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Earth's Processes and Features

7.3.spi.11. Recognize specific physical processes that operate on the Earth's surface

Tina Le

on 8 February 2013

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Transcript of Earth's Processes and Features

Earth's Processes and Features 7.3.spi.11. Recognize specific physical processes that operate on the Earth's surface (i.e., erosion, volcanoes, earthquakes, wind and water currents, plate tectonics, and weathering.) A * What physical features are formed by tectonic plates ? * Explain how they are formed by tectonic plates . * Convergent Boundaries

* Divergent Boundaries

* Transform Boundaries Divergent Transform Convergent Tectonic plates collide at convergent boundaries. Where oceanic crust meets continental crust, the latter may be compressed and thickened, resulting in mountain-building. The dense oceanic plate sinks beneath the lighter continental plate, forming an ocean trench, and volcanic activity occurs as the crust descends into the mantle. Where two ocean plates meet, the oldest, most dense plate is subducted and an arc of volcanic islands is formed parallel to the trench

These convergent boundaries also occur where a plate of ocean dives, in a process called subduction, under a landmass. As the overlying plate lifts up, it also forms mountain ranges. In addition, the diving plate melts and is often spewed out in volcanic eruptions such as those that formed some of the mountains in the Andes of South America. At divergent boundaries in the oceans, magma from deep in the Earth's mantle rises toward the surface and pushes apart two or more plates. Mountains and volcanoes rise along the seam. The process renews the ocean floor and widens the giant basins. A single mid-ocean ridge system connects the world's oceans, making the ridge the longest mountain range in the world. And when the crust buoys up, producing a mid-ocean ridge, and lava is extruded through a central rift valley to create new oceanic crust. Seamount volcanoes may also arise.

On land, giant troughs form where plates are tugged apart. If the plates there continue to diverge, millions of years from now, it will split from the continent to form a new landmass. A mid-ocean ridge would then mark the boundary between the plates. Transform boundaries arise where plates are moving past each other, what are called strike-slip faults. No crust is created or destroyed, nor is there any volcanic activity. They can occur where segments of a divergent boundary are offset, and extensive fracture zones can result. These boundaries don't produce spectacular features like mountains or oceans, but the halting motion often triggers large earthquakes. skip this if you understand about tectonics plate if you don't understand about tectonics plate WATCH THIS VIDEO !! B What physical features are formed from erosion ? Explain how they are formed by erosion . Tectonic plates are pieces of the Earth's crust and uppermost mantle, together referred to as the lithosphere. The plates are around 100 km (62 mi) thick and consist of two principal types of material oceanic crust and continental crust . this is some of the tectonic plates convergent
boundary Divergent
boundary Erosion is the process by which soil and rock are removed from the Earth's surface by natural processes such as wind or water flow, and then transported and deposited in other locations.
1. Water erosion (Rainfall)
2. Rivers and streams
3. Coastal erosion
5 Floods
6 Freezing and thawing
7.Wind erosion
8.Gravitational erosion
9 Exfoliation * water erosion (Rainfall) There are three primary types of erosion that occur as a direct result of rainfall—sheet erosion, rill erosion, and gully erosion. Sheet erosion is generally seen as the first and least severe stage in the soil erosion process, which is followed by rill erosion, and finally gully erosion (the most severe of the three).

The impact of a falling raindrop creates a small crater in the soil, ejecting soil particles. The distance these soil particles travel (on level ground) can be as much as 2 feet vertically, and 5 feet horizontally. Once the rate of rain fall is faster than the rate of infiltration into the soil, surface runoff occurs and carries the loosened soil particles down slope.

Sheet erosion is the transport of loosened soil particles by surface runoff that is flowing downhill in thin sheets.

Rill erosion refers to the development of small, ephemeral concentrated flow paths, which function as both sediment source and sediment delivery systems for erosion on hillslopes. Generally, where water erosion rates on disturbed upland areas are greatest, rills are active. Flow depths in rills are typically on the order of a few centimeters or less and slopes may be quite steep. This means that rills exhibit very different hydraulic physics than water flowing through the deeper, wider channels of streams and rivers.[citation needed]

Gully erosion occurs when runoff water accumulates, and then rapidly flows in narrow channels during or immediately after heavy rains or melting snow, removing soil to a considerable depth. Transform ***Shoreline erosion, which occurs on both exposed and sheltered coasts, primarily occurs through the action of currents and waves but sea level (tidal) change can also play a role.
***Hydraulic action takes place when air in a joint is suddenly compressed by a wave closing the entrance of the joint. This then cracks it. Wave pounding is when the sheer energy of the wave hitting the cliff or rock breaks pieces off. Abrasion or corrasion is caused by waves launching seaload at the cliff. It is the most effective and rapid form of shoreline erosion (not to be confused with corrosion). Corrosion is the dissolving of rock by carbonic acid in sea water. Limestone cliffs are particularly vulnerable to this kind of erosion. Attrition is where particles/seaload carried by the waves are worn down as they hit each other and the cliffs. This then makes the material easier to wash away. The material ends up as shingle and sand. Another significant source of erosion, particularly on carbonate coastlines, is the boring, scraping and grinding of organisms, a process termed bioerosion.
***Sediment is transported along the coast in the direction of the prevailing current (longshore drift). When the upcurrent amount of sediment is less than the amount being carried away, erosion occurs. When the upcurrent amount of sediment is greater, sand or gravel banks will tend to form as a result of deposition. These banks may slowly migrate along the coast in the direction of the longshore drift, alternately protecting and exposing parts of the coastline. Where there is a bend in the coastline, quite often a build up of eroded material occurs forming a long narrow bank (a spit). Armoured beaches and submerged offshore sandbanks may also protect parts of a coastline from erosion. Over the years, as the shoals gradually shift, the erosion may be redirected to attack different parts of the shore. * Coastal erosion Glaciers erode predominantly by three different processes: abrasion/scouring, plucking, and ice thrusting. In an abrasion process, debris in the basal ice scrapes along the bed, polishing and gouging the underlying rocks, similar to sandpaper on wood. Glaciers can also cause pieces of bedrock to crack off in the process of plucking. In ice thrusting, the glacier freezes to its bed, then as it surges forward, it moves large sheets of frozen sediment at the base along with the glacier. This method produced some of the many thousands of lake basins that dot the edge of the Canadian Shield. These processes, combined with erosion and transport by the water network beneath the glacier, leave moraines, drumlins, ground moraine (till), kames, kame deltas, moulins, and glacial erratics in their wake, typically at the terminus or during glacier retreat. * Glaciers * Wind erosion Wind erosion is a major geomorphological force, especially in arid and semi-arid regions. It is also a major source of land degradation, evaporation, desertification, harmful airborne dust, and crop damage—especially after being increased far above natural rates by human activities such as deforestation, urbanization, and agriculture.

Wind erosion is of two primary varieties: deflation, where the wind picks up and carries loose soil particles; and abrasion, where surfaces are worn down as they are struck by airborne particles carried by wind. Deflation is divided into three categories: surface creep, where larger, heavier particles slide or roll along the ground; saltation, where particles are lifted a short height into the air, and bounce and saltate across the surface of the soil; and suspension, where very small and light particles are lifted into the air by the wind, and are often carried for long distances. Saltation is responsible for the majority (50-70%) of wind erosion, followed by suspension (30-40%), and then surface creep (5-25%).

Wind erosion is much more severe in arid areas, and during times of drought. For example, in the Great Plains, it is estimated that wind erosion soil loss can be as much as 6100 times greater in drought years, than in wet years. Mass movement is the downward and outward movement of rock and sediments on a sloped surface, mainly due to the force of gravity.
Mass movement is an important part of the erosional process, and is often the first stage in the breakdown and transport of weathered materials in mountainous areas. It moves material from higher elevations to lower elevations where other eroding agents such as streams and glaciers can then pick up the material and move it to even lower elevations. Mass-movement processes are always occurring continuously on all slopes; some mass-movement processes act very slowly; others occur very suddenly, often with disastrous results. Any perceptible down-slope movement of rock or sediment is often referred to in general terms as a landslide. However, landslides can be classified in a much more detailed way that reflects the mechanisms responsible for the movement and the velocity at which the movement occurs. One of the visible topographical manifestations of a very slow form of such activity is a scree slope.
Slumping happens on steep hillsides, occurring along distinct fracture zones, often within materials like clay that, once released, may move quite rapidly downhill. They will often show a spoon-shaped isostatic depression, in which the material has begun to slide downhill. In some cases, the slump is caused by water beneath the slope weakening it. In many cases it is simply the result of poor engineering along highways where it is a regular occurrence.
Surface creep is the slow movement of soil and rock debris by gravity which is usually not perceptible except through extended observation. However, the term can also describe the rolling of dislodged soil particles 0.5 to 1.0 mm in diameter by wind along the soil surface. * Gravitational erosion this video is optional to watch * What physical features could be formed from volcanoes ? C * Explain how they are formed by volcanoes ? Volcanic features

1 Fissure vents
2 Shield volcanoes
3 Lava domes
4 Cryptodomes
5 Volcanic cones (cinder cones)
6 Stratovolcanoes (composite volcanoes)
7 Supervolcanoes
8 Submarine volcanoes
9 Subglacial volcanoes
10 Mud volcanoes

Shield volcanoes, so named for their broad, shield-like profiles, are formed by the eruption of low-viscosity lava that can flow a great distance from a vent. They generally do not explode catastrophically. Since low-viscosity magma is typically low in silica, shield volcanoes are more common in oceanic than continental settings. The Hawaiian volcanic chain is a series of shield cones, and they are common in Iceland, as well. Shield volcanoes
tratovolcanoes or composite volcanoes are tall conical mountains composed of lava flows and other ejecta in alternate layers, the strata that give rise to the name. Stratovolcanoes are also known as composite volcanoes, created from several structures during different kinds of eruptions. Strato/composite volcanoes are made of cinders, ash and lava. Cinders and ash pile on top of each other, lava flows on top of the ash, where it cools and hardens, and then the process begins again. Classic examples include Mt. Fuji in Japan, Mayon Volcano in the Philippines, and Mount Vesuvius and Stromboli in Italy.

Throughout recorded history, ash produced by the explosive eruption of stratovolcanoes has posed the greatest hazard to civilizations as compared to other types of volcanoes. No supervocano has erupted in human history. Shield volcanos have smaller pressure buildup from the underlying lava flow as compared to stratovolcanoes. Fissure vents and monogenetic volcanic fields (volcanic cones) have less powerful eruptions, as they are many times under extension. Stratovolcanoes have been a greater historical threat because they are steeper than shield volcanos, with slopes of 30–35° compared to slopes of generally 5–10°, and their loose tephra are material for dangerous lahars. Stratovolcanoes A supervolcano is a large volcano that usually has a large caldera and can potentially produce devastation on an enormous, sometimes continental, scale. Such eruptions would be able to cause severe cooling of global temperatures for many years afterwards because of the huge volumes of sulfur and ash erupted. They are the most dangerous type of volcano. Examples include Yellowstone Caldera in Yellowstone National Park and Valles Caldera in New Mexico (both western United States), Lake Taupo in New Zealand, Lake Toba in Sumatra, Indonesia and Ngorogoro Crater in Tanzania, Krakatoa near Java and Sumatra, Indonesia. Supervolcanoes are hard to identify centuries later, given the enormous areas they cover. Large igneous provinces are also considered supervolcanoes because of the vast amount of basalt lava erupted, but are non-explosive. Supervolcanoes Submarine volcanoes Submarine volcanoes are common features on the ocean floor. Some are active and, in shallow water, disclose their presence by blasting steam and rocky debris high above the surface of the sea. Many others lie at such great depths that the tremendous weight of the water above them prevents the explosive release of steam and gases, although they can be detected by hydrophones and discoloration of water because of volcanic gases. Pumice rafts may also appear. Even large submarine eruptions may not disturb the ocean surface. Because of the rapid cooling effect of water as compared to air, and increased buoyancy, submarine volcanoes often form rather steep pillars over their volcanic vents as compared to above-surface volcanoes. They may become so large that they break the ocean surface as new islands. Pillow lava is a common eruptive product of submarine volcanoes. Hydrothermal vents are common near these volcanoes, and some support peculiar ecosystems based on dissolved minerals. by : Tina Le
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