ChaCha

Somehow, while I was looking up information on the mechanics of back-arc basin formation, I ended up on ChaCha. For the unaware…

ChaCha gives free, real-time answers to any question both online at ChaCha.com and through mobile phones by either texting “ChaCha” (242-242) or using one of our mobile apps. Through our unique “ask-a-smart-friend” format, ChaCha has become the leading answers service with more than a billion questions answered to date all in a fun, conversational format perfect for those in need of fast, free answers while on-the-go.

I ended up in the Earth Science section because I was curious, and I was disappointed with what I found. ChaCha may offer quick answers, but not particularly great or accurate answers. So to kill some time…

Q: What did Wegner argue about glacial deposits based on what he observed?

Wegner, as we ALL know, was the main guy behind the theory of continental drift. He had a bunch of lines of evidence to support this theory, and one of them was his observations of glacial deposits.

What Wegner noticed, was that when you looked at the glacial deposits of the southern hemisphere continents, they matched up across continent borders. Similarly to the way that other geological phenomenon did such as fossils, coal beds, etc.

So, Wegner argued that the glacial deposits were once part of one glacial system when the continents were once joined.

Q: Why is the World not round?

I assume this question is asking why the Earth is actually an oblate spheroid as opposed to being perfectly wrong. ChaCha’s answer says why celestial objects are generally round, which doesn’t answer the question.

The Earth is generally depicted as being perfectly round when in actuality, it is not. It’s an oblate spheroid, meaning that it’s a sphere that looks like it’s being pinched at the poles so that the equator bulges out a little bit.

This occurs because of the rotation of the Earth. The rotation of an object results in something called centrifugal force. Centrifugal force is what you’re feeling when you take a turn at speed in a car and your body wants to move to the ‘outside’ of the turn.

In the Earth’s case, the rotation of the planet is causing it’s mass to move to the outside of it’s rotation resulting in the oblate shape of the Earth.

Q: How does sand turn to glass?

This is either a geology question or a Minecraft question. ChaCha answer neither, and fortunately Minecraft takes it’s cue from real life so both can kind of be answered at once. Sand, well, mature sand, is compositionally almost entirely composed of silica (SiO2) which is the chief component of glass.

You can read about artificial glass making somewhere else, but sand can turn into glass naturally by lightning strike. Glasses are created through a process called vitrification, and a lightning strike can cause this vitrification. When this happens it forms vein-like structures called fulgurite.

It might not look like what you think of when you think of glass, but there it is. Natural glass.

In Minecraft, you take sand, put it in the furnace, add coal and vitrify.

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