"To understand something you must be able to measure it"
Robert (Bob) Maurer
Bob Maurer graduated as a mining metallurgist in South Africa and worked in gold uranium and diamond mines before studying electro-chemistry at the University of London. This took him into research projects on the growth of single crystals of Alpha –Uranium crystals and the hydrogen embrittlement of high tensile steels, and to a career in engineering. After a number of jobs related to fluid flow measurement he set up Maurer Instruments Ltd where he developed a range special purpose Turbine flow meters and a range of Crude Oil Sampling equipment in addition to meter calibration systems. Bob has delivered a large number of papers on Flow Measurement, Meter Proving and Crude Oil Sampling in the UK, Europe and the USA. His main hobbies are now related to mineral and fossil collecting. It was this hobby that took Bob to the Bolivian Andes and led him on to look at the forces associated with Tectonic Movements.
Bob has given talks to HHGS and other geology groups on several topics of interest to him:
- An engineers approach to the forces responsible for tectonic and orogenic movements (December 2019)
- Our Heritage - Stone Tools and Rock Art
- Did climatic changes in Europe give rise to the rock carvings in North Africa?
- Mining for Rare Minerals in Mexico
The Rotating Earth and Plate Tectonics
This work explores the nature and origin of the forces responsible for the unrelenting unidirectional movements of continental sized masses away from what was Pangea c. 275 Ma years ago to their present positions.
The analysis given demonstrates that the forces responsible for tectonic movements are related to the rotational velocity of the Earth which is dependent on the Sun’s gravitational pull on the asymmetrical positioning of the Earth’s centre of mass.
The resultant unbalanced rotation gives rise to the Earth’s wobble and the significant circumferential forces that move the continental masses. It is these tectonic movements in which continental and oceanic crusts are continuously forced into the mantle, that forever ensures that the lithosphere is recycled and regenerated.
Furthermore, the offset ‘centre of mass’ gives rise to the generated and tilted N-S principal axis of rotation that applies to all the planets. This action also yields a viable explanation regarding why all the planets (Venus apart) rotate in the same direction as the Sun.
The sight of undisturbed sedimentary rocks on the top of the Bolivian Andes in 2001 prompted this research into the magnitude of the unrelenting forces associated with plate tectonics.
My wife Betty who put up with my obsession with tectonics to the exclusion of all other domestic matters.
David J. Tompkins for valuable help with mathematical modelling.
Professor Richard Howarth, University College, London, for his help with the statistical analysis of the tensile stress forces.
Dr John Crocker for help with the verification of the mathematical analysis and encouragement.
Allan Wheeler, retired Government Scientist, for factual verification, constructive discussions & editing.
Dr Stuart Harker, Professor Emeritus, Heriot-Watt University, Edinburgh, for factual corrections and encouragement.
Dr Shigeyuki Suzuki, Professor Emeritus, Department of Earth Sciences, Okayama University for factual advice, editing, illustrations, and encouragement.
Dr Richard Moody, Professor Emeritus, Surrey University, Guildford, whose field trips inspired my love of geology.
The late Dr RF (Bob) Symes, Natural History Museum, who gave me a detailed insight into mineralogy.
Natalie Batten (BSc) for formatting and editing.
Viki Sizgoric for the original illustrations.
Jean Sippy and Ruth Weinberg for editing.
Brian Warshaw for collating the dates and correspondence associated with this project.
I also thank all my friends at the various Local Groups and affiliates of the Geologists’ Association and the Harrow and Hillingdon Geological Society for the encouragement they offered.