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Protoplanetary Earth Formation: Further Evidence and Geophysical Implications

By J. Marvin Herndon

Abstract

Recently, I showed that the “standard model ” of solar system formation is wrong, yielding the contradiction of terrestrial planets having insufficiently massive cores, and showed instead the consistency of Eucken’s 1944 concept of planets raining out in the central regions of hot, gaseous protoplanets. Planets generally consist of concentric shells of matter, but there has been no adequate geophysical explanation to account for the Earth’s non-contiguous crustal continental rock layer, except by assuming that the Earth in the distant past was smaller and subsequently expanded. Here, I show that formation of Earth, from within a Jupiter-like protoplanet, will account for the compression of the rocky Earth to about 64 % of its current radius, yielding a closed, contiguous continental shell with concomitant Earth expansion commencing upon the subsequent removal of its protoplanetary gaseous shell. I now propose that Earth expansion progresses, not from spreading at mid-oceanic ridges as usually assumed, but primarily by the formation of expansion cracks (often near continental margins) and the in-filling of those cracks with basalt (produced from volume expansion in the mantle), which is extruded mainly at midoceanic ridges, solidifies and traverses the ocean floor by gravitational creep to regions of lower gravitational potential energy, ultimately plunging downward into distant expansion cracks, emulating subduction. Viewed from that perspective, most of the evidence presented in support of plate tectonics supports Earth expansion; mantle convection is not required, and the timescale for Earth expansion is no longer constrained to about 200 million years, the maximum age of the current ocean floor

Topics: Key Words, protoplanet, protoplanetary Earth, Earth formation, Earth expansion, plate tectonics
Year: 2004
OAI identifier: oai:CiteSeerX.psu:10.1.1.352.2822
Provided by: CiteSeerX
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