At https://phys.org/news/2021-01-geologic-history-written-garnet-sand.html … the eastern edge of New Guinea was or is a plate boundary it is thought and has therefore captured a bit of geological interest, not least because of location in a tropical region. The idea is implanted in the theory that New Guinea and Australia are a single plate [with a few bitty bits tacked on] and moved enmasse from a former Gondwana location, formerly attached to India, and Antarctica, and moved northwards to kick up against the Asian plates. Conversely, in an expanding earth model it is the oceans that have grown and the land masses remain fixed. The problem with Plate Tectonics is getting these huge lumps of land moving across what are now oceans and seas but one can do wonders with computer simulation. At SIS we do not support one over the other but are always interested when the subject of Plate Tectonics is mentioned as it remains largely an hypothesis that has yet to be proved. This link is to research that claims to have found proof of subduction at a plate boundary and therefore is worth reading. It is worth mentioning at the outset that Plate Tectonics as fact is what is currently taught at seats of learning. In addition, the photograph of the lead author reminds me of a niece [currently living in Canada], the resemblance is quite striking. However, Suzanne Baldwin is an American and leader of a team of geologists that have worked over several seasons at the New Guinea location. The initial assumption is that as a plate boundary, subduction processes must have been going on per mainstream thinking. Hence, the idea is to look for evidence of subduction on the ground – in the gneiss rocks for example. However, the researchers hit a jackpot it would seem as they claim not only that a certain rock formation subducted but there is evidence that rock has also been exhumed, in a sedimentary layer of garnet sand which can be seen on the beach [see image at link]. We are told that over time plate boundaries can change location, and rocks that have subducted can be exhumed. This research is likely to figure highly in future Plate Tectonics literature as such evidence is currently short on the ground.
At https://phys.org/news/2021-01-icebergs-key-sequence-ice-age.html … concerns a research paper at www.nature.com/articles/s41586-020-03094-7 … which is another kind of sequencing. A sequencing of several ideas in order to create a bigger more whole idea. The research came about as there is a major problem in Ice Age theory, quite how orbital changes triggered them. The idea is reasonable from a mainstream viewpoint but the actual control knob that pushed the earth from a warm system into a cold one has yet to be dreamed up. You don't get that idea from text books or popular books on the subject. They are authoritative as if it is all and done and dusted. This research paper proves it is not but claims it has the solution to the problem. Milankovitch obviously realised that the quickest way to get an Ice Age, or the appearance of an Ice Age from a Eurocentric point of view, was to shift the poles. However, that was out of the question in his day as uniformitarianism strictly forbid such a trick. He therefore created the same effects as a pole shift by plotting the orbit of the earth around the sun and suggested that at certain moments it would be reasonable that earth did indeed become colder, and presumably an Ice Age could have been induced. It was a remarkable piece of mathematics but the actual mechanics of an Ice Age scenario remain elusive, even to this day [in spite of what anyone might tell you otherwise]. The researchers involved in this paper no doubt firmly believe that Ice Ages as characterised by mainstream did exist as that is what they learnt when obtaining their degrees. Hence, there must be a mechanism to make the theory work. Ice Ages are stilll a theory it would seem, otherwise there would be no need of this research paper. What they appear to have done is gel a couple of theories together in order to create a mechanism for the process. These include the idea that large amounts of fresh water floating north or south into the Atlantic can trigger changes in the ocean circulation system, as well as an acceptance that oxygen isotopes of foraminifera are a reliable thermometer of ocean water, with the icing on the cake of co2 dragged down from the atmosphere and absorbed by the oceans which in turn caused the globe to cool. No comment on the latter as that might be an add-on, although it is surprising they should suggest co2 in the oceans has an atmospheric origin as it has recently been discovered that lots of volcanoes and earthquakes occur beneath the waves and these are adequate to explain any co2 found in the oceans. The foraminifera isotopes are not regarded as entirely reliable nowadays and as far as the ocean circulation system is concerned, even the scientist who dreamt it up has reservations. It requires a lot of fresh water – which brings us around to the first of the chain reactions – icebergs melting around Antartica and somehow being able to move further northwards over time, deeper into the southern Atlantic and therefore able to move fresh water uncontaminated by salt into the pathway of the ocean circulation system. This in turn also relies on a much earlier paper that claimed ice melted around Antarctica earlier than around the northern nether regions at the end of the last glacial. There might be a good reason for that as a shift in pole position would require the West Antarctic peninsular to have been in a warmer position than it is now, but that is an idea that must never be mentioned. It may have nothing to do with it. No doubt this paper will be quoted in future papers on the subject, and perhaps also in critical papers on Ice Age theory. Such research makes the world go round. Worth keeping a copy for later reference.