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Abstract

Experimental investigation of the solid state deformation properties of silicates at high temperatures has revealed that the deformation rate depends on the stress to a power of about 3 to 5 as well as strongly on the temperature. This highly nonlinear behavior leads to the potential of thermal runaway of the mantle's cold upper boundary layer as it peels away from the surface and sinks through the hot mantle. The additional fact that the mineral phase changes that occur at 660 km depth act as a barrier to convective flow and lead to a tendency for large episodic avalanche events compounds the potential for catastrophic dynamics. Two-dimensional finite element calculations are presented that attempt to model these strongly nonlinear phenomena. It is proposed that such a runaway episode was responsible for the Flood described in Genesis and resulted in massive global tectonic change at the earth's surface.

Keywords

Runaway subduction, Genesis flood, power-law creep, thermal runaway, catastrophic plate tectonics

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Creative Commons License

Creative Commons Attribution-Noncommercial-No Derivative Works 4.0 License
This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-Noncommercial-No Derivative Works 4.0 License.

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