Testing the Inertial Interchange Hypothesis, Shaler Subgroup, Victoria Island, Canada

Regions: Inuvialuit Settlement Region

Tags: physical sciences, tectonic movement, stratigraphy, continental plates

Principal Investigator: Maloof, Adam (1)
Licence Number: 13596
Organization: Harvard University
Licensed Year(s): 2004
Issued: May 20, 2004
Project Team: D.A.D. Eva

Objective(s): The inertial interchange hypothesis states that, superimposed on place techtonic motions, rapid and choreographed drift of all continents may have occurred numerous times between 900 and 500 million years ago as the Earth adjusted to drive positive mantle mass anomalies to the equator and negative mass anomalies to the poles. The consequences of such large and rapid plate motions (up to 90 degrees in a few million years) would be global and profound. The researchers believe they may have uncovered geologic evidence of such an event in the sedimentary record of Svalbard, arctic Norway. This project is an integrated physical, chemical, and magnetic stratigraphic study of the time correlative Upper Shaler Supergroup on Victoria Island in order to test the inertial interchange hypothesis and to investigate its consequences on the biosphere, global carbon cycle, and sea level.