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The Hydrological Cycle
Water doesn't come into or leave Earth ­ it's continuously cycled between the oceans and
the atmosphere, returning to the ocean when it falls as a form of precipitation.

This is known as the global hydrological cycle.

The global hydrological cycle is a closed system ­ there…

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Precipitation All the ways moisture leaves the atmosphere
Rain, hail, snow, dew and frost

Solar energy For evaporation

Interception When some precipitation lands on some
vegetation or other structures, like buildings
and concrete or tarmac surfaces, before it
reaches the soil.
It creates a significant store of water…

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Flows and processes Water moving from one place to another
Surface runoff / overland flow Water flowing over the land.
Can flow over the whole surface or in little

Throughfall Water dripping from one part of a plant to

Stemflow Water running down a plant stem or a…

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Drainage Basins
The drainage basin is an example of an open system, and many of the terms above are
central to it.

Below is a flow diagram of the drainage basin system:

All rivers receive a water supply and the area of land this comes from is known as a…

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