Reconstruction of the CGMW2010 geological map of the world – Arctic region

This animation reconstructs the CGMW (Bouysse, 2010) geology of the circum-Arctic region from 200 Ma to present, using the GPlates software and the plate model by Shephard et al. (Earth-Science Reviews, 2013). Some overlaps of geological elements are caused by small imperfections in the plate polygons published with this plate model. An interactive display of this reconstruction and some additional information can be found on the GPlates Portal.

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Australian paleotopography 70 million years ago to present

This quicktime animation accompanies the paper by Heine, C., Müller, R.D., DiCaprio, L. and Steinberger, B. (2010), Integrating deep Earth dynamics in paleogeographic reconstructions of Australia, Tectonophysics, 483, 135-150. The animation is based on a combination of a present-day digital elevation model corrected for time-dependent sediment thickness in some key areas combined with a model for Australia's plate motion over a convecting mantle, resulting in topography modulated by mantle convection-driven dynamic surface topography back in time and a eustatic sea model (see paper for details).  

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Hawaiian plume motion through geological time

The video, created by Rakib Hassan, shows the southward motion of the modelled Hawaiian plume over geological time and the evolution of its tilt. Note the fast southward motion of the plume before 50 Ma, driven by the southward motion of its root at the northern edge of the Pacific Large Low-Shear Velocity Province (LLSVP). This motion came to a halt after 50 Ma. The black contour marks the 75% chemical concentration isosurface 100 km above the core mantle boundary. 

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Evolution of deep mantle flow under the Pacific Ocean

The video, created by Rakib Hassan, shows the evolution of mean poloidal deep mantle flow in a 300 km thick shell above the core mantle boundary over the last 140 million years. N-S oriented cross sections along two profiles through the Pacific Large Low-Shear Velocity Province (LLSVP) show the evolution of its edges driven by subduction-induced flow.

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Modelled uplift history of the Eastern Australian Highlands through time

Modelled topography of the eastern Australian highlands since 150 million years ago. The model is based on a coupled plate tectonic-mantle convection model run on the Australian high performance computer Raijin. The model shows that the time-dependent interaction of plate motion with mantle downwellings and upwellings accounts for the broad pattern of margin uplift phases.

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Tectonic Plate Velocities from the Triassic Period (230 million years ago) to the present

Reconstructions of absolute plate velocities, with colours and vector lengths indicating plate speed and vector azimuths representing absolute plate motion directions. Subduction zones are coloured magenta teethed lines that indicate subduction polarity, mid-ocean ridges are black lines and coastlines and boundaries between continental blocks and terranes are shown as grey lines. Hammer projection with 30°W … Read more…

High horizontal fault displacement rates and landscape evolution

High horizontal fault displacement rates and landscape evolution video featured image

In this numerical model of landscape evolution we impose over 2 million of years deformation produced with the Underworld software over an initial flat surface, ie a 256 km square box at a resolution of 1 km. On top of the deformed surface, a landscape evolution model, Badlands, is used to simulate both hillslope and … Read more…

Virtual seafloor geology globe spinning North-South

Lithology globe Aus Ant view

This spinning virtual seafloor geology globe is composed of a set of screen captures of an interactive digital globe portraying the distribution of different seafloor sediments available at the Gplates Portal. Citation Dutkiewicz, A., Müller, R. D., O’Callaghan, S., & Jónasson, H. (2015). Census of seafloor sediments in the world’s ocean. Geology, G36883-1. doi: 10.1130/G36883.1. … Read more…

Virtual seafloor geology globe spinning East-West

Lithology globe Aus Ant view

This spinning virtual seafloor geology globe is composed of a set of screen captures of an interactive digital globe portraying the distribution of different seafloor sediments available at the Gplates Portal. Citation Dutkiewicz, A., Müller, R. D., O’Callaghan, S., & Jónasson, H. (2015). Census of seafloor sediments in the world’s ocean. Geology, G36883-1. doi: 10.1130/G36883.1. … Read more…

Plate reconstruction with ocean basin paleo-ages

A global animation accompanying the publication Global continental and ocean basin reconstructions since 200 Ma. Citation Seton, M., et al. (2012), Global continental and ocean basin reconstructions since 200 Ma, Earth-Science Reviews, 113(3-4), 212-270. doi: 10.1016/j.earscirev.2012.03.002. View the full playlist on our EarthByte YouTube channel

Plate reconstruction with paleo-bathymetry of the ocean basins

Reconstructions of tectonic plates and oceanic paleodepth (i.e. paleobathymetry). Citation Müller, R., M. Sdrolias, C. Gaina, and W. Roest (2008). Age, spreading rates, and spreading asymmetry of the world’s ocean crust, Geochemistry, Geophysics, Geosystems, 9(4), 19, Q04006. doi: 10.1029/2007GC001743. View the full playlist on our EarthByte YouTube channel

Geodynamics of arc-continent collisions

Courtesy of Prof Louis Moresi, created with the ellipsis software. Citation O’Neill, C., Moresi, L., Müller, R.D., Albert, R. and Dufour, F., 2006, Ellipsis 3D: a particle-in-cell finite element hybrid code for modelling mantle convection and lithospheric deformation, Computers and Geosciences, 32, 1769-1779. View other EarthByte animations on our YouTube channel

Global plate and continental velocities since Pangea breakup

This animation portrays the motion of continents (grey, yellow, orange and red) and oceanic plates (blue) since Pangea breakup from 200 million years ago. The model is a modified version of the Seton et al. Citation Zahirovic, S., R. Müller, M. Seton, and N. Flament (2015), Tectonic speed limits from plate kinematic reconstructions, Earth and … Read more…

Gondwana breakup and the Western Tethys (regional view)

By popular demand, Sabin Zahirovic provides a few more GPlates animations of the breakup of Pangea and Gondwana since 200 million years ago. This animation is in a hemispherical view and is based on the model of Seton et al. (2012). All the files needed to make this animation are in the GPlates SampleData folder, … Read more…

The Virtual Observatory: Deep time travel in the Pacific, presented by Dietmar Müller

Deep Time Travel — it’s not just science fiction! The EarthByte Group is developing an Experimental Virtual Planet to explore Earth’s geological evolution, enabling deep time travel from your own laptop, anywhere, anytime, and all without a police box. In this illustrated talk, Australian Laureate Fellow Professor Dietmar Müller reports on the experimental work of … Read more…

EarthByte Group makes the finals of the Eureka Prize

The EarthByte group is a finalist for the Eureka Prize from the Australian Museum, for its development of GPlates software! The prize is awarded annually for research innovation and GPlates was nominated for providing a “experimental virtual planet” to investigate geological systems through deep time. You can read more about the Eureka Prize here. Watch the … Read more…

Plate reconstructions of Southeast Asia

This animation is from our recent work on Southeast Asian plate reconstructions. Read the peer-reviewed paper CitationZahirovic, S., M. Seton, and R. Müller (2014), The Cretaceous and Cenozoic tectonic evolution of Southeast Asia, Solid Earth (EGU), 5, 227-273. doi: 10.5194/se-5-227-2014. View similar animations on our EarthByte YouTube channel

Continental rifting in 3D using Underworld

This model shows the evolution of a continental rift from inception to breakup, using the Underworld numerical modelling framework. The left and right walls of the model are pulled apart from each other at a total rate of 2 cm/yr to induce rifting. Courtesy of Luke Mondy, EarthByte. View other EarthByte animations on our YouTube … Read more…