Tag Archives | Ethiopia

A New African Ocean?

For over the past 5 years, scientific researchers have been observing an ocean in the making.  Scientists at the Royal Society, claim that the African continent will be split in two based on a 60 kilometer crack in the Earth’s surface in Ethiopia.  Tim Wright, the lead researcher, estimates that the process of forming a new ocean will take approximately ten billion years.  The crack is caused by molten rock slowly rising from deep below the Earth’s surface.  Matt McGrath of the BBC goes into detail:

“Dr James Hammond, a seismologist from the University of Bristol – who has been working in Afar – says that parts of the region are below sea level and the ocean is only cut off by about a 20-metre block of land in Eritrea.

“Eventually this will drift apart,” he told the BBC World Service. “The sea will flood in and will start to create this new ocean.

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Giant Crack in Africa Will Create a New Ocean

By LiveScience Staff

A 35-mile rift in the desert of Ethiopia will likely become a new ocean eventually, researchers now confirm.

The crack, 20 feet wide in spots, opened in 2005 and some geologists believed then that it would spawn a new ocean. But that view was controversial, and the rift had not been well studied.

A new study involving an international team of scientists and reported in the journal Geophysical Research Letters finds the processes creating the rift are nearly identical to what goes on at the bottom of oceans, further indication a sea is in the region’s future.

The same rift activity is slowly parting the Red Sea, too…

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