What are the three types of plate tectonic boundaries?

The 3 types of tectonic plate boundaries are:

  1. Divergent
  2. Convergent
  3. Transform

At a Divergent boundary, two tectonic plates move away from each other. Not unlike how same magnetic poles repel each other. As the plates moves, deep fissures are created in the earth’s crust.

Magma oozes up from the mantle into the gap and hardens, forming new crust.

At a Convergent boundary, two tectonic plates collide head on. Imagine two quarterbacks who tackle each other head on. As they make contact, the force of the impact ripples through both of their bodies. This force also ripples through the plates, causing earthquakes when they collide.

When plates collide, one of two possible things happens:

  1. The edges of the plates buckle up into a mountain range.

  2. One plate bends the other down into a deep trench. The place where this happens is given a special name:The Subduction Zone. (It actually sounds like a place from a fiction novel).

At a Transform boundary, two plates slide against each other. It’s like grinding two bricks together; both get damaged and there is a lot of friction.

Rocks along the boundary are pulverized and a brand new linear fault valley or undersea canyon appears. Not to mention the severe earthquakes that happen as a result.

If this sparked your interest in plate tectonics, you can explore the area further at this amazing place: http://science.howstuffworks.com/nature/natural-disasters/earthquake2.htm

You can find out when the mechanisms were discovered, how and by whom. And what kind of faults result because of plate movement and just get to know more about the powerful phenomena of earthquakes and volcanoes for which plate tectonics are responsible!

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