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Question #

What do you understand by the theory of 'continental drift? Discuss the prominent evidences in its support.

The recent cyclone on east coast of India was called 'Phailin'. How are the tropical cyclones named across the world? Elaborate.

ChatGPT Answer #

The theory of continental drift suggests that the Earth's continents were once joined together in a single landmass and have since drifted apart over millions of years. It was proposed by Alfred Wegener in the early 20th century and was later supported by various pieces of evidence.

1. Fit of the Continents: The coastlines of Africa and South America seem to fit together like puzzle pieces, suggesting that they were once connected. Similarly, other continents like North America and Europe, or South America and Antarctica, show similar fits.

2. Fossil Correlations: The presence of identical fossils of plants and animals on different continents that are now separated by vast oceans indicates that these organisms were once living in the same region or environment.

3. Rock Types and Geological Structures: Similar rock structures and formations on different continents provide evidence of the connections between them. The Appalachian Mountains in North America and the Caledonian Mountains in Europe are a notable example of such similar geological features.

4. Paleoclimatic evidence: The discovery of ancient glacial deposits in regions that currently have tropical climates is evidence that these regions were once located in polar or temperate zones when the continents were joined.

5. Magnetic Signatures: The alignment of magnetic minerals in rocks on different continents provides further support for continental drift. These minerals align with the Earth's magnetic field at the time of their formation, which has shifted over geological time.

As for the naming of tropical cyclones worldwide, it follows a standardized procedure set by the World Meteorological Organization (WMO). Different regions follow different naming systems. For example:

1. North Atlantic and Eastern North Pacific: These tropical cyclones are named using a predefined list of names that alternate between male and female names. The list is maintained and updated by the WMO.

2. Indian Ocean: The Indian Ocean region, including the recent cyclone 'Phailin,' uses a list of names proposed by member countries surrounding the ocean. Each country contributes a set of names, and they are used sequentially.

3. Western North Pacific: Tropical cyclones in this region are assigned names given by the Japan Meteorological Agency. The names are usually chosen from a list of Japanese, Vietnamese, and Filipino names.

These naming systems help in quickly identifying and communicating about tropical cyclones, making it easier for meteorologists and the general public to track and respond to these severe weather events.

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