50 years in the past, scientists dug into Pangaea’s previous lives

Earlier than Pangaea — What? Science Information, September 30, 1972

The continents as we all know them resulted when the proto­continent Pangaea broke aside and its fragments made the lengthy gradual journey to their current positions. The method took about 200 m­illion years. However the Earth’s crust is an estimated 4.5 billion years outdated.… [Scientists are exploring] the perplexing p­roblem of what went on throughout the billions of years earlier than Pangaea went to items.


The continents have an on-again, off-again relationship that has existed since properly earlier than Pangaea, fossil and rock proof reveals. Most scientists agree that the earliest identified supercontinent, known as Nuna, fashioned round 1.5 billion years in the past. It broke aside and reunited because the supercontinent Rodinia about 1 billion years in the past. A 3rd supercontinent known as Pannotia might have fashioned roughly 600 million years in the past close to the South Pole, however its existence is debated. Immediately, scientists are predicting how continents will merge sooner or later. A supercontinent dubbed Amasia may kind 250 million years from now because the continents drift towards the North Pole (SN: 1/21/17, p. 18).

Erin I. Garcia de Jesus is a workers author at Science Information. She holds a Ph.D. in microbiology from the College of Washington and a grasp’s in science communication from the College of California, Santa Cruz.

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