This web-based laboratory material explores the ways in which heat controls mantle dynamics, how seismic waves move through the mantle and may be used to investigate its properties, and how the mantle interacts with the drifting crustal plates above it. Visualizations include surface heat flow and topography, an animation of seismic waves traveling through Earth’s interior, shallow mantle tomography and surface topography, and examples of mantle tomography from Central America are offered. In addition, a two-dimensional, single layer mantle convection model and a diagram of the driving forces of plate tectonics further illustrate the concepts presented. Several sections have questions for students with links to the answers.
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