Tectonic plate


the two sub-layers of the earth’s crust (lithosphere) that move, float, and sometimes fracture and whose interaction causes continental drift, earthquakes, volcanoes, mountains, and oceanic trenches


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  • Tectonic plates

    tectonic plates [(tek-ton-ik)] The dozen or so plates that make up the surface of the Earth. Their motion is studied in the field of plate tectonics. Note: The plates are not the same as the continents. The North American plate, for example, extends from the middle of the Atlantic Ocean to the west coast of […]

  • Tectonics

    noun, (used with a singular verb) 1. the science or art of assembling, shaping, or ornamenting materials in construction; the constructive arts in general. 2. structural geology. noun (functioning as sing) 1. the art and science of construction or building 2. the study of the processes by which the earth’s crust has attained its present […]

  • Tectonism

    noun, Geology. 1. diastrophism (def 1).

  • Tectorial

    noun, plural tectums, tecta [tek-tuh] /ˈtɛk tə/ (Show IPA). Anatomy, Zoology. 1. a rooflike structure. tectorial tec·to·ri·al (těk-tôr’ē-əl) adj. Of, relating to, or characteristic of a tectorium. tectum tec·tum (těk’təm) n. pl. tec·ta (-tə) A rooflike structure of the body, especially the dorsal part of the mesencephalon. tec’tal (-təl) adj.

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