Plate Tectonics

What would you think if you knew that the rocks found on the Brazilian and African highlands are very similar, and that identical fossils were found on different continents?

Have the continents ever been united in the past?

Now look at the picture below. Note that the continents fit together like puzzle pieces. This and other evidence suggests that continents may have been part of a single set of rocks in the past. This theory is called continental drift theory.

The theory of Continental Drift was proposed in 1912 by the German scientist Alfred Wegener, who said that millions of years ago there was a single continent called Pangeia, which was surrounded by a single ocean called Pantalassa.

In times before the Continental Drift theory, other theories have been proposed by scientists who also realized the fact, but were unsuccessful in their discoveries, as they did not resonate.

According to Continental Drift, Pangeia would have slowly broken into two continents called Laurasia, located to the north, and Gondwana, located to the south.