Revealing the early seafloor spreading history between India and Australia



The Perth Abyssal Plain, a section of ocean floor that lies off the western coast of Australia, formed as India and Australia broke away from what had been the supercontinent Gondwana, beginning around 130 million years ago. Oceanic crust within the Perth Abyssal Plain is the only region of preserved seafloor that directly records the early history of relative motion between India and Australia, but the lack of magnetic data collected in that region had made it difficult for scientists to validate tectonic models of the motion of those continents.