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40 terms

Rocks and Soil Vocabulary

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rock
any solid mass of mineral or mineral-like matter that occurs naturally as a part of our life
igneous rock
a rock formed by the crystallization of molten magma
sedimentary rock
a rock formed from the weathering products of preexisting rocks that have been transported, deposited, compacted, and cemented
metamorphic rock
a rock formed by the alteration of preexisting rock deep within Earth (but still in a sold state) by heat, pressure, and/or chemically active fluids
rock cycle
a model that illustrates the origin of three basic rocks types and the interrelatedness of Earth materials and processes
magma
a body of molten rock found at depth, inducing any dissolved gases and crystals
lava
magma that reaches Earth's surface
weathering
the disintegration and decomposition of rock at or near Earth's surface
sediments
loose particles created by the weathering and erosion of rock, by chemical precipitation form solution in water, or from the secretions of organisms and transported by water, wind or glaciers
intrusive igneous rock
igneous rock that formed below Earth's surface
extrusive igneous rock
igneous rock that has formed on Earth's surface
porphyritic texture
an igneous texture consisting of larger crystals embedded in a matrix of much smaller crystals
granite composition
a compositional group of igneous rocks that indicate a rock is composed almost entirely of light-colored silicates, mainly quartz and feldspar
basaltic composition
a compositional group of igneous rocks indication that the rock contains substantial dark silicate minerals and calcium rich plagioclase feldspar
andesitic composition
the composition of igneous rocks lying between felsic and mafic
ultramafic
igneous rock composed mainly of iron and magnesium-rick minerals
erosion
the incorporation and transportation of material by mobile agent, such as water, wind, or ice
deposition
the process by which an agent of erosion loses energy and drops the sediment it is carrying
compaction
process by which sediments are squeezed together by the weigh of overlying materials driving out water
cementation
solidification of sediments by the deposition of dissolved minerals in the tiny spaces between the sedimentary particles
clastic sedimentary rock
a sedimentary rock make of broken fragments pf preexisting rock
chemical sedimentary rock
sedimentary rock consisting of material that was precipitated from water by either inorganic or organic means
metamorphism
the change in mineral composition and texture of a rock subjected to high temperature and pressure within the Earth
contact metamorphism
changes in rock caused by the heat from a nearby magma body
regional metamorphism
metamorphism associated with large-scale mountain-building processes
hydrothermal solution
the hot, watery solution that escapes form a mass of magma during the later stages of crystallization; Such solutions may alter the surrounding rock
foliated metamorphic rock
metamorphic rock with texture that gives the rock a layered appearance
nonfoliated metamorphic rock
metamorphic rock that does not exhibit a banded or layered appearance
mechanical weathering
the physical disintegration of rock, resulting in smaller fragments
frost wedging
the mechanical breakup of rock caused by the expansion of freezing water in cracks and crevices
talus
an accumulation of rock debris at the base of a cliff
exfoliation
type of weathering caused by the reducing pressure on a rock surface, allowing slabs of outer rock to break off in layers
chemical weathering
the process by which the internal structure of a mineral is altered by the removal and/or addition of elements
mass movement
the downslope movement of rock, regolith, and soil under the direct influence of gravity
rockfall
occurs when rocks or rocks fragments fall freely through the air; common on steep slopes
rockslide
occurs when a mass of rock slides rapidly downslope along planes of weakness
slump
the downward slipping of a mass of rock or unconsolidated material moving as a unit along a curved surface
mudflow
quickly moving downhill flow of soil and rock fragments containing a large amount of water
earthflow
slow-moving downslope movements of water-saturated, clay-rick sediment, most characteristic of humid regions
creep
the slow downhill movement of soil and regolith