View Full Version : Plate tectonics without any water.

2013-Apr-01, 10:48 PM
I read on an article that plate tectonics might be possible on a super Earth without the need on any body of water. Would this be true or does it sound like a fantasy?

John Mendenhall
2013-Apr-02, 12:06 AM
Gotta link to the article? We're high and dry without it.

2013-Apr-02, 12:59 AM
It might be possible if the core was hot enough, and the crust thin enough. Like John said, help to have the article.

2013-Apr-02, 01:00 AM
While a lubricant other than water seems unlikely, possibly it occurs frequently in other solar systems. Neil

distraction tactics
2013-Apr-05, 02:31 AM
Water is instrumental in the process of partial melting, which is a critical mechanism in forming continental crust. Could it be possible? Maybe, but another mechanism would be required.

2013-Apr-05, 02:03 PM
You might not need a body of water...a moderately hot super-Earth with a atmosphere rich in water vapor might hydrate enough surface rock. Trapped hydrogen from a hydrogen-rich atmosphere might lead to temporary formation of water in deep rock if the equilibrium points of the involved reactions shift around just right.