An African Rift

24 May 2018
by africanmaths.org

A rift that can break the continent apart appeared in Africa.

Africa Rift

The earth literally opened up in Kenya. A huge rift appeared there. Scientists say this rift is about to tear the continent apart sooner or later. This won't happen fast, but even now the rift is looking like the one from the Apocalypse movies. And it keeps getting bigger.

It is always curious to watch how the Earth changes. In our times, the planet regularly gives scientists and simple viewers reasons to turn cameras on. A new island has appeared in the Pacific Ocean recently, and its evolution gives the opportunity to track the changes that are happening on Mars in a real-time mode. And now, Africa gives them another surprise.

A huge rift of several miles of length appeared in Kenya. It is 15 meters deep and 6 meters wide. Scientists have been keeping an eye on this place since long ago. This is where the border of two tectonic plates is situated, and this border is now unstable due to the underground volcanic activity.

'The rift can cut the continent in two parts in future', say the members of the Fault Dynamic research group. The Sun mentioned their words already.

The division won't happen soon. Despite the fact that the huge rift goes on growing, it is going to need 50 million years to tear Africa apart. Still, the rift is dangerous already. There is an important local road passing through it, and nobody knows yet if the road would go underground or turn into a "bridge".

According to the scientists, a similar rift led to the division of South America and Africa 138 million years ago.

Still, not all colleagues agree with the conclusion of researchers. The geologist David Bressan told Forbes that the community could confuse things because of their fast conclusions, and in fact that is not a kind of a rift able to tear Africa apart.

Bressan says that there had been no seismological station catching underground activities in the area before the rift appeared, and that couldn't happen. But there were heavy rains which could wash out the rift like that.

As usual, only time can show who of the scientists was right. In this case, we are going to need a lot of time. But you can watch an epic video showing how the event had happened. 

 
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