theory in general. Brown's book does present some engineering rigor, which the article does not. Is Hydroplate Theory complete in all details? Probably not. But it does answer the question, 'Where did all the water come from?' in a way that Ice Canopy Theory cannot.

Where I differ with Brown is his dismissive treatment of so-called 'Gap Theory' based on Custance's work "Without Form and Void". This dismissal may have been because of Custance's writings elsewhere about the Flood being regional, not global (he erred on this topic, in my view).

I believe the correct translation of Gen.1:2 is, 'And the earth BECAME waste and empty.' There have been 2 water judgments of the earth, both the result of angelic misadventures (cf. the progeny of the sons of God - the Nephilim ['gigas' in the LXX] - Gen.6:1-4; and note that Noah was pure in his pedigree - Gen.6:9).

The geologic models seem to have some hard-to-explain data for Flood scientists because they are limiting the data to only ONE flood. Unlike Brown, I lean toward 'Behemoth' and 'Leviathan' (ie, the saurians) having been destroyed by the first great flood of judgment in Gen.1:2.

But I do favor Brown's conclusions for a young earth and young cosmos. And he presents a lot of interesting scientific phenomena and critical review of them from the largely uniformitarian, scientific journals & books.
Morris G., United States, 8 April 2013

I agree with much of the critique of Dr. Brown's hydroplate theory. Regarding the changes in the tilt of the earth's axis and resulting climatic changes advanced by Brown however, as Dr. Brown points out, George F. Dodwell, the well respected Astronomer for South Australia from 1909 to 1952, after extensive study found that historical astronomical measurements made over a 4000 year period did indeed provide compelling evidence showing

that changes in the tilt of the earth's axis have taken place. I believe authors of creationist flood models need to either refute Dodwell's findings or incorporate earth axis tilt changes into flood models.
Carl Wieland responds

I agree, having had a copy of the original manuscript in my possession for some decades, that the Dodwell information is important and needs to be brought to light; we have spent considerable effort trying to encourage that for some years and I am pleased to say that this looks like happening very soon, though there's many a slip twixt cup and lip... However, what should be encouraging in the meantime, is knowing about his highly persuasive data about the reality of an axis shift over many centuries. Less encouraging/persuasive were some of his speculations in a separate part, which is not part of what is being proposed. For example, his speculation about it being partial recovery from an impact knocking over a once-upright Earth. Or his comments about the climate on an upright Earth, not so much the fact that it seems contrary to modern computerized modelling results, but his statement in one of his sections that there were no growth rings in fossil trees (the reality is that some do have them and some don't, like today). A creationist PhD physicist told me years ago that an impact big enough to do what Dodwell proposed would vaporize the Earth. So why do I see it as very exciting data? Because the methodical documentation of a substantially and historically changing tilt (up to AD 1850, IIRC) seems real, even irrefutable; and as the same physicist pointed out (and I later saw confirmed by a secular article, IIRC it was SciAm) a shift in the distribution of mass on the Earth's surface will result in a changing tilt. The secular source proposed that the shifting of the continents over vast ages would change the tilt. If CPT were the mechanism of the Flood, it would result in a changed tilt over much shorter timespans. Once the Dodwell data is published, it can presumably be seen if that fits with a CPT model or any other. Unfortunately, without the permission of the Dodwell estate, publication of any aspect prematurely is not feasible, but we are doing what we can to facilitate others publishing it with their consent. Stay tuned!

B. B., New Zealand, 8 April 2013

Has the author confused the normal use of the terms "deductive" and "inductive" in his final summation?

Shaun Doyle responds

The author intends to advocate an inductive approach to Flood modelling, i.e. generalizing from a large sample of particular observations, rather than a deductive approach, i.e. proposing a theory that acts as a constraint on our interpretation of the physical evidence. Dr Brown’s Hydroplate theory is an example of the latter approach which the author suggests we should avoid. Of course, there always is a constraint on our interpretation of the physical evidence within Flood modelling: the Bible. However, Flood modelling goes far beyond what the Bible tells us about the Flood to try to describe what happened in as much detail as possible. This means a deductive approach to Flood modelling doesn’t just impose the Bible as a constraint on the model; it also places other extrabiblical assumptions on the interpretation of the evidence. It is this that the author seeks to avoid precisely because we can’t implicitly trust any assumptions not derived directly from Scripture.

Mark B., Canada, 7 April 2013

From your conclusion:

"A better method is the inductive method of science in which one lets the observations speak for themselves and sees if the model can survive critical analysis. Contrary data should lead to the rejection or modification of the model."

Wow, did you really say this - that observations (or evidence) should speak for itself? What happened to the mantra 'evidence needs to be interpreted'?

Thank you for the observation that there is currently no viable flood model. As I'm convinced that the earth is old based on evidence I'm sure there will never be a viable flood model. In building your own model I'm sure you will consider all contrary observations/evidence.

Shaun Doyle responds

Note two important things about this article:

    It is an in-house debate: the reliability of the relevant biblical texts is not in question in this article.
    Finding evidence consistent with Noah’s Flood is not the same thing as finding evidence consistent with a particular Flood model. There is plenty of readily observable evidence that is far easier to explain in the context of a global watery cataclysm than in a deep-time context (e.g. Sedimentary blankets, It’s plain to see, ‘Millions of years’ are missing, Was the Flood global?). However, judging between different Flood models is much more difficult because the solid testimonial data has typically been exhausted for information, so we are left to deliberate between different Flood models on the physical evidence and the validity of the subsidiary assumptions different investigators make. (See Flood models and biblical realism)

In this light, the conclusion advocates an inductive approach to Flood modelling, and so is clearly advocating this within the biblical framework. The truth or relevance of Scripture is not questioned, but there is a lot that the Bible doesn’t say that would be relevant to Flood modelling. As such, Flood modellers investigate the physical evidence assuming that Scripture provides the reliable starting point for all Flood models.

Our statement in the preface is also made within this same context. The Bible is infallible, but Flood models are not. The Bible is clear enough that there was a global watery tectonic cataclysm about 4,500 years ago, and that is the non-negotiable starting point of all Flood modelling. However, given the subjective nature of the physical evidence, the fact that Flood modelling is a relatively young enterprise, and the fact that most research done on the relevant evidence has been done in an antithetical framework which requires painstaking reanalysis and reinterpretation, Flood modellers clearly have a huge task ahead of them.

Jonathan G., United States, 7 April 2013

Mike, you've done a fantastic job on this article. I am sure you put far more work into it than most of realize, and I appreciate your careful and thoughtful and well-referenced approach.

I had forgotten the gist of Brown's model. Now that I read your critique here, I remember why I had forgotten it. (Sorry. I know that sounds harsh of me. It's true though). While I like the idea of a layer of water under the continents, much of what Brown puts forth stretches credulity -- the launching of rocks into space, God's designing a not-so-very-good planet that would explode, etc.

I just want you to know how much I appreciate your painstaking approach, and the attention to detail.
Jonathan G., United States, 7 April 2013

The above looks to be an interesting article, and I plan to to read it today. Thank you for putting in the effort to research it and to write it.

Question: What precisely do you mean when you say: "submit his model ... to the Journal in order to have it pass through the refining fire of robust criticism in the normal scientific fashion"? He has published a book, right? So there is the model, right there in the book, and everyone is free to critique it, as in fact you are doing now in the present article. When you say "submit", are you expecting him to change his text in response to your feedback?
Carl Wieland responds

Jonathan, I think that included in what was meant was this: publication in a formal journal would have meant a protocol which would not only have allowed critique, it would have meant that the author of the paper proposing the model (or aspects of it) would have had a formal right of reply to his critics, with the normal rules of scientific exchange and openness, so people could see pro and con arguments together. Our suggestion is that any new concept in creationist thought and research is, ideally, best exposed first to formal criticism in a technical setting, to see how it survives, as it were, prior to being published in a form for a lay audience. However, I readily acknowledge that this ideal has not always been followed, including by us, and as such it would not have been worthy of such detailed comment. The reason for finally publishing this is because we keep on getting hassled about why we don't stock the book, and so to explain we have to start giving critical comments 'behind a person's back', as it were, which is not the intent.
Jeannette P., United Kingdom, 7 April 2013

Good science involves the willingness to change, or even discard, a hypothesis if it appears untenable.

I had never heard of Dr Walter Brown or the ‘Hydroplate’ Flood model, (and as a non Geologist, find this article too technical to understand fully); but it does seem strange if he is unwilling to submit his thesis to peer review of other Creationist scientists. Of course, it cannot be easy if one has spent years perhaps developing a thesis, to submit to having it criticised. However, being willing, if necessary, to discard a pet idea (as long as it involves no challenge to our basics of faith) should be easier for a Christian than anyone else. Having a problem with this means it has become an “idol” and NEEDS to be let go for that reason alone. After all, it is not the same as having one’s worldview under attack, as would happen if the thesis was submitted to Evolutionist scientists!

Creationists base their studies on the presupposition that the Genesis account is historically reliable. That the Flood happened should be a non-negotiable tenet of faith. However, research and discussion on HOW it happened is permissible because it has no effect on our basic beliefs.

Evolutionists base their studies on the presupposition that evolution happened. That is to them a non-negotiable "tenet of faith". But again, research and discussion on HOW it happened is permissible in Evolutionist circles because it has no effect on basic beliefs
Off Topic / NOAH'S ARK
« Last post by Admin on February 27, 2017, 06:31:18 pm »
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Catastrophes: the Diluvial Evidence by Trevor Palmer
Trevor Palmer is Professor of Life Sciences and Senior Dean at the Nottingham Trent University. He graduated in biochemistry from Cambridge University and obtained a PhD from London University. He is the author of Understanding Enzymes, Principles of Enzymology for Technological Applications and Controversy: Catastrophism and Evolution - The Ongoing Debate. He has been a member of SIS Council since 1986. Summary
Flood myths are found throughout the world. As late as the 17th century, one particular flood myth (that involving Noah) was regarded as the literal truth by almost everyone in Europe. In contrast, for most of the 20th century, very few scientists have been prepared to even consider the possibility that floods or other catastrophes may have occurred on a global scale. Now that we can examine the evidence with greater objectivity, it is clear that, although the continents have not been covered by water during the time that humankind has lived on the Earth, there have nevertheless been some large-scale catastrophic floods. Two particular periods of interest are the Pleistocene-Holocene transition and the beginning of the Late Holocene. Many questions still remain unanswered about the events at these times.
The Ancient World
According to the book of Genesis, God breathed life into Adam and Eve, the first man and woman, on the sixth day of Creation. Just nine generations later, corruption had become so widespread that God brought about the Flood, when 'the waters prevailed upon the earth an hundred and fifty days', and 'all the high hills, that were under the whole heaven, were covered'. However, Noah, who was an exception to the general rule of wickedness, had been warned about the coming deluge. This enabled his family to build a large boat, the Ark, to sail on the waters. Hence they survived the Flood, the only humans to do so [1. The story of Noah is just one of over 500 flood myths from around the world, many of which similarly involve a man and a woman escaping by boat. In the Babylonian epic of Gilgamesh, the hero, Uta-Napishtim, was warned by Ea, God of the Waters, about the coming deluge. Others include a Greek myth, where the survivors were Deucalion and his wife, Pyrrha [2. As well as legends of a catastrophic flood, there are other widespread myths where the Earth suffered near destruction by fire. An example is one from Greece in which Phaeton took the Sun-chariot and drove it too close to the Earth, scorching the surface, until Zeus cast a thunderbolt and caused Phaeton to fall to his death. According to the philosopher, Plato (c. 429-347 BC), the basis of the Phaeton myth was one of a series of cosmic disturbances which caused periodic catastrophes on Earth [3. The origins of myth and legend are far from certain and may not be the same in every case. It remains possible that some stories may, to some extent, have a factual basis. ...

The Primordial Light? [SIS C&C Review]
... is hinted at again at the time of the Flood: "In the week of mourning for Methuselah God caused the primordial light to shine." (73) Now Methuselah died seven days before the great Deluge (74). And seven days before the Deluge Noah and his family took refuge in their Ark:- "And it came to pass after seven days, that the waters of the flood were upon the earth." (Genesis 7:10) Had the "primordial light" served as God's signal to ... to go into the Ark? Thus we have evidence from the Jewish myths that on two occasions a brief, bright light has flooded this Earth. Can Saturn have been this Primordial Light? 3. The Disruption of Saturn The most striking myth of the destruction of Saturn is that in the Egyptian referring to the demise of Osiris at the hands of Seth (75). Osiris is dismembered. Other destruction motifs relating to the end of Saturn are given by de Santillana and von Dechend with reference to the destruction of the Mill

The Road To Saturn [Aeon Journal]
(See file.)

On testing The Polar configuration [Aeon Journal]
... hence, as the Earth rotates, the terrestrial observer sees the crescent complete a full revolution around Saturn each day. The position of the crescent in relation to the daily cycle is sepicted below. As the Sun sets in the West (assuming the present direction of Earth's rotation), the image is 1) [* !* image As the crescent descends, the apparition grows steadily brighter. Then, when the Sun reaches its Midnight position with respect to the observer, the crescent is directly below Saturn, and the apparition its brightest: 2) [* !* image Representing the most brilliant phase of the configuration, this image should dominate over all others. As the Sun rises in the East and the sky lightens, the radiance of the configuration diminishes: 3) [* !* image Then, when the Sun reaches its Noon position, the crescent hovers above Saturn. 4) [* !* image This is the point of least radiance, mythically the "end" or "completion" of the daily cycle. The position of the crescent with respect to the phases of the ancient "day" can contribute immensely to our understanding of the roots of symbolism, for ancient nations possessed an array of symbols relating to the cycle of day and night. To measure the ability of the polar configuration to predict the forms and meanings involved, one must remember that the original, archaic "day" began at sunset, as the polar configuration began to grow bright, reaching its supreme moment in the image [* !* image, while the "night" or period of "cessation," answers to the image [* !* image There is thus considerable meaning in Budge's identification of the upright crescent-enclosure with "the sun at sunrise" (literally, "the shining forth of the sun"). Since, in our model, this moment par excellence comes when the crescent rests directly below the orb of Saturn, the Egyptian symbol corresponds directly to the predicted image of the archaic "day." 16. The revolving crescent's designated place was atop the world pillar. It was G. S. Faber, writing over 150 years ago, who first seems to have noticed the unique connection of the mythical mountain and the symbolic "Moon" of ancient rites. Resting on the summit of the mount, the crescent served as the receptacle of the sun held in its embrace, the combined image providing the likeness of a human form with outstretched arms. Thus the sacred mount passed into numerous local traditions as "The Mountain of the Moon," he said. Faber, however, was propounding a vastly different idea from that offered here. It was his purpose to show that all such motifs arose as distorted echoes of the ancient image of the ark of Noah resting on the Mount of Ararat after the deluge, it being the habit of pagan minds to assimilate Noah to their solar worship and the ark itself to the crescent moon. Yet remarkably, the widespread "pagan" image discovered by Faber answers to the cosmic form of the midnight polar configuration noted above. And this very image makes possible a new understanding of a crucial characteristic of the cosmic mount: its summit is cleft, horned or two-peaked. On analysis these two peaks of the world mountain always turn out to be the anomalous, yet highly visible crescent "moon." Moreover, the image of a recumbent crescent resting on a cosmic column and holding in its hollow the central sun, [* !* image, is perhaps the single most crucial image to our analysis of the polar configuration. For one thing, it establishes certain implied meanings of the crescent which would not be suggested by a crescent alone (i.e., these meanings are entirely dependent upon a particular relationship of the crescent to the central sun and supporting pillar). 17. The spectacular appearance of Saturn within the pillared crescent must have inspired many previously-unexplained mythical images, all mysteriously linked to each other. What are the primary mythical forms which our model would explain through this image? The most common and fundamental include: Giant bird standing upright (on its tail feathers), with outstretched wings; God or goddess with outstretched wings; Pillar or mountain supporting a pair of horns; The Bull of Heaven, with the sun between its horns; God or goddess with upraised or outstretched arms; Heaven sustaining giant bearing sun god and/or celestial band on his shoulders; Sun god in cosmic ship resting on a pillar or mountain; Twin peaks or cleft peak of the world mountain (Faber's "Mountain of the Moon.") ...

Kadmos: The Primeval King [Kronos]
... With the fall of these primeval figures is associated the collapse of a Golden Age and/or a great celestial kingdom. As the Edda states with regard to the fall of Baldur: "This was the greatest misfortune ever to befall gods and men."(45) A classic example of the collapse of the primordial kingdom is that of the mysterious disappearance of Atlantis as related by Plato. It is my opinion that the swallowing up of Tantalus' primeval city-kingdom during a great deluge should be seen as a parallel to the Atlantis legend, as should the watery disappearance of Kekrops' city of Athenae.* [* In a future essay I hope to discuss the fall of Saturn's celestial city, a city represented in Egyptian hieroglyphics as the band of the Aten [* !* Image from whence, most probably, derive both "Athena" and "Athenae". The number of primeval kings associated with a cataclysmic deluge is truly amazing. To Kekrops and Tantalus should be added the names of Menes, Fo-Hi, Yima, and Osiris, all of whom were linked to a great flood.(46) The Hindu Manu was represented as the sole survivor of a universal deluge.(47) The flood legends associated with these primeval kings lead us inevitably to the archetypal figure of Noah, where a surprising connection to Saturn will be found. This striking resemblance between the Biblical Noah and Saturn, the legendary ruler of Rome, has frequently drawn the attention of scholars and was actually the subject of lively debate among the Biblical exegetes of the Renaissance. Samuel Bochart, for example, made the following observation: "Noah is clearly the pagan god Saturn, because both men divided the world among their sons, both were described as the justest men of their age, both were able to converse with beasts, both were 'men of the earth,' both were associated with drunkenness, and both instructed the world in agriculture."(48) Like Saturn, the Babylonian flood hero, Xisuthros, would appear to represent another pagan parallel to Noah, a fact generally acknowledged by Biblical scholars.(49) The account of Xisuthros, as told by Berosus, contains numerous features reminiscent of the account in Genesis, one of the more striking of which concerns the origin of sacrificial rites. Here the reader will recall that immediately upon leaving the ark, "Noah built an altar to the Lord, and took of every clean animal and of every clean bird, and offered burnt offerings on the altar".(50) Likewise, upon landing, Xisuthros "prostrated himself to the ground, set up an altar and sacrificed to the gods, and then disappeared". "Xisuthros himself did not appear to them (the people) any more but there was a noise out of the air instructing them on the need to worship the gods, seeing that he was going to dwell with the gods because of his piety."(51) Several motifs in Berosus' account are of interest. Xisuthros' association with the origin of sacrificial rites unites ...

The Kaaba [Kronos]
... Modern Muslims may invoke nobler symbolisms to account for the rite of the tawaf but what they unknowingly practice to this day during the hajj in Mecca seems to be nothing but an ancient Saturnian rite the meaning of which has long been forgotten. 4. Noah's Ark Utnapishtim is the Assyro-Babylonian prototype of the Hebrew Noah. In the famed Epic of Gilgamesh, his ark is described as having been constructed in the shape of a cube- one iku by one iku by one iku(30)- which would have made for a very unseaworthy vessel. According to Muslim tradition ...

Thoth Vol. II, No. 11 June 30, 1998 [Thoth Website]
VENUS AS THE DOVE By Robert Lugibihl
Thinking about the following passages with the idea of the dove symbolizing Venus, they take on a whole new perspective... (D)oesn't Noah himself symbolize Saturn? If so, the line "he put forth his hand, and took her [the dove/Venus, and pulled her in unto him into the ark" is particularly interesting. And when the dove/Venus "returned not again ... him any more", it was then safe to venture out into the world again. "Also he sent forth a dove from him, to see if the waters were abated from off the face of the ground; "But the dove found no rest for the sole of her foot, and she returned unto him into the ark, for the waters were on the face of the whole earth: then he put forth his hand, and took her, and pulled her in unto him into the ark. "And when the dove/Venus "returned not again unto him any more", it was then safe to venture out into the world again. "Also he sent forth a dove from him, to see if the waters were abated from off the face of the ground; "But the dove found no rest for the sole of her foot, and she returned unto him into the ark, for the waters were on the face of the whole earth: then he put forth his hand, and took her, and pulled her in unto him into the ark. "And he stayed yet other seven days; and again he sent forth the dove out of the ark; "And the dove came in to him in the evening; and, lo, in her mouth was an olive leaf plucked off: so Noah knew that the waters were abated from off the earth. "And he stayed yet other seven days; and sent forth the dove; which returned not again unto him any more.".... Comments by DWARDU CARDONA: Precisely. Venus left the ark (the Saturnian crescent) and descended toward Earth, then returned to the ark (the crescent) but, again, left and careened away on its own to cause a series of calamities before slowly moving on to its present orbit. Now, the above mini-scenario is NOT- repeat, NOT- based on the Noah story. It is actually based on a multitude of other records. BUT- and this is the beauty of the entire thing- it DOES fit the Noah story. The unfolding of the event, of course, and as always, is a little bit more complex than the above thumbnail bio. Dwardu

The Deluge in Rabbinical Sources [Velikovsky Archive Website]
... that there were ample signs of the impending catastrophe, and attempts to organize rescue by preparing boats or ships, all probably destined to fail. The Biblical account, in order to explain the survival of the human species and some land animals, made the ark of Noah the central theme of the story. There must have been many Noahs, and the Midrashim also say so but probably none of them escaped with his boat the outrages of nature. Possibly, in some caves high in the mountains, in far separated regions of ... that came from the sky were heated. Many passages in the rabbinical literature refer to the heated water. (6) The rabbinical literature also refers to great tides and surges of water that covered the face of the earth. ? The flood began to toss the ark from side to side. All inside of it were shaken up like lentils in a pot.? (7) It is also said that not one, but many arks or vessels were used as a means of escape, but they were ruined or capsized

A Hebrew Cosmogony [Velikovsky Archive Website]
... the same. The continents changed their places in the former and in this catastrophe. The areas where now the shores of the Mediterranean sea are, were once the shores of an open ocean: this may be concluded from the following statement, if true: Before Noah, the sea was in the habit of transgressing its bounds twice daily, morning and evening. Afterwards, it kept within its confines. The constellations of the sky in this part of the world, it seems, moved after the deluge from their place. ... earth vomited lava, lightnings flashed, thunders roared, and a loud din grew all over the earth, as never known before to its inhabitants. (2) All the time the deluge lasted the sun and the moon shed no light. The story of the ark is well known from the biblical tale. The Aggada adds details; The waters were in no way quiet; it was dark outside; the inside of the ark was illuminated by a precious stone. The flood began to toss the ark from side to side

Deluge and Comet [Velikovsky Archive Website]
... became Dean of the Philosophical College at that University. In 1602 he published a short treatise in Latin, De cometis tractatus novus methodicus, and in it he had the following entry concerning the Deluge: In the year of the creation of the world 1656, after Noah had attained the age of 600 years, three days before the death of Methusalem, a comet appeared in the constellation Pisces, was seen by the entire world as it traversed the twelve signs of the zodiac in the space of a month; on the sixteenth ... April it again disappeared. After this the Deluge immediately followed, in which all creatures which live on earth and creep on the ground were drowned, with the exception of Noah and the rest of the creatures that had gone with him into the ark. About these things is written in Genesis, chapter 7. (2) Rockenbach lived and wrote nearly a hundred years before Whiston. What were Rockenbach ? s sources? He did not let us know. He referred to them at the beginning of his treatise, claiming that

Seventeen [Velikovsky Archive Website]
- In the story of the Universal Deluge it is said: “In the six hundredth year of Noah’s life, in the second month, on the seventeenth day of the month, the same day were all the fountains of the great deep broken up, and the windows of heaven were opened.” (1) Five months later, according to the Book of Genesis, on the seventeenth day of the seventh month, the ark rested upon Ararat.
- In Egyptian religious belief Osiris was drowned “on the seventeenth day of the month Athyr.” (2) The fast for Tammuz, commemorating his descent into the netherworld, began on the seventeenth of the month named for him.(3) Although the similarity of the Babylonian and Biblical versions of the story of the Deluge was repeatedly stressed, the significance of the number seventeen in the story of Tammuz in relation to the same number in the book of Genesis was not emphasized, or even noticed.
- The feast of Saturnalia began “always on the 17th of December” and with time, in imperial Rome, when it was celebrated for three consecutive days, it began on the fifteenth and continued for two more days, until the seventeenth.(4)
- The connection between the number seventeen and the Deluge is thus not confined to the Biblical, Babylonian, and Egyptian sources—we meet it also in Roman beliefs and practices. The significance of the number seventeen in the mystery plays related to Osiris’ drowning and in the festivities of Saturnalia is an indication that these memorials were related to the Deluge.
LK1 Sedimentation / Re: MEGASEQUENCES
« Last post by Admin on February 27, 2017, 01:41:36 pm »
The Worldwide Flood - Geologic Evidences - Pt 1 with Dr. Andrew Snelling - Origins

Here are my Notes on the Flood Video called The Worldwide Flood - Geologic Evidences:
3'37": Evidence: If there was a Great Flood, the ocean waters could have flooded the continents, bringing along sand, mud and ocean creatures.
5'20": Tapeats Sandstone, Redwall Limestone and Coconino Sandstone belong to 5 megasequences of strata that cover much of North America.
5'42": Tapeats covers about 2/3 of U.S. and part of western Canada. It's also found in Israel.
6'24": Redwall having same features and fossils is found in AZ, TN, PA, England, Himalayas near Nepal,
7'00": Cretacious chalk, over 1,000 ft thick in places, is found in Ireland, S. England, Europe, Egypt, Turkey, Western Australia and in the U.S. from NE to TX.
8'40": Coconino, 300 ft thick, has crossbedding diagonal to the horizontal strata formed from underwater sand dune waves with the tops washed off.
10'53": Coconino covers from AZ to KS to TX. The sand waves started at 60 ft high each in water moving 3-5 mph. Coconino was deposited in a few days. The entire Grand Canyon strata were deposited in a few months.
12'54": Ayers Rock in central Australia is sandstone with nearly vertical strata with grains of different sizes, angular and some delicate, meaning they were deposited rapidly (from 60 miles away).
15'57": Ayers sandstone is over 18,000 ft thick. It was deposited within hours by turbidity currents moving up to 70 mph.
20'00": Coconino is over Hermit shale. Shale is hardened mud. Coconino sand came from Canada
22'00": Navajo sandstone in s. Utah lies over Coconino. Navajo sand contains zircons and quartz eroded from mountains of PA and NY.
23'00": Sand waves are direction indicators, indicating that Flood waters flowed during the Paleozoic over the Americas from n.e. to s.w. The same direction of flow occurred on the other continents too.
Off Topic / ATEN
« Last post by Admin on February 26, 2017, 12:21:41 am »

The Origin of Velikovsky's Comet
Kronos Vol. X No. 1 (Fall 1984)
(c) 1984 by David Talbott and Ev Cochrane

1. Introduction
It has been nearly 35 years since Immanuel Velikovsky published Worlds in Collision, thus provoking one of the great scientific controversies of the twentieth century. In the intervening years, most of the world's leading astronomers have registered their opinions on the subject. Their consensus boils down to this: A) Velikovsky was treated poorly, but B) that is no reason to take his claims seriously. Not so long ago, however, much of the present speculation among astronomers themselves would have been considered dangerously Velikovskian. Now, we see "respectable" publications not only dignifying the general principles of catastrophism but introducing the once-unthinkable possibility of recent catastrophes - world-shattering events within the memory of man.(1)

Velikovsky, of course, did not look to astronomy for his evidence of interplanetary disturbances, but to history. Ancient religious and mythological texts provided the primary sources for Worlds in Collision; and in the end, it will be these sources that offer the acid test of his thesis. The overriding issue in Velikovsky's historical research is surely the proposed cometary past of Venus. Despite the interesting and often encouraging revelations from space probes of the past two decades, it must be said that little historical evidence of the Venus-comet has been added to the material originally assembled by Velikovsky. This lack is particularly noticeable in comparative mythology, the discipline which forms the backbone of Velikovsky's theory. Here, virtually nothing new has been brought to light bearing on the Venus question. In a series of essays, beginning with the present one, we intend to outline some aspects of ancient Venus symbolism generally overlooked so far. Our study will take us back to the mythical age of "beginnings". We will find much support for Velikovsky's claim of a cometary Venus - and also a surprising and crucial connection with Saturn. Though our investigation will question certain assumptions of Worlds in Collision, we think the evidence will help to substantiate Velikovsky's underlying theory of celestial catastrophe, in which the primary players are planets.

2. The Saturn Myth
In Worlds in Collision, Velikovsky presented the last two acts of what he claimed to be a much longer drama of interplanetary catastrophes. These later episodes, involving Venus and Mars and dated from the fifteenth to the seventh centuries B.C., were claimed by him to have been preceded by equally dramatic cataclysms involving the giants Saturn and Jupiter. While hinting at these earlier catastrophes, however, Velikovsky refrained from publishing anything but the briefest summaries. At the time of his death, in 1979, the full story still remained untold. It is understood that Velikovsky believed the Earth and Saturn to have once moved in close proximity, with the Earth perhaps revolving as a Saturnian moon. In a very early epoch, mythically recalled as the Golden Age, Saturn visually dominated the sky. This era, Velikovsky believed, ended in Saturn's mythical "death" and an overwhelming cataclysm - the great Deluge.

The mystery of Saturn's past, as posed by Velikovsky's intriguing references, inspired the several years of research behind one of the writers' recently-published book, The Saturn Myth.(2) The book proposes that Saturn - fixed at the celestial pole - loomed massively overhead, a central sun venerated by all mankind. Evidence is presented there for a Saturnian "polar configuration" as the source of early civilization's dominant symbols. One of the features of this Saturnian configuration was a giant band surrounding the planet. The Saturn Myth is a preface to a longer saga involving interplanetary upheavals. In that book, no reference is made to Venus, Mars, or Jupiter, even though these planets emerge as major figures in celestial events.

What we aim to present here involves certain details which were left unmentioned in The Saturn Myth - aspects of ancient myth and symbolism which will be helpful in delineating the roles of other planets in very early times. Several writers(beginning with Velikovsky himself) have conjectured that the identifications of the planets shifted with shifting world ages. We intend to show, however, that from their earliest mention in ancient sources, the root identities of the respective planetary gods hold up well; and such ambiguity as does affect planetary identifications stems from a former connection of Venus, Mars, and Jupiter with a unified apparition in the sky. Our underlying assumption is that the planets have not always roamed around the Sun as separate and discrete objects in the heavens  of terrestrial observers. Rather, they were once joined in a visually integrated "conjunction" of sorts, and this seemingly-improbable alignment was the basis of Saturn's polar station. It is obvious that we will not be able to prove the point in this introductory article, but we hope that our first effort will begin to suggest the nature of the original celestial unity remembered by so many ancient races.

3. Rules of Research
In exploring the roots of ancient myth and symbolism, we suggest a few simple rules of research.
I. The world supply of myths and symbols should be consulted as a test of any major hypothesis. Surely this was the major thrust of Worlds in Collision. It is the concordance of global testimony that gives the most impressive weight to Velikovsky's arguments.
II. The earliest sources are crucial to a proper understanding of mythical motifs and can help to prevent the misplacement of events. Had he consulted the earliest sources of Egypt and Mesopotamia, Velikovsky might have avoided the most pronounced weakness of Worlds in Collision. Unfortunately, in seeking to substantiate a 1500 B.C. catastrophe, Velikovsky cited mythical themes clearly discernible in texts written a thousand years or more before the proposed event.
III. Ancient statements appearing to contradict elementary experience or logic are a key to discovery. It is improbable enough that one tribe or nation would call a modest light such as Venus "the torch of heaven", "star with hair", or anything so suggestive of power and light. When one notes that the themes appear from one land to another, the seed of discovery emerges: perhaps Venus was not always the mere speck we see today. IV. Cosmic symbols must be allowed to illuminate the texts, and the texts allowed to illuminate the symbols. Worlds in Collision makes no use of ancient signs or ideographs. Yet the ancients themselves declared that these simple pictures were actually cosmic references. Where, then, is Venus in the lexicon of symbols? Our answer to the Venus question could not be stated more emphatically: Symbols of the planet pervade the earliest sources. In fact, at the dawn of civilization, the proto-planet Venus - looking very much like a comet - appears as part and parcel of a unified cosmology ruling the collective consciousness of man. This cosmology, however, has yet to be recognized by conventional schools.

4. The Great Mother
One of the most prominent features of ancient religion is the universal devotion to a goddess called the "Great Mother". Perhaps the best-known early instances of the goddess are the Egyptian Isis and the Mesopotamian Inanna-Ishtar. Significantly, chroniclers identify both goddesses with the planet Venus.(3) Moreover, it would be difficult to find an ancient civilization which fails to support this role of Venus as Great Mother. There appears to be an impressive continuity of this identity from the infancy of civilization through the Classical Age of Greece and up to more modern times. This aspect of Venus symbolism raises a question which finds no apparent solution in either Velikovsky's or traditional theory. Why was a feminine nature ascribed to the planet? It is almost an ironclad rule of ancient symbolism that Mars, Saturn, Jupiter, and Mercury appear as masculine figures. Why was Venus the exception? Today we see the visible planets as five star-like points of light. Does one of them appear especially feminine? The answer to this mystery, as we will attempt to show, lies in a remarkable association between Venus and the planet Saturn.

5. The Enclosed Sun
Ancient pictographs will figure prominently in our analysis (Rule IV). We begin with what is perhaps the most common sign among early civilizations, one which occurs on all continents (Rule I), and the prehistoric origin of which is beyond dispute (Rule II). The image is the "enclosed sun", discussed at length in The Saturn Myth. There, it is shown that this sign was Saturn's special emblem, an identification which appears as irrational as it was widespread (Rule III). The Saturn Myth proposes that this pictograph actually depicted the physical appearance of Saturn in former times - that it is a literal drawing of the Saturnian orb surrounded by a great band. The ancients called it the "world wheel", which Saturn is said to have produced in the primeval age. This was the wheel of the archaic polar sun (Saturn), fixed but ever-turning in the northern sky. Though space in this article will not allow more than a glimpse of the mythological material, the imagery of the enclosed sun asks us to believe that during Saturn's epoch, the Earth, rather than orbiting Saturn as a moon (Velikovsky's proposal), rotated with Saturn on a common axis. What terrestrial observers saw in the sky appeared as an immense wheel (the band) revolving around the stationary orb of Saturn.

The extensive and interlocking symbolism of the Saturnian band is discussed fully in The Saturn Myth. There, it is shown that this single band provided the visual basis for numerous mythical images of the great god's dwelling, including such well-known forms as: the cosmic Eye, crown, throne, shield, temple, and city. Each of these symbols, however, occurs in such explicit association with the mother goddess as to amount to a straightforward identity: the goddess was originally and fundamentally the Saturnian band. Analysis of the related symbolism reveals two elementary facts. Together, they pose the riddle we will seek to resolve: 1) In ancient representations of the enclosed sun, the separate band was called the mother goddess; 2) The consistent planetary representative of the mother goddess was Venus. There is no better source of information on the enclosed sun than the vast ritual texts of ancient Egypt. With the emergence of the hieroglyphic language, the enclosure of the old sun god appears as the Aten, written with the sign (o), the very symbol under discussion.

Contrary to common assumption, Egyptian texts make clear that the Aten is the enclosure itself and not the sun which rests within the band. A frequent title of Ra is am-aten-f - "dweller in his Aten", a title likewise given to both Atum and Horus. "Spacious is your seat within the disk [Aten]", reads a Coffin Text.(4) Of Osiris, the Book of the Dead declares: "Oh, great god, who livest in thy divine Aten."(5) As if to emphasize the point, Egyptian scribes and artists often drew only the band itself when denoting the Aten. The literal reading is "enclosure" or "circle", and Ra is the "sender-forth of light into his Circle".(6) "I am the one who is in his Circle", he announces.(7) The tangible character of the band could not be more explicitly stated. But having no reference point in nature, Egyptologists have habitually looked past the band to the enclosed god himself in trying to interpret the language.

To the Egyptians, the band was very real. They called it the "enclosure of Fire-Light"(8) - the great god's brilliant and enduring halo of "glory" or "splendor". It was the "chamber" or "house" of the primeval sun, and the Egyptian myths of "the Beginning" elaborate in various ways how the great band came into existence. Yet, a paradox runs through all the related symbols. In the Egyptian language, the band of the Aten means, at once, the "body" of the sun god as well as the female principle, the god's "mistress". It is the radiant "womb" in the sky, the Great Mother herself, in which the sun god shines as the "Great Seed". Mythically, the male and female powers combine in the androgynous image of the enclosed sun. The relationship occurs in the symbolism of all the primary Egyptian gods and goddesses. Isis is the "chamber" of the sun god. Hathor is "the House of Horus", and Nephthys "the House-Lady". Nut encloses Ra, the Great Seed. Ra "shines forth from the womb of Nut".(9) Elsewhere, Ra is the sun "in the womb of Hathor".(10) Osiris, too, sends forth his light from the womb of Nut. "Homage to thee, King of kings, Lord of lords, who from the womb of Nut hath ruled all the world.''(11)
Lacking a concrete reference for this language, Egyptologists have drawn on such abstract notions as "the sky", "the all", "heaven", etc. They have not realized that the subject is the band of the Aten because, in the familiar heavens of today, the Aten has no meaning. Researchers are thus left adrift in insubstantial explanations. When considering the sign of the Aten itself, they see the band alternately as a "parhelion", the "circle of the sky", the Earth, or the Sun itself (leaving a mystery as to what is inside the band). That a sign so obviously universal has no equally-obvious explanation is, to say the least, curious. This confusion is unnecessary.

The Aten symbol is a picture of the visible wheel of the primeval sun god, who was Saturn. To recognize this is to possess an extraordinarily simple explanation for some of the most elementary mythical images. The literal equation is: Band of the Aten= circle of Fire-Light (halo, glory, splendor)= sun god's dwelling= sun god's "body"= the Great Mother. Yet, even while the Egyptians celebrated the Aten-band as the Mother Goddess, they recognized many complementary interpretations of the fiery enclosure. An analysis of the related forms yields a startling consistency yet to be acknowledged by Egyptologists.

6. The Eye of Heaven
Consider the mysterious Eye of heaven. T. Rundle Clark has observed that this  baffling yet pervasive symbol is the key to an understanding of ancient Egyptian religion, especially the religion of the Great Mother. "The complex meshes of eye symbolism", he writes, "are woven all around the Egyptian Goddess, and she cannot be understood or compared with other goddesses until they are unraveled."(12) What was the Eye? Why were all the major Egyptian goddesses - Isis, Hathor, Nut, Sekhmet, Bast, and others - called "the Eye of Ra"? ...

When Venus Was A Comet
Kronos Vol. XII No. 1 (Winter 1987)
Ev Cochrane and David Talbott
... Strangely enough, the Imix dragon is usually decorated with celestial symbols, including that of the planet Venus.(77) That this juxtaposition of celestial and telluric elements was not unique to the Imix dragon is emphasized by Joralemon: "It is precisely this combination of sky and earth attributes that characterizes the Dragon throughout ancient Mexican religious history."(78) A similar state of affairs confronts the mythographer in ancient Egypt. There the serpent-dragon par excellence was Set, whose celestial aspect is well-pronounced. Thus Set is described as the "Outflow" of the old sun god and associated with the god's dwelling in the sky.(79) The name Set, however, means "earth".(80) Another incredible fact is that Thebeh, one of Set's epithets, is cognate with "thebn" which means "lock of hair".(81) The Egyptian mother goddesses share this same symbolism. Hathor, for example, whose serpentine nature has already drawn attention, was also considered to be an "earth goddess". Another name for Hathor was Hensektet, the meaning of which is "lock of hair".(82)

In light of these revelations, the possibility must be considered that the ancients' "Earth" was something different in nature than the terrestrial landscape. Similarly, in the Sumerian hymn quoted earlier, the "radiance" of Inanna was compared to that of Urash, the Earth Mother. This in itself should have cautioned commentators against hastily identifying the ancients' "Earth". In fact, it is our opinion that the goddess and dragon both trace to a comet-like Venus which once displayed the form of a giant spiral or "lock of hair", the very form depicted by the Caban curl.

According to the hypothesis outlined in this series of essays, it was this comet which first appeared in close proximity to the old sun god, as if born of the sun god himself. After an indeterminate amount of time, the spiral-shaped form (lock of hair, beard, etc.) moved away from the immediate vicinity of the god, eventually settling in an orbit around him. It was during this latter period that the tail of the comet appeared as a giant celestial band enclosing the central sun, as depicted in the Aten sign.* [* Cf. L. M. Greenberg, "Aten, Akhnaten, and Venus Reconsidered," Pensee IVR I (May 1972), pp. 4 1 42.- LMG] In complete accordance with this hypothesis, we find that an alternative name for the Aten was Sesheta Circle, derived from "seshet", an early Egyptian word for "comet".(83) Thus a literal interpretation of the god's celestial dwelling would be "Circle of the Comet". "Seshet" itself, however, also means "lock of hair".(84)

Further support for this hypothesis comes from the fact that, in Egyptian hieroglyphs, the band of the Aten means "serpent-dragon", "goddess", as well as "earth".(85) One therefore finds that the Egyptian sun god resided within an enclosure that is variously described as the "coils of the dragon", the "body of the Mother Goddess", or the "bowels of the earth". That these are the very same symbols of the enclosure which present themselves in Mesoamerica strongly suggests that there was a common celestial reference for this symbolism. In short: The celestial "Earth" which has long troubled commentators appears to be nothing more than the comet-like band which once enclosed the ancient sun god.

We have seen that Inanna-Venus was described as torch-like. A curious feature of Mesoamerican symbolism parallels this description. Like many of their Mesoamerican neighbors, the Mayans commonly compared the planet Venus to a dog, referring to it as the "dog running ahead of the sun".(86) ...

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