Millions of years ago, continental plates movement added up to significant changes in the way landmasses are configured on our planet. Recently, digital artist Massimo Pietrobon realized a map, and we can finally understand how the supercontinent Pangea made the planet look similar to how it is today.
According to measurements, the continental plates move approximately one to four inches annually, so we don’t feel or observe the tectonic pulls that are continually reshaping Earth’s ground. Earthquakes and volcanic events occur from time to time so that we must remember that the earth beneath us is permanently moving.
Supercontinent Pangea Had Its Unique Features Reimagined
Since the average continent is estimated to move only one foot every decade, it’s challenging to predict when we’ll witness a significant graphical revision to the world map. But, whatever life exists now, approximately 300 million years in the future, it might get the chance to meet a new supercontinent, the Pangea Proxima.
Such a world is only one possible supercontinent configuration that could have an opportunity to arise. It would feature continents such as Australia and Indonesia, collapsing into each other, and South and North America slamming into Antarctica and Africa. This Pangea Proxima could hold an immense inland sea, made up of what represents today the Indian Ocean.
Pangea is known as the latest supercontinent in Earth’s history. It started evolving over 300 million years ago, creating up to one-third of the Earth’s ground. The remainder of the planet was a massive ocean dubbed Panthalassa. Over time, researchers tried to piece together more details on the patterns of life and climate on the supercontinent.
The center of the supercontinent Pangea, similar to some areas from today Central Asia, is believed to have been unhabitable and arid, with temperatures of 45 degrees Celsius. Archeologists found almost no fossils in the regions that once were present in the middle of Pangea.
Also, the powerful contrast between Panthalassa and the supercontinent might have triggered extreme cross-equatorial monsoons. By this extraordinary point in history, animals such as dinosaurs and plants were able to venture freely across Pangea.
Many Pieces of The Land Scattered Across the Earth
Approximately 200 million years ago, magma started to resurface through a weal point in the Earth’s crust. The volcanic rifts arise that would eventually separate Pangea into pieces. Over time, the Atlantic Ocean appeared due to that rift area.
The most noticeable proof of that separation is in the similar pattern of the coastlines of modern-day West Africa and Brazil. Present-day North America split from Africa and Europe, and as the map points out, the Atlantic Canada was millions of years ago, linked to Morocco and Spain.
The whole thing with tectonic plats is behind some of modern Earth’s most known features. For example, the Himalayas appeared after the Indian subcontinent separated from the eastern part of Africa and collapsed directly into Asia. That process of plate convergence created lots of Earth’s highest mountains. The separation of the supercontinent Pangea made the Earth look like today.