This professional/technical book, How the Earth’s Plate Tectonic Cycle Works, by John Carman, takes a fresh look at the unifying theory of geology: plate tectonics. While a cyclic tectonic system is universally accepted, Carman goes beyond simple interactions of the earth’s mantle and crust, but adds intriguing arguments for the involvement of the earth’s core in the tectonic cycle.
Using an igneous petrologic approach, he argues for magmatic interactions, applying mineral pressure and temperature phases and associations among mineral species. Contributing to his explanation are assumed geochemical fractionation processes within the molten mantle and core resulting in density currents, thus adding to the commonly attributed heat convective explanation. Carman further posits that friction between moving immiscible magmatic systems could add to the earth’s internal heat budget, but neglects to offer geophysical evidence involving conceivable heat flow calculations for his argument.
The author’s writing style is extremely difficult to follow. Spelling errors abound, a very unusual citation system is used, acronyms are not explained, and complex and run-on sentences could benefit extensively from quality editing. Even for those well versed in the subject matter, reading the text will be a challenge due to the convoluted sentence structures. Figures in the text are poorly reproduced and occasionally show remnant moire patterns (background pixelation) from improper scanning algorithms. On a final note, the manuscript in a rewritten and edited form might be better suited for publication in a respected peer reviewed scientific monograph rather than a stand-alone self-publication.
Also available as an ebook.