Thursday , December 9 2021

Relics of "lost continents" hidden under the Antarctic have been discovered by satellite images



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The European Space Agency (ESA) has discovered relics of lost continents that have been hidden under Antarctica for millions of years.

Satellite images show the time frame of the ancient land surface buried 1.6 km below the ice continent, Daili Mail reports.

The scientists said that the snapshots were lit in Antarctica, the "least-clarified continent on Earth."

They used data from the long dead Gravity field and the Ocean Circulation Explorer (GOCE), which went down to Earth after it consumed fuel in 2013.

Although the satellite has disappeared for 5 years, scientists are still switching over data on Earth's gravity tape collection.

A team of scientists used GOCE readings to map the movement of tectonic plates of the Earth under the Antarctic.

Their research enabled them to track down hidden tectonic shifts over the past 200 million years, providing an insight into how the Antarctic was formed.

"These gravitational images revolutionize our ability to study the least intelligible continent on Earth: Antarctica," said Fausto Ferraccioli, a scientific leader of geology and geophysics at the British Antarctic Survey.

"In the East Antarctic, we see an exciting mosaic of geological features that reveals the basic similarities and differences between barks below Antarctica and other continents to which it joined 160 million years ago."

The scientists combined GOCE readings with seismic data to create 3D maps of the Earth's lithosphere.

The lithosphere consists of a cover and a melt tile below the surface of the Earth, and includes mountain ranges, oceanic backbones and rocky zones called the crown.

The cratons are the remains of ancient continents embedded in the continents, as we know them today.

The study found that Western Antarctica (green) has a dull bark of eastern Antarctica (blue), which has
The study found that western Antarctica (green) has a dwarf bark from eastern Antarctica (blue), which has "familiarity with Australia and India". Picture / ESA

New readings illuminated the collapse of Gondwana, a long-lasting supercontinent that houses what is now Antarctica.

While the country was split up some 130 million years ago, the map shows that Antarctica and Australia have been linked recently 55 million years ago.

The study also found that the Western Antarctic has a thinner crust from eastern Antarctica, which has "familiarity with Australia and India".

Scientists hope to use their findings to examine how the Antarctic's geological and continental structure influence the wave of its ice.

GOCE mission scientist Roger Haagmans said: "It's exciting to see that the direct use of gravity gradients, first measured by GOCE, leads to a fresh independent look inside the Earth – even under a thick ice sheet.

"It also provides a context for how continents may have been connected in the past before they were separated because of the movement of plates."

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