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LoÎden LuídesªandLoÎdenª¡íeÎd Luídes!
LOÍUPH LU1UP5
Bats of the World • Bird Life • Birds •
Butterflies and Moths • Casino Games •
Dinosaurs • Endangered Animals •
Exploring Space • Fishes • Fishing •
Flowers • Fossils • Geology • Insects • Mammals •
North American Indian Arts • Planets • Pond Life •
Reptiles and Amphibians • Rocks and Minerals •
Seashells of the World • Seashores •
The Sky Observer's Guide •
Spiders and Their Kin • Stars • Trees •
Tropical Fish • Venomous Animals •
Weather • Weeds •
Whales and Other Marne Mammals
LOÍUPH Ï1PÍU LU1UP5
Birds of North America
Easter Birds
Reptiles of North America
Rocks and Minerals
Seashells of North America
Skyguide
Trees of North America
Wildflowers of North America
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KPYNLÍL |LKLNPÍ
FORE¼ORD
"IHEEARIH-l ove it or l eave i t , " is a popul ar s l og an
evol vi ng from our recog ni t i on of the peril s of an expl od­
i ng popul at i on, a pol l uted envi ronment , and the l i mi ted
natural resources of an a l ready pl undered pl anet . E ffec­
ti ve s ol ut i ons to our soci etal probl ems demand an effec­
ti ve knowl edge of the ear t h on whi ch we l i ve.
The obj ect of t hi s book i s to i ntroduce t he eart h: i ts
rel at i on to the rest of the uni verse, the rocks and mi neral s
of whi ch i t i s made up, t h e forces that s hape i t , and t h e 5
bil l i on year s of hi story that have g i ven it i ts present for m.
Many t opi cs that are di scussed i n the book have a very
practi cal and urgent sig ni fi cance for our soci ety, thi ng s
such a s water s uppl y, i ndust ri al mi neral s , ore deposi t s,
and fuel s . Others are of i mportance i n l ong er pl anni ng
and devel opment , such as eart hquake effects , mar i ne
eros i on, l ands l i des, ar i d reg i ons , and so on. The ear t h
provi des the ul t i mate basi s of our present soci ety: the ai r
we breathe, t h e water we dr i n k , t h e food we eat , the
mater i al s we use. Al l ar e the products of our pl anet .
The st udy of the earth opens our eyes to a vast scal e
of t i me t hat provi des us wi th new di mens i ons , mean i ng s ,
and perspecti ves . And it reveal s the order of the ear th ,
i t s dynami c i nterdependence and i t s structured beauty.
I am most gr ateful to Sharon Sanford, who typed the
manuscr i pt of the revi sed edi t i on .
F . H . T. R .
Revised Edition, JÛÛJ.
Copyright© JÛÛJ,JÛ¯Z Golden Books Publishing Company, Inc., New Yor, New
York JÛJÛb. All rights resered. Produced in the U.S.A. No par of this book may
be copied or reproduced without written permission from the copyright owner.
Librar of Congress Catalog Number. ¯Z-JbÛÏ4J. ISBN Ü-ôÏ-Z4dÛ-4.
A Golden Field Guide'", A Golden Guide", G Design', and Golden Books" are
trademars of Golden Books Publishing Company, Inc.
CONIENI5
c.o.oc··+-o..:....:+ + + + + + • + + + .
:-.. ·.:- + : ··:.+ · «
:-.. ·.: -::..::::«·o: : :». + :·
:-.:..::..o: o+·+-
-. ·o: : o++ + + + + + + + + + . + . + + + + ::
WEATHERI NG + + = + . + + . + + + + + . + + + + + :.
GLACI E RS AND GLACI ATI ON + + + + + .c
THE OCEANS + + + + + + + + + + . + + + + + + + + c:
WI NDS + + + + + + + + . + + + + + + + + . . + + + + + :.
PRODUCTS OF DE POSI TI ON + + + + . . :.
:-.:..:::..:..·«:.:-«»c.:+ + .:
VOLCANOE S . . + + . . . + . . . . . . . . . + + .:
CLASSI F I CATI ON OF I GNEOUS
ROCKS + . + + + + + . + . . + + . + + + + . + . .»
METAMORPHI SM + . . + + . + . + + . + + . . . ».
MI NE RALS AND CI VI LI ZATI ON + + . + »c
THE CHANGI NG EARTH . . . + . . . + ·«.
ROCK DEF ORMATI ON + + + . + + + + + ·«c
ROCK F RACTURES + ··«
MOUNTAI N BUI L DI NG . . . . . . . . . . ··.
:-.·.:-:.::...o·:-.. ·.: -+ ·::
EARTHQUAKES . . ·:.
THE EARTH' S I NTE RI OR + ·:c
THE OCEAN FLOOR + ·:c
PLATE TECTONI CS . ·+.
-o=:-.. ·.: -=o. .: + e e e e e • + ·.c
:-..«.: -:- ::o.c. ·..
::-.. »·:.««: :». e « • + ·.c
+-.·+ ·.:
Vol ca ni c erupti on in Kapoho, Hawai i . Many i s l ands in the Paci fi c are
vol cani c in or i g i n.
GEOLOGY AND OURSELVES
Geol ogy is the study of the earth . As a sci ence, it is a
newcomer in compari son wi th, say, astronomy. Whereas
geol ogy i s onl y about 200 years ol d, astronomy was
acti vel y studi ed by the Egypti ans as l ong as 4, 000 years
ago. Yet specul ati on about the earth and i ts acti vi ti es must
be as ol d as the human race. Surel y, pri mi ti ve peopl e were
fami l i ar wi th such natural di sasters as earthquakes and
vol cani c erupti ons.
Gradual l y, human soci ety became more dependent
upon the earth i n i ncreasi ngl y compl ex ways . Today,
behi nd the i nsul ati on of our modern l i vi ng condi ti ons, ci vi ­
l i zati on remai ns basi cal l y dependent upon our knowl edge
of the earth . Al l our mi neral s come from the earth's crust .
Water suppl y, agri cul ture, and l and use al so depend upon
sound geol ogi c i nformati on.
Geol ogy sti mul ates t he mi nd . I t makes use of al most al l
other sci ences an d gi ves much to them i n return . I t i s the
basi s of modern soci ety.
4
THE BRANCH OF GEOLOGY emphasi zed here is physi cal
geol ogy. Other Gol den Gui des of thi s seri es, Rocks and
Minerals and Fossils, deal wi th the branches of mi neral ogy,
petrol ogy, and pal eontol ogy.
- - c : : ·.c. :. :cc i s t h e
ov e r a l l s t u dy o f t h e e a r t h ,
embraci ng most other branches
of g e o l o g y b u t s t r e s s i n g t h e
dynami c a n d structural aspects .
It i ncl udes a study of l andscape
devel opment , the earth' s i nte­
r i or, the nature of mountai ns ,
and t he composi t i on of r ocks and
mi neral s .
- :::. : ·.c.:.:cci s the
study of the hi story of earth and
i ts i nhabi t ant s. I t t races anci ent
geographi es and the evol ut i on of
l i fe.
.::»:« :c.:.:ccis geol ­
ogy appl i ed to the search for and
expl oi tati on of mi neral resources
such as metal l i c ores, fuel s , and
water.
::..::.. ·. c.:.:c·(tec­
toni cs) i s the study of earth struc­
tures and t hei r rel ati onshi p to the
f o r c e s t h a t p r o d u c e t h e
structures .
c.:-- c: ::is the study of the
ear t h' s phys i c al pr oper t i es . I t
i ncl udes the study of earthquakes
( sei smol ogy) and methods of mi n­
er al and oi l expl orat i on.
-- c: : ·.::. ·»:c. ·-- ci s
cl osel y rel ated to geol ogy and i s
concerned wi t h t h e seas, maj or
ocean basi ns, seafl oors, and t he
crust beneath them.
THE SI ZE AND SHAPE OF THE EARTH were not always
calculated accurately. Most anci ent peoples thought the
earth was fl at, but there are many si mple proofs that the
earth i s a sphere. For i nstance, as a shi p approaches from
over the hori zon, masts or funnels are vi si ble. As the shi p
comes closer, more of i t s lower parts come i nto vi ew. Fi nal
proof, of course, was provi ded by ci rcumnavi gati ng the
gl obe and by photographs taken from spacecraft .
The Greek geographer and astronomer E ratosthenes
was probably the fi rst (about 225 B . C. ) to measure suc­
cessfully the ci rcumference of the earth . The basi s for hi s
calcul ati ons was t he measurement of t he el evati on of the
sun from two di fferent poi nts on the globe . Two s i multane­
ous observati ons were made, one from Alexandri a, Egypt
( Poi nt B, p. 7), and the other from a si te on the Ni le near
the present Aswan Dam ( Poi nt A) . At the latter poi nt, a
good verti cal si ghti ng could be made, as the sun was known
to shi ne di rectly down a wel l at noon on the longest day
(June 23) of the year.
Eratosthenes reasoned that i f the earth were round, the
noonday sun could not appear i n the same posi ti on i n the
sky as seen by two wi dely separated observers. He com­
pared the angular di splacement of the sun (Y) wi th the
di stance between the two ground si tes, A and B.
6
. . :. »: - ·: ·f r om or bi t i n g
earth satel l i tes have confi rmed
that the eart h i s actual l y s l i ght l y
fl attened at the pol es. I t i s an
obl ate spheroi d, t he pol ar c i r­
cumference bei ng 27 mi l es l ess
than at the equator. The fol l ow­
i ng measurements are currentl y
accepted:
Avg . di ameter
Avg. radi us
Avg. ci rcumference
7, 91 8 mi .
3 , 959 mi .
24, 900 mi .
LARGE AS THE EARTH I S, i t i s mi nute i n compari son wi th
the uni verse, where di stances are measured i n li ght years­
the di stance li ght, movi ng at 1 80, 000 mi les per second,
travels i n a year. Thi s is about 6 bi lli on mi l es or 1 0 mi lli on,
mi l li on ki lometers. Usi ng these uni ts of measurements, t he
moon i s 1 . 25 li ght seconds from t he earth, t he sun i s Sli ght
minutes from the earth, and the nearest star i s 4 li ght
y
ears
from the earth . Our galaxy is 80, 000 li ght years i n di am­
eter. The mos t di stant galaxi es are 8 bi lli on li ght years
from earth . I t i s esti mated that there are at least 400
mi lli on galaxi es "vi si ble" from earth usi ng radi o telescopes
and s i mi lar means of detecti on. Galaxi es are ei ther elli p­
ti cal or spi ral i n shape.
. . ·:o:: -. +.: measured the
di stance [X)between Poi nt s A and
B as 5, 000 stadi a (about 575
mi l es ) . Al t hough the observer at
Poi nt A saw the sun di rectl y over­
head at noon, the observer at B
found the s un was i ncl i ned at an
angl e of 7° 1 2' [Y)to the verti cal .
Si nce a readi ng o f 7 ° 1 2' corre­
sponds to one-fi fti eth of a ful l ci r ­
c l e ( 3 6 0 ° ) , Er a t o s t h e n e s
r e as on e d t h a t t h e me a s u r ed
ground di stance of 5, 000 stadi a
mus t represent one-fi fti eth of t he
earth' s ci rcumference. He cal cu­
l at ed the ent i re ci rcumference to
be about 28, 750 mi l es.
THE EARTH'S SURFACE, for the purpose of measure­
ments, i s commonl y assumed to be uni form, for mountai ns ,
val l eys, and ocean deeps, great as some are, are rel ati vel y
i nsi gni fi cant features i n compari son wi th the di ameter of
the earth .
But mountai ns are not i nsi gni fi cant to humans. They pl ay
a maj or rol e i n control l i ng the cl i mate of the conti nents;
they have profoundl y i nfl uenced the patterns of human
mi grati on and settl ement .
Mountai n ranges, wi th very few excepti ons, are narrow,
arcuate bel ts, thousands of mi l es in l ength, general l y
devel oped on the margi ns of t he anci ent cores or shi el ds of
t he conti nents . They consi st of great thi cknesses of sedi ­
mentary and vol cani c rocks, many of them of mari ne ori ­
gi n. Thei r i ntense fol di ng and faul ti ng are evi dence of
enormous compressive forces.
Mountai ns are not l i mi ted to the l and . The ocean fl oor
has even more rel i ef than the conti nents . Most of the
conti nental margi ns extend as conti nental shel ves to a
depth of about 600 feet bel ow the l evel of the sea, beyond
8
7
6
5
4
3
2
|
ocÐUO
whi ch the seafl oor (conti nental sl ope) pl unges abruptl y
down (see p. 66) .
The ocean fl oor adj acent to some i sl ands and conti nents
has l ong, deep trenches, the deepest of whi ch, off the
Phi l i ppi nes, i s about 61/2 mi l es deep (p. 1 38) . A worl dwi de
network of mi d-oceani c ri dges, of mountai nous propor­
ti ons, enci rcl es the earth . Thi s network has geophysi cal
and geol ogi c characteri sti cs that suggest i t occupi es a
uni que rol e i n earth dynami cs -that al ong these ri dges
new seafl oor i s constantl y bei ng created.
THE EARTH'S CRUST, deri ved from the denser, underl yi ng
mantl e (pp. 1 28- 1 29) , consi sts of two ki nds of rock. The
conti nental crust di ffers from the oceani c crust i n bei ng
l i ghter ( 2 . 7 gm. /cc. compared wi t h 3. 0) , thi cker (35 km-
70 km versus 6 km) , ol der ( up t o 3. 5 bi l l i on years versus a
maxi mum of 200 mi l l i on years), chemi cal l y di fferent, and
much more compl ex i n structure. These di fferences refl ect
the di fferent modes of formati on of the two ki nds of crust
( pp. 1 40- 1 45) .
9
@ Pluto
THE EARTH
RELATIVE
D
ISTANCES
EARTH is one of ni ne pl anets revol vi ng i n
OF PLANETS
1 · 1 [ 11· · I) b" d
FROM THE
near y c1rcu ar e 1pt1ca or tts aroun our
SUN star, the sun . Earth is the thi rd pl anet out from
Neptune
Uranus
the sun and the fifth l argest pl anet in our sol ar
·. .+.::vary i n size, composition, and orbit. Mer­
cury, with a diameter of 3, 1 1 2 miles, is the planet
nearest to the sun. It orbits the sun in just three earth
months. Jupiter, about ten times the diameter of Earth
(88, 000 miles), is the largest planet and fifth in distance
from the sun, taking about 1 1 3/• earth years to orbit the
sun. Pluto, the most distant planet, tokes about 2473/•
earth years to orbit around the sun. The inner planets
hove densities, and probably compositions similar to
Earth's; outer planets ore gaseous, liquid, or frozen
hydrogen and other gases.
: -.:. +on overage-sized star, makes up about 99
percent of the moss of the solar system. Its size may be
illustrated by visualizing it as a marble. At this scale,
the earth would be the size of a small groin of sand one
yard away. Pluto would be a rather smaller groin 40
yards away.
: .:... :.:revolve around seven planets. Including the
earth's moon, there ore 61 satellites altogether; Mars
has 2, Jupiter 1 6, Saturn 1 8, Uranus 1 5, Neptune 8,
Saturn and Pluto 1 .
Jupiter
:o«.::ore among the oldest members of the solar
system. They orbit the sun in extremely long, elliptical
orbits. As comets approach the sun, their toils begin to
glow from friction with the solar wind.
Mars
Earth
" M
Venus
Mercury @
IN SPACE
system, havi ng a di ameter of about 7, 91 8
mi l es. It compl etes one orbi t around the sun i n
about 365V4 days, t he l ength of ti me that gives
us our uni t of ti me cal l ed a year.
: -.«oo»earth's natural satellite, has about 'I• the
diameter, 1/a
1
the weight, and 3/s the density of our
planet. The moon completes one orbit around the earth
every 2711 days. It takes about the same length of time,
291/2 days, to rotate on its own axis; hence, the same
side, with an 1 8% variation, always faces us. The
moon's surface, cratered by meteorite impact, consists
of dark areas (maria) which are separated by lighter
mountainous areas (terrae). Terrae are part of the orig­
inal crust, formed about 4. 5 billion years ago; maria
are basins, excavated by meteorite falls, filled by ba­
saltic lavas formed from 3 to 4 billon years ago.
·::..o -: the so-called minor planets, are rocky,
airless, barren, irregularly shaped objects that range
from less than a mile to about 480 miles in diameter.
Most of the asteroids that have been charted travel in
elongated orbits between Mars and Jupiter. The great
width of this zone suggests that the asteroids may be
remnants of a disintegrated planet formerly having
occupied this space.
«.:.o.: loosely called shooting stars, are smaller
than asteroids, some being the size of grains of dust.
Millions daily race into the earth's atmosphere, where
friction heats them to incandescence. Most meteors dis­
integrate to dust, but fragments of larger meteors some­
times reach the earth's surface as "meteorites." About
30 elements, closely matching those of the earth, have
been identified in meteorites.
COMPARATIVE
SIZES OF THE
PLANETS
Pluto @
Mercury g
Mars
Venus
Earth
WINTER
SPRING AND FALL
"  MMER
x
v
¯¬
¯�¬
v
v
v
l
t
¸ s
V
W
f
W
W
l
f
t
l
1
N s'
N s
¥
x
Ti l ted axi s determi nes d i fferent posi ti ons of sun at s unri se, noon, and
s unset at d i fferent seasons i n mi ddl e north l ati tude.
THE EARTH'S MOTI ONS determi ne the dai l y phenomenon
of day and ni ght and the yearl y phenomenon of seasonal
changes. The earth revol ves around the sun i n a sl i ghtl y
el l i pti cal orbi t and al so rotates on i ts own axi s. Si nce the
earth's axi s i s ti l ted about 231/2° wi th respect to the pl ane
of the orbi t, each hemi sphere receives more l i ght and heat
from the sun duri ng one hal f of the year than duri ng the
other hal f. The season i n whi ch a hemi sphere i s most
di rectl y ti l ted toward the sun i s summer. Where the ti l t i s
away from the sun, the season i s wi nter.
... ·: ..«:: :»::·:-.. ·.:-
...:..: :»i s earth's moti on
about the sun i n a 600- mi l l i on­
mi l e orbi t , as i t compl etes one
orbi t about every 3651/• days
travel i ng at 66, 000 mph.
.::·: :»i s a whi r l i ng moti on
of the earth on i t s own axi s once
i n about every 24 hours at a
speed of about 1 , 000 mph at the
equator.
».:·: :» i s a dai l y ci rcul ar
mot i on at each of the earth's
pol es about 40 f t . in di ameter.
1 2
-..:.:: :»i s a mot i on at the
pol es descri bi ng one compl ete
ci rcl e every 26, 000 years due to
axi s t i l t , caused by gravi tat i onal
act i on of the sun and moon.
:..::. ·. :·::.«revol ves
around the center of our Mi l ky
Way Gal axy. Our porti on of the
Mi l ky Way makes one revol ut i on
each 200 mi l l i on year s .
c·. ·· .:seem to be recedi ng
from the earth at speeds propor­
ti onal to t hei r di stances .
N
IHE SUN is the source of al most al l energy on earth . Sol ar
heat creates most wi nd and al so causes evaporati on from
the oceans and other bodi es of water, resul ti ng i n preci pi ­
tati on. Rai n fi l l s ri vers and reservoi rs, and makes hydro­
el ectri c power possi bl e. Coal and petrol eum are fossi l
remai ns of pl ants and ani mal s that, when l i vi ng, requi red
sunl i ght . I n one hour the earth recei ves sol ar energy equi v­
al ent to the energy contai ned i n more than 20 bi l l i on tons
of coal , and thi s i s onl y hal f of one bi l l i onth of the sun's
total radi ati on .
J ust a star of average si ze, the sun i s yet s o vast that i t
coul d contai n over a mi l l i on earths . I ts di ameter, 864, 000
mi l es, is over 1 00 ti mes that of the earth . I t is a gaseous
mass wi th such hi gh temperatures ( 1 1 , 000° F at the sur­
face, perhaps 325 , 000, 000°F at the center) that the gases
are i ncandescent. As a huge nucl ear furnace, the sun con­
verts hydrogen to hel i um, si mul taneousl y changi ng four
mi l l i on tons of matter i nto energy each second.
Sol ar promi nences compared wi t h the si ze of t he earth
:-. « . .· =·· l i ke many
ot her gal axi es, i s a whi r l i ng
spi ral wi t h a central l ens-shaped
di sc that stretches into spi ral
ar ms . Most of i t s 1 00 bi l l i on
stars ar e l ocated i n t he di s c.
The Mi l ky Way's di ameter i s
abou t 80, 000 l i g h t year s ; i t s
t h i c k n e s s , abou t 6 , 500 l i g h t
years. (A l i ght year is the di stance
l i ght travel s i n one year at a
vel oci ty of 1 86, 000 mi . per sec . ,
o r a total o f about 6 t r i l l i on
mi l es . )
GALAXI ES are huge concentrati ons of stars. Wi thi n the
uni verse, there are i nnumerabl e gal axi es, many resembl i ng
our own Mi l ky Way. Someti mes cal l ed extragal acti c nebu­
l ae or i sl and uni verses, these star systems are mostl y vi si bl e
onl y by tel escope. Onl y t he great spi ral nebul a Andro­
meda and the two i rregul ar nebul ae known as the Magel ­
l ani c Cl ouds can be seen wi th the naked eye. Tel escopi c
i nspecti on reveal s gal axi es at the furthermost l i mi ts of the
observabl e uni verse. Al l of these gi ganti c spi ral systems
seem to be of comparabl e si ze and rotati ng rapi dl y.
Nearl y 50 percent appear to be i sol ated i n space, but
many gal axi es bel ong to mul ti pl e systems contai ni ng two
14
or more extragal acti c nebul ae. Our gal axy is a member of
the local G roup, whi ch contai ns about a dozen o ther
gal axi es. Some are el l i pti cal i n shape, others i rregul ar.
Gal axi es may contai n up to hundreds of bi l l i ons of stars
and have di ameters of up to 1 60, 000 l i ght years . Gal axi es
are separated from one another by great spaces, usual l y
of about 3 mi l l i on l i ght years.
Many gal axi es rotate on t hei r own axes, but al l gal axi es
move bodi l y through space at speeds of up to 1 00 mi l es a
second. I n addi ti on to thi s, the whol e uni verse seems to be
expandi ng, movi ng away from us at great speeds . Our
nearest gal axy, i n Andromeda, i s 2 . 2 mi l l i on l i ght years
away.
About 1 00 mi l l i on gal axi es are known, each contai ni ng
many bi l l i ons of star s. Others undoubtedl y l i e beyond the
reach of our tel escopes . I t seems very probabl e that many
of the stars the gal axi es contai n have pl anetary systems
si mi l ar to our own . I t has been esti mated t hat there may be
as many as 1 0
1
9 of these. Chances of l i fe occuri ng on other
pl anets woul d, therefore, seem very hi gh, al though i t may
not bear an exact resembl ance to l i fe on earth .
=- ..-::.»....«in Canes
Venat i ci , showi ng the rel ati vel y
cl ose packi ng of stars i n the cen­
tral part
c..«::- .«.»....««:·i n
Andromeda i s s i mi l ar i n form but
twi ce the s i ze of our awn gal axy,
the Mi l ky Way.
THE CHEMI CAL ELEMENTS are the s i mpl est components
of the uni verse and cannot be broken down by chemi cal
means. Ni nety-two occur natural l y on earth, 70 i n the sun .
They devel op from thermonucl ear fusi on wi thi n the stars,
i n whi ch the el ementary parti cl es of the l i ghtest el ements
(hydrogen and hel i um) are transformed i nto heavi er
el ements .
7
THE ORI GI N OF THE UNI VERSE is unknown, but al l the
bodi es i n the uni verse seem to be retreati ng from a common
poi nt, thei r speeds becomi ng greater as they get farther
away. Thi s gave ri se to the expandi ng- uni verse theory,
whi ch hol ds that al l matter was once concentrated i n a very
smal l area. Onl y neutrons coul d exi st i n such a compact
core. Accordi ng to thi s theory, at some moment i n ti me­
at l east 5 bi l l i on years ago -expansi on began, the chemi ­
cal el ements were formed, and turbul ent cel l s of hot gases
probabl y ori gi nated. The l atter separated i nto gal axi es,
wi thi n whi ch other turbul ent cl ouds formed, and these
ul ti matel y condensed to gi ve stars. Proponents refer to thi s
as the "Bi g Bang" theory, a term descri pti ve of the i ni ti al
event, perhaps as l ong as 1 0- 15 bi l l i on years ago.
THE ORI GI N OF THE SOLAR SYSTEM i s not ful l y under­
stood, but the si mi l ar ages of it s components (Moon,
meteori tes, Earth at about 4.5 -4. 6 bi l l i on years) and the
si mi l ar orbi ts, rotati on, and di recti on of movement around
the sun, al l suggest a si ngl e ori gi n. The theory currentl y
most popul ar suggests that i t formed from a cl oud of col d
gas, i ce, and a l i ttl e dust, whi ch began sl owl y to rotate
and contract. Conti nui ng rotati on and contracti on of thi s
di sc-shaped cl oud l ed to condensati on and thermonucl ear
fusi on -perhaps tri ggered by a nearby supernova, from
1 6
whi ch stars such as the sun were formed. Col l i si on of
scattered materi al s in the di sc gradual l y l ed to the forma­
ti on of bodi es -pl aneti smal s -whi ch became protopl a­
nets . The growi ng heat of t he sun probabl y evaporated off
the l i ght el ements fr om the i nner pl anets ( now represented
by the dens e, rocky "ter rest r i al" pl anet s -Mer cury,
Venus, Earth, Mars, and t he Moon) . The outer pl anets,
because of thei r greater di stance from the sun, were l ess
affected and retai ned thei r l i ghter hydrogen, hel i um, and
water composi ti on. Perhaps they formed from mi ni -sol ar­
pl anet systems wi thi n the l arger di sc. Thi s composi ti on may
wel l refl ect that of the parent gas cl oud.
Each pl anet seems to have had a di sti nct "geol ogi c"
hi story. Some, l i ke Earth and l o, a moon of J upi ter, are
sti l l active. Others, l i ke Mercury, Mars, and our moon, had
an earl i er acti ve hi story, but are now "dead . "
Thi s theory, i n a n earl i er versi on, has a l ong hi story,
goi ng back to I mmanuel K ant, the phi l osopher, i n 1 755,
and t he French mathemati ci an Pi erre-Si mon de Lapl ace
( 1 796) .
Arti st' s i nterpretati on of t he dust·cl oud t heory
IHE EARIH'5 AINO5PHERE is a gaseous envel ope sur­
roundi ng the earth to a hei ght of 500 mi l es and i s hel d i n
p l ace by the earth's gravi ty. Denser gases l i e wi thi n three
mi l es of the earth's surface. Here the atmosp here p rovi des
the gases essenti al to l i fe: oxygen, carbon di oxi de, water
vapor, and ni trogen .
Di fferences i n atmosp heri c moi sture, temp erature, and
p ressure combi ned wi t h t he earth's rotati on and geo­
grap hi c features p roduce varyi ng movements of the atmo­
sp here across the face of the p l anet, and condi ti ons we
exp eri ence as weather. Cl i mati c condi ti ons ( rai n, i ce,
wi nd, etc . ) are i mportant i n rock weatheri ng; the atmo­
sp here al so i nfl uences chemi cal weatheri ng.
Gases in the atmosp here act not onl y as a gi ganti c
i nsul ator for the earth by fi l teri ng out most of the ul travi ol et
and cosmi c radi ati on but al so burn up mi l l i ons of meteors
before they reach the earth .
The atmosp here i nsul ates the earth agai nst l arge tem­
perature changes and makes l ong- di stance radi o commu­
ni cati ons p ossi bl e by refl ecti ng radi o waves from the earth .
It al so p robabl y refl ects much i nterstel l ar "noi se" i nto
space, whi ch woul d make radi o and tel evi si on as we know
them i mp ossi bl e.
Composi t i on of
ai r at al t i tudes
up to about
45 mi l es
ni trogen 78%
oxygen 2 1%
Composi t i on of
ai r at al ti tudes
above 500 mi l es
hel ium 50%
hydrogen 50%
argon0.93%
carbon di oxi de 0. 03%
other gases Ç,Ç4

: -. .«: ::· c«:.: in the
atmosphere is shown i n the chart
at l eft . Cl ouds form i n the tropo­
s pher e; the ove r l y i n g s t r at o­
sphere, extending 50 mi l es above
the earth, i s cl ear. The i ono­
sphere (50-20 0 mi l es) contains
l ayers of charged parti cl es ( i ons)
that refl ect radi o waves, permi t­
ti ng messages to be transmi tted
over l ong di stances . Fai nt traces
of atmosphere exi st i n the exo­
sphere to about 500 mi l es from
the earth's surface.
oororoboreoIì &
=·VU¯
g§µ OZONE
~
t7"
oItrov¡o|eIroy&
lmm&on
unmonned
boIIoon
27mi!e&

TROPOSPHERE
JUU
2bU
2UU

bU
\UU
VU
öU
7
U
tU
bU
4U
JU
2U

U
Atmospheri c ci rcul at i on i nvol ves the cont i nuous reci rcul at i on of vari ous
substances .
OUR PRESENT ATMOSPHERE and oceans were probabl y
deri ved by degassi ng of the semi - mol ten earth and conti n­
ui ng l ater addi ti ons from vol canoes and hot spri ngs . These
gases -such as hydrogen, ni trogen, hydrogen chl ori des,
carbon monoxi de, carbon di oxi de, and water vapor­
probabl y formed the atmosphere of ear l i er geol ogi c ti mes.
The l i ghter gases, such as hydrogen, probabl y escaped.
The l ater devel opment of l i vi ng organi sms capabl e of pho­
tosynthesi s sl owl y added oxygen to the atmosphere, ul ti ­
matel y al l owi ng the col oni zati on of the l and by provi di ng
free oxygen for respi rati on and al so formi ng the ozone
l ayer, whi ch shi el ds the earth from ul travi ol et radi ati on of
the sun .
Some evi dence for thi s sequence in the devel opment of
the atmosphere is contai ned in the sequence of Precam­
br i an rocks and fossi l s, whi ch suggests a transi ti on from a
non-oxygen to free-oxygen envi ronment.
20
THE EARTH'S CRUST: COMPOS ITION
We have so far been abl e to penetrate to onl y very shal l ow
depths beneath the surface of the earth. The deepest mi ne
is onl y about 2 mi l es deep, and the deepest wel l about 5
mi l es deep.
But by usi ng geophysi cal methods we can "x- ray" the
earth. Careful traci ng of earthquake waves shows that the
earth has a di sti nctl y l ayered structure. Studi es of rock
densi ty and composi ti on, heat fl ow, and magneti c and
gravi tati onal fi el ds al so ai d i n constructi ng an eart h model
of three l ayers: crust, mantl e, and core. Esti mates of the
thi ckness of these l ayers, and suggested physi cal and
chemi cal characteri sti cs form an i mportant part of modern
theori es of the earth {p. 1 26).
The crust of the earth i s formed of many di fferent ki nds
of rocks { p. 92) , each of whi ch i s an aggregate of mi neral s ,
descri bed on pp. 22-3 1.
Grand Canyon of Col orado Ri ver, Ari zona, i s 1 mi l e deep, but exposes
onl y a s ma l l port of upper port i on of earth' s crust.
MI NERALS are natural l y occurri ng substances wi th a char­
acteri sti c atomi c structure and characteri sti c chemi cal and
phy si cal properti es . Some mi neral s have a fi xed chemi cal
composi ti on; others vary wi thi n certai n li mi ts . It is thei r
atomi c structure that di sti ngui shes mi neral s from one
another.
Some mi neral s consi st of a si ngl e el ement, but most
mi neral s are composed of two or more el ements . A di a­
mond, for i nstance, consi sts onl y of carbon at oms, but
quartz i s a compound of si li ca and oxygen . Of the 1 05
el ements presentl y known, ni ne make up more than 99
percent of the mi neral s and rocks.
m

m

5
ø
o
2.0
2.59
2. 83
3.63
5.00
Al umi num 8. 1 3
7 F`
c
=
���� `
c
o
T
c
0
½
c
D
æ
0
m
o
ä
22
.00
Total 98. 59
:··c.»«»-: . ::»are the
two most abundant el ements i n
the earth' s crust. Thei r presence,
i n such enormous quant i t i es, i ndi ­
cates t hat mos t of t he mi neral s
ar e s i l i cates ( compounds of met­
al s wi th s i l i con and oxygen) or
al umi nosi l i cates . Their presence
i n rocks i s al so an i ndi cat i on of
the abundance of quartz ( Si O, ,
s i l i con di oxi de) i n sandstones and
grani tes, as wel l as i n quartz
vei ns and geodes .
The most stri ki ng feature of mi neral s is thei r crystal
form, and thi s is a refl ecti on of thei r atomi c structure. The
si mpl est exampl e of thi s i s rock sal t, or hal i te ( NaCI ,
sodi um chl ori de) , i n whi ch t he posi ti ve i ons (charged
atoms) of sodi um are l i nked wi th negati vel y charged chl or­
i ne i ons by thei r unl i ke el ectri cal charges. We can i magi ne
these i ons as spheres, wi t h t he spheres of sodi um havi ng
about hal f the radi us of the chl ori ne i ons ( . 98
A
as agai nst
1 . 8
A
;
A
i s an
A
ngstrom Uni t, whi ch is equi val ent to one
hundred mi l l i onth of a centi meter, wri tten numeri cal l y as
0. 00000001 em or l 0-8 cm) . The uni t i s named for Anders
A
ngstrom, a Swedi sh physi ci st.
·.«·::. : .:show that t he
i nt ernal arrangement of hal i te i s
a defi ni te cubi c pat t ern, i n whi ch
i o n s of s od i u m a l t er n at e wi t h
those o f chl or i ne. Each sodi um
i on i s t hus hel d i n t he center of
and at equal di stance f r om six
symmet ri cal l y arranged chl ori ne
i ons, and vi ce versa. I t i s t hi s
bas i c at o mi c ar r an gemen t or
crystal l i ne structure t hat gi ves
hal i te i t s di stincti ve cubi c crystal
form and i t s characteri st i c physi­
cal propert i es .
Hal i te crystal
SODI UM ATOM joi ns CHLORI NE ATOM
to form i oni c crystal
sodi u m c hl ori de
THE ATOMI C STRUCTURE of each mi neral is di sti nctive
but most mi neral s are more compl i cated than hal i te, some
because they compri se more el ements, others because the
i ons are l i nked together i n more compl ex ways . A good
exampl e of thi s i s the di fference between di amond and
graphi te. Both have an i denti cal chemi cal composi ti on
(they are both pure carbon) but they have very di fferent
physi cal properti es. Di amond i s the hardest mi neral
known, and graphi te i s one of the softest. Thei r di fferent
atomi c structures refl ect thei r di fferent geol ogi c modes of
ori gi n.
- ««:s- t h e hardest natural
substance known, cons i sts of pure
carbon at oms. Each carbon atom
i s l i nked wi t h four others by el ec­
tron-shar i ng. The four el ectrons
i n the outer shel l are shared wi th
four ne i gh bor i ng at oms. Each
atom of carbon then has ei ght
el ectrons i n i t s outer shel l . Thi s
provi des a very strong bond. I t s
crystal form i s a refl ect i on of i t s
structure and of the condi ti ons
under whi ch i t was formed. Di a­
mond i s usual l y pal e yel l ow or
col or l ess, but i s found al so i n
shades of r ed, or ange, gr een,
bl ue, br own, or bl ack. Pure whi t e
or bl ue-whi t e are best for gems.
24
c.«-- :: qui te di fferent from
di amond, i s soft and greasy, and
wi del y used as an i ndust ri al l ubr i ­
cant. I n graphi t e, car bon at oms
are arranged i n l ayer s, gi vi ng t he
mi neral i t s f l aky f or m. The at oms
wi t h i n e a c h l ay e r h ave v e r y
strong bonds , but those t hat hol d
s ucces s i ve l ayer s t oget her are
very weak. Some at oms between
l a y e r s ar e h e l d t o g e t h e r s o
poorl y that they move freel y, gi v­
i ng the graphi te i ts soft, s l i ppery,
l ubri cat i ng properti es. Because
of i ts poor bondi ng, graphi te i s a
good conductor of el ect ri ci ty. I t s
b e s t - known u s e i s i n " l e a d "
penci l s.
CRYSTAL FORM of mi neral s is an i mportant factor in thei r
i den t i fi cat i on . Gr own wi t hout obs t r uct i on , mi n er a l s
devel op a characteri sti c crystal for m. The outer arrange­
ment of pl ane surfaces refl ects thei r i nternal structure.
Perfect crystal s are rare. Most mi neral s occur i n i rregul ar
masses of smal l crystal s because of restri cted growth . Si nce
al l crystal s are three-di mensi onal, they may be cl assi fi ed
on the basi s of the i ntersecti on of thei r axes . Axes are
i magi nary l i nes passi ng through the geome tri c center of a
crystal from the mi ddl e of its faces and i ntercepti ng i n a
si ngl e poi nt .
: . . : : .·::«. :have t hree
axes of equal l engt h meeti ng at
ri ght angl es , as i n gal ena, gar­
net, pyri te, and hal i t e.
:::.«c:s«.:.·::«.:have
three axes at ri ght angl es, two of
equal l engt h, as i n zi rcon, rut i l e,
and scapol i t e.
-,
Quartz Staurol i te
«:s::. s ::.·::«.:have
three unequa l axes, two formi ng
an obl i que angl e and one perpen­
di cul ar, as i n augi t e, orthocl ase,
and epi dot e.
:. :. s ::.·::«.:have three
axes of unequal l engths, none
formi ng a ri ght angl e wi th others,
as i n pl agi ocl ase fel dspars .
Gal ena Zi rcon
-:·«c:s«.:.·::«.: have
three equal hori zontal axes wi t h
60° angl es and one shorter or
l o n ge r at r i g h t a n g l e s , as i n
quartz and tourmal i ne.
:.:-:. -:«. : :.·::«.:
have three axes at ri ght angl es ,
but each i s of di fferent l engt h, as
i n bari te and staurol i t e.
Epi dote
25
N1NERA11DENI1FlCAI1ON i nvol ves the use of vari ous
chemi cal and physi cal tests to determi ne what mi neral s are
present i n rock . There are over 2, 000 mi neral s known, and
el aborate l aboratory tests ( such as X -ray di ffracti on) are
requi red to i denti fy some of them. But many of the common
mi neral s can be recogni zed after a few si mpl e tests . Si x
i mportant physi cal properti es of mi neral s (hardness, l us­
ter, col or, speci fi c gravi ty, cl eavage, and fracture) are
easi l y determi ned. A bal ance is needed to fi nd speci fi c
gravi ty of crystal s or mi neral fragments . For the other
tests, a hand l ens, steel fi l e, kni fe, and a few other common
i tems are hel pfu l . Speci mens can someti mes be recogni zed
by taste, tenaci ty, tarni sh, transparency, i ri descence,
odor, or the col or of thei r powder streak, especi al l y when
these observati ons are combi ned wi th tests for the other
physi cal properti es.
di amond
MOHS'
SCALE OF
HARDNESS
-«.-»:::i s the resi stance af a
mi neral surface Ia scratchi ng . Ten
wel l -known mi neral s have been
arranged i n a scal e af i ncreasi ng
har dnes s ( Mohs ' s ca l e ) . Ot her
mi neral s ar e assi gned compara­
bl e numbers from l to l 0 to rep­
r e s e n t r e l a t i v e h a r d n es s . A
mi neral that scratches ort hocl ase
( 6) but is scratched by quartz ( 7)
woul d be assi gned a hardness
val ue of 6. 5.
..:::.is the appearance of a
mi neral when l i ght i s refl ected
from i ts surface . Quartz i s usual l y
gl assy; gal ena, metal l i c .
Ga l ena crystal s
:-.: · :c.«. :·is the rel a­
t i ve wei ght of a mi neral com­
pared wi th the wei ght of an equal
vol ume of water. A bal ance i s
nor mal l y us ed to determi ne t he
two wei ght s. Same mi neral s ar e
s i mi l ar superfi ci al l y but di ffer i n
de n s i t y . Bar i t e may r es emb l e
quart z, but quartz has a speci fi c
gravi ty of 2 . 7; bari te, 4. 5 .
::.:.vari es i n some mi neral s .
Pi gments or i mpuri t i es may be the
cause. Quartz occurs i n many
hues but i s someti mes col orl ess.
Among mi ner al s wi th a constant
col or are gal ena ( l ead gray). sul ­
fur ( yel l ow) , azuri te ( bl ue). and
mal achi te ( green) . A f resh sur­
face i s used for i denti fi cat i on, as
wea t h e r i n g c h a n g e s t he t r u e
col or.
:..«.«c.is the tendency of
some mi ner al s tq spl i t al ong cer­
t ai n pl anes that are paral l el to
thei r crystal faces . A hammer
bl ow or pressure wi th a kni fe
bl ade can cl eave a mi neral . Gal ­
ena and hal i te have cubi c cl eav­
age. Mi ca can be separated so
easi l y that i t i s sai d to have per­
fect bas al c l eavage. Mi n era l s
wi t h o u t a n o r d e r l y i n t e r n a l
arrangement of atoms have no
cl eavage.
·.«::...i s the way a mi neral
breaks other than by cl eavage.
Mi neral s wi th l i t t l e or no cl eavage
are apt to show good fracture
surfaces when shat tered by a
hammer bl ow. Quartz has a shel l ­
l i ke fracture surface. Copper has
a rough, hackl y surface; cl ay, an
earthy fracture.
Rhombohedra l
cl eavage:
cal ci te
Conchoi dal fracture:
obsi di an
Uneven fracture:
ar senopyr i te
27
COMMON ROCK-FORMI NG MI NE RALS i ncl ude carbon­
ates , sul fates , and other compounds . Many mi neral s crys­
tal l i ze from mol ten rock materi al . A few form i n hot spri ngs
and geysers, and some duri ng metamorphi sm. Others are
formed by preci pi tati on, by the secreti ons of organi sms,
by evaporati on of sal i ne waters , and by the acti on of
ground water.
«.»..«.:«..:»«:.: :..·«:.:.«»-:·.-.:
..«:».:.i s o group nome for
hydrated ferri c oxi de mi neral s ,
Fe,O,. H, O. I t i s on amorphous
mi neral that occurs i n compact,
smooth, rounded mosses or i n
soft, earthy mos s es . No cl eav­
age. Earthy fracture. Hardness
(H) 5 to 5. 5; Sp. Gr. 3 . 5 to 4. 0.
Rusty or bl acki sh col or. Dul l ,
e ar t h y l u ste r g i v es o ye l l ow­
brown streak. Common weather­
i ng product of i ron mi neral s .
:«.:.:.i s o cal ci um carbonate,
CoCO,. I t has dogtooth or fl at
hexagonal crystal s wi th excel l ent
cl eavage. H. 3; Sp. Gr. 2. 72.
Col or l es s or whi t e. I mpur i t i es
show col ors of yel l ow, orange,
c·-:.«i s o hydrated cal ci um
sul phate, CoS0,. 2H, O. Tabul ar
or fi brous monocl i ni c crystal s , or
massi ve. Good cl eavage. H. 2 .
S p . Gr. 2 . 3 . Col orl ess or whi t e.
Vi treous to pearl y l uster. Streaks
ore whi te. F l exi bl e but no el ast i c
fl akes. Somet i mes fi brous . Found
i n sedi mentary evapori tes and as
s i ngl e crystal s i n bl ock shal es.
The compact, massi ve form i s
known as al abaster.
brown , and green. Transparent
to opaque. Vi treous or dul l l us­
ter. Maj or consti tuent of l i me­
stone. Common cave and vei n
depos i t . Reacts strongl y i n di l ute
hydroch l ori c aci d.
Cal ci te
F i brous Gypsum
..«.::is s i l i con di oxi de, Si O, .
Massi ve or pri smat i c . No cl eav­
age. Conchoi dal fracture. H. 7;
Sp. Gr. 2. 65. Commonl y col or­
l ess or whi t e. Vi treous to greasy
l uster. Transparent to opaque .
Common in aci d i gneous, meta­
morphi c, and c l ast i c rocks, vei ns,
and geodes . The most common of
al l mi neral s .
Quartz
crystal
.::· ·:.«.sc:...:«:.«.s..«.:
·..-:-«.:are al umi na- si l i cates
af ei t her potas s i u m (KAI Si308
orthocl ase, mi crocl i ne, etc . ) ar
sodi um and cal ci um ( pl agi ocl ase
fe l ds par s NaAI Si ,08 , CaAI , ­
Si ,08}. Wel l -farmed monocl i ni c
ar t r i cl i ni c crystal s , wi th good
cl eavage. H. 6 to 6. 5; Sp. Gr.
2. 5 to 2. 7 Orthocl ase fel dspars
are whi te, gray, or pi nk, vi treous
to pear l y l uster, and l ack surface
stri at i ons . Pl agi ocl ase fel dspars
are whi te or gray, have two good
cl eavages, whi ch produce fi ne
paral l el st ri at i ons on cl eavage
surfaces . Common i n i gneous and
metamorphi c rocks, and arkosi c
sandstones .
«.:«:ar e s i l i c at e mi n er a l s .
Wh i t e mi c a ( mu s c ov i t e} i s a
potassi um al umi no- s i l i cate. Bl ack
mi ca ( bi ot i te} i s a potassi um,
i r on, magnes i u m al u mi no- s i l i ­
cate . Both occur i n t hi n, mono­
c l i n i c , p s e u d o - h e x a g o n a l ,
scal el i ke crystal s . Superb cl eav­
age gi ves t hi n, fl exi bl e fl akes .
Pear l y to vi treous l uster. Mi cas
are common i n i gneous, meta­
morphi c, and sedi mentary rocks .
Bi ot i te
( bl ack mi ca)
30
-· . :· . ». : i n c l u de a l a r g e
g r o u p of s i l i c at es of c a l c i u m,
magnes i um, and i ron . Augite,
( CaMgfeAI ),•( AIS i ) , 06, a n d
hyper s t hene, ( FeMg) Si 03, ar e
t he mos t common. Stubby, ei ght­
si ded pri smati c, orthorhombi c or
monocl i ni c crystal s , or massi ve.
Two cl eavages meet at 90° ( com­
pare amphi bol es) , but t hese are
not al ways devel oped. Gray or
green, gradi ng i nto bl ack. Vi tre­
ous to dul l l uster. H. 5 to 6. Sp.
Gr. 3 . 2 to 3 . 6. Common i n nearl y
al l basi c i gneous and metamor­
phi c rocks . Someti mes found i n
meteori tes.
««- - . :. . : a r e c o mp l e x
hydrat ed sil i cat es of c al c i u m,
magnes i um, i ron, an d al umi num.
Hornbl ende, a common amphi ­
bol e, has l ong, s l ender, pri s­
mati c, si x-sided orthorhombi c or
monoc l i n i c crystal s ; s omet i mes
fi b r ou s . Two g o o d c l eav age s
meeti ng at 56°. H . 5 t o 6; Sp. Gr.
2. 9 to 3 . 2 . Bl ack or dark green .
Opaque with a vi treous l uster.
Common i n basi c i gneous and
metamorphi c rocks. Asbestos i s
an amphi bol e.
:... ». i s a magnesi um-i ron
s i l i c at e, ( FeMg ), Si O,. S ma l l ,
gl assy grai ns . Often found i n
l arge, granul ar masses. Crystal s
ar e rel ati vel y r ar e. Poor cl eav­
age. Conchoi dal fracture. H. 6. 5
t o 7 ; S p . Gr. 3 . 2 t o 3 . 6 . Vari ous
shades of green; someti mes yel ­
l owi s h. Transparent or trans l u­
cent . Vi treous l uster. Common i n
bas i c i gneous and metamorphi c
rocks. Ol i vi ne al ters to a brown
col or.
: :««:»o. .«. » . . «. :
c«..»«i s a l ead sul phi de, PbS.
Heavy, br i t t l e, gr anul ar masses
of cubi c crystal s . Perfect cubi c
cl eavage, H. 2 . 5; Sp. Gr. 7 . 3 to
7. 6 Si l ver-gray. Metal l i c l uster.
Streaks ore l ead-gray. I mportant
l ead ore. Common vei n mi neral .
Occurs wi th zi nc, copper, and
si l ver.
:--«....:.i s a zi nc s ul phi de,
ZnS. Cubi c crystal s or granul ar,
compact . Si x perfect cl eavages
at 60° . H. 3 . 5 to 4; Sp. Gr. 3 . 9
t o 4 . 2 . Usual l y browni s h; some­
t i mes yel l ow or bl ack. Transl ucent
to opaque. Resi nous l uster. Some
s p e c i me n s a r e fl u o r e s c e n t .
I mportant zi nc or e. Common vei n
mi neral wi t h gal ena.
-·..:.i s an i ron s ul phi de, FeS, .
C u b i c , b r a s s y c r y s t a l s wi t h
stri ated faces . May b e granul ar.
No cl eavage. Uneven fract ure.
H. 6 to 6.5; Sp. Gr. 4 . 9 to 5 . 2 .
Brassy yel l ow col or. Metal l i c l us­
t er. Opaque and bri t t l e. Al so
c a l l e d f oo l ' s g o l d . Co mmo n
source o f sul fur.
THE CRUST: EROSION AND DEPOSITION
The earth's crust is i nfl uenced by three great processes
whi ch act together:
Gradati on i ncl udes the vari ous surface agenci es ( i n
contrast t o t he two i nternal p rocesses bel ow), whi ch break
down the crust (degradati on) or bui l d i t up ( aggradati on) .
Gradati on i s brought ab
9
ut by r unni ng water, wi nds, i ce
and the oceans . Most sedi ments are fi nal l y deposi ted i n the
seas .
Di astrophi sm i s the name gi ven t o al l movements of the
sol i d crust wi th respect to other parts (p. 1 06) . Someti mes
thi s i nvol ves the gentl e upl i ft of the crust . Many rocks that
were formed as mari ne sedi ments gradual l y rose unti l they
now stand thousands of feet above sea l evel . Other di as­
trophi c movements may i nvol ve i ntensive fol di ng and frac­
ture of rocks.
::«: :. . » . : t he wo r l d ove r
provi de evi dence of changes i n
the earth's unstabl e crust . The
photograph shows cl i ffs made of
rocks t hat were depos i ted under
the seas that covered the area
about 130 mi l l i on years ago .
These were upl i fted and fol ded,
so thei r or i gi nal l ayers now stand
al most verti cal . At present they
are undergoi ng erosi on by the
sea, typi fi ed by the form of the
arch. Eroded mater i al i s bei ng
rede pos i t ed os a be ac h . T h e
r oc k s of wh i c h c oa s t l i n es ar e
formed are themsel ves t h e resul t
of earl i er gradat i onal events .
»«:..«.«.:-refl ects process
of erosi on, whi l e deposi t i on has
pr oduc ed the bea c h . Do r s et ,
Engl and.
Erupt i on of Kapoho, Hawai i , showi ng paths of mol ten l ava
VULCANI SM i ncl udes al l the processes associ ated wi th the
movement of mol ten rock materi al . Thi s i ncl udes not onl y
vol cani c erupti ons but al so t he deep-seated i ntrusi on of
grani tes and other rocks ( p. 83).
These three processes act so that at any ti me the form
and posi ti on of the crust i s the resul t of a dynami c equi l i b­
ri um between them, al ways refl ecti ng the cl i mate, season,
al ti tude, and geol ogi c envi ronment of parti cul ar areas . As
an end product of degradati on, the conti nents woul d be
reduced to fl at pl ai ns, but the bal ance i s restored and the
processes of erosi on counteracted by other forces that tend
to el evate parts of the earth's crust . These changes refl ect
changes i n the earth's i nteri or (p. 1 46) .
33
Yosemi te val l ey i s the resul t of i nteract i on of vari ous types of eros i onal
processes.
ERO51ON i nvol ves the breaki ng down and removal of
materi al by var i ous processes or degradati on .
·::.« :..«...·in Cal i forni a
i s a good exampl e of the compl ex
i nterpl ay of gradat i onal proc­
esses . A narrow canyon was fi rst
carved by the Ri ver Merced. Thi s
was l ater deepened and wi dened
by gl aci at i on. Runni ng water i s
n ow mo d i f y i n g t h e r e s u l t a n t
hangi ng and U-shoped vol l eys ( p.
58) , so characteri st i c of gl aci al
topography. The l evel of t he mai n
vol l ey f l oor l i es 3, 000 f eet bel ow
the upl and surface of the Si erras .
Di fferences in topography ore
portl y the resul t of di fferences i n
j oi nt i ng and resi stance of under­
l yi ng grani tes. Hal f Dome and El
Capi t an ore r es i s t ant gr an i t i c
monol i t hs l ai d bore by t h i s di ffer­
ent i al weat her i n g . The r egi on
thus shows t h e effect of many
degrodot i onol processes . But the
300-ft . -t hi ck sedi ment on the vol ­
l ey fl oor reveal s t he cont i nui ng
aggradat i onal effects t hat ore
al so at wor k.
WEATHERI NG
Weatheri ng i s t he general name f or al l t he ways i n whi ch a
rock may be broken down. It takes pl ace because mi neral s
formed i n a parti cul ar way (say at a hi gh temperature i n
t he case of an i gneous rock) are often unstabl e when
exposed to the vari ous condi ti ons affecti ng the crust of the
earth . Because weatheri ng i nvol ves i nteracti on of the l i tho­
sphere wi th the atmosphere and hydrosphere, i t vari es wi th
the cl i mate. But al l ki nds of weatheri ng ul t i matel y produce
broken mi neral and rock fragments and other products of
decomposi ti on. Some of these remai n i n one pl ace (cl ay or
l ateri te, for exampl e) whi l e others are di ssol ved and
removed by r unni ng water.
The earth's surface, above the l evel of the water tabl e
( p. 50) , i s everywhere subj ect t o weatheri ng . The weath­
ered cover of l oose rock debri s (as opposed to sol i d bed­
r oc k ) i s k n own a s t h e r ego l ith . T h e t h i c k n e s s a n d
di stri buti on of the regol i th depend upon both the rate of
weatheri ng and the rate of removal and transportati on of
weathered materi al .
: -. .··.:::o f weatheri ng are
most str i ki ngl y seen i n ari d and
s emi ar i d envi r onment s , where
bare rocks are exposed wi t hout a
cover of vegetat i on. Bryce Can·
yon, Utah , shows the effects of
the beddi ng and di fferi ng resi s·
lance of rocks i n produci ng di s·
t i n ct i ve er os i o n a l l an df or ms .
Weat heri ng is of great i mpor·
lance to humanki nd. Soi l s are the
resul t of weatheri ng processes,
and are enri ched by the acti vi ti es
of a n i ma l s a n d p l a n t s . S o me
i mpor t ant economi c resources,
such as our ores of i ron and al u·
mi num, are the resul t of res i dual
weatheri ng processes .
· .:::: -«: : . .. sci s of t en
produced by al ternate freezi ng
and thawi ng of water i n rock
pores and fi ssures . Expansi on of
water duri ng freezi ng causes the
rock to fracture.
: - -. .:. -«. =. «: -. .. sc
oc c u r s i n we l l - j o i nt ed r o c k s ,
because weather ing tokes pl ace
mo r e r a p i d l y at c o r ne r s and
edges ( 3 and 2 si des) than on si n­
gl e faces .
«.:-«s.:«. =.«:-. ..sc
i nvol ves the di s i ntegrati on of a
rock by mechani cal processes .
These i ncl ude freezi ng and thaw­
i ng of water i n rock crevi ces, di s ­
r u p t i o n by p l a n t r o o t s o r
bu r r owi ng ani ma l s , and t h e
c hanges i n v ol u me t h a t r es u l t
from chemi cal weatheri ng wi t hi n
the rock. Thi s weather i ng i s espe­
ci al l y common i n hi gh l at i tudes
and al t i tudes, whi ch hove doi l y
f r eez i ng and t h awi ng, and i n
de s e r t s , wh e r e t h e r e i s l i t t l e
wat er o r veg e t a t i o n . R o t h e r
ang u l a r r oc k f o r ms or e p r o­
duced, and l i t t l e chemi cal change
i n the rock i s i nvol ved . I t was once
thought that extreme doi l y tem­
p e r a t u r e c h a n g e s c a u s e d
mechani cal weatheri ng, but t hi s
now seems uncertai n.
: - . «. : «. =. «: - . . . sc
i nvol ves t he dec ompos i t i on of
r ock by chemi cal changes or s ol u­
t i on. The chi ef processes ore oxi ­
d a t i o n , c a r b o n a t i o n a n d
hydrati on, and sol ut i on i n water
above and bel ow the surface .
Many i ron mi neral s , for exampl e,
ore rapi dl y oxi di zed ( "rusted")
and l i mes t one i s d i s s ol ved by
water contai ni ng carbon di oxi de.
Such decomposi ti on i s encour­
aged by worm, wet cl i mat i c con­
d i t i ons and i s mo s t a c t i ve i n
tropi cal and temperate cl i mates .
Bl ankets of s oi l or other mater i al
or e produced whi ch ore so thi ck
and extensi ve that sol i d rock i s
rarel y seen i n the t r opi cs . Chem­
i cal weatheri ng i s more wi de­
s p r e a d a n d c o m m o n t h a n
mechani cal weatheri ng, al though
usual l y both oct together.
SOI L is the most obvi ous resul t of weatheri ng . It is the
weathered part of the crust capabl e of supporti ng pl ant
l i fe. The thi ckness and character of soi l depend upon rock
type, rel i ef, cl i mate, and the "age" of a soi l , as wel l as the
effect of l i vi ng organi sms.
I mmature soi l s are l i t t l e more t han broken rock frag­
ments, gr adi ng down i nto sol i d rock . Mature soi l s i ncl ude
quanti ti es of humus, formed from decayed pl ants, so that
the upper surface (topsoi l ) becomes dar k. Organi c aci ds
and carbon di oxi de rel eased duri ng vegetati ve decay di s­
sol ve l i me, i ron, and other compounds and carry them
down i nto the l i ghter subsoi l .
Resi dual soi l s, formed i n pl ace from the weatheri ng of
underl yi ng rock, i ncl ude l ateri tes , produced by tropi cal
l eachi ng and oxi di zi ng condi ti ons whi ch consi st of i ron and
al umi num oxi des wi t h al most no humus. Transported soi l s
have been carri ed from t he parent rocks from whi ch they
formed ond deposi ted el sewhere. Wi nd-bl own l oess ( p.
77), al l uvi al deposi ts ( p. 44) , and gl aci al t i l l ( p. 59) are
common exampl es of transported soi l s .
LATE RI TI C SOI L PROFI L E
Fr i abl e cl ay
Concret i ons
ri ch i n i ron
and manganese
oxi des
I ron- ri ch
cl ays
zone
serpent i ne
MATURE SOI L PROF I L E
¸Humus-ri ch
cl ay
l Cl ay wi t h
l i mestone
fragment s
Fres h
l i mestone
37
¯¬

\¸rock f al l
t
l
Î
Î
.::··«..:for mi ng t al us s l opes ore on
exampl e of mos s wasti ng . The fi ner materi al
tends t o be concentrated near t he bose of
t he sl ope. Suc h fal l s may be ei ther s mal l and
i rregul ar or massi ve and sudden, causi ng a
rock aval anche.
i on
MASS WASTI NG i s the name gi ven to al l downsl ope move­
ments of regol i th under the predomi nant i nfl uence of grav­
i ty. Weathered materi al i s transported from i ts pl ace of
ori gi n by gravi ty, streams, wi nds, gl aci ers, and ocean
currents. Each of these agenci es i s a deposi ti ng, as wel l as
a transporti ng agent and, though they rarel y act i nde­
pendentl y, each produces rather di fferent resul ts.
The preventi on of mass wasti ng of soi l i s of great i mpor­
tance i n al l parts of the worl d. Engi neeri ng and mi ni ng
acti vi ti es usual l y requi re geol ogi cal advi ce on s l i de and
subsi dence dangers . Several tragi c dam fai l ures have
resul ted from sl i des. The Vai ont reservoi r sl i de i n I tal y i n
1 963 cl ai med 2, 600 l i ves . Careful geol ogi cal si t e surveys
can prevent such di sasters .
:«.:-·.:=:may be s l ow or
very rapi d . Sl ow movement ( s ol i ­
fl u c t i on ) t okes pl ac e i n ar eas
where port of t h e ground i s per­
manent l y f r ozen . Thes e ar eas
cover about 20 percent of the
earth . On sl opes, the t hawed
upper I oyer sl i des on the frozen
ground bel ow i t . On fl at ground,
l ateral movement gi ves stone
pol ygons. Sudden fl ows may fol ­
l ow heavy r ai ns.
:o..:...-is the gentl e, down­
h i l l movement of the regol i t h that
occurs even on rather moderate,
g r a s s - c ov er ed s l o p e s . I t c a n
often b e seen i n road cuts.
:..«-:are s l i des i n soft, uncon­
s ol i dated s edi men t . Some ar e
submari ne i n or i gi n . Fossi l s l umps
are recogni zabl e i n some strata.
Usual l y, s l umps are on a rather
smal l scal e, as when sod breaks
off O stream bank.
: . . : . -. » : . i s d o wn wa r d
movement o f the earth' s surface
caused by nat ural means ( chemi ­
cal we at h e r i n g i n l i me s t on e
a r e a s ) o r a r t i fi c i a l me t h ods
(excessi ve mi ni ng or br i ne pump­
i ng) . Heavy l oadi ng by bui l di ngs
or en gi n eer i n g st r uct ur es may
al so cause subsi dence.
. «»-: ..- . : ar e mas s move­
ments of ear t h or r ock al ong a
de fi n i t e p l a n e . T h e y oc c u r i n
areas o f hi gh rel i ef where weak
pl anes-beddi ng, j oi nt s, or faul t s
( p . 1 1 0 - 1 1 1 ) - a r e s t e e p l y
i n c l i n e d ; wh e r e we a k r o c k s
u n de r l i e mas s i ve o n e s ; wher e
l arge rocks ar e undercut; and
where water has l ubr i cated sl i de
pl anes .
Hi l l creep affects fences and trees,
as wel l as bendi ng of vert i cal
strata.
Typi cal l ands l i de topography i n
Wyomi ng shows debri s o f huge
boul ders.
R o c k g l a c i e r s i n v o l v e s l o w
downs l ope movement of "ri ver" of
rock.
RUNNING WAT E R
Runni ng water i s the most powerful agent of erosi on .
Wi nd, gl aci ers, and ocean waves are al l confi ned to rel a­
ti vel y l i mi ted l and areas, but runni ng water act s al most
everywhere, even i n deserts . One fourth of the 35, 000
cubi c mi l es of water fal l i ng on the conti nents each year runs
off i nto ri vers, carryi ng away rock fragments wi th i t . I n the
Uni ted States, thi s erosi on of the l and surface takes pl ace
at an average rate of about one i nch i n 750 years. Runni ng
water breaks down the crust by the i mpact of rock debri s i t
carri es .
:-.-·-.:.:c.::·:..is a
conti nuous change in the state of
water as it passes through a cycl e
of evaporat i on, condensat i on,
and preci pi tat i on. Of t he water
that fal l s on the l and, up to 90
percent i s evaporated . Some is
absorbed by pl ants and subse­
quent l y t ranspi red to the atmo­
sphere , some runs off i n streams
and ri vers, and some soaks i nto
the ground . The rel ati ve amounts
moi st ai r mass
Þ
moves to conti nent
of water fol l owi ng these paths
vary consi derabl y and depend
upon the sl ope of the ground; the
character of the soi l and rocks;
the amount , rate, and di st ri bu­
ti on of rai nfal l ; the amount and
type of pl ant cover ; and the t em­
per at u r e . The hydr os pher e i s
esti mated t o i ncl ude over 300
m i l l i o n c u b i c m i l e s of wat er ,
about 97 percent of whi ch i s i n
the oceans .
condensat i on
pr ci pi tat i on

evaporati on i n fal l i ng
evaporat i on from

^_ "q O.
o
,� j l
runoff
P
^g ´�
P
� I
I
l oss by
stream
r unoff

¾w

l
� ¬@" ,´
OCEAN
ground water moves to ..
-
..
..¸_ ri vers, l akes, oceans *
---·.......--·
water
t abl e

A si ngl e shower may i nvol ve the downpour of more than
a bi l l i on tons of water. Each rai ndrop i n the shower
becomes i mportant i n erosi on, especi al l y i n areas wi th
sparse vegetati on and unconsol i dated sedi ments . Runoff
water rarel y travel s far as a conti nuous sheet, for it i s
broken up i nto ri vul ets and streams by surface i rregul ar i ­
t i es i n r ock type and rel i ef.
Runni ng water carri es i ts l oad of rock debri s partl y i n
suspensi on, part l y by rol l i ng and bounci ng i t al ong t he
bottom, and part l y i n sol uti on . The carryi ng power of a
stream is proporti onal to the square of i ts vel oci ty, and so
is enormousl y i ncreased i n ti me of fl ood.
:-.·:.«:·.....:depends
upon mony factor s . Water runs
downhi l l under the i nfl uence of
gravi ty, the fl ow of the water
bei ng character i s t i cal l y t ur bu­
l ent , wi th swi r l s and eddi es . The
overal l l ong profi l e of a ri ver val ­
l ey i s concave upwards, however
much i ts gradi ent (i ts sl ope or f al l
i n a gi ven di stance) may var y. The
vel oci t y of the stream i ncreases
wi t h t h e g r a d i e n t , b u t a l s o
depends on other factors, i ncl ud­
i ng the posi t i on wi t hi n the ri ver
channel , the degree of turbu­
l ence, the shape and course of the
channel , and the stream l oad
( transported materi al s ) .
-. s-..:.:-.«.s«c.-«:
: . . s o f D i a m a n t i n a R i ve r ,
Queensl and, Austr al i a, i s t ypi cal
of ri ver devel opment i n areas
where the underl yi ng rocks are
rel ati vel y uni form i n t hei r resi s­
tance to erosi on. Thi s pattern
may be modi fi ed by conti nued
downcut t i ng of the ri ver.
Di agrammat i c model of a ri ver
system, showi ng cross sect i ons of
channel at t hree poi nts
Ni agara F al l s are formed by res i stant bed of dol omi te.
RI VER PROFI LES refl ect the varyi ng devel opment of drai n­
age systems. Duri ng earl y devel opment, changes are
refl ected by di recti on and shape of stream courses . Ul ti ­
matel y, erosi on produces an equi l i bri um between the sl ope
and vol ume of the r i ver and i ts erosi onal and deposi ti onal
power. Thi s resul ts i n a graded profi l e, or profi l e of equi l i b­
r i um. Fi nal equi l i bri um is never reached because of sea­
sonal and geol ogi c changes . The downward l i mi t of erosi on
by a ri ver i s the base l evel , bel ow whi ch the ri ver cannot
downcut appreci abl y because i t has reached the l evel of
the body of water i nto whi ch i t fl ows . Sea l evel is the
ul ti mate base l evel for al l ri vers . Larger rivers and l akes
i nto whi ch ri vers fl ow consti tute l ocal base l evel s .
Stages i n t he cycl e of ri ver erosi on were once l abel ed as
"yout h, " "maturi ty, " and "ol d age . " Al though these
stages descri be certai n characteri sti cs, they i mpl y no par­
ti cul ar age i n years, onl y changi ng phases i n devel opment.
Ri vers often show a condi ti on of ol d age near thei r mouths,
but are mature or youthful i n thei r hi gher reaches . For that
reason , the terms are rather mi sl eadi ng, and are now
rarel y used.
42
.....-.:·...:.. ·· ..·..-
.,,.. .,,.·-......· ·.
- . · . , . . . . . · - . · - .
....-..,...- ..·......· .
.. ·.,......·.,. . .-
....c..«.-.:·... ..--.·
·... ..-.. .·..· ...
.·...· ,·,.- .·. ...·. .
. . - . . . . . . -. -.. . , .
.,. . ...... ·.. ...
.. .·-... .· ··...·· ..·
· .. ·:. ..-. ..·...-. .
longi t udi nal profi l e ..
:«:::-..::..--.:·... .
.... . ·· ,·. .· ..·...
.,. . .. :.. .·.·..·.
.. . .·.· .·-. , ·, ....
, .... -... .,..·-.-..·.
...,..·, · ... ......
.... .·.- ··.~· .· ...·
. .. · ... . · « . . . . . · ...
·...·.. ...
longi t udi nal profi l e ..
c.«-.--.:·....· ...-..
.. .·.· .·....- ..-··.
..· .... .,, .· ,..... -.
· .· ..-. . · . ·-..·-. ·,
...· ..... .... .·-..·-
... ·· . .....·...... ·.
... . .-.....·... .·.,
·. ...·--.... .···....
. ... ·..· .· · ... ··.
... « .. .. .. .·- ·-...·
.....-. ..
longi tud i nal profi l e ..
43
......s«: :sor upl i ft may
i nterrupt the cycl e of erosi on at
any st age to provi de new energy
for downcutt i ng . The charact er of
the st ream i s then often a combi ­
n a t i o n of r e c e n t l y c u t , s t eep
g o r ge s i n a n ol der me a n d e r
course. Anci ent fl ood- pl ai ns are
often l eft "stranded" as terraces.
Upl i ft and warpi ng may be rel a­
ti vel y sudden or s l ow, frequent or
r ar e, l ocal or regi onal i n extent .
Terraces are cut as ri ver swi ngs f r om one si de of va l l ey t o other.
WATERFALLS AND RAPI DS are l ocal i ncreases in gradi ent
i n the l ong profi l e of a ri ver. Most are due to unequal
erosi on of t he stream bed.
:-: ·«... of the Yel l owstone
Ri ver (the l ower of whi ch i s twi ce
as hi gh as Ni agara Fal l s ) res ul t
f r om resi stant l ava fl ows . Ni ag­
ara Fal l s i s hel d up by an SO-foot­
thi ck bed of dol omi te, whi ch i s
more resi st ant to erosi on than t he
u n d e r l y i n g s h a l e s a n d t h i n
l i mestones .
Other fal l s resul t from over­
deepeni ng of a mai n val l ey, often
by i ce, as i n the Bri dal Vei l Fal l s
i n Yosemi te, so t hat t he t ri butar­
i es are l eft "hangi ng" (p. 34) .
Conti nued erosi on by a stream
l eads to upstream mi grat i on and
u l t i m a t e s m o o t h i n g o u t o f
waterfal l s .
. » . . . « . . . : : . : » h a s
al ready cut Ni agara Fal l s back
about 7 mi l es from the Ni agara
escarpment, si nce i t began cut­
ti ng about 9, 000 years ago. The
weaker shal es bel ow the Lockport
Dol omi te are undercut by the tur­
bul ent water i n the pl unge pool ,
s o that t h e overl appi ng dol omi te
i s under mi n ed, and event u al l y
c o l l a ps e s . T h e Ni agar a R i v e r
fl ows i nto Lake Ontar i o from Lake
E r i e , wh i c h wi l l u l t i mat e l y be
drai ned by upstream mi grat i on of
the fal l s .
::..««-. .«:·t akes pl ac e
wh en t h e t r i b u t a r i e s o f o n e
s t r ea m ( A) e r o d e f as t e r t h a n
those o f anot her ( B) i n the same
area . The headwaters of the l ess
ac t i v e s t r e a m a r e u l t i ma t e l y
di verted or cut off . When such
"beheaded" st r ea ms abandon
thei r path t hrough a ri dge, a wi nd
gap res ul t s .
-..:«:are masses of sedi ment
deposi ted where ri vers l ose t hei r
vel oci t y as they ent er l akes or
seas . Thi ck, rel ati vel y uni form
l ayers of sedi ment accumul ate on
the steep outward s l ope. Del tas
of the Mi ssi ss i ppi , Ganges, and
Po are t housands of square mi l es
i n area. Del t as have a character­
i s t i c s t r a t i fi c a t i o n i n t h e i r
deposi ts .
Y
Cl i nton
Li mestone
--

and Sha l e �
Thorol d �
Sandstone
 

Whi rl pool •a
Sandstone
-::-:..:are ci r cul ar hol l ows Å
in a stream bed, dr i l l ed out by
swi r l i ng currents of water carry­
i n g g r av e l a n d p e b b l e s . T h i s
"hydraul i c dr i l l i ng" i s a n i mpor­
tant met hod of down- c ut t i n g,
even i n hard rock .
-. »-..:.:dr ai nage patter ns
ar e t h o s e t hat s how t r ee l i k e
branchi ng because the bedrock
has a uni form resi stance to ero­
si on and does not i nfl uence the
di recti on of stream fl ow.
:.-:. «-::. -drai nage gen­
eral l y has stream courses that are
i ndependent of rock structure. A
s t r eam' s eros i on al power may
have been strong enough t o mai n­
t ai n i t s antecedent cour s e dur i ng
DRAI NAGE
::»:....»:::..««: fl ow
i n di recti ons determi ned l argel y
by t he ori gi nal s l ope and shape
o f t h e g r o u n d . Wh e n t h e i r
courses are modi fi ed by features
of the geol ogy, such as val l ey cut­
t i ng i n soft strata, the adj usted
tri butari es are known as subse­
quent streams .
:.....:patterns ar e character­
i s t i c of u n i f o r ml y d i p p i n g o r
strongl y fol ded rocks . I n t hi s rec­
tangul ar pattern, the tri butari es
are nearl y perpendi cul ar to the
mai n stream.
upl i ft and devel opment of a new
geol ogi cal structure. Or i t may
keep i ts same course after i t cuts
through younger, overl yi ng, fl at,
sedi mentary rock to an ol der,
i rregul ar rock mass.
PAIIERN5
.«-.«.pat t er n s deve l op o n
young mountai ns , such a s vol can­
oes where streams radi ate from
the hi gh central area.
Pi racy may caus e ri ver di vers i on. Ancestral Shenandoah Ri ver captured
headwaters of Beaver Dam, l eavi ng an abandoned water gap.
«o- · .--.« »«c.may be
caused by pi racy ( p. 45) as wel l
as by gl aci al or vol cani c bl ocki ng
of st ream courses. Gl aci al di ver­
si an resul ts from overdeepeni ng
of basi ns and ri ver vol l eys by i ce,
b l o c k i n g of d r a i n a g e by i c e ,
morai ni c deposi ts, and mel twa­
ter, whi ch may produce gl aci al
l akes and new outl ets . Changes
i n sea l evel may al s o modi fy
drai nage.
Great lakes basi ns were carved by i ce from soft strata. Or i gi nal
dr ai nage was bl ocked by i ce, produci ng l ocal cr us t al depressi ons .
EROSI ONAL LANDFORMS are produced by runni ng
water and other erosi onal agents . Mesas are fl at-topped
rock mountai ns, whi ch stand as remnants of a once conti n­
uous pl ateau. Buttes are smal l er exampl es of t he same
thi ng. Monuments descri be any i sol ated rock pi nnacl e.
hogback escar pment
- :c.«:· : are l o n g r i d g e s
formed b y steepl y di ppi ng resi s­
tant strata; cuestas are gent l y
sl opi ng ri dges formed i n gentl y
di ppi ng strata .
s«:..«... -c.:are formed
of resi stant strata, usual l y sand­
stone or l i mestone. Underground
erosi on has taken pl ace bel ow the
or i gi nal stream bed.
- ss«:..: at Bryce Canyon,
Ut ah, show di fferenti al weather­
i ng. Erosi on has removed the soft­
er, more sol ubl e rocks. Rocks
here are of Tert i ary ( Eocene)
age.
GROUNDWATER is found al most everywhere bel ow the
earth's surface. Most ori gi nates from rai n and snow, but
smal l quanti ti es come from water trapped i n sedi ments
duri ng thei r deposi ti on (connate water) or from i gneous
magmas ( j uveni l e water) .
:.-:«..«»»:-...is formed
f r om mi n e r a l s d e p o s i t ed by
groundwater i n cl ayl i ke rocks .
Gr oun dwat er i s on i mpor t an t
agent i n both deposi t i on on d ero­
si on of surface rocks . I t can di s­
s o l v e o r i g i n a l c e m e n t i n g
mater i al s and deposi t new ones .
For exampl e, i t produces caves
and caverns by sol ut i on i n car­
bonate rocks.
-:.::.:·t he per cent age of
por e s pace to total vol ume of a
rock, depends upon the gr ai n
si ze, shape, packi ng, and cement
of rock part i cl es. The permeabi l ­
i t y of a r ock, or i ts capaci ty t o
trans mi t or yi el d water, depends
upon the si ze of pores, rather
than thei r total vol ume. Pores
smal l er t han 1 /20 of a mi l l i meter
wi l l n o t a l l o w wat e r t o fl ow
through them.
=...::.:.-:«»-( enl arged
vi ew) wi th hi gh porosi ty due to
sorti ng, whi ch has removed fi ne­
grai ned part i cl es
-::. .·: :. : . - : «»- h a s
l ower porosi ty than wel l - sorted
sand, because the pore spaces
are fi l l ed by fi ne part i cl es .
..«. : :: » . :g e n e r a l l y h o l d
water i n enl arged j oi nts formed
by sol ut i on; they l ack the "pore
spoce1 1 of sandstones.
¬
C
0

÷ >
0 =
o ¯ ¯
ë �
o o
o 0
0 Grai n di ameter
49
THE WATER TABLE depends on the di stri buti on of ground­
water. The open spaces i n the rocks of the upper part of
the cr ust are fi l l ed mai nl y wi th ai r. Thi s i s the zone of
aerati on . Water moves downward through thi s zone i nto
the zone of saturati on, where openi ngs ar e fi l l ed wi th
water. The upper surface of thi s saturated zone i s the water
tabl e. I n most areas, the water tabl e i s onl y a few tens of
feet bel ow the sur face, but i n ari d regi ons, i t i s much
deep er. Water-bear i ng rocks are rarel y found bel ow
2, 000 feet . Rock pores are cl osed by pressure at depth,
and thi s determi nes the l ower l i mi t for groundwater. Most
rocks wi l l give off water whenever they i ntersect the water
tabl e. But the l evel of the water tabl e fal l s after a dry
season, so rock formati ons must be deep enough to pene­
trate the water tabl e al l year round . Someti mes a per ched
water tabl e resul ts when a p ocket of water i s hel d above
the normal water tabl e by a saucer of i mpervi ous rock.
Any water-pr oduci ng rock formati on i s cal l ed an aqui fer.
«. : . : «»=. . . :a r e t h os e
where water i s confi ned t o a
permeabl e aqui fer by i mpervi ous
beds , and where the catchment or
i ntake area (and thus the water
l evel i n the aqui fer) i s hi gher
than the wel l head. Thi s al l ows
the wat er to fl ow toward t he
surface under i t s own i nternal
pressure.

 

´

,raÌ n fa
gr ani te
(after Hol mes )
SPRI NGS are sources of runni ng water produced by the
water tabl e i ntersecti ng the ground surface. A few of the
many ways they can be formed are shown i n the di agrams
above. Some spr i ngs are dry at seasons when t he water
tabl e i s depressed; others fl ow wi thout i nterrupti on.
-:: : - ..»c: a r e gen er a l l y
confi ned t o oreos o f recent vul ­
c an i s m wh er e gr ou ndwat er i s
heated at depth by contact wi t h
i gneous magmas. Such spri ngs
ore wel l devel oped i n Yel l owstone
Not i onal Pork and North I s l and,
New Zeal and. Terrace deposi ts
may be produced when hot spri ng
water deposi ts di ssol ve mi neral
mat t er. Mammot h Spri ngs of Yel ­
l ows t on e No t i o n a l P o r k o r e
f or med of c a l c i u m c ar bon at e
(travert i ne) . Geysers, i nt ermi t ­
t ent f ou n t o i n l i ke hot s p r i n g s ,
of t en b u i l d c on es of s i l i c eou s
geyseri t e.
·.««.:..:ore gent l e geysers
l ocated i n vol cani c regi ons that
emi t fumes, usual l y i n the form of
steam.
Hot Spri ngs, Ther mopol i s , Wyomi ng
Nor r i s Geyser Bas i n, Wyomi ng
Puddi ng Bas i n Geyser, New Zea­
l and shows t ypi cal er upt i on.
Ý
c.·:..:ar e t her mal s pr i n gs
that peri odi cal l y di scharge t hei r
wat er wi th expl osi ve vi ol ence. Al l
geysers have a l ong narrow pi pe
extendi ng down from t hei r vents
i nto thei r reservoi r s . A bui l d- up
and sudden r el ease of st eam bub­
bl es pr obabl y rel i eves t he pres­
sure on the heated water bel ow
ground so that i t boi l s and surges
u pwar d . T h e p e r i o d bet ween
erupti ons vari es from mi nutes to
mo n t h s i n d i f f e r e n t g e y s e r s ,
dependi ng upon the structure of
the geyser, i t s water suppl y, and
i ts heat source.
:.- ·« :-·.. i n Yel l owstone
Æ Nat i onal Park di scharges O col ­
umn of water and st eam up to 1 70
feet hi gh approxi matel y every 65
mi nutes .
Typi cal geyser structure shows
c o m p l e x s y s t e m of fi s s u r e s
extendi ng down to regi ons where
g r ound wat er becomes s uper ­
heated and fi nal l y erupts .
Geyser i te ( Si nter )
Temperature Depth
2 l 2°F
/ 0'
33'
295'
:«. . : r e fl e c t t h e wo r k o f
groundwater. Li mestone i s di s­
sol ved by c i rcul at i ng wat er i n
s ubs ur f ace j oi nt s and fi s s ur es .
Th e enl argement gradual l y pro­
duces a cove . I nsi de a cove, dr i p­
p i n g wa t e r , r i c h i n c a l c i u m
bi carbonate and CO,, often pro­
duces preci pi tates that form sta­
l agmi tes and stal act i tes .
GEOLOGI CAL WORK OF GROUNDWATER is i mportant
i n sol uti on and deposi ti on i n the rocks through whi ch i t
passes . I t di ssol ves l i mestone and other carbonate rocks to
form caves and si nk hol es . Li mestone areas are often
marked by a karst topography of si nks, few surface
streams (they fl ow underground) , and l arge spri ngs. I n
caves, the deposi ti on of cal ci te di ssol ved i n dr i ppi ng
groundwater produces stal acti tes, i ci cl e-shaped forma­
ti ons hangi ng from the cave cei l i ngs, and stal agmi tes,
formati ons that bui l d up from the cave fl oor. The carryi ng
away of mi neral s i n sol uti on usual l y occurs above the water
tabl e. Bel ow that l evel , deposi ti on, repl acement, and
cementati on are i mportant . Bal l - l i ke masses (concreti ons) ,
hol l ow, gl obul ar bodi es (geodes) , and the cement i n many
sedi mentary rocks are the resul t of the acti on of ground­
water at depth .
geode
KARST TOPOGRAPHY
concret i on
Cotter Dam suppl i es water for Austral i an capi ta l ci ty of Canberra.
THE EARTH'S WATER SUPPLY is one of i ts most preci ous
natural resources . Al though nearl y three quarters of the
gl obe i s covered by water, over 97 percent of the 326
mi l l i on cubi c mi l es of earth's water i s l ocked up i n the
oceans, too sal ty for dri nki ng water or for agri cul ture.
Another 2 percent is frozen in gl aci ers and i ce sheets . The
ti ny fracti on that i s avai l abl e for water suppl y i s very
unevenl y di stri buted. One thi rd of the earth's l and surface
i s desert or semi ari d. Even i n humi d areas, water suppl y
and conservati on present maj or probl ems. The l ocati on
and devel opment of new i ndustri es depend upon adequate
water suppl i es. Wor l d demand for water i s expected to
doubl e in the next twenty years. I t requi res 600, 000 gal ­
l ons of water t o produce one t on of syntheti c rubber. The
dai l y consumpti on of the average househol d i n the Uni ted
States is 400 gal l ons.
54
About three quarters of the water used in most humi d
i ndustr i al areas comes from surface waters (ri vers, l akes,
arti fi ci al reservoi rs, etc . ) . The rest comes from groundwa­
ter. Pol l uti on and waste sti l l prevent maxi mum use of sur­
face waters, on whi ch we depend .
Over one fourth of the earth's l and surface is desert,
and dam constructi on can be vi tal i n these areas . The
Aswan Dam i n Egypt brought al most 2 . 5 mi l l i on acres of
new l and i nto cul ti vati on and generates 1 0 bi l l i on ki l owatt­
hours of el ectri ci ty each year. Desal i ni zati on of sea water,
al though used i n some ari d areas, i s sti l l too expensive for
general use.
Water conservati on is a pressi ng worl d need si nce sup­
pl i es, al though they are never exhausted but are repl en­
i shed i n the water cycl e, can never be i ncreased. They can ,
however, be more effi ci entl y used and di stri buted . Pol l u­
t i on of water suppl i es by domesti c and i ndustr i al wastes
can upset the del i cate ecol ogi cal bal ance, and has very
seri ous bi ol ogi c, economi c, and recreati onal effects .
Ari d and semi ari d regi ons cover about 1 /3 of the earth' s s urface. Thi s
water hol e i n Paki st an i s t ypi cal of l oc al water s uppl i es .
Lake Sol i t ude, Wyomi ng, a t ypi cal area of recent g l aci at i on
GLACIERS AND GLACIATION
We l i ve today i n the twi l i ght of a great epi sode of refri g­
erati on, when much of the Northern Hemi sphere was cov­
ered by conti nental i ce sheets, l i ke those that sti l l cover
Antarcti ca and Greenl and. Al though the i ce i tsel f has now
retreated from most of Europe, Asi a, and North Ameri ca,
it has l eft traces of i ts i nfl uence across the whol e face of
the l andscape in j agged mountai n peaks, gouged-out
upl and val l eys, swamps, changed ri ver courses, and boul ­
der-strewn, tabl e-fl at prai ri es i n the l owl ands.
Gl aci ers are t hi ck masses of sl ow-movi ng i ce. I n the
hi gher l ands and pol ar regi ons, the annual wi nter snowfal l
usual l y exceeds the summer l oss by mel ti ng. Permanent
snow fi el ds bui l d up, and thei r l owest boundary i s the snow
l i ne, the actual hei ght of whi ch vari es wi th l ati tude and
cl i mate. Buri ed snow recrystal l i zes to form i ce, whi ch
moves sl owl y under i ts own wei ght. I t moves most rapi dl y
i n the mi ddl e of the gl aci er.
56
GLACI AL EROSI ON has a powerful effect upon l and that
has been buri ed by i ce and has done much to shape the
mountai n ranges of our present worl d . Both val l ey and
conti nental gl aci ers acqui re many thousands of boul ders
and rock fragments, whi ch, frozen i nto the sol e of the
gl aci er, gouge and rasp the rocks over whi ch the gl aci ers
pass . The rocks are sl owl y abraded down to a smooth,
fl uted, grooved surface. Gl aci al mel twater, from peri ods
of dayl i ght or summer thaw, seeps i nto rock fi ssures and
j oi nts. When i t freezes agai n, i t hel ps to shatter the rocks,
some of whi ch may become frozen i nto the body of the
gl aci er and be carri ed away as the gl aci er moves down­
sl ope. Aval anches and undercutti ng of val l ey si des add to
the rock debr i s.
.::·:..·«:::di spl ay fl ut­
i n g , s t r i a t i o n , a n d p o l i s h i n g
effects o f gl aci al erosi on . The
f or m a n d d i r e c t i o n of t h e s e
grooves c an be used t o show the
di recti on i n whi ch the i ce moved .
:·-.:«..:»c.:.-.»«.:::
:.:»of a val l ey gl aci er shows i t s
structure and i ts profi l e of bed­
roc k. Surface i ce i s bri t t l e, but
u n de r l y i n g i c e c r ys t a l s bend ,
shear, and gl i de, causi ng i ce to
fl ow by deformat i on .
• • • • •ZONE Of. ACCUMU(A I ON .

.¸��� P
ZONE OF WASTAGE
:-... ::«c.: :· c.«: «.
..:: :»are i l l ustrated above,
s h o wi n g m o u n t a i n c o u n t r y
before, dur i ng, and after gl aci a­
t i on. Gl aci ers cut U- shaped val ­
l eys , modi fyi ng and deepeni ng
the i nt erl ocki ng pattern of earl i er
meanderi ng ri ver erosi on . The
va l l e y s a r e s t r a i g h t e n e d a n d
truncated b y i ce fl ow. Tri butary
hangi ng val l eys devel op where
the rate of erosi on by t ri butary
gl aci ers i s l ower than that of the
gl aci er i n the mai n vol l ey. As the
i ce retreat s, waterfal l s fl ow out
of them i nto the mai n vol l ey.
U-shoped gl aci ated vol l ey, Cl i n­
t on Canyon, New Zeal and
-:.s: «..:.:«»-: ....:
are al l products of gl aci al ero­
si on. Horns ore sharp, pyrami dal
mou n t a i n peaks f or med wh en
headword erosi on of several gl a­
ci ers i ntersect . Aretes ore sharp
ri dges formed by headword gl a­
ci al eros i on. Conti nent al gl aci ers
tend to produce a smoothed-out
effect on the l andscape, such as
that of the laurenti an Shi.el d i n
Co n od o . C i r q u e s o r e b owl ­
shaped vol l eys formed a t heads
of gl aci ers and bel ow oretes and
horned mountai ns ; often contai n
a smal l l ake, cal l ed a tor n.
Horns and oretes i n gl aci ated
area, Swi tzerl and
Retreat i ng
i ce s heet
I DEALI ZE D GLACI AL LANDSCAPES show typi cal depo­
si ti onal features . They are col l ecti vel y cal l ed ti l l deposi ts .
Gl aci al deposi ts of rock fragments are carri ed by the
gl aci er on i ts surface wi thi n the i ce and at i ts base. Thi s
materi al i s deposi ted ei ther beneath or at the foot of t he
i ce fi el d, formi ng unsorted and unbedded "ti l l . " Mel twater
streams fl owi ng from the gl aci er form sorted, strati fi ed
gl aci ofl uvi al or outwash deposi ts. These and other gl aci al
deposi ts are often descri bed as "dri ft . " Deposi ts al so occur
duri ng retreat of i ce.
«:.« ».:ore deposi ts of gl a­
ci al t i l l formed ei ther as arcuate
mounds at t he snout of the gl aci er
(ter mi nal mor ai nes) or as sheets
of t i l l over consi derabl e areas
( boul der cl oy) . Successi ve termi ­
n al morai nes often mark retreat
stages of gl aci ers (recessi onal
morai nes) . Mor ai nes ore mode up
of a vari ety of unsorted rock frag­
ments i n unbedded cl oy matri x.
...«: ::ore boul ders of "for­
ei gn" rock carr i ed by gl aci ers .
Some ore up to 1 00 feet across,
and most ore found many mi l es
-..«. »: ore l ow, r ou n ded
h i l l s , someti mes reachi ng a mi l e
i n l e n g t h , f ou n d i n g l a c i at e d
areas . Al i gned i n the di recti on of
i ce fl ow, thei r steeper, bl unter
ends poi nt toward the di recti on
from whi ch the i ce come. They are
f or med by p l a s t e r i n g of t i l l
around some resi stant rock mos s .
They pr oduce a c h ar act er i s t i c
"basket-of-eggs" topography.
from thei r poi nts of ori gi n . They
often hove bl unted edges and
rat her smoot h f aces, but most
l ock gl aci al stri at i ons .
59
·««.:are i sol ated hi l l s af strat­
i fi ed mater i al farmed from debri s
that fel l i nto openi ngs i n retreat­
i ng or stagnant i ce. Kame ter-
races are benches of strati fi ed
mater i al deposi ted between the
edge of O val l ey gl aci er and the
wal l of the val l ey.
GLACI OFLUVI AL DEPOSI TS are al l sorted and bedded
stream deposi ts. Outwash deposi ts, formed by mel twater
streams, are fl at, i nterl ocki ng al l uvi al fans.
.:·..:ar e l ong, nar row, and
often branchi ng s i nuous ri dges of
poorl y sorted gravel and sand
formed by deposi ti on from for­
mer gl aci al streams .
·.::..-:..:are depressi ons
( someti mes fi l l ed by l akes) due to
mel ti ng of l arge bl ocks of stag­
nant i ce, found i n any typi cal gl a­
ci al depos i t .
GLACI AL LAKE DEPOSI TS are formed ei ther by mel twater
or the bl ocki ng of ri ver courses . Del tas and beaches mark
the l evel s of many such l akes.
.«...:.«·:are l ake deposi ts
of fi ne-grai ned si l t, showi ng reg­
u l a r s eas on al a l t e r n at i on s of
l i g h t - c o l o r e d , t h i c k e r b a n d s
deposi ted duri ng wet, summer
months and thi nner, dark bands
r e pr e s e n t i n g t he fi n e r , of t en
or g a n i c , ma t e r i a l of wi n t e r
deposi ts that settl e bel ow t h e fro­
zen l ake surface.
Maxi mum extent of Pl ei stocene i ce sheets and gl ac i er s
ANCI ENT PERI ODS OF GLACI ATI ON produced l and fea­
tures sti l l i n evi dence today. The features al ready descri bed
can be seen i n connecti on wi th exi sti ng gl aci ers, but ol der
gl aci al deposi ts and erosi onal features prove the occur­
rence of earl i er gl aci al epi sodes . The most recent of these
i s the Pl ei stocene gl aci ati on whi ch began about two mi l l i on
years ago. I t i nvol ved four maj or epi sodes of gl aci ati on,
when conti nental i ce sheets covered about one quarter of
the earth's surface, i ncl udi ng parts of North Ameri ca,
northern Europe, and northern Asi a. Gl aci al advances
were separated by warmer, i ntergl aci al peri ods. I n the
areas outsi de those covered by gl aci ers, especi al l y i n the
Southern Hemi sphere, correspondi ng pl uvi al peri ods of
abnormal l y heavy rai nfal l marked Pl ei stocene ti mes, prob­
abl y caused by changes i n the general pattern of wi nd
ci rcul ati on produced by conti nental gl aci ers.
Pl ei stocene gl aci ati on mol ded such fami l i ar features of
our present l andscapes as the j agged peaks of the Rocki es
and the Al ps, the ri ch farm soi l s of the northern mi dwestern
states, and the Great Lakes .
61
GLACI ATI ON is i mportant because it has mol ded the
topography of much of the Northern Hemi sphere. I t al so
poses a number of basi c geol ogi c probl ems.
:-«»c.: »:.«.....of up
to 300 feet occurred when much
of the ocean's water was l ocked
i n c o n t i n e n t a l g l a c i e r s . E v en
today, i f present gl aci ers an d i ce
sheets that cover 1 0 percent of
the earth's surface were to mel t ,
sea l evel woul d r i se by some 300
f eet . The c on t i n e n t al ma r g i n s
woul d b e fl ooded, and many of
the worl d's maj or ports woul d be
s u bme r ged . T h i s may h appen
agai n . I f i t does not, an d we are
i nstead l i vi ng i n an i ntergl aci al
r at her t han postgl aci al epi sode,
then c ont i nent al g l ac i er s may
agai n spread across muc h of the
earth .
.:«- »c:-.:..:: by i ce
caused sags to devel op whi ch
reached about 1 , 500 ft . under
the t hi ckest i ce. Wi th the mel t i ng
of the gl aci ers, the crust began to
r i se agai n, and the hi story of t hi s
r i se can be traced i n Scandi na­
vi a, North Ameri ca, and Europe .
The crust ri ses about 9 i nches per
century.
UP",
INMETERS
'
Si nce 6800 B.
:«.:.::· :.«c.:are sti l l
unknown . Possi bl e causes may be
changes i n the broad pattern of
the ci rcul at i on of the oceans,
changes i n the rel ati ve posi t i on of
the eart h and s un, changes i n
sol ar radi at i on, and the presence
of some bl anket such as vol cani c
dust to reduce sol ar radi at i on
reachi ng the earth . I t has al so
been suggested that t he Pl ei sto­
cene gl aci at i on of the Northern
Hemi sphere coul d have been the
resul t of surges i n the Antarcti c
i c e s h eet p r od u c i n g wi d e i c e
s h e l v e s a r o u n d t h e S o u t h e r n
Ocean, whi ch cool ed the Nort h­
ern Hemi sphere.
- . . - . . :::: . ». c. «: «
: :»:are much l ess easy to
detect than the very recent Pl ei s­
tocene. One maj or epi sode of
g l a c i a t i o n t ook p l a c e i n t h e
Southern Hemi sphere i n Permo­
Carboni ferous t i mes, about 230
mi l l i on years ago. Ti l l i tes ( i ndur­
at ed gl aci al t i l l s) and stri ated
rock pavements show l arge areas
of Au s t r a l i a , Sou t h Ame r i c a,
I ndi a, an d South Afri ca t o have
been gl aci ated . The character of
these gl aci al deposi ts suggests
that these areas, now remote,
formed a s i ngl e massi ve cont i nent
(Gondwanal and) at that t i me.
There i s al so evi dence of an
Ordovi ci an ( about 450 mi l l i on
years ago) and a l ate Pre-Cam­
bri an gl aci at i on ( about 600 mi l ­
l i on years ago) .
THE OCEANS
Oceans pl ay a maj or rol e i n the earth's natural processes
because of thei r producti on and control of cl i mate, suppl y­
i ng moi sture to the atmosphere and provi di ng a vast cl i ­
mati c regul ator. They form the ul ti mate si te of deposi ti on
of al most al l sedi ment and are the home of many l i vi ng
speci es of ani mal s and pl ants . The oceans cover over 70
percent of the earth's surface. The conti nents are sur­
rounded by shal l ow, gentl y sl opi ng conti nental shel ves .
The average ocean depth is al most three mi l es, but
trenches, up to 36, 000 feet deep, are found i n pl aces .
Al though much of the deep ocean fl oor is a fl at pl ai n, some
parts are more mountai nous than the mountai n regi ons of
dry l and. A worl dwi de system of mi doceani c ri dges
i ncl udes submari ne mountai n chai ns , marked by i ntense
vul cani sm and earthquake acti vi ty, and offset by transform
faul ts . They are the si tes of the formati on of new crustal
rocks ( p. 1 4 1 ) . There are al so many vol cani c i sl ands,
i ncl udi ng many submerged bel ow sea l evel .
Cal i forni a Coast s hows force of breaki ng waves erodi ng s hore l i ne.
^
OCEANIC CURRENTS AND DRIFTS
warm
1 . N. Equatori al

2. S. Equatori al
cool 3. Eq. countercurrent
4. N. Atl anti c dri ft
5. N. Paci fi c
:...:»::have a maj or i nfl u­
ence on worl d weather patterns .
Di fferences in the densi ty of sea
water of varyi ng sal i ni ty and di f­
ferences i n temperature produce
water ci rcul at i on i n the oceans .
The col der, mor e sal i ne, denser
water si nks downward to produce
deep ocean currents. Nearer the
surface of the sea, the combi ned
i nfl uence of wi nds and the rota­
ti on of the earth produce the
more fami l i ar surface currents,
i ncl udi ng the Gul f Stream. These
s ur f ace c u r rent s f al l ow gr eat ,
swi r l i ng routes around t he ocean
bas i ns and t he equator. Some
currents move at speeds of aver
1 00 mi l es a day.
64
6.
7.
8.
9.
1 0.
Humbol dt 1 1 . Fal kl and
Kuroshi o 1 2. Benguel a
Al aska 1 3. West Wi nd Dri ft
Labrador 1 4. F l ori da
Canari es 1 5. Cal i forni a
::«=«:..i ncl udes about 3 . 5
percent of di ssol ved chemi cal s by
wei ght . Sal t ( NaC 1 ) i s the most
c o mmo n s o l u t e , wi t h s ma l l e r
quant i t i es o f magn es i u m c h l o­
ri de, magnesi um an d cal ci um sul ­
fates, and t races of about 40
other el ements . Sal i ni t y i s the
number of grams of these di s­
sol ved sal ts i n 1 , 000 grams of sea
water. Al though the proporti ons
of these sal t s to one another are
v e r y s i mi l a r t h r o u g h o u t t h e
oceans of the wor l d, the total sa­
l i ni t y of the oceans vari es from
pl ace to pl ace and wi th depth . I t
i s l ow near ri ver mouths, for
exampl e, and hi gh i n areas of
hi gh evaporati on.
: -.:are twi ce-dai l y movements
of bi l l i ons of t ons of oceon woter
i nfl uenced by mony factors on the
surfoce of t he eorth as wel l as
from spoce. Moi nl y, the gravi ta­
ti onal pul l of the moon upon the
earth causes t he waters to bul ge
toward i t twi ce a day, creat i ng
wh a t we c a l l h i g h t i d e s . T h e
correspondi ng bul ge or hi gh
=«..:are produced chi efl y by
t he drag of wi nds on the surface
of water. The water i s dr i ven i nto
a ci rcul ar mot i on, but onl y the
wave form, not the water i tsel f,
moves across the ocean surface .
Waves general l y affect onl y the
uppermost part of the oceans .
Wave bas e i s hal f t he wave l ength
of any par t i cul ar wave system.
Wh e n t h e y r u n i n t o s h a l l o w
water, waves drag bottom, and
t h e t opmos t wat e r p a r t i c l e s
break agai nst the shore. Waves
pl ay an i mport ant part in the
shapi ng of coast l i nes, both in
sedi ment transport and in ero­
si on . Some l arge waves ( tsunami )
ar e caused by earthquakes .
ti de on the di stant si de of the
earth from the moon i s caused
by t h e c o r r e s po n d i n g l owe r
attroct i on of the moon at t hi s
greater di stance, al l owi ng t he
oc e an s t o " s wi n g " ou t wa r d .
T i de s r i s e o n l y t wo o r t h r e e
feet o n open coast l i nes, but i n
r es t r i c t ed c h an n el s c an r eac h
fi fty feet .
G
0
.
w
o
4
æ
¬
Î
8
Ñ
D
o
u
1 2
|
THE EDGES OF THE CONTI NENTS are commonl y marked
by margi ns of broad, fl at shelves whi ch sl ope gentl y (at
about 1 : 1 000) to a depth of about 450 feet. At thi s depth,
they merge i nto the steeper conti nental sl ope. The wi dth of
shelves vari es from a few mi l es to 200 or more mi l es.
Commonly, shel ves are about 30 mi l es wi de. The shel ves
seem to be formed by the deposi ti on and erosi on of fai rl y
young sedi ments, many of them of Pl ei stocene age.
Changes in sea l evel of some 500 feet have be�n i nvol ved
duri ng thi s peri od.
: - : : o» : » . » :«. : - . . ·
«»-:.o-:r i m the conti nents,
t h e wi d e s h e l f d r o p p i n g of f
steepl y at t he sl ope t o t he depths
of the seafl oor. At the base of
the cont i nental sl ope, there is
often a convex rise, formed from
s l u mped s ed i me n t s . T h i s a r ea
li ttora l ¡ ¡ Sha l l ow ¦
ranges from a few mi l es to about
1 00 mi l es i n wi dt h.
The great vert i cal exaggera­
t i on of the di agram suggests a
much steeper profi l e than real l y
e x i s t s . Even s o, t he s l o p e i s
al most a hundred t i mes steeper
than the shel f.
Deep water
Zone
, Water j
1
Ner i t i c Zone
_ Effecti ve Sunl i ght- Pl ankton Zone
Twi l i ght Zone
CONTI NENTAL
PLATFORM
Com
p
l etel y cark
Ayual Zane
OCEANI C PLATFORM BASI N
: . .««. s . :«s·:s : c u t
through the cont i nent al shel ves
ond sl opes and are wi del y di s­
tri buted al ong the edges of con­
t i n e n t s . S o m e s e e m to b e
cont i nuat i ons o f ri vers o n the
l and, but others show no such
rel ati on to drai nage and do not
ext end ac r os s t h e c on t i n en t al
shel ves . Al l canyons tend t o have
a V-shaped profi l e and to have
tri butary systems much l i ke those
of terrest ri al ri vers . Thei r deeper
mouths are marked by great del ­
t al i ke fans of sedi ment , whi ch
gradual l y bui l d up to form t he
conti nental ri se.
Submari ne canyons are thought
to be formed by the erosi on of
turbi di ty currents, whi ch some­
t i mes attai n consi derabl e vel oc­
i ty. Heavy wi th s i l t , they have a
s t r on g s c o u r i n g a n d e r o s i ve
power.
Experi menta l turbi d i ty current i n a l aboratory tank
: . . .. -.: ·: . . . . s : :a r e
dense, fl owi ng masses o f sedi ­
ment-carryi ng wat er fl owi ng at
speeds of up to 50 mi l es per
hour. Many are probabl y t ri g­
g e r ed by e a r t h q u a k e d i s t u r ­
bances o f unconsol i dated sedi ­
ment on the cont i nent al shel ves
and sl opes. The coi nci dence of
s ome s u bmar i n e c an yon s wi t h
ri ver courses, such as those of
t h e Hu d s o n a n d Co n g o , h a s
been thought t o b e the resu l t of
ri ver erosi on at earl i er peri ods
of l owe r sea l e ve l . P r o b a b l y
i t i s the resul t o f ei ther the pres­
ence of t hi cker, unstabl e masses
of sedi ment near ri ver mout hs
or t u r b i d i t y fl o w f r o m r i v e r
mouths i n t i mes o f fl ood.
8000
6000
4000
2000
O feet
Coastal vi ew of Hargrove's lookout, New South Wa l es, Austra l i a
COASTLI NES mark the boundari es of l and and sea .
Al though the great vari ety of rock types, structures , cur­
rents, ti des, cl i mate, and fl uctuati ng sea l evel s produce
many di fferent types of coast l i nes, each can be understood
as the product of three si mpl e processes: erosi on, deposi ­
ti on, and changi ng sea l evel .
Coastal erosi on is the resul t of the twi ce-dai l y poundi ng
by the sea, weari ng down t he margi ns of the l and, creati ng
coastal feat ures, and cutti ng back the shorel i ne at a rate
of several feet a year.
:. ··:«s-=«.. :.:-.«:
· :. «: a r e c h a r ac t e r i s t i c of
shorel i nes under goi ng eros i on .
Waves undercut the rocks near
sea l eve l .
:«..:are formed by erosi on
al ong a conspi cuous l i ne of weak­
ness i n a cl i ff, such as al ong j oi nts
and faul t s . Cont i nui ng erosi on
may form an arch .
.«·:«s- - .«-. «s-: ar e
produced by rel ati ve di fferences
i n the resi stance to erosi on of
coastal rocks. The more resi stant
standout as headl ands, but ul t i ­
mat e l y, t he c o n c e n t r a t i o n of
wave erosi on on the headl ands
and deposi t i on i n the bays have a
tendency to produce a strai ght
coast l i ne.
Drowned Va l l ey, vi ew from MI. Wel l i ngton, Tas mani a
A CHANGI NG SEA LEVEL i s represented by many fea­
tures around coast l i nes. Wi thi n hi stori c ti mes, establ i shed
towns have been submerged. Rai sed beaches and wave­
cut pl atforms are common in many areas, ri si ng many feet
above present sea l evel . Far i nl and and hi gh on the sl opes
of mountai ns, fossi l s of mari ne ani mal s gi ve further proof
of ol der and more profound changes i n sea l evel , refl ecti ng
maj or changes i n the geography of the past. Submergence
and emergence of coastl i nes modify the general features
of erosi on and deposi ti on.
.«..c.s:::«::. s. : ar e
l e s s c o m m o n t h o n t h e s u b ­
merged . They ore marked by
: . .«. . c. - ::«: : . s. :
d u e t o pos t g l a c i a l r i s i n g s ea
l eve l , ar e i n den ted c oast l i nes
wi t h deep i n l ets and submerged
gl aci al val l eys. The "gr ai n" of
the coast l i ne depends upon the
character and structure of the
r oc k s . I n At l an t i c - t ype coas t ­
l i nes, t he structural trends are
more or l ess perpendi cul ar to the
coast . I n Paci fi c type, they are
paral l el to the coast.
rai sed beaches and cl i ffs, and
often by an al most fl at coastal
pl ai n, sl opi ng gent l y seaward.
69
MARI NE DEPOSI TI ON may be recogni zed as the domi ­
nant process where shorel i nes ore marked by a number of
fami l i ar features . Ul ti matel y, t he bal ance of coastal ero­
si on and deposi ti on tends to produce a coastl i ne i n tem­
porary equi l i bri um. Al though thi s i s more qui ckl y formed
i n soft strata, i t requi res thousands of years i n resi stant
rocks .
.:«:-: : c ons i s t of sed i ment
sorted ond transported by waves
and currents . Most of the sedi ­
ment i s the s i ze of s and or of
gravel , but l ocal cobbl e and
boul der deposi ts are al s o com­
mon. Beaches vary greatl y, de­
pendi ng upon the sedi ment
suppl y, the form of the coast­
l i ne, wave and current condi -
l i ons , and seasonal changes . On
i rregul ar coast l i nes, t hey t end t o
be confi ned to t he bays . Obl i que
waves and l ongs hor e c ur r ent s
often produce constant l atera I
move me n t of beac h mat e r i a l .
Beaches thus exi st i n a state of
dynami c equi l i br i um, as a movi ng
body of wave-washed and sorted
sedi ment .
I nteracti on of r i ver and mar i ne deposi t i on and eros i on, Wal es
o· · : -o. . . «. : f or me d of
sand an d pebbl es ar e general l y
separated f r om the mai n shore­
l i ne by narrow l agoons . They are
anci ent beach deposi ts that are
c h a r a c t e r i s t i c of s u b me r ge d
coasts . I n Nort h Ameri ca, off­
shore bars are common al ong the
At l ant i c and Gul f coasts. They
are general l y paral l el to exi st i ng
coast l i nes .
: «» - . «. : a r e f o r me d o n
i ndented coast l i nes by l ongshore
dri ft of sedi ments paral l el wi t h
the coast. When sedi ment i s car­
ri ed i nto deeper water, as i n a
bay, the energy of the waves or
currents i s reduced, and the sed­
i ment i s deposi ted as a bar. The
s l ower the current, the more rap­
i dl y the sedi ment i s deposi ted.
The bar is an el ongat i on of the
adj acent beach, partl y or com­
pl etel y cut t i ng off the bay. Spi ts
are bars that extend i nto open
water rather t han i nto a bay. The
free ends of many spi ts are curved
l andwar d by wave refr ac t i on .
Spi t growth may l ead to bl ocki ng
of harbors and di versi on of ri vers
that fl ow i nto t he sea, someti mes
requi r i ng dredgi ng.
Typi cal cl i ff and beach scener y
s hows ba l a n c e of e r o s i o n a n d
deposi t i on. ( Dor set, E ngl and)
-:.:«:( p. 45) are formed by
rapi d depos i t i on of mater i al car­
ri ed by a ri ver when i t ent ers the
deep water of a l ake or the sea
and l oses i t s vel oci ty. Al l del tas
have a s i mi l ar pattern of deposi ­
t i on an d sedi ment di st ri but i on .
Shape an d s i ze vary, dependi ng
upon l ocal condi t i ons .
::o.«..«:-.:(or ber ms ) ar e
f or me d by s t o r ms t h a t t h r o w
gravel and boul ders up above the
normal hi gh- t i de l evel .
Wi de, sandy beach wi th storm beach near c l i ffs at Lavernock, Wal es
Terr i genous Gl obi ger i na
}
Cal careous
-
Radi ol ar i an
}
Si l i ceou
!
-Red Cl ay -Pteropod
ooze
di atom ooze
MARI NE SEDI MENTS are cl assi fi ed in three broad cate­
gori es: l i ttoral , neri ti c, and deep-sea sedi mentati on . li t­
toral sedi ments form between hi gh- and l ow-ti de l evel s;
neri ti c sedi ments accumul ate on t he conti nental shel f . These
two groups of shal l ow-water sedi ments cover onl y about 8
percent of the ocean fl oor. They are made up of a var i abl e
mi xture of terri genous or l and-deri ved debri s, chemi cal
precì pì !o!es, ondorgonì cdeposì !s . 1heydì fferfrom pl oce
to pl ace due to vari ati ons in coastl i nes, ri vers, and changes
i 'n sea l evel .
I n general , in shal l ow-water sedi ments , there is a di rect
rel ati onshi p between the si ze of a sedi ment parti cl e and
the di stance to whi ch a gi ven current wi l l carry i t, the l arger
parti cl es bei ng deposi ted nearer the source. Thi s pattern
i s modi fi ed by the acti on of waves, currents , and turbi di ty
currents .
Deep-sea sedi ments deposi ted outsi de the conti nental
shel f form a l ayer general l y l ess than 2, 000 feet thi ck over
the deeper parts of the ocean fl oor. They are much t hi nner
and younger i n age than we shoul d predi ct from knowl edge
of present rates of sedi mentati on. The abyssal parts of the
72
ocean show much more uni form sedi ments than the conti ­
nental margi ns, where most terrestri al debri s i s deposi ted .
Those of the bathyal zone, deposi ted on the conti nental
sl opes to a depth of about 1 2, 000 feet, i ncl ude muds of
vari ous ki nds. The sedi ments of greater abyssal depths are
red cl ays and vari ous oozes whi ch cover 30 percent and 47
percent of the ocean fl oor respecti vel y.
:«.:«..:.::::.:are fi ne­
medi um-grai ned sedi ments that
c over a l mo s t h a l f the oc e a n
fl oors. They occur down t o a
depth of al most 1 5, 000 feet .
Bel ow t hat depth, t he cal careous
tests of the pl anktoni c forami ni ­
f er G/ obi ger i na and pt er opod
mol l uscs, whi ch f or m mos t of t he
sedi ment s, are di ssol ved .
: . :.:.::::.:are deri ved
from the remai ns of surface- l i vi ng
or ga n i s ms ( di at oms and radi ­
o/aria) for mi ng very sl owl y at
great depth i n t he oceans . Di a­
t om oozes are f ound chi efl y i n
pol ar seas wher e predatory crea­
tures are l ess common. Radi ol ar ­
i an ooze i s most commonl y found
i n the warm, tropi cal water s.
-«.·..-:.«·i s formed from
meteori c dust and from very fi ne
terri genous or vol cani c parti cl es
carri ed by the wi nd or i n suspen­
si on i n sea water. I t may form as
s l owl y as one i nch every 250, 000
year s . I t may i ncl ude vol cani c ash
l ayer s . Ot her sedi ments, such as
ma n g a n e s e n o d u l e s ( s h o wn
here), are present i n some parts
of the ocean fl oor.
73
= »-is most effecti ve i n trans­
port and deposi t i on i n deserts,
n ear s h or e l i ne s , and i n ot h er
pl aces where there i s a suppl y of
dry, fi ne-grai ned, l oose sedi ment
wi t h l i t t l e vegetati on to hol d i t
t og e t h e r . Gr e at S a n d Du n e s
Nat i onal Monument, shown here,
i s formed by deposi ti on of wi nd­
bor ne s an d a g a i n s t mou n t a i n
range.
WI NDS
Wi nds are movements of the atmosphere brought about
not onl y by the rotati on of the earth but by unequal
temperatures on the earth . The heat of the sun, the chi ef
source of thi s ci rcul ati on, i s more concentrated i n the
tropi cs than i n hi gh l ati tudes. Thi s produces vast atmo­
spheri c convecti on currents , havi ng a broad, constant
overal l di stri buti on that refl ects the earth's rotati on . I t al so
shows wide l ocal vari ati ons in speed and di recti on due to
d i ff er en c es i n t opogr aph y a n d ot h e r a t mos p h e r i c
condi ti ons.
A maj or rol e i s pl ayed by the wi nd i n the di stri buti on of
water from the oceans to the l and. Water vapor, i n turn,
has a bl anketi ng effect that keeps the earth's surface tem­
perature hi gher than i t woul d otherwi se be. Wi nd i s an
agent of transport and, to a l esser extent, of erosi on . I n
thi s, i t resembl es fl owi ng water, but because of i ts much
l ower densi ty (onl y about 1 /800 that of water) , i t i s far l ess
effecti ve and general l y transports onl y the fi ner dust par­
ti cl es. Dust from vol cani c expl osi ons wi l l often gi ve bri l l i ant
sunsets i n di stant l ands for many months after the expl o­
si on . Wi nds transport through the atmosphere compara­
ti vel y l arge quanti ti es of sal t crystal s gathered from the
ocean's surface.
74
WI ND EROSI ON is very l i mi ted in extent and effect . It i s
l argel y confi ned to desert areas, but even there i t i s l i mi ted
to a hei ght of about 1 8 i nches above ground l evel .
-:::.:-.«:·:.«:are cl ean,
wi ndswept areas where pebbl es
ma y h a v e b e e n r o l l e d a n d
bounced al ong by the force of
strong wi nds . larger cobbl es and
boul ders are l eft behi nd .
.:s: ·«::: found in deserts,
are pebbl es or cobbl es that have
devel oped pol i shed surfaces and
s h a r p e d g e s u n d e r w i n d
abrasi on .
- : : : . : : . :: :s t e n d s t o
expose bare rock surfaces, whi ch
may st and up wi thout a cover of
vegetat i on, as i n Paki stan .
Semi ari d l andscape has di sti ncti ve erosi onal character.
WI ND DEPOSI TS consi st of transported parti cl es that are
effecti vel y sorted accordi ng to si ze because of the l i mi ted
carryi ng capaci ty of the wi nd . Sand dunes, for exampl e,
general l y consi st of sand gr ai ns of more or l ess uni form
si ze, whi ch are rounded and pi tted or frosted by abrasi on.
Sand dunes are found i n areas where there i s a l arge
suppl y of dry, l oose, fi ne-grai ned materi al . Li ke snow­
dri fts, they form around l ocal obstructi ons. They al so
mi grate downwi nd. Thei r parti cul ar si ze and form depend
upon the sand suppl y, the presence of vegetat i on, and the
vel oci ty and constancy of di recti on of the prevai l i ng wi nd .
Dunes may be transverse or l ongi tudi nal to the wi nd
di recti on.
.«.:-«s:ar e crescent i c dunes
that often bui l d up to 400 yards
l ong and 1 00 feet hi gh, and are
formed mostl y i n deserts wi th
more or l ess constant wi nd di rec­
t i ons. They are not stati c and may
mi grate up to 60 feet per year.
The crescent poi nt s show down­
wi nd di recti on. Wi nds al so pro­
duce gi ant ri ppl e marks on sand
surfaces. Barchons usual l y ore
found i n groups, or swar ms, and
moy form l ong l i nes, or chai ns,
acr oss a pl ai n.
:«s- -.s: :-«-: typi cal l y
has gentl e wi ndward sl ope and
steep l eeward s l ope, dawn whi ch
sand grai ns sl i de or rol l . Dotted
l i ne shows haw cont i nuous move­
ment of sand gr ai ns produces
mi grat i on of whol e sand dunes .
Dunes take many for ms . It wou l d
not be eas y t o compi l e a compl ete
l i st of al l the vari et i es. Var i at i ons
i n form i ncl ude scal l oped si des
and i rregul ar i ti es i n pl an of t he
crest .
«s : : s: - . s : -. - ::.: :
preserved i n such sedi mentary
rocks as those of the Navaj o
S a n d s t o n e i n Z i o n C a n y o n
Nat i onal Par k, di spl ay aeol i an
beddi ng, sorti ng, and s and gr ai n
roundi ng s i mi l ar to t hos e of pres­
ent-day dunes . Careful mappi ng
of bedd i n g d i r ec t i on s r evea l s
anci ent wi nd di rect i ons . I n t hi s
way, i t has been possi bl e to make
a map of the Per mi an wi nds of
southwestern Uni ted States 225
mi l l i on years ago.
.:: : : -: -:: : : f or med of
fi ne-grai ned s i l t , l ack ony bed­
d i n g b u t of t en h av e ve r t i c a l
j oi nt s . Transported b y wi nd from
de s e r t s , f r o m d r i ed - u p fl ood
pl ai ns , from ri ver courses, or
from gl aci al deposi ts, they are
c ommon i n mi dwes t er n Un i t ed
States, Chi na, Europe, and i n
ma n y a r e a s s u r r o u n d i n g t h e
wor l d's deserts an d gl aci al out­
wash areas. Loess produces fer­
ti l e s oi l s , partl y beause of i ts very
hi gh porosi ty. loess i s yel l ow or
buff i n col or and often forms ver­
t i cal cl i ffs . Art i fi ci al caves i n eas­
i l y wor ked l oess may provi de
homes.
Cros s- bedd i ng i n stati onar y dune
Cr oss- beddi ng i n mi gratory dune
 
�Å
Cross-beddi ng, in wi nd-depos­
i ted sandstone, refl ects i t s for·
moti on i n anci ent sand dunes,
east of Echo Cl i ffs, Ari zona .
77
PRODUCTS OF DEPOSI TI ON
Sedi mentary rocks are general l y formed from the break­
down of ol der rocks by weatheri ng and the agents of
erosi on descri bed on pp. 34-76. A few are chemi cal pre­
ci pi tates, or organi c debri s . Sedi mentary rocks cover
about 75 percent of the earth's surface.
CLASTI C OR DETRI TAL SEDI ME NTARY ROCKS are
formed from the debri s of preexi sti ng rocks or organi sms.
The weathered r ock materi al i s general l y transported
before i t is deposi ted. Thi s movement often gi ves round
grai ns. The debri s i s eventual l y l ai d down i n hori zontal
l ayers, usual l y as mari ne deposi ts but someti mes as depos­
i ts from ri vers, l akes, gl aci ers, or wi nd. Cl asti c rocks are
sol i di fi ed sedi ments .
::sc.:«. .«: . c on s i s t s of
rounded pebbl es or boul ders hel d
t i ght l y i n o fi ner-grai ned matri x .
The pebbl es ore usual l y of quartz
at l e a s t ' /• i n c h or mo r e i n
di ameter.
«.·::.i s a quar t z- fel ds par
s a n ds t on e u s u a l l y f or med i n
desert areas by rapi d erosi on and
d e po s i t i o n of f e l d s p a r - r i c h
i gneous rocks .
:«s-:::s:consi sts of sand­
si ze parti cl es, usual l y of quart z.
I t may show consi derabl e vari a­
ti on i n cement i ng mi ner al s, i n
roundi ng and s or t i ng of part i ­
cl es, and i n forms of beddi ng .
:«.:«.:s ::consi sts of bro­
ken shel l s or other organi c mate­
ri al and fragments from ol der
l i mestones . I t i s deposi ted as sed­
i mentary debr i s .
c.«·=«:·.i s a poorl y sorted
m i x t u r e of r o c k f r a g me n t s ,
quartz, and fel dspar fragments
i n a cl ay matri x. Often formed by
t urbi di te fl ows {p. 67) , gray­
wac ke a l ways i n d i cat es r api d
er os i on an d de po s i t i o n u n der
unstabl e condi t i ons.
: -«. . c o n s i s t s o f v e r y fi n e ­
grai ned part i cl es o f quart z and
cl ay mi neral s . I t i s consol i dated
mud that has been depos i ted i n
l akes, seas, and s i mi l ar envi ron­
ment s. About 45 percent of al l
exposed sedi mentary rocks are
shal es.
ORGANI C SEDI MENTARY ROCKS are formed from
organi c debri s -the deposi ts or remai ns of once- l i vi ng
organi sms (shel l s , coral s, cal careous al gae, wood, pl ants,
bones , etc . ) . Al though they are a form of cl asti c rock,
organi c rocks may contai n more and better-preserved
fossi l s, as they are l ai d down near the pl ace where the
ani mal or pl ant once l i ved.
CHEMI CALLY FORMED SEDI MENTARY ROCKS consi st
of i nterl ocki ng crystal s preci pi tated from sol uti on. They,
therefore, l ack the debri s-cement composi ti on of other
sedi mentary rocks . A decrease i n pressure, an i ncrease i n
temperature, or contact wi th new mater i al s may cause
mi neral s to preci pi tate from sol uti on .
. «.:::».consi st s chi efl y of
Æ
cal ci te from concentrated shel l ,
coral , al gae, an d other debr i s . I t
may grade i nto dol omi te, char­
acteri zed by the presence of cal ­
ci um and magnesi um carbonate
(p. 28). Chal k i s a fi ne-grai ned
l i mestone of mi nute coccol i t hs .
Travert i ne i s l i mestone preci pi ­
tated by s pr i ngs .
..«-:. :.:are chemi cal pre­
ci pi tates, farmed by evaporati on
i n s hal l ow, l and- l ocked basi ns of
water. They vary greatl y i n tex­
ture and composi t i on . Rock sal t ,
gypsum, anhydri te, and potas­
si um sal ts are the most common.
I mportant i ndustri al mi neral s .
bi tu mi nou:
oa l
::«. i s c o n s o l i d a t e d pe at ,
formed by the decomposi ti on of
woody pl ant debri s (p. 98) . I t i s
an organi c rock, and pl ant struc­
tures may sti l l be preserved i n i t .
Co a l s g r ade f r om l i g n i t e t o
anthraci te, whi ch h as about 95
percent carbon in i t .
SEDI MENTARY ROCKS ar e i mportant natural resources .
Shal es and l i mestones are used for cement, cl ays for
cerami cs; other rocks are used for road meta l . Sedi men­
tary i ron ores, bauxi te, and coal form the basi s of much
heavy i ndustry; soi l i s the ul ti mate basi s of most of our food
suppl i es.
THE SI ZE, SHAPE, AND SORTI NG of sedi mentary struc­
tures wi thi n rocks may provi de cl ues to the deposi ti onal
envi ronment t hat exi sted duri ng t hei r formati on. Rounded,
frosted, wel l -sorted grai ns, for exampl e, i ndi cate wi nd­
deposi ted sand .
:. :: : . . - - »ci s a t e r m
appl i ed t a sweepi ng, ar cl i ke beds
that l i e at an acute angl e ta the
general hari zant al strati fi cati on .
It is camman in stream and del tai c
d e po s i t s , i n d e e p e r ma r i n e
waters, and i n sand dunes . Crass­
beddi ng refl ects the di recti on af
current fl aw.
c.«-.-..-- »ci s due ta di f­
f er e n t i a l s et t l i n g af m i n e r a l
grai ns, a n d i s useful far determi n­
i n g t he c o r r e c t "way u p " i n
f ol de d s t r at a . T h e l a y e r s af
coarse rack have a sharp base
and gradual l y grade upward i nto
fi ner-grai ned materi al s .
.«...-..-- »ci s a type af
t hi n, graded beddi ng that has
al ternate l ami nat i ons af coarse
and fi ne-grai ned materi al . Espe­
ci al l y camman i n gl aci al l ake
deposi t s, i t i s characteri st i c of
seasonal deposi t i on, each pai r af
varves representi ng a year. ( See
page 60. )
«.-:.«:·:farm where l ake
and mud deposi ts are dri ed by the
sun and are preserved by buri al
under mud.
scoot- ood•I| | |
gtodedbedd| og
:::.. «»- · ..structures are
farmed by erasi on and subse­
quent fi l l i ng af val l eys and chan­
nel s i n a ri ver bed .
. --.:««.·:are produced by
wi nd in desert sand deposi ts and
by waves or currents i n vari ous
aqueous envi ronment s.
8 1
THE CRUST: SUBSURFACE CHANGES
Runni ng water, i ce, wi nd, and other agents of erosi on
sl owl y wear down the surface of the conti nents. Over the
earth as a whol e, some 8 bi l l i on tons of sedi ment i s carri ed
by ri vers i nto the sea every year, equival ent to some 200
tons per square mi l e of l and surface. Thi s represents an
average l oweri ng of the ri vers' drai nage areas by approx­
i matel y one foot every 9, 000 years.
The ul ti mate effect of thi s erosi on woul d be to reduce the
conti nents to a fl at surface, but there are two earth pro­
cesses that tend to i nterrupt thi s conti nui ng erosi on and
restore the bal ance: the tectoni c upl i ft of areas of both the
exi sti ng conti nental and offshore areas of sedi mentati on
( di astrophi sm) , and the broadl y rel ated process of i gneous
acti vi ty (p. 83). Most of these forces act sl owl y, over l ong
peri ods of ti me, and the earth's crust i s al ways i n a state of
dynami c equi l i br i um, though conti nuousl y changi ng, as a
resul t of thei r varyi ng i nteracti on .
THbkOCKCTClb
Vol cani c cones stand out as hi l l s near Spri ngvi l l e, Ari zona.
I gneous rocks form the foundati ons of the conti nents,
but most of the surface of the conti nents i s made up of
sedi mentary rocks of vari ous ages . These l ayers have been
deposi ted on and around anci ent conti nental cores or
shi el ds, whi ch are made chi efl y of grani ti c i gneous and
metamorphi c rocks. The cores of mountai n chai ns general l y
reveal t he s ame rocks. These i gneous rocks were general l y
formed at great depths and l ater upl i fted, eroded, and
covered wi t h a rel ati vel y t hi n veneer of sedi ments .
VOLCANOES
Vol canoes are mountai ns or hi l l s , rangi ng from smal l coni ­
cal hi l l s t o peaks wi th 1 4, 000-foot rel i ef, formed by l ava
and rock debri s ej ected from wi thi n the earth's crust. Of
the more than 500 active vol canoes, some extrude mol ten
l ava, others erupt ash and sol i d (pyrocl asti c) fragments.
Sti l l others ej ect both, and al l emi t l arge quanti ti es of
steam and vari ous gases . Some erupti ons are rel ati vel y
"qui et , " others expl osi ve.
83
VOLCANI C ACTI ON resul ts in the formati on of five basi c
types of vol canoes, but no two are ever qui te al i ke. The
ki nds of materi al s that erupt from a vol cano l argel y deter­
mi ne the shape of i ts cone. Fl ui d streams of l ava travel far
and usual l y produce wi de-based mountai ns; ash, vi scous
l avas, and ci nders usual l y bui l d up steep cones .
:«.-..«:are formed by the
col l apse of the top of a vol cano
f o l l owi n g an e x pl os i o n . New
cones may be born in the cal dera.
Cr at e r L a k e i n Or eg o n i s an
exampl e of t hi s type of vol cano.
84
:.» - . . : :». : ar e s t eep­
si ded, symmet ri cal cones, such as
Vesuvi us, formed by the erupt i on
of ci nders, ash, and at her pyro­
cl ast i c product s .
:-...-.:.:«»:.: l i ke those
i n H a wa i i , a r e br oad d o me s
formed b y l ava fl ows from a cen­
tral vent or from fi ssures and par­
asi ti c vent s.
::«-::.:.::».:are formed
from i nterbedded l ava fl ows and
py r o c l a s t i c d e br i s . T h e y a r e
i ntermedi ate i n form between ci n­
der and shi el d vol canoes .
-.«:.«..«:«.::cover great
areas i n the Col umbi a Ri ver Val ­
l ey, I cel and, and I ndi a, and are
apparentl y extruded, to spread
i n thi n sheets, not from central
vents but from cracks or fi ssures .
VOLCANI C PRODUCTS i ncl ude bombs, ci nders, ash, and
dust , as wel l as l ava and gases . Most l ava has a basal ti c
composi ti on ( p. 93) consi sti ng of pl agi ocl ase fel dspars,
pyr oxen e, a n d o l i vi n e . E r u pt ed at t emper at ur es of
between 900° and 1 , 200°C, i t can fl ow for great di stances
at consi derabl e speeds.
:-::·-:::·.«.«di ffer i n
form and texture . Pi l l ow l ava
( l eft) is formed by submari ne vol ­
canoes . Bl ocky l ava has a j ogged
.:.:«».: .:«.shows spi n­
dl e-shaped form.
-.::....:.:»:·.:.:«»:::
i n nar r ow bel t s r efl ect s ear t h' s
maj or pl ates ( pp. 1 44- 1 47) and i s
rel ated to deep i nt eri or processes.
Many l i e around the Paci fi c Ocean.
surface and i s produced by s ud­
den gas escape. Ropy l ava ( r i ght )
forms at a hi gher temperature
than bl ocky l ava .
.:. : «». :: . · · i s a fi n e ­
grai ned, pyrocl ast i c rock.
Others or e formed i n such areas of
r ec ent t ec t on i c ac t i v i t y as t h e
Medi terranean or the Afri can Ri ft
Vol l eys . Most oceani c i sl ands ore
vol cani c.
I NTRUSI VE I GNEOUS ROCKS are formed from magma
ri si ng wi thi n the earth's crust . Unl i ke the extrusi ve vol cani c
rocks, i ntrusi ve rocks crystal l i ze bel ow the earth's surface,
and thei r presence becomes obvi ous onl y after the country
rock i nto whi ch they were i ntruded has been removed by
erosi on.
I ntrusi ons show great vari ati on i n for m. Some cut across
beddi ng pl anes ( di scordant), whi l e others run paral l el wi th
them (concordant) . They range i n si ze from di kes measur­
i ng a few i nches wi de to bathol i ths hundreds of mi l es
across .
I ntrusive rocks are often associ ated wi th i mportant
metal l i c mi neral deposi ts, such as copper or ni ckel .
·:.«::· cs::.: s:..: :s:
-..::s : s:..: .:.::·:
si mi l ar to grani te, are i denti fi ed
by havi ng a coarser crystal tex­
ture, produced by s l ower cool i ng
than that in extrusi ve rocks. I n
general , r ocks formed ot shal l ow
dept hs i n t he crust hove on i nter­
medi ate text ure.
- ·.:are usual l y verti cal i ntru­
s i ve s heet s , of t en di s c or dant .
T h ey ma y oc c ur i n vas t d i k e
swarms, associ ated wi t h a central
vol cani c neck or i nt rusi ve center s .
Di kes and s i l l s frequent l y have
fi n e - g r a i n e d , c h i l l e d c o n t a c t
margi ns .
Di kes, such as those on l eft, s how chi l l ed margi ns of li ne- gra i ned texture,
where i n contact wi th the country rock, as on r i ght.
Ol d vol cani c neck at Shi prock, New Mexi co, is ci r cul ar in out l i ne and fed
a radi at i ng ser i es of once mol ten di kes.
.:.:«s : -..c: or necks,
ore more or l ess cyl i ndri cal , ver­
ti cal -wal l ed i ntrusi ons, general l y
of porphyri t i c roc k. Whether or
not they pas s upward i nto I ovas,
or brecci as, depends to o great
extent upon the depth of l ocal
weather i ng .
: ..:or e h or i z on t al i nt r us i ve
sheets, ei ther concordant or di s­
cordant . Such s i l l s os the 900-
fi ne-grai ned
c hi l l ed zone
1 % ol i vi ne
PALI SADES
SI LL
25 % ol i vi ne
fi ne-grai ned
c hi l l ed zone
1 % ol i vi ne
.«:::. :-:ore dome-shaped
i ntrusi ons havi ng o fl at bose but
on a r c h ed c o n c o r d a n t r oof ,
foot-thi ck Pal i sades on the Hud­
son Ri ver show vert i cal di fferen­
ti ati on because of gravi tati onal
cr ys t a l l i zat i on . Some s i l l s an d
di kes or e on l y o few feet i n t hi ck­
nes s ; some deve l op c o l u mn a r
j oi nti ng s i mi l ar t o that o f l ovo
fl ows . Si l l s ( A) ore di st i ngui shed
from l ovo fl ows (B) by the baki ng
of over l yi n g adj acent c ount r y
rock by s i l l s and erosi onal con·
tocts i n buri ed l ovo fl ows .
compact
basal t
col umnar
formed by i nt rusi ve pressure, and
o rat her fl at fl oor. They may show
di fferent i at i on.
country rock
satel l i te
stock
roof
roof
pendant
´
BATHOLI TH
.«:-:. :-: or pl utons, ore maj or, com­
pl ex, i ntrusi ve masses, general l y grani t i c
and often several hundred mi l es i n extent .
They or e t he l argest i ntrusi ons and ar e
found i n areas of maj or tectoni c deforma­
ti on, as i n the I daho Bathol i th and i n the
conti nental shi el ds. Al though many pl u­
t oni c grani tes s how s har p contacts wi t h
ol der r ocks , and ore, therefore, i nt rusi ve
in a stri ct sense, others show compl ete
transi t i on with surroundi ng country rocks
and seem to resul t from the metamorphi sm
or grani t i zot i on of ol der sedi ­
me n t a r y an d me t a m o r p h i c
Stock and as soci ated l accol i t h,
structures.
Henr y Mounta i ns , Utah
::::·:ore di scordant, i ntru­
si ve masses, a few mi l es i n di am­
e t e r . Some ore p l u t o n i c , bu t
others pass upward i nto anci ent
vol cani c pl ugs. They ore smal l er
than bathol i t hs.
bas i c l opol i t h
. :- :..: - : « » - . «· . . . -
. »: . . : :»: or e s a u c e r l i k e
i n t r u s i o n s , u p t o 2 00 mi l e s
across, wi th compl ex geol ogi c
hi st ori es. Di st i nct mi neral ogi cal
l ayer i n g i s pr es en t , t h e mor e
basi c mi neral s general l y bei ng i n
t h e l ower l ayers, as i n t h e Bush­
vel d compl ex i n South Afri ca and
the Sudbury, Ontar i o, l opol i t h .
Gravi ty set t l i ng and convecti on
currents seem responsi bl e for t hi s
l ayeri ng .
roof rocks gr an i te
MI NERAL COMPOSI TI ON
K-fel dspar
Pl agi ocl ase
Z
¹''
Ò
Texture
O°¯
Ol i vi ne
E
L
Pyroxene
Bi oti te
Am hi bol e
w
Pyrocl ast i c Tuff and brecci a
Þ

Z
æ
Obsi di an ( massi ve)
>
Gl assy
M
Pumi ce (frothy)
w
Aphani t i c
w
( very fi ne-
Rhyol i te Andes i te Basal t
Þ

gr ai ned)
Z
æ
Phaner i t i c >
Ë
( coarse-
Grani te Di or i te Gabbro
gr ai ned
COLOR LI GHTER I NTERMEDIATE DARKER
CLASSI FI CATI ON OF I GNEOUS ROCKS
We have al ready seen that i gneous rocks vary i n thei r
occurrence, whi ch tends to produce di fferences i n texture
(crystal si ze, shape, and arrangement) . They al so vary
greatl y i n mi neral content, and thus i n chemi cal composi ­
ti on. Aci d rocks (those contai ni ng quartz) make up the bul k
of pl utoni c i ntrusi ons but seem t o be confi ned to t he conti ­
nents , whereas basal ti c rocks account for most of the
vol cani c rock of both the conti nents and the oceans .
I gneous rocks are commonl y cl assi fi ed by t hei r texture
(the si ze, shape, and vari ati on i n thei r crystal l i ne form)
and thei r chemi cal composi ti on (represented by thei r con­
sti tuent mi neral s ) . These two factors refl ect thei r rate of
cool i ng and or i gi nal magma composi ti on.
89
1 1 00°
|
Ol i vi ne
TEMPERATURE ( Cent i gr ade)
zeol i te
Muscovi te Qua rtz
( St i l bi te)
mi ca
R e a c t i o n s e r i e s o f c o mmo n s i l i c a t e
Bi oti te
m i n e r a l s f r o m i g n e o u s r oc k s . H i g h
mi ca
temperature mi nera l s are shown on l eft of
di agr am.
MAGMA i s the mol ten si l i cate source materi al from whi ch
i gneous rocks are derived. Al though l ava provi des a sur­
face sampl e of magma, the i ncreased pressures and tem­
peratures of deeper magmas permi t a hi gher gas and water
content than at the surface.
I gneous rocks show great vari ati on i n chemi cal compo­
si ti on, but thi s does not mean that each of the many types
has crystal l i zed from a di fferent ki nd of magma. I t seems
probabl e that a si ngl e ki nd of basal ti c magma i s the parent
of al l vari eti es of i gneous rocks, and that di fferent chemi cal
composi ti ons resul t from crystal l i zati on di fferenti ati on .
Fi el d and l aboratory studi es of i gneous rocks show that
i gneous mi neral s have a defi ni te sequence of crystal l i za­
ti on: I ron, magnesi um, and cal c-si l i cate mi neral s ( such as
ol i vi ne, pyroxene, and c al c i um- pl agi oc l ase fel ds pars)
form before sodi um and potassi um fel dspars and quartz .
Thi s sequence is seen in di fferenti ated i ntrusi ons.
Al though crystal l i zati on of a basal ti c magma woul d
normal l y gi ve a basal t (i f the earl y-formed mi neral s are
separated from the bul k of the magma by gravi ty settl i ng
or tectoni c pressure) , the remai ni ng magma woul d be
90
aci d and rel ati vel y ri ch in si l i ca and
potassi um and i n sodi um al umi nosi l i ­
cates. Conti nued crystal l i zati on and
separati on woul d then produce a
rhyol i ti c magma. About 90 percent
of the ori gi nal magma woul d remai n
as c r y s t a l l i n e r o c k s of b a s i c
composi ti on .
The hypothesi s of a si ngl e parent
basal ti c magma expl ai ns many oth­
erwi se puzzl i ng features of i gneous
rocks, i ncl udi ng the preponderance
of basal t l avas and the frequent smal l
and l ate rhyol i ti c fl ows i n basal ti c
vo l c an i c er u pt i on s . U nd i st ur bed
cool i n g wou l d pr oduce gr an i t es ,
whi ch woul d overl i e basi c rocks .
Other facts, however, suggest that
such an expl anati on cannot account
for al l grani ti c rocks. The abundance
of grani tes i n mountai n ranges, and
thei r apparent conti nui ty wi th meta­
morphi c rocks, i mpl i es that many
grani tes are formed by the "grani t i ­
zat i on" of deepl y buri ed sedi men­
tary rocks i n the roots of mountai n
chai ns . Thi s metamorphi c or i gi n of
grani ti c, pl utoni c rocks mi ght then
pr ov i de " i n t r u s i ve ma g ma s " at
hi gher l evel s i n the crust. I t seems
unl i kel y that such huge masses of
grani te coul d have formed by di ffer­
enti ati on of basi c l avas .
CRYSTAL SETTLI NG
Evol ut i on of gr ani t i c
magma fr om basal t i c
magma
A. BASALTI C MAGMA
50% Si 02
1 0% Fe0+ Mg0
40% ather
B. Ol i vi ne, pl agi ocl ase
fel dspar, and pyroxene
qysttl s form at �d settr e
magnesi um
subtracted
D. GRANI TI C MAGMA
70% Si 02
2% FeO ¬ MgO
28% other
mel t
91
••
Gr an i te l andscape in Si erra Nevada shows sheet l i ke weather i ng.
THE FORM AND TEXTURE of i gneous rocks di ffer greatl y
i n detai l s of appearance and i n the gross forms of the enti re
rock bodi es. In contrast to vol cani c l avas, whi ch are extru­
si ve i gneous rocks, those formed at great depth are known
as i ntrusive or pl utoni c (p. 89). These tend to crystal l i ze
more sl owl y and, therefore, have l arger crystal s than
extrusi ve rocks . The texture of an i gneous rock depends
upon i ts rate of cool i ng, and thus on i ts geol ogi c mode of
formati on ( p. 89) . The chemi cal and mi neral content of
i gneous rocks depends upon the composi ti on of the mag­
mas from whi ch they were formed . Magmas (or mel ts) ri ch
i n si l i ca produce grani ti c (aci d) type rocks . Those ri ch i n
i ron and magnesi um tend to be more mobi l e, and these
produce basal ti c (basi c) type rocks. Because of thei r dura­
bi l i ty, many i gneous rocks are used as road materi al .
Large, speci al l y cut bl ocks are used a s ornamental bui l di ng
stones.
The col or of an i gneous rock i s rel ated to i ts composi ­
ti on . Aci d rocks general l y tend to be l i ghter i n col or than
basi c ones.
92
::««:».»:..:..:.c»::.:.::·:
c.«».:: usual l y l i ght-col ored
and coar s e- gr ai n ed, cont ai n s
about 30 percent quartz an d 60
percent potash fel dspar. I t may
be pi nki sh red or bl ack-spotted .
Grani te is common in many l arge
i ntrusi ons and often associ ated
wi th mi neral deposi ts.
c«...: i s dark-col ored and
has a coarse, grani t i c-type t ex­
t ur e c on s i s t i n g of pl agi oc l as e
f e l d s p a r an d pyr oxen e wi t h
traces o f other mi neral s , but i t
contai ns n o quart z .
c . « » .: : - : . - - · . · h a s
ground mass wi t h l onger crystal s
( p h e n o c r y s t s ) o f f e l d s p a r ,
quart z, o r mi ca . Very coarse­
grai ned aci di c rocks ( pegmati tes)
have crystal s over 40 feet l ong .
Sma l l por phyr i t i c cr ys t a l s a re
al so found in l avas .
::««:»:·:.. :..:.c»: :.: .::·:
.-·:..:: i s a l i ght , fi ne­
grai ned vol cani c rock of gra­
ni ti c composi t i on, often porphy­
ri ti c, wi t h phenocrysts of quart z
and orthocl ase .
:.:.-.«»«»--.«.::have
s i mi l ar composi t i on to rhyol i te .
Both ore rapi dl y cool ed . Obsi d­
i an i s a t ransl ucent gl ass. Pumi ce
i s a r h yo l i t i c f r ot h c h a r ac t er ­
i zed by cavi ti es l eft by t he rel ease
of gas .
.«:«.:t he mos t common l ava,
is dark, fi ne-grai ned, and rather
heavy. I t consi sts of pyroxene and
a pl agi ocl ase fel dspar. Ci ndery
basal t ( scori a) may have second­
ary mi neral s wi t hi n the cavi ti es
formed by gas .
93
METAMORPHI SM
Metamorphi sm i s the process of change that rocks wi thi n
t he earth undergo when exposed t o i ncreasi ng tempera­
tures and pressures at whi ch thei r mi neral components are
no l onger stabl e. Metamorphi sm may be local -contact
metamorphi sm i s due to i gneous i ntrusi on ( pp. 86-99) - or
regional -as takes pl ace i n mountai n bui l di ng, when sl ate,
schi st, and gnei ss are formed . Metamorphi sm may take
pl ace i n a sol i d state, wi thout mel ti ng .
Effects of metamorphi sm depend upon the composi ti on,
texture, and strength of t he ori gi nal rock, and on the
temperature, pressure, and amount of water under whi ch
metamorphi sm takes pl ace. Metamorphosed rocks may
di ffer i n texture, mi neral content, and total chemi cal com­
posi ti on from the parent rock.
: : ·: . . « . : - « s c : : a r e
s h own by mas t me t a mo r p h i c
racks. Cl eavage i n sl ates ( t hei r
fi ssi l i ty al ong defi ni te pl anes) i s
produced by paral l el real i gnment
of such fl aky mi neral s as mi ca,
and i s often i ncl i ned sharpl y I a
or i gi nal beddi ng i n the racks .
Cl eavage i s mai nl y t he resul t of
t h e i n c r e a s e d p r e s s u r e o f
dynami c metamorphi s m.
·:. «: :si s t he devel opment
of wavy or contorted l ayers under
more i ntense metamorphi sm. I t
i nvol ves structural and mi neral ­
o g i c a l c h a n g e s . S c h i s t s h a ve
cl osel y spaced fol i at i on .
--·.. :::have a rather gl ossy,
s l a t y a pp e a r a n c e c a u s ed by
r ecr ys ta l l i zat i on of fl aky mi n ­
er a l s a l o ng c l eavage pl an e s .
Characteri st i cs ar e i n between
schi sts and sl ates .
c.:=:-:·».=« »..«.:
r es u l t s f r om i n t e n s i v e me t a­
morphi s m, such as regi onal meta­
morphi sm i nvol ved i n mountai n
bui l di ng . l os s of s ome chemi cal
component s and addi t i on of ot h­
ers may produce changes i n total
chemi cal composi t i on of the ori g­
i nal roc k. Such f l aky mi neral s as
mi ca are unstabl e under these
condi ti ons and hi gh- grade meta­
morphi c rocks often have a gran­
u l a r appear an c e, deve l op i n g
whol e new sui tes of metamorphi c
mi neral s . The part i cul ar assem­
bl age depends upon the compo­
si t i on of the parent rock and t he
metamorphi c envi ronment . Thi s
has l ed to a concept of metamor­
phi c faci es .
««.... f i ne to coarsel y granu­
l ar, i s composed chi efl y of cal ci te
or dol omi te . It deri ves from meta­
morphosed l i mestone.
..«.:: :.i s a tough rock of
met amor ph os ed qu ar t z s an d­
stone wi t h a sugary texture . I ts
col or i s whi te to pi nk- brown .
c«. s : : · . . : . : : : - : :
s h o ws f o l i a t i o n i n p a r a l l e l
arrangement of pl at y mi cas, and
g r o wt h of g a r n e t as a n e w
mi neral .
.:.:c :.:contai n garnet and
pyr oxe n e , f or med f r om bas i c
rocks at h i gh pressure.
Ecl ogi te
metamorphosed sedi mentary rock
aureol e, zone of
contact
( gr ani t i c i ntr usi on)
..:.·::«.. :«: :s of some
mi neral s and the conversi on of
others i s a feature common to
many metamor phi c rocks, espe­
ci al l y those formed at hi gh tem­
peratures, such as those around
i n t r u s i on s ( t h e r mal met a mor ­
phi s m) . Rocks around i nt rusi ons
often di spl ay t hi s as a resul t of
contact metamor phi s m.
Bl ack Mar bl e
Garneti ferous s chi st
Offshore dri l l i ng r i g symbol i zes man' s search for petrol eum.
MI NERALS AND CI VI LI ZATI ON
The foundati on of 20th-century ci vi l i zati on i s i ndustri al ,
and the basi s for i ndustry i s fuel s and metal ores . The thi ngs
that form the basi s of l i fe i n the devel oped wor l d -cl ean
water suppl y, bui l di ngs, hi ghways, automobi l es, hard­
ware, tool s , ferti l i zers, pl asti cs, fuel s, chemi cal s , and
more -ul ti matel y come from the crust of the ti ny pl anet on
whi ch we l i ve.
E c on omi c mi ner a l s a re ver y u neve n l y d i s t r i buted .
Al though most mi neral s themsel ves are wi del y scattered,
deposi ts suffi ci entl y ri ch to mi ne de'pend upon rare combi ­
nati ons of geol ogi c processes. They are often found i n
i sol ated areas, and l ong geol ogi c study may be needed to
l ocate and expl oi t them. Al most 90 percent of the worl d's
ni ckel suppl y, for exampl e, comes from a si ngl e i ntrusi on
near Sudbury, Ontari o.
New i ndustri al processes and i nventi ons bri ng demands
for new mi neral s and fuel s . The need for radi oacti ve mi n­
eral s spurred devel opment of new techni ques and di men-
96
Mexi co
I raq
3 1 . 0 ( 4. 8%)
U. A. E mi rates
29. 4 ( 4. 6%)
Uni ted States
26. 5 ( 4. 1 %)
Li bya
23. 5 ( 3. 7%)
I r an
58. 0
( 9. 0%)
Peopl e's Republ i c
of Chi na
20. 0 ( 3. 1 %)
Kuwai t
68. 5
( 1 0. 7%)
WORLD CRUDE OI L proved reserves total about 640 bi l l i on bar rel s ;
di st r i but i on i s concentrated i n Mi ddl e East . (After U. S . Dept . of Ener gy)
si ons i n geol ogi c surveys after Worl d War I I . The di scovery
of new mi neral deposi ts can rapi dl y revol uti oni ze the ci vi ­
l i zati on of whol e nati ons, as i t has i n the Mi ddl e East,
where some of the worl d's l argest petrol eum resources have
brought great weal th to Arab countri es .
Al l mi neral deposi ts are exhausti bl e. Once we have
mi ned a vei n of si l ver or a bed of coal , there i s no way of
repl eni shi ng i t. Thi s demands careful conservati on of mi n­
eral deposi ts as wel l as l ong-term expl orati on and pl anni ng
for new suppl i es.
Depl et i on of some essenti al mi neral s now poses seri ous
l ong-term probl ems. I t i s esti mated by some that 80 per­
cent of the worl d's economi cal l y recoverabl e suppl i es of
petrol eum wi l l be exhausted wi thi n a century. Some metal s ,
i ncl udi ng l ead and copper, have comparabl y l i mi ted
reserves. These esti mates are based upon present rates of
consumpti on, but an expl odi ng worl d popul ati on coul d
quadrupl e our mi neral needs .
97
LÛÅL fÎ ËLÜbÛf
ÏMËUMÎ ÏËÜbÏÅÏËb
Anthracite
Bi tumi nous
Sub- bi tumi nous
and l i gn ite
MI NE RAL FUELS are basi c to an i ndustri al economy not
onl y for heat i ng, l i ghti ng, and transport but al so for the
i ndustri al power needed i n mi neral processi ng, mi ni ng,
and i n manufacturi ng . Hydroel ectri ci ty, though of great
i mportance i n some areas, provi des onl y a smal l fracti on
(l ess than 2 percent) of the worl d's power. Mi neral fuel s
(oi l , coal , and gas ) provi de about 98 percent. Coal and
petrol eum are fossi l fuel s.
Bi t umi nous coal
Car noti te, a u ran i um mi ner al
98
::«. i s a s ed i me n t a r y r oc k
formed from the remai ns of fossi l
pl ant s. Buri ed peat , under pres­
sure, l oses water and vol ati l es
and achi eves a rel ati vel y hi gh
carbon content . Peat has about
80 percent moi sture; i i gni te ( on
i ntermedi ate step between peat
an d c oo l ) , abou t 40 per c ent ;
bi t umi nous cool , onl y about 5
per c e n t . An t h r a c i t e , f or me d
under condi t i ons of extreme pres­
sure, contai ns 95 percent carbon
compared wi th bi tumi nous cool ,
whi ch has on l y about 8 0 percent .
Most of the wor l d' s great cool
deposi ts ore in rocks of Pennsyl ­
vani an or Permi an age.
«::« :·.:.:at present suppl y
onl y a fracti on of the worl d's
resources, but they wi l l become
more i mportant . Mi neral fuel s
used are or es of urani um.
Cr oss sect i on of oi l fi el d shows s ubs urface structure; petrol eum i s
trapped i n crest o f an ant i cl i ne seal ed b y i mper vi ous c a p rock.
-.:.:.:.«i s a general term
far a mi xture of gaseous, l i qui d,
and sol i d hydrocarbons. When
burned, t hi s foss i l fuel rel eases
sol ar energy stared mi l l i ons of
years ago. Petrol eum mi grates
from the source rock, where i t
f or ms , to o t h e r r o c k s . Mos t
petrol eum remai ns di spersed i n
r ock pores and much escapes at
the surface of the earth . But i n
commerci al fi el ds, i t i s trapped
bet ween an i mpe r me abl e c ap
rock and a permeabl e reservoi r
rock, often fl oati ng on water, as
i l l ustrated.
:..:-«..is carbonaceous shal e
that yi el ds hydrocarbons when
di st i l l ed. At present , the cost of
oi l and gas producti on from i t i s
too hi gh to make oi l shal e eco­
nomi cal l y i mport ant , but i t may
be used i n the future.
- . : . :. . .«. ·- . :.«:.:»
i nvol ves bot h g e ol og i c a l an d
geophysi cal st udi es. Si nce most
of the more obvi ous surface traps
h av e n o w b e e n d i s c o v e r e d ,
sei smi c and other surveys are
i ncreasi ngl y used to di scover sub­
s ur f ac e an d s u b ma r i ne s t r u c ­
tures, such as those beneath the
North Sea.
FAULT OI L TRAP
STRATI GRAPHI C OI L TRAP
SALT DOME OI L TRAP
99
ORE DEPOSI TS are natural concentrati ons of metal l i c mi n­
eral s i n suffi ci ent quanti ty t o make thei r expl oi tati on com­
merci al l y worthwhi l e. Most i ndustri al metal s, other than
i ron, al umi num, and magnesi um, are present as onl y a
fracti on of 1 percent i n the average i gneous rocks of the
earth's crust . Pl ati num, for exampl e, has an abundance of
. 000, 000 , 5 per cent by wei gh t ; s i l ver a nd mer c u r y,
. 000, 01 percent. An or e wi th 1 percent anti mony contai ns
1 0, 000 ti mes as much as t he average i gneous rock. There
are several geol ogi cal processes by whi ch ore-beari ng
mi neral s are concentrated i n the crust.
MAGMATI C ORES are concentrated from mol ten rock
where crystal s settl e duri ng cool i ng . Some of the worl d's
greatest ore bodi es were formed in thi s way.
Pretor i a Seri es
chromi te l ayers gr an ite
@ :-: ..:-.:.- magneti te
and chrami te deposi ts of South
Afri ca occur i n l ayered l opol i t hs
of nori t e ( gabbro wi th hyper­
sthene pyroxene) . See p. 88 .
µ :-::.-...·ni ckel depos­
i ts of Ontari o occur as stri ngers
i n a nori te i ntrusi ve compl ex.
- ««:s-:are formed deep i n
vol cani c pi pes, crystal l i zi ng from
a di sti ncti ve ul trabasi c rock, ki m­
ber l i t e. Exposure by weatheri ng
may s ubs equent l y concent r at e
d i a m o n d s i n r i v e r p l a c e r
deposi ts .
METAMORPHI C ORES are formed around some i ntrusi ons
by contact metamorphi sm of the country rocks . Asbestos ,
once used f or i nsul ati on and fi reproofi ng, i s a common
nonmetal l i c metamorphi c mi neral .
- · - . :: - . . ««. :. . :
i ncl ude many o f the l argest
deposi ts of l ead, zi nc, cap­
per , and s i l ver . Depos i t ed
from hot, aqueous sol ut i ons,
t hei r di st ri but i on i s usual l y
control l ed by j oi nt s, faul t s,
beddi ng, and l i thol ogy of t he
count ry rocks . The mi neral i z­
i ng sol ut i ons ar i s e f r om mag­
mat i c sources, al though the
parent i gneous rock may not
al ways be ex posed . The cop­
per deposi ts of Butte, Mon­
t an a , a n d U t a h , s i l v er of
Co ms t o c k L ode, N evad a ,
and gol d o f Cr i ppl e Creek,
Col orado, are al l hydrother­
mal deposi t s. A l arge porti on
of the wor l d's gol d i s mi ned
from deposi ts that or i gi nated
from hydrothermal sol ut i ons.
Gr ay
porphyry
Tucson
faul t
Par t i ng_
quart
zi te
Whi te
Cambr i an
quartzi te
Di a g r a mma t i c c r o s s s ec t i on of
structur al ore control i n l ead and
z i n c mi ne, Leadv i l l e , Col orado
(After Arga l l )
1 01
Dr i l l i ng i n taconi te i ron ore rocks
requi res s peci al equ i pment.
«.:«.. ::..: such as the i ran
ar ound Bi r mi ngham, Al abama,
and Northamptonshi re, Engl and,
are sedi mentary r ocks ri ch i n
ori gi nal hemati te. Carnoti te, a
s ed i me n t a r y u r a n i u m o r e , i s
found i n sandstones of the Col o­
r ado Pl ateau .
SEDI MENTARY ORES form in a vari ety of di fferent ways .
Some are formed as di rect sedi mentary deposi ts or by
evaporati on; others have an i gneous ori gi n and are con­
centrated by sedi mentary processes .
..«-:. :.:are mi neral sal ts
( h al i te , gyps um, pot as h , et c . )
f o r m e d b y e v a p o r a t i o n o f
restri cted bodi es o f water. The
great sal t deposi ts of Germany,
Utah, and New Mexi co are exam­
pl es . Evapori tes may be i mpure,
c o n t a i n i n g c l a y , s a n d , o r
carbonates .
..: -.«.« »..«.-.-:: ::
are formed by weatheri ng and
l eac h i n g , wi t h c or r es pond i n g
e n r i c h me n t of l ow- g r ade or e
deposi t s, many of sedi mentary
-.«:..-.-:: ::are formed
by concentrat i on of fragments i n
stream deposi t s. Such heavy mi n­
eral s as gol d, di amonds, magne­
t i t e , a n d t i n o x i d e a r e of fe n
concentrated i n t hi s way. Exam­
p l e s a r e t h e t i n d e p o s i t s of
Mal aysi a and the gol dfi el ds of
Cal i forni a and Austral i a.
ori gi n . Th e great i ron deposi ts of
the Great Lakes and the al umi ­
num (bauxi te) deposi ts of Arkan­
sas have been concentrated i n
s i t u by t hi s process.
I r on or e pi t , Vi rgi n i a, Mi nn. ; rocks are Precambri an .
CONSTRUCTI ONAL AND I NDUSTRI AL MI NE RALS,
al though more abundant than or e mi neral s, are used i n
much greater quanti ti es . They are general l y quarri ed
rather than mi ned.
. . .. -. » c««: . . .«. : a r e
e x t r a c t e d f r o m t h e e a r t h ,
whether bri ck, stone, steel gi rd­
er s , or gl as s . Bui l di ng stones mus t
be dur abl e, easi l y quarri ed, and
eas i l y wor ked . The par t i c u l ar
s t on e s s el ec t ed of t e n depend
upon t he l ocal weatheri ng condi ­
t i ons (determi ned by amounts of
i ndustri al gases) and l ocal avai l ­
abi l i ty of stones .
Other i ndustri al mi neral s , such
as sul phur, sal t, potash, gypsum,
and asbestos, are not so wi del y
di st ri buted, but are used i n many
i ndust ri al processes . They occur
i n v e r y d i f f e r e n t g e o l o g i c
setti ngs .
:.«·:are us ed f or br i ck mak­
i ng, i n chemi cal i ndustri es, i n
cerami cs , and i n the manufacture
of many other products . Each use
demands sl i ght l y di fferent qual i ­
t i es. Many vari eti es of cl ay ar e
known and mi ned.
:«»-«»-c.«...are wi del y
us ed i n concr et e cons t r uct i on .
Most suppl i es come from gl aci al
and ri ver deposi t s. Reserves are
p l e n t i f u l , b u t d i s t r i b u t i o n i s
patchy.
:::».«cc..c«:.for hi gh­
way, ai rfi el d, and dam construc­
t i o n i s a l s o u s e d i n g r e a t
qu an t i t i e s . I t i s r es i s t an t an d
cheapl y quarri ed. I n some tropi ­
cal areas, i t has to be i mported.
..«.:::».is used in the manu­
facture of cement , as a metal ­
l urgi cal fl ux, as an aggregat e,
and i n agri cul t ure. Li mestones
are wi del y di stri buted, and over
500 mi l l i on tons are quarri ed
annual l y in Nort h Ameri ca al one.
T HE CHANGING EARTH
I f the processes of erosi on and deposi ti on were counter­
acted onl y by i gneous acti vi ty, we shoul d expect the conti ­
nents to be featurel ess pl ai ns, broken onl y by active
vol canoes or pl ateaus of l ava. But there are consi derabl e
movements of t he earth's crust.
Anci ent caves, hi gh above present
beach, i ndi cate former posi ti on of
sea l evel , N. I r el and.
.«.:-..«·. :pr ovi de dr a­
mati c evi dence of crustal move­
ments . Smal l rel ati ve movements
of the crust, both verti cal and
hori zontal , can very often be
measured after earthquakes have
taken pl ace (p. 1 26) .
.« :.-..«:-.:and buri ed
forests of t en i nvol ve r egi on al
warpi ng rather than si mpl e upl i f t .
Rai sed beaches show a ri se i n t he
Cal i forni a coast l i ne over the past
years, but on the other hand,
ports af Denmark are si nki ng (see
p. 62) .
::- . . ::«::«. · :«: .. . :
such a s wavecut pl atforms i ndi ­
cate rel ati ve upl i ft of the l and;
drowned val l eys i ndi cate rel ati ve
si nki ng (p. 69) . Rai sed coral reefs
often show upl i ft, t i l t i ng, and
even reversal of movement .
·::: .: af mar i ne ani mal s i n
l and areas i ndi cate rel at i ve upl i ft
of the l and. The presence of coal
seams wi th l and pl ants thousands
of feet bel ow pr es ent gr ou n d
l evel shows that s i nki ng h as al so
taken pl ace. lake sedi ments are
often i nterbedded wi th sedi ments
that were deposi ted i n the sea.
Crustal movement is a common feature of the earth . It i s
found throughout t he wor l d, i n rocks rangi ng i n age from
the ol dest to the youngest. I t i nvol ves vari ous ki nds of
movement: gentl e, sl ow upl i ft or si nki ng, regi onal warp­
i ng, rapi d earthquake movements, and regi onal stresses
that are strong enough to buckl e and break great masses
of rock { pp. 1 07- 1 25) .
s: ::-«:«s-:.:of ri vers
ore thought to resul t from rel ati ve
upl i ft of the l and surface ( p. 44) .
The Grand Canyon, whi ch mea­
sures more t han a mi l e deep, i s an
exampl e.
. : : : s: «:.: «: s: of t h e
crust i s i ndi cated by famous tem­
pl e r ui ns near Napl es. The pi l ­
l ar s , erected on l and, were bored
by mari ne mol l uscs, i ndi cat i ng
submergence by the seo and the
subsequent upl i ft of the l and.
. s: :s·:.« : : : ( p . 1 1 4 )
represent breaks i n the deposi ­
t i on of s ed i men t s , s omet i mes
i ndi cat i ng peri ods of si gni fi cant
crust al di st urbance.
·:.-:i n anci ent st rat a range
from smal l warps, onl y one or two
feet in hei ght , to great domes,
mi l es across. I n areas where rocks
have responded i n a bri ttl e man­
n e r , b r e a k s ( f a u l t s ) h a v e
devel oped.
·«..::i nvol ve fracture and rel ­
at i ve moverent of rock uni t s ( p.
1 1 1 ) . I n near l y al l cases, the
rocks i nvol ved were ori gi nal l y i n
a hori zontal posi t i on .
Roman templ e, bui l t on dr y l and,
i s now fl ooded.
Devoni an sandstone
UNCONFORMI TY
Typi cal unconfor mi t y showi ng
effects of upl i ft i n pre- Devoni an
Fol di ng i n l i mestone, Vi ct or i a1
Austral i a
Y
ROCK DEFORMATION
Al though sedi mentary rocks are general l y deposi ted i n
al most hori zontal beds, we general l y fi nd t hem di storted
and t i l ted i f we fol l ow them over any consi derabl e di stance.
Such structures are the resul t of l arge-scal e crustal defor­
mati on, whi ch produces correspondi ng changes i n vol ume,
shape, and someti mes chemi cal composi ti on of the rocks
themsel ves . The i ntensi ty of the changes i s proporti onal to
the i ntensi ty of deformati on and the depth of buri al (see
Metamorphi sm, p. 94) . Under some stress condi ti ons,
rocks behave as though they were el asti c, but as stress
i ncreases, they undergo permanent ( pl asti c) deformati on
and may ul ti matel y fracture. The most i ntense zones of
deformati on are associ ated wi th mountai n chai ns .
- -of O bed i s a measure of i ts
sl ope or ti l t i n rel ati on to the hor­
i zontal . The directi on of dip i s the
di recti on of maxi mum s l ope, or
the di recti on a bal l woul d run
over the bed i f i t s surface were
perfectl y fl at . The angle of dip i s
the acute angl e thi s di recti on
makes wi th a hor i zontal pl ane.
The strike of a rock bed i s t he
di recti on of the i ntersecti on of i t s
di p di recti on wi t h O hori zont al
pl ane. I t i s expressed as a com-
Di p· sl r i ke
map symbo l :
beddi ng pl ane
l i ne of stri ke
¯
35
angl e of di p
pass beari ng an d l i es at r i ght
angl es to t he di recti on of di p.
Di p-stri ke symbol s ar e used on
most geol ogi c maps.
Cl i n omet er s are e l a bor ate
i nstruments used by geol ogi st s to
measure di p. A s i mpl e i nstru­
ment, however, may be made
from a pl ast i c protractor fi xed to
a fl at base wi th a wei ghted thread
to measure the maxi mum di p. The
stri ke of the di p i s then measured
wi th a compass .
Sheep Mountai n, Wyomi ng, is a fi ne exampl e of pi tc hi ng anti cl i ne.
FOLDS are wri nkl es or fl exures i n strati fi ed rocks. They
range from mi croscopi c si zes i n metamorphi c rocks to
great structures hundreds of mi l es across. They someti mes
occur i n i sol ati on, but more often they are packed
together, especi al l y i n mountai n ranges . Upfol ds are cal l ed
anticlines, and downfol ds are cal l ed s
y
ncl
ines. Fol ds wi th
one l i mb more or l ess hori zontal are cal l ed monoc
l
ines. Al l
fol ds tend t o di e out as they ar e traced al ong t hei r l engths.
·:.««:.:»:··:.-:shown
i n stages . I n Stage 1 , the rocks
are deposi ted. I n Stage 2, they
are fol ded. I n Stage 3, they are
upl i fted and t hei r tops eroded,
wi t h o n l y t h e i r d i p p i n g l i mb s
remai ni ng. The ol dest beds ( 1 )
are al ways i n the core of a n ant i ­
cl i ne, but on the fl anks of a
syncl i ne.
STAGE 2
N
|
angl e af
pl unge �
"
¯%
¯N

¨
`"
¨
--�
6
axi s 5
Bed 7
7

8
9
' 1 0 (
N
9
~
t
1 0
.
Bed 6
1 4
¬
Rel i ef di agr am and geol ogi c map of a pl ungi ng ant i c l i ne
: - . :: . . : : . . . :· · :. -:
( above). The axi al pl ane i s drawn
sa that i t bi sects the angl e of the
fol d . The axi s i s i ts trace on a
beddi ng pl ane. If the axi s is not
hori zontal , the fol d i s sai d to
pi tch or pl unge.
«»:.:..».:can be spotted on
geol ogi c maps by the di p ar­
rows po i n t i n g away f r om t h e
a x i s . A p i t c h i n g f o l d g i ves a
: ·»: ..». : o c c u r wh e r e t h e
beds di p toward the axi s . They
can pi tch and be ei ther symme­
tri cal or asymmetr i ca l . A struc­
t ur a l bas i n i s a bas i n - s h aped
syncl i ne where di ps converge on
a cent ral poi nt or area.
"c l os i n g" ou t c r op pat t e r n . A
dome is an anti c l i ne that has di ps
poi nt i ng i n al l di recti ons from a
central poi nt or area.
Kl ND5 OF FOLD5
:·««.:..:«.·:.-:( a) have
l i mbs di ppi ng in opposi te di rec­
ti ons at the same i ncl i nat i ons. The
axi al pl ane (ap) i s verti cal .
«:·««.:..:«.·:.-:( b) are
those havi ng an i ncl i ned axi al
p l a n e a n d , l i k e s y mme t r i c a l
f o l d s , h av e l i mbs d i p p i n g i n
opposi te di recti ons, but a t di ffer­
ent i ncl i nat i ons.
:...:..»:-·:.-:( c) have
an i ncl i ned axi al pl ane and l i mbs
di ppi ng i n the same di recti on.
One l i mb i s i nverted.
: ::..»«. · :. - : ( d ) h av e
equal di ps of two l i mbs; axi al
pl ane di ps i n same di rect i on.
..:.«..s: ·:.-: ( e) have
hori zontal axi al pl anes .
`
Fol ded rocks form cl i ffs 1 , 500 feet above San J uan Ri ver, Utah.
FOLD PATTERNS are rarel y as si mpl e as i deal i zed ones
shown on these pages . They often pass i nto faul t s. Some
beds yi el d to strai n more readi l y than others . Such i ncom­
petent rocks as shal e and rock sal t, for exampl e, often
yi el d by fl owi ng and s l i ppi ng i n fol ds. Fl owage of sal t may
produce structural domes, l eadi ng to petrol eum reservoi rs.
Such i ncompetent rock movements are someti mes so strong
that, as i n some Mi ddl e East oi l fi el ds, maj or fol ds at depth
are not refl ected at the surface. Fol ds that do reach the
surface are best exposed i n ari d and semi ari d areas and i n
rock faces and cl iffs, but regi onal mappi ng of other vege­
tati on-covered areas, such as the Appal achi ans, often
shows fol di ng over great areas . Anti cl i nal fol d structures
someti mes provi de petrol eum reservoi rs.
Cumber l and
Pl ateau
NW
'
Sect i on acr oss southern Appal achi an Mountai ns
Atl ant i c
. Car ol i na coasta l
R
.
d
P1 edmont Pl ateau
(
f b I t ( • 1 ge s a e e p 01 n

·

h
,
 

SE
1 09
ROCK FRACTURES
JOI NTS and fractures are another way that . rocks yi el d to
stress. Joi nts are fractures or cracks in whi ch the rocks on
ei ther si de of the fracture have not undergone rel ati ve
movement. Common in sedi mentary rocks, they are usual l y
caused by rel ease of buri al pressure or by di astrophi sm.
They pl ay an i mportant part in rock weatheri ng as zones
of weakness and water movement.
�� ������. : »: : »: . - «. » :«. ·
.::·:occur i n paral l el sets at
ri ght angl es to the beddi ng. Ten­
si onal , compressi onal , and tor­
s i o n a l s t r e s s e s a l l p r o d u c
e
di sti ncti ve j oi nt s .
.: »:: » c».:.: .::·:
may resul t f r om shr i nkage duri ng
cool i ng . I n fi ne-grai ned rocks,
there i s a characteri st i c pol ygo­
nal arrangement . Grani te masses
may show sheet j oi nt i ng.
Gi ant's Causeway, Northern I r el and, shows hexagonal col umns
formed by cool i ng of basal t l avas.
FAULTS are fractures where once-conti nuous rocks have
suffered rel ative di spl acement. The amount of movement
may vary from l ess than an i nch to many thousands of feet
verti cal l y and to more than 1 00 mi l es hori zontal l y. Some,
such as the San Andreas Faul t, are maj or earth features .
Di fferent types of faul ts are produced by di fferent com­
pressi onal and tensi onal stresses, and they al so depend
upon the rock type and geol ogi cal setti ng .
Faul ts are the cause of earthquakes, whi ch suggests that
repeated smal l movements rather than one "catastrophi c"
break characteri ze many faul ts. Di sti ncti ve, l arge-scal e
fracture zones (transform faul ts) di spl ace t he mi d-oceani c
ri dges i n several areas ( pp. 1 36 and 1 40) .
· »-::··«..::
»:.««.c.«. :·:.:.»
: :»«.·«. .::are nat neces­
sari l y the mast cam man faul t type
i n a gi ven area . They are faul ts i n
whi ch rel at i ve downward move­
ment · has taken pl ace down the
upper face or hangi ng wal l of the
faul t pl ane. (We cannot gener­
al l y prove whether both beds
have moved, or onl y one . ) The
B l ock d i ag r a m of n o r mal fa u l t
before weather i ng
throw of t he f aul t i s the verti cal
di spl acement of the bed ( ac) ; the
heave i s the hori zont al di s pl ace­
ment ( be) . The angl e abc i s the
di p of the faul t pl ane, and the
compl ement of thi s i s the hade.
The di p i s usual l y steep. Some­
ti mes there may be more t han ane
epi sode of movement al ong the
same faul t pl ane or zone.
B l ock d i a g r a m of n o r ma l f a u l t
after weather i ng
B l o c k d i a g r a m o f h i g h - a n g l e
rever se fau l t
.....:.:. :-..::·«..::
have rel ati ve upward movement
of the hangi ng wal l of the faul t
pl ane. They occur i n areas of
compressi on and fol di ng such as
mountai n bel t s. lat eral di spl ace­
ment may be many mi l es. They
Topographi c depressi on mar ki ng
San Andreas Faul t i s occupi ed by
u l agoon, Bol i nas Bay.
t hr ust
pl ane
kl i ppe of wi ndow of
overt hr ust
Di agr ammat i c c r o s s s ect i o n of
eroded l ow-angl e t hr us t fau l t
often have a l ow di p and resul t i n
repeti ti on and apparent reversal
of strat i graphi c order i n a verti ­
cal sequence. Chi ef Mountai n i n
Montana i s an eroded remnant of
a l arge thrust faul t .
«c.«..»i s a bl ock t hat has
been dropped down between two
normal faul t s. An upl i fted faul t
bl ock i s a horst . Rift valleys are
graben s t r uct ur es hundreds of
mi l es i n l ength . The most spectac­
ul ar i s that al ong the Red Sea,
but they are al so found i n East
Afri ca, the Rhi ne, and Cal i for­
ni a, and t hey al so occur beneath
the oceans al ong the crests of the
mi d-oceani c ri dges.
:.«.·«..:: :.::. ·. :. -
·«..:: «»-...«:.-:.«»:
·:.«·«..::are those where
sheari ng stress has produced hor­
i z o n t a l mo ve me n t . T h e S a n
Andreas Faul t i n Cal i forni a i s 600
mi l es long and has a di spl ace­
ment of over 350 mi l es. The 1 906
and 1 989 San Franci sco earth­
quakes were caused by the move­
ment of the San Andreas Faul t ,
whi ch i s sti l l acti ve.
FAULTS I N THE FI ELD are general l y more compl ex than
those shown i n these di agrams. Rotati onal movements
often compl i cate the si mpl e verti cal and hori zontal move­
ments , and the throw and hade of a faul t may change
al ong i ts l ength . The faul t pl ane i s often poorl y defi ned,
and is represented by a faul t zone made up of broken and
di storted rocks . Faul ts often occur i n groups (faul t zones)
made up of many i ndi vi dual faul ts . Except i n desert areas,
cl i ff faces , and quarri es, faul ts are rarel y seen at the
surface, but thei r presence i s i ndi cated by one or more of
the fol l owi ng features:
·«..: ...:: «occurs where
the rocks of the foul t zone are
shattered i nto angul ar, i rregu­
l arl y si zed fragments. Some may
be reduced to a gri tty cl ay.
::-:c.«-- :.··.:::occur
when faul t s bri ng together rocks
of di fferi ng hardness. Denuda­
ti on may i ndi cate the faul ti ng by
showi ng sharp, "unnatural " top­
og r a p h i c c o n t a c t . T h e Te t on
range i n Wyomi ng i s an exampl e,
wh er e r e s i s t a n t P r e c a mb r i a n
i gneous rocks are faul ted agai nst
s of t er Te r t i a r y sed i me n t s ( p .
1 1 8 ) . Ot h e r t o p o g r a p h i c
ef f ect s -bays o r v al l eys , f or
exampl e -may resu l t from the
weakness of a faul t zone, whi ch
i t sel f may undergo st rong di ffer­
ent i al weat her i ng .
:-. »c:may be produced by
faul ts when pervi ous and i mper­
vi ous strata are brought i nto con­
tact wi th one another ( p. 5 1 ) .
Li nes of spri ngs often i ndi cate the
exi stence of a faul t .
:. :·.»: -.: pol i shed stri a­
ti ons or fl ut i ngs, are often found
i n the faul t pl ane or zone. They
may i ndi cate the di recti on of rel ­
ati ve movement .
- :-.«:.«.»::·:.::.:-
i s another i ndi cat i on of a faul t .
As wel l as di spl aci ng rocks verti ­
cal l y, f aul t s i n di ppi ng beds wi l l
di spl ace thei r outcrop patterns .
In geol ogi c mappi ng, f aul ts are
often i nferred from outcrops that
"won' t match .
éé
Smal l - scal e faul t i ng i n l i mestone
UNCONFORMI TI ES are anci ent erosi on surfaces in whi ch
an ol der group of rocks has been upl ifted, eroded, and
subsequentl y buri ed by a group of younger rocks. Uncon­
formi ti es can be used to date peri ods of crustal movement
i n the reconstructi on of earth hi story. The ti me span repre­
sented by the erosi on surface (absence of deposi ts) may
vary from very l ong to very short peri ods . A "break" i n
foss i l sequence, often a characteri sti c feature of uncon­
formi ti es, can be measured by compari ng the fossi l s wi th
those of uni nterrupted rock sequences . Unconformi ti es
vary i n form, and i n the erosi onal i nterval s they represent.
- :::»·:.« : .:occur where
the beds obove ond bel ow the
erosi on surfoce ore paral l el . I f
the ol der group of rocks has been
fol ded and eroded before the
deposi t i on of the younger group,
thei r beds wi l l not be paral l el ,
and they represent an angular
unconformi t y.
STAGE 2
Upl i ft and
fol d i ng
The eroded upper surface of
t he underl yi ng gr oup of rocks
may be fl at or i t may have consi d­
erabl e rel i ef. Ol d soi l s are some­
t i me s pr e s er v ed . T h e l owes t
overl yi ng beds ar e often con­
glomerates made up of eroded
f r ag me n t s of t h e u n d e r l y i n g
group o f rocks .
STAGE 3 Surface eros i on
Submergence and
renewed deposi t i on
Pl ane of unconformi ty
STAGE 4
1 1 4
The Matter hor n, Swi tzer l and, s hows s har p outl i ne formed by gl aci al
erosi on t ypi cal of many mountai ns .
MOUNTAI N BUI LDI NG
Mountai ns are among the most conspi cuous features of the
earth's surface. Al though they are formed i n vari ous ways
and are of vari ous ages, most are concentrated i n great
fol ded bel ts that run al ong the conti nental margi ns . Not
al l are confi ned to the l and. The Mi d-Atl anti c Ri dge
stretches thousands of mi l es, ri si ng al most 1 0, 000 feet
above the ocean fl oor. Si mi l ar ri dges are found i n other
oceans (p. 1 36) .
Any i sol ated, upstandi ng mass may be cal l ed a moun­
tai n . There i s no mi ni mum hei ght or parti cul ar shape
i nvol ved. Some of the ways i n whi ch mountai ns may be
produced are shown on the fol l owi ng pages .
1 1 5
VO1CANlC NOUN1A1N5 i ncl ude some of the worl d's
most beauti ful and famous mountai ns. Mt. Fuj iyomo i n
Japan, Mt. Vesuvi us i n I tal y, Mt . Hood i n Oregon, and Mt.
St. Hel ens and Mt . Rai ni er i n Washi ngton ore al l exampl es
of characteri sti cal l y steep and symmetri cal vol cani c moun­
tai ns . Other vol cani c mountai ns, such as Mauna loa i n
Hawai i , ore formed by shi el d vol canoes ( p. 84) . They tend
to be rounded and fl attened, but may sti l l be hi gh and
I orge. Mauna loa ri ses al most 1 4, 000 feet above sea l evel
and about 32, 000 feet above the seafl oor. Wi th i ts di am­
eter of 60 mi l es , i t i s t he worl d's l argest mountai n i n terms
of vol ume.
Vol cani c mountai ns may form very rapi dl y. Mt . Poracu­
ti n i n Mexi co began to grow i n February, 1 943. Wi thi n a
week, i ts cone was 500 feet hi gh, and wi thi n two years i t
hod reached 1 , 500 feet.
Some vol cani c mountai ns occur as i sol ated structures ,
but others form ports of extensi ve vol cani c chai ns . Vol cani c
i sl ands may form great i sl and orcs, of whi ch the 1 , 000-
mi l e Al euti an chai n i s on exampl e.
Mt . Fuj i yama, Japan's sacred mountai n, i s a vol cano.
Bl ue Mountai ns , New South Wal es, Austra l i a, or e eros i onal i n or i gi n,
con s i st i ng chi efl y of hor i zonta l Permi an and Tr i assi c strata.
EROSI ONAL MOUNTAI NS are found in regi ons of crustal
upl i ft. These are wi de areas where crustal upl i ft (epei r­
ogeny) has produced el evated pl ateaus and thereby pro­
vi ded new erosi onal energy to ri vers . The steep gorges
wi th preci pi tous edges of Grand Canyon-type topography,
for exampl e, are general l y thought of as a di ssected pl a­
teau rather than a mountai n . Some wel l - known mountai ns,
such as the Bl ue Mountai ns of New South Wal es, Austral i a,
are formed i n thi s way. I f erosi on conti nues l ong enough ,
hugh i sol ated, resi stant remnants ar e l eft. An exampl e i s
Mt . Monadnock i n New Hampshi re, whi ch ri ses 1 , 800 feet
above a "penepl ane" and gi ves i ts name to such i sol ated
structures (monadnocks) . These structures are thus outl i ers
of younger rock, resti ng on an exposed basement of ol der
rocks.
1 1 7
-:«. «:. »:« »: ar e t h e
s i mpl est ki nd of structural moun­
tai ns . They t end ta be rel ati vel y
s m a l l , i s o l a t e d , s t r u c t u r a l
domes, upl i fted wi thout i ntense
faul t i ng . They may be associ ated
wi th such i gneous i nt rusi ons as
l a c c o l i t h s . T h e B l a c k H i l l s of
South Dakota ar e an exampl e.
STRUCTURAL MOUNTAI N RANGES are by far the most
numerous and extensive mountai n ranges and di ffer from
vol cani c and erosi onal mountai ns i n the structural defor­
mati on and upl i ft they have undergone. Some of the ol der
mountai n ranges, such as the Appal achi ans, are l ess
i mpressi ve than the younger, such as the Al ps, but they
share certai n common characteri sti cs, si x of whi ch are
di scussed bel ow. It is these, more than j ust hei ght, that are
a cl ue to an understandi ng of the nature of structural
mountai ns .
·«. .:. . ::· «:. »:« »:
may be formed i n any type of
rock . They are often, though not
al ways, structural l y undeformed
where di fferenti al verti cal di s­
pl acement or t i l t i ng by steep nor­
mal faul ts gi ves rel ati vel y up­
l i fted and downsunk bl ocks. Ri ft
val l eys are often associ ated wi th
the mountai n scarps, whi ch tend
1 1 8
to run paral l el wi t h the faul t i ng .
S u c h mo u n t a i n s ma y be v er y
l arge. Th e Si erra Nevada repre­
sents the upt i l ted edge of a bl ock
of grani te 400 mi l es l ong and 1 00
mi l es wi de, wi th an eastern scarp
1 3 , 000 feet above sea l eve l .
There are several such ranges
from Oregon to Ari zona, whi ch
produces spectacul ar scenery.
,
,
S ml �s
,
MOUNTAI N CHAI NS
Cenozoi c
Mesozoi c
Pal eozoi c
N
e
CONTI NENTAL SHI ELDS
FOLDED MOUNTAI N RANGES al l have s i mi l ar character­
i sti cs . Most of the worl d's great mountai n chai ns , such as
the "young" Hi mal ayas, Al ps, Rocki es, and Andes, and
the ol der Ural s and Appal achi ans, bel ong to none of the
groups di scussed on pp. 1 1 6- 1 1 7. I n spi te of many i ndi vi d­
ual di fferences, al l are fundamental l y fol ded ranges and
share these si x i mportant characteri sti cs:
1 . Li near di stri buti on of mountai n ranges i ndi cates they
are not haphazardl y scattered across the earth's surface;
they are found i n l ong, narrow bel ts . The Appal achi ans,
for exampl e, stretch 1 , 500 mi l es from Newfoundl and t o
Al abama and are up t o 350 mi l es wi de. The Rocki es are
3, 000 mi l es l ong and conti nue southward for another
5, 000 mi l es i n the Andes of South Ameri ca and then i nto
Antarcti ca. Thei r l ocati on near the margi ns , or former
margi ns, of conti nents i s a maj or cl ue to thei r ori gi n .
1 1 9
Ptocombt | on Combt | on Otdov| c| on Dovon| on Cotbon| Iotoos Potm| on 1t | oss| c Ctotocooos 1ott| oty
General i zed sect i on acr oss the Rocki es from eastern I daho to western
Wyomi ng ( see p. 1 52 for mean i ng of geol ogi c ages)
Z. Thi ck, sedi mentary rocks that are found i n al l the
worl d's maj or mountai n chai ns are general l y 30, 000 to
40, 000 feet (6-8 mi l es) i n thi ckness . Fossi l s and structures
show most are mari ne rocks, formed i n el ongated crustal
downwarps. They i ncl ude chi efl y cl asti c sedi ments and vol ­
cani c rocks. Strata of equi val ent age on t he borderi ng
conti nents are often onl y a tenth of t hi s t hi ckness and
general l y have a hi gher proporti on of carbonates and
coarse cl asti c rocks.
d. Di st i ncti ve i gneous and metamor phi c rocks are
found i n mountai n chai ns . Cl asti c sedi ments are often
i nterbedded wi th great thi cknesses of vol cani c l avas, and
eroded cores of mountai n chai ns i ncl ude vast grani ti c bath­
ol i ths, as wel l as mi gmati tes . The bathol i ths and mi gmati tes
were probabl y formed from the effect of depth and heat
on deepl y buri ed sedi ments .
In younger mountai n ranges -those formed duri ng the
l ast 1 20 mi l l i on years (see pp. 1 1 9 and 1 52) -active
vul cani sm cont i nues . The vol canoes of the Cascades,
Andes, and Antarcti ca are exampl es. I n ol der mountai n
ranges, al though the el evati on seen i n more recent moun­
tai ns i s reduced by erosi on, the di sti ncti ve rock types and
deformati on patterns can sti l l be recogni zed .
1 20
4. I ntense fol di ng and faul t i ng i n maj or mountai n
chai ns often i nvol ve thrusti ng on t he nei ghbori ng conti nen­
tal margi n, wi th di spl acements of many mi l es and conse­
quent shorteni ng of the crust. Active earthquakes and upl i ft
mark "younger" mountai n ranges .
å. Repeated upl i ft and erosi on have taken pl ace i n
fol ded mountai ns . Ol der ranges may be eroded down
al most to a fl at surface (a penepl ai n) and then be upl i fted
agai n. The Appal achi ans, formed i n the Late Pal eozoi c,
were eroded t o a penepl ai n i n t he Tri assi c and agai n i n t he
Cretaceous . Thei r present 6, 000-feet -hi gh rel i ef resul ts
from Terti ary upl i ft and recent erosi on . Conti nental shi el d
areas, now rather fl at, represent anci ent eroded mountai n
chai ns .
b. Mountai ns have roots. They are not s i mpl y l umps of
rock resti ng on a uni form surface. They have roots of l i ght
materi al extendi ng far down bel ow thei r normal depths.
Thi s i s suggested by t he gravi ty anomal y of mountai ns, by
the paths of earthquake waves through them, and by hi gh
heat fl ow associ ated wi t h mountai ns . Si nce mountai ns
defl ect a pl umb l i ne l ess than t he mere attracti on of thei r
surface mas s resti ng on "normal " basement, they must be
under l ai n by a l arger amount of l i ght materi al .
actual
meas ured --
gr avi ty
-
50
CRUSTAL ROCK
fol ded
sed i mentary
rock
I
MANTLE RQ4
· ·
cont i nent
guyot
'
abyssal pl ai n
Mai n features of t he ocean fl oor
THE ARCHITECTURE OF THE EARTH
SEEN FROM SPACE, earth i s a bl ue pl anet, vei l ed i n a
swi r l i ng, changi ng tracery of cl ouds. It is bl ue because it i s
a watery pl anet, two-thi rds of i t s surface covered by
oceans; i t i s vei l ed because i ts envel opi ng atmosphere i s i n
constant moti on, i nteracti ng everywhere wi t h l and and
water. The fi rst part of thi s book has descri bed thi s i nter­
acti on, showi ng the changi ng pattern of rock formati on,
er os i on , and depos i t i on . But beneat h t hese s u r f ace
changes, there are al so changes wi thi n t he earth, whi ch
have created i ts maj or archi tectural features . The second
part of thi s book descri bes these maj or earth features and
the processes that produced them.
The continents consi st of l arge shi el ds of anci ent Precam­
bri an rocks, around whi ch younger rocks have been
formed.
Mountain ranges of several di fferent ages are found i n
l i near bel ts around the margi ns of the conti nents . They are
1 22

f
abyssal pl ai n

(After The Story of the Earth, H. M. S. O. )
i ntensel y fol ded and faul ted and contai n a vari ety of sedi ­
mentary, i gneous, and metamorphi c rocks ( p. 1 1 9) .
Volcanoes and earthquakes ar e not randoml y di stri b­
uted, but are concentrated i n narrow bel ts, especi al l y i n a
"ri ng of fi re" around the Paci fi c Ocean, in areas of recent
mountai n bui l di ng, and al ong the mi d-ocean ri dges and
ri ft val l eys ( p. 85) .
Mid-ocean ridges form a gl obal network of submari ne
mountai n chai ns, 25, 000 mi l es l ong and reachi ng 1 8, 000
feet in hei ght above the seafl oor. Ri ft val l eys, transform
faul ts, shal l ow-focus earthquakes, and vol canoes mark the
crest of the mi d-ocean ri dge (p. 1 36) .
Island arcs and submarine trenches, some over 6 mi l es
deep, found i n the Paci fi c and el sewhere, are marked by
vul cani sm and i ntense earthquake acti vi ty (pp. 1 38- 1 39) .
The ocean floor i s made up of vol cani c and sedi mentary
rocks, al l of rel ati vel y young age. I n contrast to the anci ent
rocks of the conti nents (some 3 . 6 bi l l i on years ol d), the
ol dest oceani c rocks are "onl y" 1 75 mi l l i on years ol d.
1 23
THE MECHANI SM OF MOUNTAI N BUI LDI NG ( ORO­
GENY) i s one of t he great di scoveri es of recent geol ogi cal
sci ences. Al though surface processes pl ay a si gni fi cant rol e
i n suppl yi ng the sedi ments that make up mountai n ranges
and i n erodi ng and accentuati ng them after they are
upl i fted, the chi ef processes operate wi thi n the earth's
i nteri or. The fol l owi ng pages trace the way in whi ch recent
di scoveri es have l ed, step-by-step, to a new theory of
mountai n bui l di ng -pl ate tectoni cs -that accounts for the
features j ust descri bed . To understand thi s theory, we need
i nformati on on the structure of the earth and i ts physi cal
properti es . The fol l owi ng pages descri be these features.
EART HQUAKES
Earthquakes are rapi d movements of the earth's crust
caused by faul t movements . Al most a mi l l i on occur each
year, but most are so weak they may be detected onl y by
very sensi ti ve recordi ng i nstruments (sei smographs) . About
90 percent of al l earthquakes seem to ori gi nate at a focus,
the poi nt of maxi mum i ntensi ty of the earthquake, i n the
outer 40 mi l es of the crust. A few deep-focus earthquakes
ori gi nate at depths as great as 400 mi l es. The l ocati on and
pattern of earthquakes are maj or cl ues to earth's structure.
1 24
: · - : « . . « . : - . . « · .
.··.:::are shown an bl ack di a­
gram. Ear t hquake waves radi ate
ou t wa r d s . T h os e t h a t t r av e l
di rectl y t o the surface ar e shown .
l sosei smal l i nes j oi n al l pl aces
where the earthquake i s recorded
wi th the same i ntensi ty. These
general l y form approxi mate ci r ­
cl es or oval s of decreasi ng i nten­
si ty around the epi center, whi ch
i s di rectl y above the focus.
Destruct i on caused by the Cal i for ni a earthquake of October, 1 989
EARTHQUAKE DESTRUCTI ON occurs when shock waves
are absorbed by bui l di ngs. Those on thi ck soi l or rock
debri s are most affected . Steel -frame bui l di ngs on sol i d
rock are more l i kel y to survive. Vi ol ent earth movements
may be accompani ed by earth fl ows and sl umps, cracks,
smal l faul ts ( wi th hori zontal or verti cal movement up to
about 30 feet) , and temporary fountai ns . F i res often resul t
from broken gas l i nes .
Tsunami s are gi ant waves in the oceans that resul t from
earthquakes . Movement of a part of the ocean fl oor di s­
turbs t he water and l eads t o huge osci l l atory waves, often
over 1 00 mi l es l ong. Movi ng at speeds of up to 500 mph,
they pi l e up al ong shores, often causi ng great destructi on.
.«.:-..«·....::enci rcl e the earth . About 415 of oi l earthquakes
and al most al l deep-focus ones occur i n a bel t around the Paci fi c . A
l ess acti ve bel t runs through the Hi mal ayas and Al ps . ( Compare wi th
p. 1 45)
EARTHQUAKE RECORDS, or sei smograms, show that
vari ous types of earthquake waves travel through the earth
by di fferent paths . There are two types of waves that travel
through the earth: P {push-pul l ) waves that are compres­
si onal and travel by movi ng the parti cl es backward and
forward through any materi al , and S (shake) waves that
pass onl y through sol i ds. S-waves shake the parti cl es per­
pendi cul arl y to the di recti on of thei r movement, l i ke waves
made in a rope by hol di ng one end sti l l and shaki ng the
other up and down . L (surface) waves travel around the
«: . : «:c. «- -i s u s ed to
record earthquake waves . The
suspended wei ght , because of i ts
i nerti a, i s unaffected by earth­
quake movements, whi ch are re­
corded on the rotati ng dru m.
Sei smographs di ffer i n si ze and
sensi t i vi ty.
surface of the earth and can pass through any materi a l .
From many observati ons, i t has been shown that when
recordi ng stati ons are more than 7, 000 mi l es away from
an earthquake epi center, the otherwi se very regul ar travel
ti mes of P-waves are reduced. They arri ve l ater than cal ­
cul ated, and S-waves are el i mi nated compl etel y. Thi s
occurs because changes of composi ti on wi thi n t he earth's
i nteri or i nfl uence the paths and speeds of the vari ous
waves .
By usi ng a worl dwi de sei smograph network and studyi ng
the paths and travel ti mes of these waves, i t i s possi bl e not
onl y to l ocate an earthquake at i ts source but al so to bui l d
up a model or pi cture of the nature of t he earth's i nteri or.
.«.:-..«·.=«..:passi ng
through the earth are i l l ustrated
b e l ow, s h o wi n g t h e ef f ec t af
refract i on on P-woves . S-woves
ore compl etel y el i mi nated by the
core. P-woves ore i ndi cated by
red l i nes, S-woves by the bl ue
l i nes.
1 27
THE EARTH'S INTERI OR
The behavi or of earthquake waves i ndi cates that the
earth's i nteri or i s not homogeneous but i s made up of a
s e r i e s of c on c e n t r i c , l aye r ed s h e l l s of d i ff er en t
composi ti on.
Us i ng data from sei smographs, a hypotheti cal model of
the i nteri or shel l s can be constructed. We have no di rect
method of testi ng i ts accuracy, but there are several l i nes
of i ndi rect evi dence that seem to support i t (p. 1 29) . The
three mai n l ayers are cal l ed crust, mantl e, and core. The
crust i s separated from the mantl e by the Mohorovi ci c, or
M-di sconti nui ty, where earthquake waves speed up by 1 5
percent.
«.: . . »«: .. :. «: : · :«
: :»recogni zes the r i gi d litho­
s ph e re ( t h e o u t e r 62 m i l e s ) .
consi sti ng o f the crust ond the
upper port of the mont l e. Thi s
over l i es the hot , sof t astheno­
s ph e re ( 6 2 - 1 55 mi l e s down ) ,
c h or oc t er i zed b y l ow s e i s mi c
wave vel oci ti es and hi gh sei smi c
attenuat i on, whi ch i s t hought to
be capabl e of fl owi ng . Thi s over­
l i es the stronger mesosphere, the
l ower mant l e. I t appears that the
maj or pl ates of the earth rest on
and move across the astheno­
sphere (see p. 1 44) .
1 28
CONTI NENT
:-.::»: ».»:«.:..:: i s
t hi cker t han t he oceani c ( 20¯ 38
mi l es, as opposed to 5 mi l es) ,
ol der ( up to 4 bi l l i on years, as
opposed to a maxi mum of 1 75-
200 mi l l i on years) , l i ghter ( 2. 7
gms per cc, as opposed to 3 . 0
gm/ c c ) , an d mor e s t r uct ur a l l y
compl ex. The cont i nent al crust
has a gr ani t i c composi t i on, wi th
t hi ck sedi mentary and metamor­
ph i c r oc k s , wh i l e the oc ea n i c
crust i s basal t i c, wi th onl y a t hi n
veneer of sedi ment s. These di ffer­
ences are expl ai ned by the theory
of pl ate tectoni cs .
:-.««»:.. bounded by the
Moh or ovi c i c d i s c on t i n u i t y, i s
marked b y 1 5-percent i ncreases
i n P- and S-wave vel oci t i es, sug­
gesti ng a change i n composi ti on.
I t seems to consi st of dar k, heavy
rocks, ri ch i n i ron-magnesi um s i l ­
i cates ( ol i vi ne and pyroxene, pp.
:-.::..i s recogni zed as a
maj or di s c on t i n u i t y wi t h i n t he
e a r t h wher e t h e S - waves a r e
el i mi nated and P-wave vel oci ty i s
sl owed down . Th i s i ndi cates that
the outer core i s probabl y a "l i q­
ui d , " but t he fact t hat P-waves
speed up agai n at a depth of
3, 1 60 mi l es suggests that the
i nner core i s s ol i d. Ci rcul at i on
movements i n the l i qui d outer
core probabl y generate the
30 and 89). A few surface out­
crops of supposed mant l e rocks
fi t t hi s general composi ti on. Sl ow
c on ve c t i o n mov e me n t s i n t h e
upper mant l e i nfl uence the struc­
ture of the crust , al l owi ng the
mov e me n t s i n v ol v e d i n p l a t e
tectoni cs .
earth' s magnet i c f i el d ( p. 1 35) . I t
probabl y has an i r on- i r on s ul ­
phi de composi t i on because of i t s
hi gh densi ty ( 1 5 f or t he i nner
c o r e ) , a n d by a n a l o g y wi t h
met eo r i t e s , wh i c h p r o ba b l y
formed a t the same t i me. I t may,
however, be a s i mi l ar composi ­
ti on to the mant l e, i t s di fferences
ar i s i ng from vari at i ons created
under very hi gh pressure.
1 29
GE OPHYSI CAL MEAS UR EME NTS pr ovi de addi t i on al
i nformati on about the earth's i nteri or an d mountai n-bui l d­
i ng processes . Arti fi ci al shock waves, used i n sei smi c stud­
i e s of s u bs u r f ac e s t r u c t u r e, r evea l t h e n a t u r e a n d
boundari es of shal l ow l ayeri ng wi thi n the earth's i nteri or.
Measurements of gravi ty and magneti c vari ati ons are use­
ful i n subsurface studi es, both "deep, " as i n those beneath
mountai n roots, and "shal l ow, " as i n the l ocati on of petro­
l eum traps or mi neral deposi ts . Heat-fl ow studi es are used
to anal yze deep structures. Radar mappi ng is al so of
i mportance. Conti nuous, rapi d geophysi cal survey mea­
surements are now bei ng made from ai rcraft and shi ps .
Heat fl ow rel ated
c
to di stance from
=
Mi d· At l ant i c Ri dge.
>
x
o
u
Note hi gh heat
ú ø
_ NV
flow at axi s . ø c
¯ �
0
u
5
4
3
2
0 l 00 200 J00 400 500 600 Km BASI NS
-.«: ·.:=::.- .:i n mi nes
and borehol es show t hat the tem­
pe r at u r e of t h e e a r t h ' s c r u s t
i ncreases b y an average of 30°C
per ki l ometer of depth, al though
there are wi de l ocal vari at i ons
caused by the geol ogi cal setti ng
and l ocal conducti vi ty. Over the
conti nents , most of the back­
ground heat seems to or i gi nate
from radi oacti vi ty i n the crust .
Where the crust i s t hi ck, as i n
mountai n r anges, val ues t end t o
be hi gh.
Sei smi c s hot expl osi on pr oduces a
pl ume of soi l . Sei s mi c studi es al so
u s e "t h u m p e r " t e c h n i q u e s ,
wi thout expl osi ves.
s hot
geophones
c.:--·: :«. .·-.:.«: :»
i s wi del y used i n t he l ocati on of
mi neral deposi ts and petrol eum
traps, and i n geol ogi c mappi ng.
The di agram shows how sei smi c
. . . : : . : . :cc » cof t he
resi sti vi ty and sel f-potent i al of
r ock penetrated by borehol es i s
Recordi ng t r uck
Sei smi c
record
-
J
J
j
j
j
j
j
j
V

-
studi es provi de a structur al pro­
fi l e of l ayered rocks. Geophones
p l ac ed at meas u r ed i n t er va l s
record the trace and t i me of
P-waves.
measured and pl otted . E l ectri c
l oggi ng i s an ai d i n subsurface
correl ati on of ai l wel l s . ( Landes)
RADI OACTI VI TY LOG
Garo ray curve Neutron curve
GEOLOGI CAL
LOG
ELECTRI CAL LOG
radi oacti vi ty radi oacti vi ty
s hal e
l i me­
stone
possi bl e
porous
zone
s hal e
s and­
stone
shal e
n hydr i te
shal e
sandstone
Nat ur al potent i al Res i st i vi ty
1HE FORCE OF GRAV11Y is present in every part of the
uni verse, from the smal l est parti cl e to the l argest star. The
earth attracts everythi ng around i t wi th a pul l towards i ts
center. The sun hol ds i ts pl anets i n thei r orbi ts by gravi ta­
ti onal attract i on. The force (F) i nvol ved i s not constant but
vari es i nversel y wi th the square of the di stance between the
two bodi es i nvol ved ( D) , and di rectl y wi th thei r masses (M
1
and M
2
) . We can cal cul ate it by usi ng the equati on devel ­
oped by Newton, F ¯ GM
1
M
2
, where G is the earth's
0
2
gravi ty constant (6. 67 X 1 0·
1 1
cubi c meters per ki l ogram
second
2
) .
The force of gravi ty i s not the same at every pl ace on
the earth . I t i s l ower on hi gh mountai n tops, an d shows a
general decrease of about one-hal f of one percent from
the pol es toward the equator.
Gravi ty i nfl uences al most al l geol ogi cal processes.
Weatheri ng and erosi on, patterns of sedi ment di stri buti on,
the form of mountai ns, and even the cool i ng of i gneous
rock, al l refl ect the i nfl uence of gravi ty.
Pr i nci pl e of gravi ty i s s hown by
spr i ng bal ance; rel ati ve extens i on
of spr i ng i s proport i onal t o dens i ty
of under l yi ng rock.
«..«. «:::.i s used to make
rapi d and accurate determi na­
t i ons of rel ati ve di fferences i n t he
earth' s gravi ty fi el d. I t i s a very
s e n s i t i v e s p r i n g b a l a n c e , a n
i n c r e a s e i n g r a v i t y b e i n g
recorded by the stret chi ng of the
spri ng . Gravi meters empl oy opti ­
c al an d e l e c t r i c al met h ods to
"magni fy" the mi nute i ncrease i n
s p r i n g l e n g t h t h a t h a s t o be
measured .
..«. : ·- . :· . : ma y a l s o
s h ow l o w g r a v i t y ( n e g a t i ve
a n o ma l y ) d u e to pr e s e n c e of
l i ghtwei ght s al t i n a sal t pl ug,
i nvi si bl e f r om the surface ( see p.
99) .
meters
:aaa
i aa
³
a
i aaa
Bouger Anomal y
Free-a i r Anomal y
m. gal s .
- sa
a
:aa
³
���������������������
:-...-:.««»-c..·:·
«-.» unl i ke other r i f t vol l eys,
hove posi t i ve gravi ty anomal i es .
They ore underl ai n by bas i c rocks
a n d o r e b o u n ded by par a l l e l
faul t s . Thi s suggests they were
formed by t he crustal separati on
of Arabi a and Afri ca, the "gop"
between them bei ng fi l l ed by ri s­
i n g b a s i c ma t e r i a l f r om t h e
mant l e.
::::«:·i s the st at e of equi l i b­
r i um t hat exi sts i n t he earth's
crust. Because mount ai ns hove
roots (p. 1 2 1 ) and al so stand
above the overage l evel of the
general l y s i mi l ar rocks of sur­
roundi ng areas, a bal ance must
exi st between them and the den­
s e r ma t e r i a l on w h i c h t h e y
Ai ry's i sostat i c hypothes i s
,i . suggested equ i l i br i um
resul t s i f cr ustal bl ocks of
s i m i l a r d e n s i t y h a v e
di ffer ent hei ght s; Pratt's
hypothes i s , :. bl ocks of
di fferent dens i ty have o
u n i f o r m l e v e l o f
c o mpe n s a t i o n . Mo d e r n
h y p o t h e s e s s u g g e s t
var i at i on i n dens i ty i n and
between col umns .
«:.»:« »:-« »:often hove
a maj or negati ve gravi ty anom­
al y caused by a r oot of l i ght­
w e i g h t g r a n i t i c m a t e r i a l .
Negati ve anomal i es across ri ft
vol l eys ore port l y expl i cabl e by
thi ck sedi ment s wi t hi n the vol l eys
themsel ves, and may res ul t from
the concentrat i on of l i ghtwei ght
al kal i ne magmas and vol canoes
i n ri ft areas .
' " fl oat . " As erosi on reduces the
moss of the mountai n, upl i ft tokes
pl ace bel ow i t as pl asti c mater i al
fl ows under i t -j ust as unl oadi ng
car go f r om a s hi p causes i t to r i se
i n t he wat er . Th e pos t g l a c i a l
upl i ft o f Scandi navi a i s on exam­
pl e of i sostati c adj ustment ( p.
62) .
GEOMAGNETI SM refl ects the earth's behavi or as though
i t were a gi ant bar magnet surrounded by a magneti c fi el d.
The force causes a compass to rotate so that it poi nts
towards the magneti c north pol e. The earth's magneti c
fi el d i s probabl y caused by convecti on currents i n the outer
core.
Geographi c North
Di rect i on
of the total
fi el d
««c».: ::::.«:are sudden
fl uctuati ons i n the earth' s mag­
neti c fi el d caused by charged
part i cl es from the sun (the sol ar
wi n d) . Magn et i c s t or ms of t en
precede aurora di spl ays.
Ai rborne magnetometer
««c».: :-. :. »«: :»i s
t h e angl e between geographi c
( "t r u e ") n o r t h a n d ma g n e t i c
north . The verti cal angl e between
the hori zont al and a freel y di p­
pi ng magneti c needl e is the i ncli­
nat i on . The dec l i n at i on s hows
d a i l y c h an ges an d a l s o s l ow,
measurabl e changes over l ong
peri ods of ti me. The magneti c
pol es change posi ti on rel ati ve to
the geographi c pol es at a present
rate of about four mi l es every
year, al though the devi at i on i s
never l arge.
««c».::«.:..:measure the
l ocal i ntensi ty of the earth's mag­
neti c fi el d. Vari at i ons ( anoma­
l i es) are caused by rocks of
d i ffer i ng magnet i c pr oper t i es .
Magneti c traverses can be made
on the ground or by ai rborne or
s e a b o r n e m a g n e t o me t e r s .
Regi onal surveys are used i n mi n­
eral expl orati on and i n study of
t he ocean fl oor.
-«..:««c».: :«i s the rem­
nant magneti sm found i n rocks ­
especi al l y l avas and some sedi ­
ment ar y r ocks -refl ec t i n g t he
anci ent magnet i c f i el ds at the
ti me of thei r formati on . Magneti c
parti cl es i n the rocks ori ent them­
s e l ve s l i k e c o mp a s s n eed l e s ,
refl ect i ng the fi el d i n whi ch they
formed.
:-.««c».: : · ..-of the
earth has been measured and
ma ppe d . T h e l i n e s of f or c e ,
ma r k e d by a r r ows , s h ow i t s
di recti on at vari ous pl aces. I t
al so vari es i n i ntensi ty ( bei ng
t wi ce as great at the pol es as at
t he equator), and t he i ncl i nat i on
ranges f rom 0° at the magnet i c
equator to 90° at the magneti c
pol es. local anomal i es are often
produced by di st i ncti ve magneti c
properti es of some rock bodi es.
.....:«.:i n eart h' s magnet i c
fi el d have occurred every few
hundred thousand years duri ng
the l ast 70 mi l l i on years . A t i me
scal e of reversal s has been recon­
structed from sequences of l avas
and deep-sea sedi ment s.
North
Geographi c
!
Pol e
I
North
MAGNETI C SURVEYS OF OCEAN FLOOR show a di sti nc­
ti ve paral l el pattern of magneti c reversal "anomal i es"
across the mi d-ocean ri dges, and provi de a cl ue to the
hi story of the ocean (p. 1 40) .
-:: : :»::· «»: .»:::»
: ».»::are reconstructed by
measurements of remnant mag­
n e t i s m i n r o c k s o f s u c c e s s i v e
a g e s . F o r E u r ope a n d No r t h
Ameri ca, the traces o f anci ent
pol ar posi t i ons are s i mi l ar, but
are di spl aced paral l el to one
anot her, suggesti ng ei ther that
the pol es have wandered or that
the conti nents have moved apart.
Other i ndependent evi dence sup­
ports the i nterpretati on of maj or
conti nental movements.
:. «:: : ...«::. i n North
Ameri ca based on pal eomagnet i c
data (after I rvi ng) . Zero pal eo­
me r i d i a n i s a r b i t r a r i l y t a k e n
through Ne w Yor k. Pal eomag­
neti c data show Nort h Ameri ca
was o n c e j o i n ed t o E u r ope ,
Afri ca, an d South Ameri ca wi t hi n
a si ngl e cont i nent , Pangea, whi ch
began to s pl i t apart about 200
mi l l i on years ago.
Pal eoequator
� 0
; 1 0
� 20
±
30
x
Typi ca l profi l e ( 3, 000 mi l es l ong) across At l anti c fl oor
Crest of Mi d­
Atl anti c Ri dge
wor l d avera
 !
""---
North Amer i can
. .
pl ate
Heat fl ow profo l e across Atl ant o c
Afri ca
N. Amer i ca
sed i ments
Mi d- At l anti c Ri dge
Basal t i c
vol cani cs
Cont i nent al cr ust
Gener al i zed cr usta l struct ure across North Atl ant i c
STRUCTURE OF THE OCEAN FLOOR
MI D-OCEAN RI DGES form a gl obal network of mountai n
chai ns, 25, 000 mi l es l ong, up t o 1 , 500 mi l es wi de, and up
to 1 8, 000 feet hi gh ( p. 66) , formed of young vol cani c
rocks. They are repeatedl y offset by transform faul ts and
have crests marked by ri ft val l eys , up to 1 2, 000 feet deep
and 30 mi l es wi de. I n some pl aces (e. g . , I cel and and East
Afri ca) ri dges emerge above sea l evel .
« - : : . « s . - c . : a r e
marked by abnormal l y hi gh heat
fl ow, shal l ow earthquakes, vol ­
cani c acti vi ty, ri ft val l eys, and
transform faul t s. Al l these i mpl y
that the ri dges are pl aces of
strong crustal tens i on. Geophys­
i cal studi es, dredgi ng, and dr i l l ­
i ng s how t he ri dges have a t hi n
Mi d- Ocean
Ri dges
Trans ­
form
Faul ts
1 36
veneer of deep-sea sedi ments,
but consi st chi efl y of basal t i c pi l ­
l ow l ava s , ove r l y i n g v e r t i c a l
feeders, and deep gabbroi c crys­
tal l i ne racks . Al l these features
i mpl y that the ri dges are si tes for
the submari ne extrusi on of new
crustal mater i al (see pp. 1 40-
1 4 1 ) .
ABYSSAL PLAI NS cover over 60 percent of the ocean
fl oor. They are fl at basi ns, hundreds of mi l es across, gen­
eral l y broken onl y by ocean ri dges, canyon systems,
trenches, vol cani c i sl ands, or seamounts . They l i e at depths
bel ow 1 5, 000 feet . Geophysi cal studi es show that they
have a thi n cover of young sedi ments .
.::·::·:-.::.«s·.::.
are younger than the conti nents,
none bei ng ol der than 1 75 mi l l i on
years; some conti nental racks ar e
over 20 t i mes t hat age. Ocean
sed i ment s t h i c ken and i n c l u de
successi vel y ol der l ayers i n par-
N Mai ne Ber muda I s .
al l el bands away from t he mi d­
ocean ri dge. Underl yi ng subma­
ri ne l avas show the same feature
( p. 1 40) . These observat i ons are
i mportant i n the devel opment of
a model to expl ai n the hi story of
the earth .
.:.:«s :: .««:.s::r i se
up to 1 2, 000 feet above the
abyssal pl ai ns . Guyots are s i mi ­
l ar , but have f l at tops, presum­
abl y havi ng been eroded by wave
a c t i o n a n d l a t e r s u b me r g e d .
Mos t l i e at 3 , 000- 5 , 000 f eet
bel ow present s ea l eve l .
Puerto
Trench
VOLCANI C I SLAND ARCS, common around the Paci fi c
Basi n, are maj or earth features, general l y bordered on
thei r convex oceani c si de by narrow trenches, up to 36, 000
feet deep. They are si tes of vul cani sm, earthquakes, neg­
ative gravi ty anomal i es, and crustal i nstabi l i ty. Thei r
andesi ti c l avas, i ntermedi ate i n composi ti on between those
of the conti nents and oceans, suggest a mi xture of the two.
Nearl y al l deep-focus earthquakes occur bel ow these arcs .
Geophysi cal studi es ( p. 1 39) i ndi cate that i sl and arcs
refl ect the col l i si on of two pl ates of the earth's crust. The
trace of earthquake foci marks the buckl i ng under (subduc­
ti on) of one pl ate. The i sl ands seem to be formed from
mel ted materi al from the subducted pl ate r i si ng through
the overri di ng pl ate, formi ng vol canoes and i ntrusi ons.
Japan and the Al euti an and Mari anas i sl ands are exam­
pl es. Destructi on of "ol d" ocean crust by subducti on ( p.
1 39) bal ances new crust formed at the ri dges .
1 . Al eut i an
2. Kur i l e
3. Japan
4. Nans ei Shoto
å. Mar i ana
0. Pal au
Ï. Phi l i ppi ne
ö. Weber
V. Java
1 0. New Br i tai n
1 1 . New Hebr i des
1 2. Tonga-Kermadec
1 3 . Peru·Chi l e
1 4. Acapul co­
Guat emal a
1 5. Cedros
l and
vol canoes ¿
EARTHQUAKE EPI CENTERS:
s hal l ow focus g•
i ntermedi ate focus

deep focus •_•
Di agr am of a typi cal i s l and arc and trench structure, showi ng rel ati ve
pos i t i on of v ol c an oe s ; s h a l l ow- , i n t er med i at e- , a n d deep- f oc u s
eart hquakes; and oceani c trench. A B represents l i n e o f sect i ons bel ow;
l ength about 1 , 200 ki l ometer s.
A
crust
B
sea l evei O
::-:c.«-- :-.:· ..shows
very steep si des of typi cal i sl and­
arc trench .
0
A B
c.«. :·-.:· ..shows i s l and­
arc t rench areas as bel t s of st rong
negati ve anomal i es .
B A

B
okm
34
'
•ø$
-2
� ^
1
58
'

- c--.«: ·.o=in vol cani c
areas but l ow across trenches
r efl ec t s "c oa l " oc ea n i c pl at e
bei ng mel ted and upri si ng .
«:-..:· :.«»-«.:shows
how subducti on of pl ate creates
��

0 700km

. «.: - .. «· . . - : . » : . .
-.::di ppi ng toward t he cont i ­
nent s at 30°-60°, refl ects subduc­
ti on af oceani c pl at e.
trench, eart hquakes, vol canoes,
and heat and gravi ty features.
oceani c cr ust
i s l and arc
l ayer 1 ��������
l ayer 2
(After The 5tory
of the Eorthg H. M. S . O. )
l ayer 3
acti ve vol cano
l i t hosphere
oceani c trench
mant l e
 ��� ���
subduct i on zone
Beni off Zone
earthquake foci to depths of
600-700 km
1 39
Tran sform f aul ts •
· e -
Mi d-ocean r i dges
Tran sform f aul t zones
Deep ocean trenches
Ear thquake epi centers �,
Pl ei stocene 2
Pl i ocene 7
Mi ocene 26
01 i gocene
38
Eocene 54
Pal eocene 65
Cretaceous 1 36
«c. : :· . ::· : s h own by
magnet i c anomal i es, exi sti ng as
mi rror i mages across the Paci fi c
mi d-oceani c ri dge, strongl y sug-
gest seafl oor spreadi ng . Note
concent rat i on of ear t hquakes ;
deeper f ocus ones ore confi ned t o
t r ench or eos shown.
SEAFLOOR SPREADI NG i s a mechani sm t hat accounts for
the maj or features of the conti nents and oceans . New
ocean fl oor i s created al ong the l ength of the mi d-ocean
ri dges, from whi ch it then moves away i n both di recti ons at
rates of between 1 12 i nch and 3 i nches a year. Thi s seems
to be part of a l arger movement i n whi ch the outer shel l of
the earth (the l i thosphere) gl i des sl owl y across the mol ten
upper l ayers of the mantl e (the asthenosphere, p. 1 28) ,
whi ch act s as a conveyor bel t f or t he ri gi d pl ates that
i ncl ude both oceans and conti nents . Both the basal ti c rocks
of the ocean crust and the overl yi ng sedi ments become
successi vel y ol der away from the ri dges, but al l are l ess
than 1 75 mi l l i on years ol d.
1 40
o
0
o

o
o
>
¬
o

C

PRESENT OCEAN BASI NS are young features of the
earth, earl i er ocean basi ns havi ng been destroyed by pl ate
tectoni c movements in subducti on and col l i si on .
TRANSFORM FAULTS ( p. 1 40) offset the mi d-ocean
ri dges. They are probabl y caused by di fferent spreadi ng
rates al ong t he ri dge. Earthquakes occur onl y al ong parts
of faul ts between the two ri dge segments , because spread­
i ng movement across other parts of faul t i s i n same di rec­
ti on . The San Andreas Faul t i s a transform faul t that
outcrops on l and, wi th the Paci fi c Pl ate s l i di ng at a rate of
4-6 em. a year past the Ameri can Pl ate. Sudden move­
ments al ong thi s faul t produce destructi ve earthquakes .
RATE OF SPREADI NG from mi d-ocean ri dge is measured
from symmetri cal pattern of magneti c reversal s observed
in rocks of equal age. These reversal s are dated by studi es
of s i mi l ar reversal s i n l ava sequences . The di stance of
bands of equal age from the ri dges shows di fferences i n
rate of spreadi ng . The East Paci fi c i s openi ng up at about
1 2 em. [³i n . ) a year, the North Atl anti c by onl y about 2
em. a year.
Age ( mi l l i ons of year s )
4 3 2 1 0 1 2 3 4
«s:««. . : i n t h e r e mn a n t
magnet i sm o f the oceani c crust
s h o w r e v e r s a l s , r e fl e c t i n g
changes i n the magnet i c fi el d at
the vari ous t i mes of crust forma­
t i on. Studi es of l ava fl ows on l and
gi ve a t i me scal e of magnet i c
reversal s for the past 4 mi l l i on
years, and t hi s i s confi rmed i n
deep-sea cores . Si mi l ar anoma­
l i es exi st i n symmet ri cal bands,
p a r a l l e l t o t h e mi d - o c ea n i c
ri dges. Thi s suggests that new
crust i s bei ng formed and spread­
i ng at rates up to 1 2 centi meters
per year.
MI D-
Model shows ri se of new seafl oor,
"i mpri nted" wi t h reversal s of suc­
c es s i v e ma g n e t i c pe r i ods an d
reversal s .
1 4 1
SUBMERGED VOLCANOES are scattered across the
ocean fl oor, ei ther si ngl y or i n cl usters, wi th more than
1 0, 000 i n the Paci fi c. Many formed above sea l evel , but
have si nce been submerged by pl ate movements (p. 1 44) .
:-.-.«:: =. . ·. .c hai n of
guyot s runs f rom t he Gul f of
Al a s k a t owar d t he Al e u t i a n
Trench ( p . 1 37) . Guyot GA- l has
a surface l yi ng al most 6, 000 feet
0
1 000
2000
3000
: :.: - . «: : =«. -« c.«
: :»o f vol cani c acti vi ty i n sev­
eral i s l and chai ns is expl ai ned by

g
Hawai i an Emperor
J �
.

Bend
º¸%
g
 

¤
¤ ,
� �
30
20
c 1 0
´6

Hawai i an
Ri dge
Hawai i
Paci fi c Ocean
bel ow the general l evel of al l the
other guyots .
It has been carri ed downwards
by the subsi dence that produced
the Al euti an Trench .
a stati onary pl ume or hot spot,
ri si ng from the mantl e through a
northwest movi ng pl at e.
:.««:.»:chai n has acti ve vul ­
cani sm l i mi ted to the i s l and of
Hawai i at the extreme southeast
ti p. Exti nct vol cani c i s l ands are
progressi vel y al der towards the
nor t hwes t . Hawai i an E mper or
Bend shows change i n di recti on of
pl ate movement 40 mi l l i on years
ago. Nei ghbori ng i s l and chai ns
(Tuamotu l i ne and Gi l bert Aus­
tral ) show si mi l ar trends . (After
vari ous authors)
CORAL REEFS devel op around i sl ands, especi al l y the vol ­
cani c i sl ands of t he Paci fi c, where they may form fri ngi ng
reefs (growi ng on t he fri nge of t he i sl and) , barri er reefs
(separated from the i sl and by a l agoon) , or atol l s ( ri ngl i ke
ramparts of l agoons, wi th no mai n i sl and core) . One
hundred and fi fty years ago, Charl es Darwi n suggested
these three types of reefs represented three stages in the
si nki ng of the ocean fl oor around a vol cani c i sl and, the
coral growth at sea l evel keepi ng pace wi th the si nki ng of
the fl oor.
Geophysi cal surveys and bori ngs on Paci fi c atol l s con­
fi rm thi s theory. On Eniwetok, 4, 000 feet of coral sedi ­
ments overl i e ol i vi ne basal t. I t may not be a compl ete
expl anati on, however, because of the general l y uni form
depth of l agoons (from 1 50 feet for the smal l er ones to
270 feet for the l arger ones), whi ch may be the resul t of
Pl ei stocene erosi on dur i ng peri ods of l ower sea l evel . Sea­
fl oor spreadi ng (p. 1 40) accounts for the subsi dence and
l ateral movement of the ocean fl oor i nvol ved i n the forma­
ti on of reefs and vol canoes .
PLATE TECTONI CS theory offers a uni fi ed expl anati on for
most features of the earth . The earth's surface consi sts of
seven ri gi d, movi ng, i nteracti ng pl ates and several mi nor
ones, each about 1 00 ki l ometers ( 60 mi l es) thi ck, carryi ng
both conti nents and oceans. New crust i s created at
spreadi ng ri dges (constructive or divergent margins, p.
1 45) ; i t moves away from these at speeds of up to 1 8
centi meters a year, and i s destroyed by subduction i nto the
mantl e at destructive or convergent margins, such as
trenches, where one pl ate typi cal l y overri des another ( p.
1 45) . Pl ates may al so s l i de l ateral l y past one another at
transform faults ( p. 1 4 1 ) . The process seems to be cont i n­
uous and broadl y bal anced, so t he earth does not change
i n si ze.
-Shal low, i ntermedi ate,
Þ and deep earthquakes
¯ Mi d-ocean ri dges
. Rel oti v
v
l ote movement
0
4
M
q
P
ocean trench
(convergence)
::.«». -c.topography, vu l ­
c an i s m, s ha l l ow ear t hquakes ,
and symmet ri cal magneti c anom­
al i es refl ect l ateral spreadi ng of
new crustal mater i al from ri dge
areas . ( Aft er Press and Si ever)
Associ ati on of Ear t hquakes
r i s i ng magma
:.«»-«.::..»:-.:refl ect
the subducti on of oceani c pl at e;
mel t i ng and ri si ng mat eri al con­
t r i but es t o vol canoes; f r i c t i on
from downward pl ate movement
produces earthquakes .
MAJOR EARTH FEATURES are expl ai ned by pl ate tecton­
i cs . For exampl e, young oceani c rocks ( l ess than 1 75 mi l ­
l i on years ol d) refl ect subducti on of ol der ones . Ol der
conti nents ( up to 3. 8 bi l l i on years) are general l y too "l i ght"
to be subducted . Other exampl es are i l l ustrated here.
MOUNTAI N BUI LDI NG takes pl ace at convergent bound­
aries of pl ates, where col l i si on produces i ntense compres­
si on . There are several vari eti es of col l i si on .
«»-.:ar i se from subducti on of
the oceani c Nazca pl ate bel ow
the cont i nent al South Ameri can
pl ate. Mountai n bui l di ng, vul can­
i s m, earthquakes, upl i ft, and the
deep Chi l e trench res ul t , as i n fi g­
ure above .
-..« «»c.«: «.-.-:: ::
now scattered across southern
conti nents, were formed wi t hi n a
supercont i nent , Gondwanal and .
Thi s dri fted apart , and the i ndi ­
vi dual cont i nent s are now i so­
l ated by pl ate movement .
- ««.«·«:f or med from col l i ­
si on 40-60 mi l l i on years ago of
I ndi an and Eur asi an pl at es; over­
t hr us t i ng pr oduc es mounta i n s .
The Al ps refl ect col l i s i on o f Afr i ­
can and Eur as i an pl at es , 60-80
mi l l i on years ago.
HOW THE EARTH WORKS
I F SEAFLOOR SPREADI NG and the i nteracti on of the ri gi d
pl ates of t he earth's crust ( pl ate tectoni cs) can account for
al l the maj or features of the earth, we have to ask what
can account for the vari ous phenomena of pl ate tectoni cs .
What is the dri vi ng force that moves the huge, ri gi d sl abs
that make up the surface of the earth? How can any such
force be powerful enough to cause earthquakes and rai se
up mountai ns? What is the earth engi ne that drives pl ate
tectoni cs?
Most earth sci enti sts now concl ude that the mantl e ( p.
1 29) -the dense l ayer underl yi ng t he crust -i s a sol i d, s o
hot that i t can fl ow very sl owl y. "F l oati ng" on t hat foun­
dati on, the l i ghter crustal pl ates are dragged al ong by
these sl ow movements in the mantl e.
How coul d that work? There i s no agreement on thi s, but
three possi bl e ways are descri bed on p. 1 47. Whatever
movement is proposed must be capabl e of expl ai ni ng lat­
eral movement of pl ates away from spreadi ng ri dges and
downward movement of pl ates at trenches .
: «-. · :-«:-:.of how pl ates of crust may be dri ven by convecti on
currents i n the mantl e. ( After several authors)
mi d·ocean ri dge
spreadi ng
FORCES THAT MOVE PLATES are sti l l not cl ear. I l l ustrated
bel ow are three possi bl e model s .
-.:- -.. . ·o.:.:may pro­
duce pl ate movement. The hei ght
and wei ght of spreadi ng ocean
ri dges moy push the pl ate l at­
eral l y, whi l e the cool , heavi er
subducted pl ate may pul l i n the
same di rect i on.
:o»..:: o»:.. . . »::i n
t he ma n t l e may f ar m s eve r a l
s l owl y convec t i ng c el l s , r i s i n g
bel ow t h e ri dges, si nki ng bel ow
the trenches, draggi ng the crust
wi th them.
-.«:.:may be cool ed porti on of
upper mantl e formed by convec­
ti on currents r i s i ng at ri dges and
cool i ng as they spread. ( I l l ustra­
ti ons after Press and Si ever)
pushed
pl ate
EARLI EST HI STORY OF THE EARTH is sti l l obscure, but i t
probabl y i nvolved the accreti on about 4 . 7 bi l l i on years
ago of col d materi al s . The i mpact of thi s materi al gradu­
al l y heated up the growi ng earth, as di d compressi on and
radi oacti vi ty. The temperature sl owl y i ncreased unti l , per­
haps 1 bi l l i on or so years after i ts formati on, the earth was
hot enough to mel t the i ron present, whi ch sank towards
the center, or core, creati ng more heat and causi ng di ffer­
enti ati on of l i ghter materi al i nto crust and i ntermedi ate
mantl e. As the temperature rose, sl ow convecti on move­
ment began to take pl ace, and the di fferenti ati on i nto a
l ayered earth conti nued, wi th l i ghter materi al formi ng the
conti nents . The atmosphere and oceans probabl y accumu­
l ated by outgassi ng from wi thi n t he earth . Pl ate tectoni cs
i s part of thi s l ater hi story of the earth .
1 47
THE EARTH'S HISTORY
The age of the earth has been a subj ect of specul ati on si nce
earl y days of humanki nd, but onl y i n the l ast century have
attempts been made to measure i t. Geol ogi sts studyi ng
earth processes are concerned wi th the sequence of rocks
and structures i n ti me, and thus wi th the hi story of the earth
i tsel f.
.«:.:·::o. »cwas once
thought to show the earth was
onl y 20-40 mi l l i on years ol d. Di s­
c ov er y o f h e a t pr odu c e d by
radi oacti vi ty provi des new data
that i nval i date t hi s concl us i on.
:::«. «...«c. :- :·».::
of sedi ment over the earth , i f reg­
ul ar l y deposi ted, was thought to
p r o v i d e t h e e a r t h ' s a g e , i f
di vi ded b y the average annual
addi t i on to new sedi ment s. Whi l e
t hi s met hod may be acceptabl e
for a few l ocal deposi ts, there are
f ar too ma n y va r i a b l e s a n d
unknowns ( such as redeposi t i on
of sedi ment) to al l ow i ts use for
deter mi ni ng the age of the eart h.
: «. : : : » : . » : : · : - .
::.«»: i s presumed to have
come from weat heri ng of rocks
and was di vi ded by the annual
i ncrement to gi ve on age for t he
oceans of about 90 mi l l i on year s .
The s ame l i mi tati ons appl y to t hi s
factor as to sedi ment-th i ckness
cal cul at i ons. Both fi gures i nvol ve
correcti ons that woul d greatl y
i ncrease t hei r val ue.
.«- :«:: ..-.:«·provi des
the best present method of mea­
suri ng the age of rocks. Radi o­
acti ve el ements undergo sponta­
neous breakdown by l oss of al pha
and beta part i cl es i nto stabl e el e­
ment s . The rate of breakdown,
whi ch con be accuratel y mea­
sured, i s i ndependent of any envi ­
r onment a I c on di t i on s , such as
t emper at ur e or pr es s u r e . Th e
rati o of decayed t o parent el e­
ments thus provi des on i ndi cati on
of the age of the mi neral i n whi ch
i t i s found. Di fferent el ements
have very di fferent decay rates.
@Succes si on of sedi mentary rocks
i n Grand Canyon, Ar i zona, s hows
thei r rel ati ve geol og i c ages, but
r e p r e s e n t s o n l y pa r t of t ot a l
geol ogi c t i me ( p. 1 5 1 ) .
..«s..« , .::., is a com- �
ma n l y u s e d e l e me n t , g o i n g �
through 5 di s i ntegrat i ons before
it becomes t he st abl e el ement "
l ead { Pb206) . Di fferent el ements �
have di fferent rates of di si nte- c
grat i on . U238 has a hal f - l i fe ( the _
t i me taken for hal f i t s at oms to
o
di s i nt egr at e) of 4, 500 mi l l i on �
(4. 5 bi l l i on) year s . Some other �
radi oacti ve el ements commonl y �
used in age studi es ore t hori um, �
potas s i um, and rubi di um.
:-.:. -.::.::·:measured
by radi oacti ve methods have an
age of about 3, 800 mi l l i on ( 3 . 8
bi l l i on) year s . Thi s i s younger
t han the earth i tsel f, whi ch i s
probabl y about 4. 5-5. 0 bi l l i on
years ol d. Studi es of meteori tes,
whi ch are probabl y sampl es of
t h e p l a n e t a r y mat e r i a l s f r om
whi ch the eart h or i gi nated, a l l
i ndi cat e an a ge of about 4. 5 bi l ­
l i on year s . The ol dest known los-
Neutrons bombard
1 00
75
50
25
1 2 11
0
newl y-formed mi ner al
uran i u m
• 238
l ead
206
'/s gone
Increasing ti me ( i n billions of years)
s i l s ore about 3 . 4 bi l l i on year s
ol d, but common foss i l s are found
onl y i n rocks younger t han 6,00
mi l l i on year s ol d.
Radi ocarbon dat i ng i s usefu l
for rocks that contai n wood frag­
me n t s a n d a r e y o u n g e r t h a n
about 70, 000 year s . C 1 4 from
the atmosphere i s i ncorporated i n
pl ant ti ssues and di s i ntegrates to
N 1 4 wi th a hal f - l i fe of 5, 570
Rate at whi ch C" decays
and becomes N1 " i s known
N1 " ¬ neutron ª C1 .
( rad i ocarbon ¬ proton)
Tree absorbs C"O,
(1 "02
and
(1
2
Q2
rema i n con stant
i n l i vi ng tree
Sect i on of l i vi ng
tree conta i ns
x amount of
(1 "
UNDERSTANDI NG EARTH HI STORY al so i nvol ves the
study of the devel opment of ani mal s and pl ants and of the
conti nuousl y changi ng anci ent geographi es. Parti cul ar
sedi mentary rocks, dated by vari ous methods, can then be
rel ated to a general geol ogi c ti me scal e. Most radi oacti ve
mi neral s used for age determi nati ons occur i n i gneous
rocks, al though gl auconi te i s a mi neral used for age studi es
of sedi mentary rocks.
:.-. .-:: : :»of s edi men­
tary rocks i ndi cates thei r rel ati ve
ages . I n undi s t ur bed s ect i on s ,
younger rocks over l i e ol der.
::.«: c. «- - :::. . . . «
: :»of strata i n one pl ace wi th
those of the same age, deposi ted
at the same peri od of t i me i n
another pl ace, i s fundamental i n
t he i nt er pr et at i on of geol ogi c
hi story.
·::: .:are i mportant i n corre­
l ati on of sedi mentary rocks . Fos­
si l s are the remai ns of, or di rect
i ndi cat i on of, prehi stori c ani mal s
and pl ant s. Al t hough i nfl uenced
by envi ronment, s i mi l ar assem­
bl ages of foss i l s general l y i ndi ­
cat e s i mi l ari t y of age i n the rocks
that contai n them.
.::··«: .: the sum total of
the character i st i cs of a rock' s
depos i t i on al envi r onment , ar e
i ndependent of geol ogi cal t i me.
An awareness of t hem, however,
i s i mportant i n correl ati on. Fi g­
ur e shows how a shal l ow sea
transgressed over a del tai c and
near-shore envi ronment i n west­
e r n U . S . i n Ca mb r i a n t i me s ,
about 500 mi l l i on years ago.
. :-:.:c :«.::....«: :»
us es the s i mi l ari t y of mi neral ogy,
s or t i n g , s t r u c t u r e , bedd i n g ,
sequence, and other features as
i n d i ca t i on s of s i mi l a r ages of
rocks. I t i s of l i mi ted val ue, si nce
rocks of di fferent l i t hol ogy often
ore deposi ted at the some ti me i n
adj acent areas .
::«»-«.-c. :.:c :::.
+«» whi ch h as been bui l t up by
combi ni ng rock sequences from
di fferent areas , con be matched
wi th a ti me scal e based on mea·
sured absol ute ages of rocks . Thi s
i s l i ke a mast er mot i on pi cture
fi l m i n whi ch l ocal rock sequences
e ac h r e pr e s e n t a few s i n g l e
frames. Thi s geol ogi c t i me scal e
i s shown on p. 1 52 .
c.:--·: :«.::....«: :»
makes us e of s i mi l ari t y of physi ·
col r ock pr oper t i es ( el ec t r i c al
resi sti vi ty an d sel f- potenti al , for
exampl e) as on i ndi cat i on of s i m·
i l or age . Wi del y us ed i n bore·
hol es, thi s method i s l i mi ted by
the some factors as l i t hol ogi cal
methods .
.::·:·::.«:i n t he geol ogi c
col umn ore maj or di vi si ons of
rocks deposi ted duri ng a parti c­
ul ar peri od of geol ogi c t i me.
Names of systems ore t aken from
ar e as wh er e r o c k s wer e fi r s t
descri bed, such as Devoni an from
Devonshi re, or from thei r char­
acteri st i cs, as Cret aceous from
the chal k, whi ch i s found i n many
strata of t hi s age.
Wor l d Rena i s-
War s sa nee
Roman
E mpi re
Assyr i an
E mpi re
Egypt i an
Mi ddl e
Ki ngdom
Li mestone
Shal e
Li mestone and s andstone
Sandstone and s hol e
The Earth' s total h i story i s pi eced
together by compar i son of rocks
from many areas .
ZI ON
CANYON
1 000
Ì då
Ì 00
Ì ö Ì
ZdÜ
ZöÜ
dÜÜ
d4å
0ÜÜ
L
C
P
L
2
D
L
C
5
U
I
PERI ODS
dura- year s
t i on
ago
mi l l i ons
QUATERNARY
Recent
Pl ei stocene
TERTI ARY
Pl i ocene
Mi ocene
Ol i gocene
Eocene
Pa l eocene
2
b
Ý
Ì Ì
Ì 0
2
CRETACEOUS ¯Ü
J URASSI C
bb
TRI ASSI C ðb
PERMI AN bb
PE NNSYLVANI AN
4
Ü
MI SSI SSI PPI AN
2b
DEVONI AN

SI LURI AN
ðå
ORDOVI CI AN
¯Ü
CAMBRI AN ¯Ü
1 52
0b
Ì ðb
Ì ÝÜ
ð
4
b
ðÝb
4ðÜ
åÜÜ
å¯Ü
E = Evapor i te
Deposi ts
0
'
0
Equat
o
r
1 000
Ki l ometers
-«..:c.:c.«--·:·. : i n Mi ddl e Per mi an t i mes, about 250
mi l l i on years ago. (After Dott and Batten)
PALEOGEOGRAPHI C MAPS are reconstructi ons of the
geography of past geol ogi c peri ods. Past conti nental geog­
raphi es can be pi eced together by usi ng pal eomagneti c
data and by pl otti ng the di stri buti on of di fferent rock
types, foss i l s , and geol ogi c structures, usi ng the methods
i l l ustrated on pp. 1 50- 1 5 1 .
=:..--«..:c.:c.«--·about 200 mi l l i on years ago. Shadi ng
represents deposi ts of former i ce cap ( see p. 1 45) . (After Press and
Si ever)
1 20° 80°
80°
40°
LAURASI A
0o

|
¸ oo 400

^
20°
¯

40°
¡ 60• •
-aoo
PANTHALASSA
so· 1 20•
1 60•
TETHYS SE A
GONDWANALAND
³

1 53
1 54
Rocks and unconsol i dated
deposi ts of Pl ei stocene
and Recent age
TERTI ARY
Rocks of Pal eocene, Eocene,
Ol i gocene, Mi ocene, and
Pl i ocene age
MESOZOI C
Rocks of Tri assi c,
Jurassi c, and
Cretaceous age
LATE PALEOZOI C
Rocks of Devoni an,
Mi ssi ssi ppi an, Pennsyl vani an,
and Permi an age
GEOLOGIC MAP OF
EARLY PALEOZOI C
Rocks of Cambri an,
Ordovi ci an, and
Si l uri an age
PRECAMBRI AN
Avari ety of i gneous, metamorphi c,
and sedi mentary rocks (i ncl udes
some metamorphosed Pal eozoi c l oco I I )
THE UNITED STATES
0 ¡00 200 J00Statute mi l es

0 ! 00 200 J00 Ki l ometers
EXTRUSI VE I GNEOUS ROCKS
Chi efly l ava flows of
Terti ary and Quaternary
age
I NTRUS I VE I GNEOUS ROCKS
( i ncl udes some metamorphi c
rocks) Grani toi d rocks of
vari ous ages
1 55
FOR MORE I NFORMATI ON
MUSEUMS AND EXHI BI TS provi de excel l ent di spl ays of general geol ogi c topi cs
and of regi onal geol ogy. Many uni versi ti es and most l arge ci ti es have museums
wi th geol ogi c exhi bi ts.
STATE GEOLOGI CAL SURVEYS publ i sh maps, gui de books, and el ementary
i ntroducti ons to geol ogy. The U . S. Geol ogi cal Survey, Washi ngton, D. C.
20242, an d the Geol ogi c Survey of Canada al so publ i sh many useful reports
and mops.
NATI ONAL PARKS AND MONUMENTS are general l y areas of great geol ogi c
i nterest. They provi de gui ded tours, tal ks, museums, and pamphl ets.
F URTHER READI NG
BOOKS wi l l hel p you devel op your i nterest i n earth sci ence. Here are a f ew useful
ti tl es:
Cattermol e, Peter, and Patri ck Moore. The Story of t he Earth . New York:
Cambri dge Uni versi ty Press, 1 985. A si mpl y wri tten , useful overvi ew.
larson, Edwi n E . , and Peter W. Bi rkel and. Putnam's Geology, 4th ed. New York,
Oxford Universi ty Press, 1 982. Wel l - i l l ustrated, readabl e, col l ege-l evel text.
Press, Frank, and Raymond Si ever. Earth, 4th ed. New York, W. H. Freeman and
Company, 1 986. Comprehensi ve, col l ege-l evel text.
Rhodes, Frank H. T. , Herbert S. Zi m, and Paul R. Shaffer. Fossils . New York,
Gol den Press, 1 962.
Smi t h, Davi d A. , ed. Cambridge Encyclopedia of Earth Sciences . New York,
Cambri dge Uni versi ty Press, 1 98 1 .
Stanl ey, Steven M. Earth and life Through Time. New York, W. H. Freeman and
Company, 1 985. Col l ege-l evel revi ew of hi stori cal geol ogy.
Zi m, Herbert S. , and Paul R. Shaffer. Rocks and Minerals. New York, Gol den
Press, 1 957.
PHOTO CRE DI TS: Unl ess otherwi se credi ted, photographs ar e by the author.
p. 4 R. Wenkam. p. 1 5 Am. Museum of Natural Hi story. p. 31 E. Moench/ Photo­
Researchers . p. 33 R. Wenkam. p. 34 top, Kai Curry-li ndahl , bot . , Dougl ass
Hubbard. p. 52 bot . , New Zeal and Geol ogi cal Survey. p. 53 luray Caves . p. 58
M. Rosal sky. p. 60 t op, J . Wyckoff. p. 63 C. Trautwei n . p. 68 t op, M. Rosal sky.
p. 69 top, E. Druce. p. 75 J. Wyckoff. p. 76 J. Wyckoff. p. 80 H. Schl enker/
Photo- Researchers. p. 83 M. Rosal sky. p. 85 J. Muench. p. 96 E. Druce. p. 1 02
L. Carl son. p. 1 03 top, J . J . Wi tki nd. p. 1 05 M. Rosal sky. p. 1 1 2 Cal i forni a
Geol ogy. p. 1 1 5 M. Rosal sky. p. 1 1 6 H. Bri stol . p. 1 25 Matthew J. lee/Oakl and
Tri bune. p. 1 34 Ai rborne Geophysi cs Di vi si on, Lockwood, Kessl er ö Barl ett, I nc.
1 56
Abysso| p| oi ns, ! 37
Ai ry'shypothesi s, ! 33
Amphi bo| es, 30
Anti c| i nes, ! 07, ! 0b
Arcs, i s| ond, ! 23, ! 3b-
! 37
Aretes, Ôb
Arkose, 7b
Artesi onwe| l s, Ô0
Asteroi ds, ¡ ¡
Atmosphere,
composi ti onoí, ! b-! 7
deíi ni ti onoí, ! b
At����
·
, ��
6orchons, 7ó
6ors,
oíí- shore, 7!
sond, 7!
6osol t , 73
6othol i ths, bb
6ovs, onderosi on, ób
6eoches, 70
roi sed, ! 04
storm, 7 !
6eddi ng,
cross, b!
groded, b!
vorved, b!
6i g-bongtheory, ! ó
6| ocky| ovo, dÔ
6recci o, ondíoul t s, ! ! 3
6ri dges, noturo| , 4b
6ui l di ngmoteri o| s, ! 03
6ushvel ddeposi ts, ! 00
Col coreni te, 7b
Co| coreousooze, 73
Col ci te, 2b
Col deros, b4
Corbonotes, 2b
Coves,
onderosi on, ób
ondgroundwoter, Ô3
Chemi col e| ements, ! ó
Chemi co| sedi ments, 72-
73
Chemi co| weother i ng, 3ó
Ci ndercones, b4
Ci rques, Ôb
C| oy,
in i ndustry, ! 03
sedi ments, 73
vorve, ó0
Cl eovoge,
i nmi nero| s, 27
Cl i íís,
onderosi on, ób
I NDEX
C| i nometers, ! 0ó
Coo| , b0, 7b
Coosto| íeotures,
ondcrusto| movement,
! 04
Coost| i nes,
emergent, ó7
onderosi on, ób
ond morine deposi ti on,
70
ondseol evel s, ó7
submerged, ó7
Co| or, oími nerol s, 27
Comets, ! 0
Composi tecones, b4
Composi ti on,
oíotmosphere, ! b-! 7
oícrust, ! 2b
oísun, ! 3
Cones,
ci nder, b4
composi te, b4
Cong| omerotes, 7b, ! ! 4
Consequentstreoms, 4ó
Conti nento| shel íond
s| ope, óó, ó7
Conti nents, óó, ! 22
Convecti oncurrents,
i nmontl e, ! 4ó, ! 47
Corol reeís, ! 43
Core, oíeorth, ! 27
Crevosseíi | l i ngs, ó0
Cross·beddi ng, b !
Crust,
bui l d-upoí, b2-! 03
composi ti on oí, ! 2b
erosi on oí, 34-4Ô
íormoí, 32-b !
moteri ol s oí, 2 ! -3 !
Crusto| movements,
! 04-! 47
ond coosto| íeotures,
! 04
ond íoss i l s , ! 04
ond i nci sed meonders,
! 0Ô
Crysto| íorm, oími nerol s,

Cubi ccrystol s, 2Ô
Cuestos, 4b
Currents,
i noceons, ó4
turbi di ty, ó7
Doti ng,
methodsusedíor,
! 4b-¡ Ô !
Decl i noti on, mogneti c,
! 34
Deep-seosedi ments,
72-73
Deíormoti on,
rock, ¡ 0ó-! ! 4
Del tos, 4Ô, ó0, 7 !
Dendri ti cdroi noge
potterns, 4ó
Deposi ti on,
productoí, 7b-b !
Deposi ts,
6ushve| d, ! 00
dune, 77
gl oci ol , Ô7, ó0
l oess, 77
mori ne, 70
ore, ! 00
outwosh, ó0
plocer, ! 02
resi duol mi nero| , ! 02
5udbury, ! 00
wi nd, 7ó-77
Desert pl otíorms, 7Ô
Di omonds, 24, ! 00
Di ostrophi sm, 32
Di kes, bó
Di p, oírockbed, ! 0ó
Di sconíormi ti es, ! ! 4
Domemountoi ns, ! ! b
Droi nogepotterns,
4ó-ÔÔ
dendri ti c, 4! , 47
modi íi coti onoí, 47
superi mposed, 4ó
rodi o| , 47
tre| | i s, 4ó
Druml i ns, Ô7
Dunes, 7ó-77
onci entdeposi tsi n,
77
shopeoí , 77
Dust-c| oudtheory, ! ó, ! 7
Eorth,
oge oí, ! 4b
crustoí, 7, 2 ! -3 !
hi storyoí, ! 47, ! 4b-
! ÔÔ
i nstobi | i t yoí, ! 04-! 47
i nteri oroí, ! 2b-! 3Ô
moteri o| sin crustoí,
2 ! -3 !
moti onsoí, ! 2
o s p| onet, ! 0-20
si zeondshopeoí, ó-7
suríoce oí, b-7, ! 22-
! 23
Eorthíl ows, 3b
Eorthquoke[s), ! 04,
! 24-! 27
1 57
corthquoke[s)[cont . ) :
destructi onby, ! 2Ô
di stri buti on oí, ! 23,
! 2Ô, ! 4Ô
epi centerpl ot, ! 37
records, ! 2ó-! 27
woves, ! 2ó-! 27
ccl ogi tes, 7Ô
cconomi cgeol ogy, Ô
c l ectri cl oggi ng, ! 3 !
cmergentcoostl i nes, ó7
crotosthenes, ó, 7
crosi on,
boysond, ób
coves ond, ób
cl iíísond, ób
coostol , ób
oíeorth's crust, 34-3Ô
gl oci ol , Ô7-Ôb
heodl ondsond, ób
ondl ondíorms, 4b
ondmountoi ns, ! ! 7
ondropi ds, 44
ondre¡ uvenoti on, 44
ri ver, 4 ! -43
bywoter, 40-4 !
ondwoteríol l s , 44
wove-cutpl otíormsond,
ób
bywi nd, 7Ô
crrot| cs, Ô7
cskers, ó0
cvopori tes, b0, ! 02
Expondi ng-uni verse
theory, ! ó
Extrusivei gneousrocks,
73
Fou| tbl ockmountoi ns,
! ! b
|oul ts, ! 0Ô, ! ! ! -! ! 3
i n mountoi nchoi ns,
! 2 !
reverse, ! ! 2
stri ke-sl i p, ! ! 2
teor, ! ! 2
thrust, ! ! 2
tronsíorm, ! 4 ! , ! 44,
! 4Ô
Fel dspors, 27
|i l l structures, b!
|ol ds, ! 0Ô, ! 07-! 07
in mountoi nchoi ns,
! 2 !
|ol i oti on, 74
Forests, buri ed, !04
Foss i l s , ! 04
onddoti ng, ! Ô0
|roctures,
oími nerol s, 27
r ock, ! ! 0
|rostshotteri ng, 3ó
1 58
|uel s,
otomi c, 7b
mi nerol , 7b
Fumorol es, Ô !
Gobbro, 73
Gol oxy, ! 2, ! 4-! Ô
Gol eno, 3 !
Geol ogi ccol umn, ! Ô !
Geol ogi cmop, ! Ô4-! ÔÔ
Geol ogi cti mescol e,
! Ô2
Geol ogy,
bronchesoí, Ô
hi storyoí, 4-7
Geomogneti smstudi es,
! 34
Geophysi col correl oti on,
! Ô !
Geophysi col expl oroti on,
! 3 !
Geophysi col meosure-
ments, ! 30
Geophysi cs, Ô
Geysers, Ô2
Gl oci oti on,
hi stor_oí, ó! -ó2
pre-Pei stocene, ó2
ondseo l evel , ó2
Gl oci ers,
deposi tsoí, Ô7-ó0
onderosi on, Ô7-Ôb
ondgl oci oti on, Ôó-ó2
Groben, ! ! 2
Grodoti on, 32
Grodedbeddi ng, b !
Groni te, 73
Groni teporphry, 73
Grophite, 24
Grovel ,
i ni ndustry, ! 03
Grovi meter, ! 32
Grovi ty,
onomol i es, ! 32, ! 33
íou| ts, ! ! !
íorceoí, ! 32
proíi l e, ! 32
Groywocke, 77
Greot5pi ro| Mebul o
M3 ! , ! Ô
Groundwoter, 47-Ô3
GulíoíEden,
ondri ítvol l eys, ! 33
Guyots, ! 37, ! 42
Prott-Wel kerchoi noí,
! 42
Gypsum, 2b
Hordness,
oími nerol s, 2ó
Heodl onds,
onderosi on, ób
Heot íl ow, ! 30, ! 37
Hexogonol crystol s, 2Ô
Hi stori col geol ogy, Ô
H| story,
oí otmosphere, 20
oíeorth, ! 47, ! 4b-! ÔÔ
oígeol ogy, 4
oígl oci oti on, ó Ì -ó2
Hogbocks, 4b
Horns,
ondgl oci ol erosi on,
Ôb
Horst, ! ! 2
Hot spri ngs, Ô !
Hydrol ogi ccycl e, 40
Hydroshere, 40
ydrotermol ores, ¡ 0 !
| ceoges, ó2
| denti íi coti on,
oími nerol s, 2ó-27
|gneous rocks,
cl ossi íi coti onoí, b7-73
commonextrusi ve, 73
commoni ntrusi ve, 73
osconti nentol íoundo-
ti on, b3
íormoí, 72
i ntrusi ve, bó
¡ oi ntsi n, ! ! 0
ond mogmos, 72
in mountoi nronges,
! 20
texture oí, 72
| nci sed meonders, ! 0Ô
| ndustry,
mi nerol s used i n,
7ó-! 03
| nstruments,
grovi meter, ! 32
sei smogroph, ! 2ó-! 27
| ntrusi ons,
l oyered, bb
shol l ow, bó
| ntrusi vei gneousrocks,
bó, 73
| sl ondorcs, ! 23, ! 3b-
! 37, ! 4Ô
| sl ondtrenches, ! 3b-! 37,
! 4Ô
| sostosy, ! 33
Joi nts, ond rocks, ! ! 0
Jupi ter, ! 0
Kometerroces, ó0
Komes, ó0
Kettl ehol es, ó0
|occol i ths, b7
|ondíorms, erosi onol , 4b
|onds| i des, 37
|ovo, bÔ
|i mestone, 77, ! 03
ond porosi ty, 47
|i moni te, 2b
|i thol ogi co| correl oti on,
! Ô !
|oessdeposi ts, 77
|oggì ng, e| ectri c, ! 3 !
|opo| i ths, bb
|uster, oími nerol s , 2ó
Mogmo, 70-7 ! , 72
Mogmoti cor es, !00
Mogneti c íi e| ds, ! 34, ! 3Ô
Mogneti csurveys, ! 3Ô
Mognetometers, ! 34
Mont| e, ! 27
convecti oncurrents,
! 4ó, ! 47
Mop[s),
geo| ogi cU. 5 . , ! Ô4-! ÔÔ
po| eogrophi c, ! Ô3
Morb| e, 7Ô
Mori nedeposi ti on, 70
Mori nesedi ments, 72-73
Mosswosti ng, 3b
Meosurement[s) ,
oíoge i nrocks,
! 4b-! 47
oíeorth, 7
geophysi col , ! 30
oísun, ! 3
Mechoni co| weotheri ng,

Mercury, ! 0
Metomorphi cores, ! 0 !
Metomorphi crocks,
ío| i ot i oni n, 74
i nmountoi nchoi ns, ! 20
recrysto| l i zoti oni n, 7Ô
texturol chongesi n, 74
Metomorphi sm, 74-7Ô
ondnewmi nero| s, 7Ô
Meteors, ! !
Meteori tes, ! !
Mi cos, 27
Mi d-oceonri dges, ! 23,
! 3ó
Mi | kyWoy, ! 4
Mi nerol [s),
otomi cstructureoí, 24
corbonotes, 2b
chorocteri sti csoí ,
22-24
col oroí, 27
constructi ono| , ! 03
commonore, 3 !
crystol íormoí, 2Ô
íue| s, 7b
hordnessoí, 2ó
i denti íi coti onoí,
2ó-27
Mi nero| [s)[cont . ) :
ondi nustry, 7ó-! 03
| uster oí, 2ó
oxi des, 2b-27
rock-íormi ng, 2b-30
su| íotes, 2b
Monocl i nes, ! 07
Monoc| i ni ccrystol s, 2Ô
Moon, ! 0
Moroi nes, Ô7
Mountoi n-bui l di ng,
! ! Ô-! 24, ! 4Ô
Mountoi nronges,
íol ded, ! ! 7-! 2 !
ondgrovi tyonomo| i es,
! 33
structurol , ! ! b
Mountoi ns, ! ! Ô-! 24, ! 33
ond crustol movement,
! ! Ô- ! 24
dome, ! ! b
erosi ono| , ! ! 7
erosi on in ío| ded, ! 2 !
íou| tb| ocks, ! ! b
ond orogeny, ! 24
roots oí, ! 2 !
up| i íti n ío| ded, ! 2 !
vo| coni c, ! ! ó
Mud crocks, b!
Moturo| bri dges, 4b
Mi ogoro |o| | s, 44, 4Ô
Mutoti on , oí eorth, ! 2
Cceon[s) , ó3-73
currents in, ó4
íl oor, ! 23
íl oorspreodi ng,
! 40-! 4 !
so| tcontenti n , ó4, ! 4b
structureoí, ! 3ó-! 43
ti desi n, óÔ
woter movementi n,
ó4-7 !
woves i n, óÔ
Cbsi di on, 73
Cíí-shore bors, 7!
Ci l sho| e, 77
C| i vi ne, 30
Cozes, 73
Cre[s),
deposi ts, ! 00
hydrothermol , ! 0 !
mogmoti c, ! 00
metol | i c, ! 02
metomorpHi c, !0!
mi nero| s, 3 !
sedi mentory, ! 02
Crthorhomb| ccrystol s,

Cutcropondíou| ts, ! ! 3
Cutwoshdeposi ts, ó0
Cxi des, 2b
Cxygen,
i neorth' scrust, 22
Pol eogrophi cmops, ! Ô3
Po| eomogneti sm, ! 34
Petro| eum, 7b, 77
Phy| l i tes, 74
Physi co| geol ogy, Ô
Ph

si co| oceonogrophy, Ô
Pi l | ow| ovo, bÔ
Pi rocy,
ri ver, 47
streom, 4Ô
P| ocerdeposi ts, ! 02
P| onetesi mo| theory, ! 7
P| onets, ! 0, ! ! , ! 7
P| oteouboso| ts, b4
Pl otetectoni cs, ! 44-! 47
P| uto, ! 0
Pl utoni ci ntrusiverocks,

Porosi ty,
oí| i mestone, 47
oírockondsond, 47
Prott-We| kerchoi noí
guyots, ! 42
Prott's hypothesi s, ! 33
Precessi on, oíeorth, ¡ 2
Pumi ce, 73
Pyri te, 3 !
Pyroxenes, 30
Quortz, 27
Quortzi te, 7Ô
kodi ol droi nogepottern,
47
kodi ooctivedecoy, ! 4b
kodi ocorbondoti ng, ! 47
koi sedbeoches, ! 04
kopi ds, ond erosi on, 44
ked 5eo, ond ri ítvo| l eys,
! ¡ 2, ! 33
kego| i th, 3Ô
ke¡ uvenoti on,
onderosi on, 44
kesi duol mi nerol
deposi ts, ! 02
keverseíoul t, ! ! 2
kevo| uti on, oíeorth, ! 2
ki dges, mi d-oceon, ! 23,
! 3ó
ki ítvo| | ey, ! ! 2, ! 33
ki pp| emorks, b !
ki ver[s),
cyc| es, 42
íormoí,4 !
pi rocy, 47
proíi | es, 42-43
kock[s),
deormoti on, ! 0ó-! ! 4
1 59
kock(s)(cont . ) :
íoci es, ! Ô0
íroctures, ! ! 0
i gneous, b7~73
meosuri ngogeoí,
! 4b-! 47
metomorphi c, 74, 7Ô,
! 20
sedi mentory, 7b~b !
systems, ! Ô !
kockío| | s , 3b
kock-íormi ngmi nero| s,
2b~30
kopy |ovo, bÔ
kotot i on,
oíeort h, ! 2
5ond,
in i ndustry, ! 03
5ondbors, 7 !
5onddunes, 7ó~77
5ondstone, 7b
5otel | i tes, ! 0
5courstructures, b !
5eoíl oor,
spreodi ng oí, ! 40-! 4 ¡
5eo l evel s,
ondcoosto| íeotures,
ó7
ondg| oci oti on, ó2
5eomounts, ! 37
5eowoter, ó4
5edi mentoryores, ! 02
5edi mentoryrocks7b~b !
�¸_
s
_
i
�c
,
o�|�íormed, 77
doting oí, ! Ô0
detri to| , 7b
¡ oi ntsi n, ¡ ! 0
in mountoi nronges,
! 20
orgoni c, 77
5edi mentorystructures, b!
5edi ments,
mori ne, 72~73
red-c| oy, 73
5ei smogroms, ! 2ó~! 27
5ei smogroph, ! 2ó, ! 27
5eptori onnodul e, 47
5hol e, 77
oi l , 77
5he| í,
conti nento| , óó, ó7
5hie| d vol conoes, b4
5i l i ceousooze, 73
5i | i con,
i neorth' scrust, 22
5i l | s, bó, b7
5| i ckensi des,
ondíoul ts, ! ! 3
1 60
5| ope,
conti nentol , óó, ó7
5| umps, 37
5oi l ,
mosswosti ngoí, 3b
ondweother i ng, 37
5oi l creep, 37
5ol orsystem,
movementoí, ! 2
ori gi noí, ! ó-! 7
5poce,
p| onets i n, ! 0-! !
bpeci íi cgrovi ty,
oími nero| s, 27
5phol eri te, 3 !
5p

i
-1�||s , ! ! 3
5tocks, bb
5tone oggregote, !03
5torm beoches, 7!
5troti grophi ccorrel oti on,
! Ô0
5treom[s),
consequent, 4ó
pi roc, 4Ô
5tri ke s i píou| t s, ! ! 2
5tructurol geol ogy, Ô
5tudi esond surveys ,
geomogneti sm, ! 34
���¦�·'�.' 30
pol eomogneti c,
! 3Ô
5ubmori neconyons,
ó7
5ubmergedcoostl i nes,
ó7
5ubsi dence, 37
5udburydeposi ts, ! 00
5u| íotes, 2b
5un, ! 0, ! 3
5uperi mposeddroi noge
ottern, 4ó
5ync|i nes, ! 07, ! 0b
Teoríou| ts, ! ! 2
Tensi onol íou| ts, ! ! ¡
Tetrogono| crysto| s, 2Ô
Thrust loul t, ¡ ! 2
1i des, óÔ
����s����
h
/�u¨t�, ! 4 ! ,
! 44, ! 4Ô
1re| l i sdroi nogepotterns,

Trenches,
i s| ond, ! 3b~! 37
submori ne, ! 23
1ri ossi cequotor, ! 3Ô
1ric| i ni ccrysto| s, 2Ô
Tsunomi s, ! 2Ô
Turbi di tycurrents, ó7
Unconormities,  , ì ì 4
Undergroundwoter,
47~Ô3
Uni verse, ori gi noí, ! ó
Upl i ít,
onderosi on, 44
íoul ts, ! ! 2
Uroni um,
ondogest udi es, ! 47
Vorve cl oys, ó0
Vorved beddi ng, b!
Venti íocts, 7Ô
Vo| coni c,
octi vi ty, b3, b4
bomb, bÔ
i sl ondorcs, ! 3b~! 37
pl ugs, b7
products, bÔ
tuíí, bÔ
Vol conoes, b3~bÔ, ! 42
di stri buti on, bÔ, ! 23,
! 42
íorm oí, b4
productsoí, bÔ
shi e| d, b4
Vu| coni sm, 33
Woter,
onddroi nogepotterns,
4ó~ÔÔ
onderosi on, 40~4 !
osnoturol resource,
Ô4-ÔÔ
ondhydro| ogi ccycl e,
40
ori gi noí , 20
sugg| yoí, Ô0
to e, Ô0
underground, 47-Ô3
Woteríol l s ,
onderosi on, 44
Woves, i noceons, óÔ
WeotHeri ng, 3Ô
chemi co| , 3ó
di ííerenti ol , 4b
eííectsoí, 3Ô
mechoni col , 3ó
spheroi dol , 3ó
ondsoi l , 37
���_��

_¿ul o, ! Ô
deposi ts, 7ó~77
Worl d,
si zeondshopeoí, ó-7
Yosemi teVo| l ey, 34
K M
LLLLLLY
a�·`
¡KANK KMLLEb, President of Cornell University, was
educated at Solihull School and the University of Birming­
ham. He has held teaching positions at the University of
illinois and the University of Wales, Swansea, where he
was Professor and Head of the Geology Department for
1Zyears. He served successively as Professor of Geology,
Dean of the College of Literature, Science, and the Arts,
and Vice President for Academic Affairs at the University
of Michigan. He is past Chairman of the Boards of the
Caregie Foundation, the American Council on Educa­
tion, and the Association of American Universities. He is
a member of the National Science Board and President
Bush's Education Policy Advisory Committee and holds
honorary degrees from 20colleges and universities.
KAYmLNL ÏEKLmAN, teacher, designer, illustrator,
and formerly Professor of Art (in charge of graphic
design) at the University of illinois, in Champaign, holds
degrees in fine arts from that university, and has a Master
of Professional Arts degree from the Art Center School in
Los Angeles. In the Golden Guide Series he has illus­
trated l0sst/s, Cc0/0_, and Kok¤ndNtncr¤/s. HLWAKL
¡KIELmAN prepared the illustrations on pages º7, 1ZZ-
1ZJ, 1Jºbottom, 14Zbottom, 14btop, 14ô, 147, and 1bJ.

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