|Timor, Pacific Ocean
|1Relative to the African Plate
The Timor Plate is a small tectonic plate (microplate) in Southeast Asia carrying the island of Timor and surrounding islands. The Australian Plate is subducting under the southern edge of the plate, while a small divergent boundary is located on the eastern edge. Another convergent boundary exists with the Banda Sea Plate to the north, and to the west is a transform boundary.
Plate tectonics is the scientific theory that Earth's lithosphere comprises a number of large tectonic plates, which have been slowly moving since about 3.4 billion years ago. The model builds on the concept of continental drift, an idea developed during the first decades of the 20th century. Plate tectonics came to be accepted by geoscientists after seafloor spreading was validated in the mid-to-late 1960s.
Obduction is a geological process whereby denser oceanic crust is scraped off a descending ocean plate at a convergent plate boundary and thrust on top of an adjacent plate. When oceanic and continental plates converge, normally the denser oceanic crust sinks under the continental crust in the process of subduction. Obduction, which is less common, normally occurs in plate collisions at orogenic belts or back-arc basins.
A transform fault or transform boundary, is a fault along a plate boundary where the motion is predominantly horizontal. It ends abruptly where it connects to another plate boundary, either another transform, a spreading ridge, or a subduction zone. A transform fault is a special case of a strike-slip fault that also forms a plate boundary.
A mantle plume is a proposed mechanism of convection within the Earth's mantle, hypothesized to explain anomalous volcanism. Because the plume head partially melts on reaching shallow depths, a plume is often invoked as the cause of volcanic hotspots, such as Hawaii or Iceland, and large igneous provinces such as the Deccan and Siberian Traps. Some such volcanic regions lie far from tectonic plate boundaries, while others represent unusually large-volume volcanism near plate boundaries.
Island arcs are long chains of active volcanoes with intense seismic activity found along convergent tectonic plate boundaries. Most island arcs originate on oceanic crust and have resulted from the descent of the lithosphere into the mantle along the subduction zone. They are the principal way by which continental growth is achieved.
The North American Plate is a tectonic plate covering most of North America, Cuba, the Bahamas, extreme northeastern Asia, and parts of Iceland and the Azores. With an area of 76 million km2 (29 million sq mi), it is the Earth's second largest tectonic plate, behind the Pacific Plate.
The Pacific Plate is an oceanic tectonic plate that lies beneath the Pacific Ocean. At 103 million km2 (40 million sq mi), it is the largest tectonic plate.
The Cocos Plate is a young oceanic tectonic plate beneath the Pacific Ocean off the west coast of Central America, named for Cocos Island, which rides upon it. The Cocos Plate was created approximately 23 million years ago when the Farallon Plate broke into two pieces, which also created the Nazca Plate. The Cocos Plate also broke into two pieces, creating the small Rivera Plate. The Cocos Plate is bounded by several different plates. To the northeast it is bounded by the North American Plate and the Caribbean Plate. To the west it is bounded by the Pacific Plate and to the south by the Nazca Plate.
The Australian Plate is a major tectonic plate in the eastern and, largely, southern hemispheres. Originally a part of the ancient continent of Gondwana, Australia remained connected to India and Antarctica until approximatelywhen India broke away and began moving north. Australia and Antarctica had begun rifting by and completely separated a while after this, some believing as recently as , but most accepting presently that this had occurred by .
The Scotia Plate is a minor tectonic plate on the edge of the South Atlantic and Southern oceans. Thought to have formed during the early Eocene with the opening of the Drake Passage that separates Antarctica and South America, it is a minor plate whose movement is largely controlled by the two major plates that surround it: the Antarctic Plate and the South American Plate. The Scotia Plate takes its name from the steam yacht Scotia of the Scottish National Antarctic Expedition (1902–04), the expedition that made the first bathymetric study of the region.
The Caribbean Plate is a mostly oceanic tectonic plate underlying Central America and the Caribbean Sea off the northern coast of South America.
The Leeward Antilles are a chain of islands in the Caribbean – specifically the southerly islands of the Lesser Antilles along the southeastern fringe of the Caribbean Sea, just north of the Venezuelan coast of the South American mainland. The Leeward Antilles, while among the Lesser Antilles, are not to be confused with the Leeward Islands to the northeast.
The Galápagos hotspot is a volcanic hotspot in the East Pacific Ocean responsible for the creation of the Galápagos Islands as well as three major aseismic ridge systems, Carnegie, Cocos and Malpelo which are on two tectonic plates. The hotspot is located near the Equator on the Nazca Plate not far from the divergent plate boundary with the Cocos Plate. The tectonic setting of the hotspot is complicated by the Galapagos Triple Junction of the Nazca and Cocos plates with the Pacific Plate. The movement of the plates over the hotspot is determined not solely by the spreading along the ridge but also by the relative motion between the Pacific Plate and the Cocos and Nazca Plates.
The Galapagos Triple Junction is a geological area in the eastern Pacific Ocean several hundred miles west of the Galapagos Islands where three tectonic plates - the Cocos Plate, the Nazca Plate and the Pacific Plate - meet. It is an unusual type of triple junction in which the three plates do not meet at a simple intersection. Instead, the junction includes two small microplates, the Galapagos Microplate and the Northern Galapagos Microplate, caught in the junction, turning synchronously with respect to each other and separated by the Hess Deep rift.
The Banda Sea Plate is a minor tectonic plate underlying the Banda Sea in southeast Asia. This plate also carries a portion of Sulawesi Island, the entire Seram Island, and the Banda Islands. Clockwise from the east it is bounded by the Bird's Head Plate of western New Guinea, Australian Plate, Timor Plate, Sunda Plate, and the Molucca Sea Collision Zone. The western border is a convergent boundary largely responsible for the mountains in western Sulawesi, subduction zones also exist on the eastern border near Seram and the southern border with the Timor Plate. A small rift is located in the middle of Sulawesi. It is a very seismically active area home to many volcanoes and the site of many large earthquakes, the largest of which was the 1938 Banda Sea earthquake which measured around 8.4 on the moment magnitude scale.
The Niuafo'ou Plate is a small tectonic plate located west of the islands of Tonga. This plate is sandwiched between the Pacific Plate to the north, the very unstable Tonga Plate to the east and the Australian Plate to the west. It is primarily surrounded by divergent boundaries. This plate is riddled with active faults thus making the area extremely earthquake prone.
The North Bismarck Plate is a small tectonic plate located in the Bismarck Sea off the northeast coast of New Guinea. It is currently regarded as a relic or inactive plate by most. At one time it was called the Manus Plate, but this term was later used for a modelled microplate at the south east boundary of the North Bismarck Plate.
The Iberian Plate is a microplate typically grouped with the Eurasian Plate that includes the microcontinent Iberia, Corsica, Sardinia, the Balearic Islands, the Briançonnais zone of the Penninic nappes of the Alps, and the portion of Morocco north of the High Atlas Mountains. The Iberian plate is a part of the Eurasian plate.
The 1965 Rat Islands earthquake occurred at 05:01 UTC, on 4 February. It had a magnitude of 8.7 and triggered a tsunami of over 10 m on Shemya Island, but caused very little damage.