Mid-Ocean Ridge or Ocean Ridge
mid-ocean ridge

Mid-Ocean Ridge Landforms Have 3 Main Characteristics:

  1. Undersea mountain range
  2. Tectonic plates on each side slowly separate
  3. Magma swells and dries creating the mountain range

Example of a Mid-Ocean Ridge Landform:
The of mid-ocean ridge or ocean ridge picture is an exampleof the Mid-Atlantic Ridge, Atlantic Ocean

What is a Mid-Ocean Ridge Landform?

A mid-ocean ridge is an undersea mountain range located where two tectonic plates are moving away from each other and magma swells from the separation.

How are Mid-Ocean Ridges Formed?

Hot magma from below the Earth’s crust, rises between the two tectonic plates on each side of the ridge. As the magma makes contact with ocean water, it cools forming part of the Earth’s crust as it separates. Circulation of the mantel below each plate helps to spread the plates apart at the mid-ocean ridge.

How Large is a Mid-Ocean Ridge?

The Mid-Atlantic Ridge is the longest, stretching for 10,000 miles. All mid-ocean ridges are connected as one continuous undersea mountain range approximately 40,000 miles long.

Where Can a Mid-Ocean Ridge Be Found?

Mid-ocean ridges are under the oceans of the world, where two tectonic plates of the Earth’s crust are moving away from each other.

Famous Mid-Ocean Ridges and Facts

• Mid-Atlantic Ridge, Atlantic Ocean
• Southwest Indian Ridge, Atlantic and Indian Oceans
• Explorer Ridge, Pacific Ocean
• East Pacific Rise, Pacific Ocean
• Pacific-Antarctic Ridge, Pacific Ocean

Europe and Africa were once together with North and South America, and there was no Atlantic Ocean. About 140 million years ago, South America began to separate from Africa, a ridge forming between them. 80 million years ago, North America began to separate from Europe at what became the Mid-Atlantic Ridge in the North and South Atlantic Ocean.

The Mid-Atlantic Ridge is 10,000 miles long and was discovered in the 19th century during the laying of the first trans-Atlantic cable. At the southern end in the South Atlantic Ocean, the Southwest Indian Ridge begins, stretching southeast and east to a point about 2000 miles south of India to join the Mid-Indian and Southeast Indian ridges.

The Explorer Ridge lies under the Pacific Ocean about 150 miles west of Vancouver Island and runs south to a point that is even with northern California where the San Andreas Fault begins. The Pacific Plate on the left moves northwest from the ridge and the Explorer Plate moves east, under the edge of the North American plate near the coast.

The East Pacific Rise is a mid-ocean ridge that begins at a point where the San Andreas Fault ends at the Salton Sea in California, north of the Mexican border. It passes under the northern Gulf of California and southwest uncer the Pacific Ocean toward Antarctica, meeting the Pacific-Antarctic Ridge.

The sea floor at the East Pacific Rise is spreading 7.5 centimeters each year, three times faster than the Mid-Atlantic Ridge. The Pacific-Antarctic Ridge continues southwest and west under the South Pacific Ocean to a point south of New Zealand, separating the Antarctic and Pacific Plates.

Mid-Ocean Ridge Definition:

A mountain range under the ocean where two tectonic plates separate

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