Encyclopedia of Astrobiology

Living Edition
| Editors: Muriel Gargaud, William M. Irvine, Ricardo Amils, Henderson James Cleaves, Daniele Pinti, José Cernicharo Quintanilla, Michel Viso


  • Nicholas Arndt
Living reference work entry
DOI: https://doi.org/10.1007/978-3-642-27833-4_1386-3


Rodinia is the oldest known supercontinent. It existed in the Neoproterozoic, from about 1,100 to 750 Ma, and comprises the oldest portions of almost all the present-day landmasses. The North American Craton formed its core, flanked by fragments now present in northern Europe, Africa, South America, India, and Antarctica. It was probably centered in the southern hemisphere, and since it persisted through the period of extreme cold known as the Snowball Earth of the Cryogenian period, large parts of it were probably covered by ice caps. It has been suggested that the ecosphere turnover and bioradiation events in the Ediacarian and in the Cambrian could have been triggered by the consequences of the Rodinia breakup to Earth’s atmosphere and hydrosphere.

See Also


Bioorganic Chemistry Southern Hemisphere Plate Tectonic Extreme Cold North American Craton 
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Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag Berlin Heidelberg 2014

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Maison des GéosciencesLGCA, Université J. FourierSt-Martin d’HèresFrance