Voyage of the continents: The tectonic ring of fire

Voyage of the continents:The tectonic ring of fire

This episode opens with the quest for the most ancient traces of life. In Australia, geologists have found an astonishing primitive fossil formation – stromatolith – dating back 3,4 billion years. This unicellular life led to the production of massive amounts of oxygen that “rusted” the oceans creating the gigantic and famous Banded Iron Beds of
Western Australia. This total amount of oxygen present in our atmosphere !

All over Australia, fossils tell stories of the impressive itinerary undertaken by massive rock provinces : beginning one billion years ago, up to just 50 million years ago, Australia slowly separated from Africa and then fratured away from Antarctica. Today in Tasmania, we can see the remains of the continental “bridge” used by fauna to flee the Antarctic cold.

At the boundary between the indo-Australian and Pacific tectonic plates, New Zealand records about 14 000 earthquakes each year. About 200 of these are strong enough to be felt. The audience will learn about extraordinary para-vocanic phenomenon such as the Earth’s tallest geysers.

Partner(s) : Arte & Ideacom International

Broadcaster(s) : Arte

Director(s) : Christopher Hooke & Yanick Rose

Author(s) : Christopher Hooke & Yanick Rose

Year : 2012

Duration : 43 minutes

Vimeo Link