Mid-ocean ridge

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Description:
A mid-ocean ridge (MOR) is a general term for an underwater mountain system that consists of various mountain ranges (chains), typically having a valley known as a rift running along its spine, formed by plate tectonics. This type of oceanic ridge is characteristic of what is known as an oceanic spreading center, which is responsible for seafloor spreading. The uplifted seafloor results from convection currents which rise in the mantle as magma at a linear weakness in the oceanic crust, and emerge as lava, creating new crust upon cooling. A mid-ocean ridge demarcates the boundary between two tectonic plates, and consequently is termed a divergent plate boundary.

The mid-ocean ridges of the world are connected and form a single global mid-oceanic ridge system that is part of every ocean, making the mid-oceanic ridge system the longest mountain range in the world. The continuous mountain range is long (several times longer than the Andes, the longest continental mountain range), and the total length of the oceanic ridge system is long.

Description

Mid-ocean ridges are geologically active, with new magma constantly emerging onto the ocean floor and into the crust at and near rifts along the ridge axes. The crystallized magma forms new crust of basalt (known as MORB for Mid-Ocean Ridge Basalt) and gabbro.

The rocks making up the crust below the sea floor are youngest at the axis of the ridge and age with...
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