Accession Number : ADA113777

Title :   Platonic Plate Tectonics: On the Regularity of the Distribution of 'Triple Points' on the Earth's Surface.

Descriptive Note : Technical rept.,

Corporate Author : PRINCETON UNIV NJ DEPT OF STATISTICS

Personal Author(s) : Arnold,Anthony J ; Siegel,Andrew F

PDF Url : ADA113777

Report Date : Nov 1981

Pagination or Media Count : 13

Abstract : The geometry of the division of the earth's surface by the major tectonic plates is remarkably regular and symmetric, and several models based on the platonic solids have been proposed to describe this pattern. Under such a model, the triple points, those points at the boundary of three plates, will have an exceptionally regular distribution. We have tested the distribution of the major triple points using a Monte Carlo computational approach and found it to depart significantly from random, independent and uniform placement of points. Given the natural human tendency to see patterns in situations where, in reality, only unstructured randomness actually exists, the formal testing of hypotheses helps to conform the validity of these structural geologic models. (Author)

Descriptors :   *Tectonics, Plates, Global, Geometry, Solids, Polygons, Mathematical models, Statistical tests, Monte Carlo method

Subject Categories : Geology, Geochemistry and Mineralogy

Distribution Statement : APPROVED FOR PUBLIC RELEASE