Might Ontong Java oceanic plateau be an example of such plateau giving rise to terranes, as for along North American coast? Does adjacent or overlying sedimentary strata, denote it’s oceanic source? When N.America was closer to equater 250 myrs ago, might oceanic plateau have been carried in from western Pacific via plate tectonics, giving rise to terranes on western N. American coast? Might oceanic plateau also give rise to new continental shelve, such as southeast Asian continental shelve (but of oceanic origin), if over 100-200 Myrs, and if it were carried to Asian continental shelve? Thus might some of continental shelve be of oceanic origin, such as from oceanic plateau, rather than the assumption of continental origin?
Drilling into continental shelve through sentiments would indicate it’s oceanic basaltic origin. Thus in principle, might continents arise not just from subduction, and plate collision, but also in part from upthrust of oceanic plateau and it’s movement to continental shelve and to continents? However wouldn’t a heavier oceanic plate subduct under the lighter continental shelve? In contrast, for colliding continents, one can have mountain building; for example Ural mountains. So for similar weight oceanic plates, might one have mountain building? However for western Pacific, one has examples of subduction of an oceanic plate under another, with trench formation.
Might one also drill into Ontong Java (~6000 ft?) now, as a convenient representative sample of what deeper ocean basin (15,000 ft?) bio-mass might be like? That is whether one has a gradient or a constant carbon content for deeper levels, with the assumption that all carbon is being recycled; hence an indicator of life’s abundance. The below reference would seem consistent with a gradient for bio-signature at a somewhat greater depth.
Perhaps alternatively one could spectroscopically look for amide linkage for amino acids; a better proxy for extant life. One could examine removed core, or else in situ laser and spectroscopic examination, proximal to burr head.
Science 24 July 2015: Vol. 349 no. 6246 pp. 420-424. DOI: 10.1126/science.aaa6882 Exploring deep microbial life in coal-bearing sediment down to ~2.5 km below the ocean floor F. Inagaki, K.-U. Hinrichs, et al