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More Tinkering by Curt Gabrielson

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Chapter 17 Plate Tectonics

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Fathom how the ground beneath us moves.

we named our kid after the tallest mountain in Timor: Ramelau. At 3,000 meters (10,000 feet), it’s 800 meters taller than Australia’s tallest mountain. The continent of Australia is enormous compared to the island of Timor—200 times the area—and has its own continental shelf under the sea. But still, Ramelau is not hard to understand if you believe in plate tectonics.

When I say “believe in,” I’m not being silly or religious. I’m saying when scientists look at data that have been collected over decades of research, they can decide that one theory is more effective than ...

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