CHRISTIAN DARKIN / SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY CHRISTIAN DARKIN / SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY
Pannotia. Artwork of prehistoric Earth with its land mass formed as one supercontinent, known as Pannotia, or the Vendian supercontinent. This is how the Earth was thought to look between 600-540 million years ago. Pannotia was thought to exist for only a short period, before splitting into four continents: Laurentia, Baltica, Siberia and Gondwana. These continents would later join again to form the supercontinent known as Pangaea 300 million years ago. Continents come together or break apart over the surface of the Earth as a result of movements in the fluid mantle below the crust. Several such supercontinents have formed in the 4.5-billion-year history of the Earth.
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