Zealandia: A hidden continent found by Geologists

Earlier today a group of geologist release a report which indicates that there may be a new continent called Zealandia , that means now there is no seven continents in the world but now Earth has eight continents. The group of geologist now believe that New Zealand and surrounded island maybe re-classified soon, before the discovery of this new continent all are these come under Australia known as Australasia.

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Zealandia shown on a map of world continents. Photograph: GNS Science

As the islands are connected by submerged continental crust, which is separate and distinct from Australia and Antarctica, the geologists argue that they should form their own continent — even if 94% of that 1.9 million-square-mile land mass (approximately the area of greater India) is underwater.

mercator-zealandia-map-web1

Satellite maps made using Earth’s gravitational field clearly show that Zealandia is a coherent geographical feature stretching from near Australia’s northeastern coast well past the islands of New Zealand, Mortimer said. Sea-floor samples reveal that Zealandia consists of light continental crust and not the dark volcanic rocks that make up nearby underwater plateaus. The area seems to be structurally intact, rather than a mash-up of different continental-crust fragments.

The founder group of new continent Zealandia, the geologist spend more than two decades to collect the enough data before they can make the cases for Zealandia. They collated their findings in a study called “Zealandia: Earth’s Hidden Continent,” published in the Geological Society of America’s journal, GSA Today.

Zealandia illustrates that the large and the obvious in natural science can be overlooked,” the researchers say in the conclusion of their study. “Based on various lines of geological and geophysical evidence, particularly those accumulated in the last two decades… Zealandia is not a collection of partly submerged continental fragments but is a coherent 4.9 Mkm2 continent.

If you could pull the plug on the world’s oceans, then Zealandia would probably long ago have been recognized as a continent” said team leader Nick Mortimer, a geologist at GNS Science in Dunedin, New Zealand.

Meanwhile there is no official announcement have been made on new continent, the researchers of this discovery are crossing their fingers in hope that more of fellow colleagues agree on this and vote to make Zealandia the earth continent of planet Earth.

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