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Geodynamics is the general term for models of the large-scale behavior of the Earth. These are usually defined mathematically and solved by computation, although ‘analog’ (scaled) experiments are possible. Aspects explored in many geodynamic models include the solid-state convection of the mantle, driven by thermally induced density contrasts; the evolution of the magnetic field due to outer core behavior; and the elastic and viscous response of the lithosphere during deformation near plate margins. Some key (but generalized) aspects of geodynamic models are: - gravity couples to density contrasts to give rise to stress; - rock rheology (relationship between imposed stress and consequent deformation of solid rock); and - temperature as a function of heat generation, conduction, and movement of material (advection). Geodynamic models also include the liquid parts of the Earth in models of the outer core, models of magma generation and movement, and models for flow of aqueous fluids in the upper part of the Earth.

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