AQA AS Geography Coasts: Coastal Landforms

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  • Created on: 22-08-13 20:26
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Coastal Landforms
Cliffs
It can be said that these are the most common and important erosional coastal landform, due to
their number and the amount of pressure human activity places upon them.
They result from the interaction of a number of processes:
1. Geological.
2. Sub-aerial.
3. Marine.
4. Meteorological.
5. Human activity.
Cliffs are steep if removal of material at its base is greater than the supply.
Cliffs are shallow if the supply of material is greater than removal.
A direct relationship exists between rock type, erosion rate and cliff morphology.

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Hard rock cliffs:
Examples include granite and basalt cliffs. They exhibit a slow rate of erosion and tend to be stable.
Soft rock cliffs:
Examples include cliffs comprised of glacial till and clay, such as those found at Fairlight Cove in
Hastings.
These cliffs often erode rapidly. In these cliffs, sub-aerial processes can contribute more to erosion
than marine processes, leading to mass movements such as sliding, slumping and falls.…read more

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Headlands and Bays
Headlands and bays form where there are bands of
alternating hard rock and soft rock at right angles to the
shoreline.
The soft rock is eroded quickly, forming a bay.
The harder rock is eroded less and sticks out as a headland.
Wave cut platforms
These are gently sloping features, often found extending from the base of a cliff. They consist partly
of material removed from the cliff (wave cut notch) as a result of continual undercutting by waves.…read more

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Geos, Caves, arches, stacks and blowholes
The action of marine erosion on jointed and bedded
rocks such as limestone and chalk tends to enlarge
any zones of weakness like joints and faults.
Where erosion excavates enough material along a
joint or place weakness, a steep-sided inlet may form
called a geo.
If this inlet continues to extend into the cliff, a cave
will form.…read more

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