Opinions on Continental collision

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For general context, see Plate tectonics.

Continental collision is a phenomenon of the plate tectonics of Earth that occurs at convergent boundaries. Continental collision is a variation on the fundamental process of subduction, whereby the subduction zone is destroyed, mountains produced, and two continents sutured together. Continental collision is known only from this planet and is an interesting example of how our different crusts, oceanic and continental, behave during subduction.

Continental collision is not an instantaneous event, but may take several tens of millions of years before the faulting and folding caused by collision stop. Collision between India and Asia has been going on for about 50 million years already and shows no signs of abating. Collision between East and West Gondwana to form the East African Orogen took about 100 million years from beginning (610 Ma) to end (510 Ma). Collision between Gondwana and Laurasia to form Pangea occurred in a relatively brief interval, about 50 million years long.


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