27 terms

Time and Earth Systems

Essential vocabulary for Friedland and Relyea Environmental Science 2nd Edition - Module 24 and 25.
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Terms in this set (...)

Core
The innermost zone of Earth's interior, composed mostly of iron and nickel. It includes a liquid outer layer and a solid inner layer.
Mantle
The layer of Earth above the core, containing magma.
Magma
Molten rock inside the earth
Asthenosphere
The layer of Earth located in the outer part of the mantle, composed of semi-molten rock.
Lithosphere
The outermost layer of Earth, including the mantle and crust.
Hot spots
In geology, a place where molten material from Earth's mantle reaches the lithosphere.
Plate Tectonics
Theory that the lithosphere is divided into tectonic plates that move around on the asthenosphere.
Subduction
The process of one crustal plate passing under another.
Divergent Plate Boundary
An area beneath the ocean where tectonic plates move away from each other.
Seafloor Spreading
The formation of new ocean crust as a result of magma pushing upward and outward from Earth's mantle to the surface.
Convergent Plate Boundary
An area where plates move toward one another and collide.
Transform Fault Boundary
An area where plates move sideways past each other.
Fault
A fracture in rock caused by a movement of Earth's crust.
Rock Cycle
The geologic cycle governing the constant formation, alteration, and destruction of rock material that results from tectonics, weathering, and erosion, among other processes.
Igenous Rock
Rock formed directly from magma.
Intrusive igneous rock
Igneous rock that forms when magma rises up and cools in a place underground
extrusive igneous rock
Rock that forms when magma cools above the surface of Earth.
Fracture
In geology, a crack that occurs in rock as it cools.
Sedimentary Rock
Rock that forms when sediments such as muds, sands, or gravels are compressed by overlying sediments.
Metamorphic Rock
Rock that forms when sedimentary rock, igneous rock, or other metamorphic rock is subjected to high temperature and pressure.
crust
In geology, the chemically distinct outermost layer of the lithosphere.
Fault zone
A large expanse of rock where a fault has occurred.
Tectonic cycle
The sum of the processes that build up and break down the lithosphere.
Radioactive decay
The spontaneous release of material from the nucleus of radioactive isotopes
Half-life
The time it takes for one-half of the original radioactive parent atoms to decay.
Relative Time
The determination of the sequence in which events occurred, relative to each other.
Absolute time
The method of recording events that identifies the actual date of an event, such as when a rock is formed

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