), thecement, and the matrix (the name given to the smaller particles present in the spaces betweenlarger grains) must all be taken into consideration.Shales, which consist mostly of clay minerals, are generally further classified on the basis of composition and bedding. Coarser clastic sedimentary rocks are classified according to their particle size and composition. Orthoquartzite is a very pure quartz sandstone;arkose is a
sandstone with quartz and abundant feldspar;greywackeis a sandstone with quartz, clay,feldspar, and metamorphic rock fragments present, which was formed from the sediments carried by turbidity currents.All rocks disintegrate when exposed to mechanical and chemicalweatheringat the Earth'ssurface.Lower Antelope Canyonwas carved out of the surroundingsandstoneby both mechanical
weathering and chemical weathering. Wind, sand, and water fromflash flooding are the primary
is the breakdown of rock into particles without producing changes inthe chemical composition of the minerals in the rock. Ice is the most important agent of mechanical weathering. Water percolates into cracks and fissures within the rock, freezes, andexpands. The force exerted by the expansion is sufficient to widen cracks and break off pieces of rock. Heating and cooling of the rock, and the resulting expansion and contraction, also aids the process. Mechanical weathering contributes further to the breakdown of rock by increasing thesurface area exposed to chemical agents.
is the breakdown of rock by chemical reaction. In this process theminerals within the rock are changed into particles that can be easily carried away. Air and water are both involved in many complex chemical reactions. The minerals in igneous rocks may beunstable under normal atmospheric conditions, those formed at higher temperatures being more