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earths-processes.pdf - Earth’s Processes EXOGENOUS...

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Earth’sProcesses
EXOGENOUS PROCESSESandENDOGENOUS PROCESSES
1.Weathering2.Mass wasting3.ErosionThey occurat or near Earth’s surface andare powered by energy fromthe Sun. External processes are a basic part of the rock cycle becausethey are responsible for transforming solid rock into sediment.
The physical breakdown (disintegration)and chemical alteration.It is worth remembering that weatheringis a basic part of the rock cycle and thusa key process in the Earth system.
Weathering is alsoimportant to humansevento those of us who are notstudying geology.
For example Weatheringcontributes to the formationof some of Earth’s mostspectacular scenery.Arizona’s Monument Valley. Whenweathering accentuates differencesin rocks, spectacular landforms aresometimes created. As the rockgradually disintegrates anddecomposes, mass wasting anderosion remove the products ofweathering.
Of course, these sameprocesses are also responsiblefor causing the deteriorationof many of the structures webuild.
Even the most “solid” monumentsthat people erect eventuallyyield to the day-in and day-outattack of weathering processes.
Rock is mechanically fragmented(disintegrated)Rock chemically altered(decomposed).These two concepts can be illustratedwith a piece of paper.
- Accomplished by physical forcesthat break rock into smaller andsmaller pieces without changingthe rock’s mineral composition.
Frost wedgingSalt crystal growthSheetingBiological activity.
As water freezes, it expands, exerting a force greatenough to break rock.
When frost wedging occursin a setting such as this, thebroken rock fragments fallto the base of the cliff andcreate a cone-shapedaccumulation known as a

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