Mechanical Weathering Processes

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  • Created by: bayleyc
  • Created on: 30-03-16 17:31
Shattering
Can occur in rocks that have a uniform (homogenous) structure. Rock can expand and contract until it shatters into sharp-edged fragments.
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Granular Disintegration
Rock types with large crystals break down grain by grain. Dark minerals absorb more heat and expand more than lighter ones. Causes the rock to disintegrate.
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Frost Shattering
Takes place in mountainous areas within hot deserts. Water is frozen and melted due to high diurnal temperature change. When the water freezes it opens cracks in the rocks. These eventually shatter.
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Exfoliation
Caused by differential expansion and contraction of surface layers of rock. Outermost layer heats up and expands most, so creates a weakness parallel to the surface. Causes outer layer to peel off.
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Block Separation
Occurs in well-jointed sedimentary rocks. Joints and bedding planes are lines of weakness in rocks that can become opened up. Can result in angular rocks breaking off of the cliff face.
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Crystal Growth
Happens when water gets into cracks and joints in rocks, forms crystals as it evaporates and dissolved salts in the water come out of solution. High temperatures cause crystals to expand and prise pieces of rock apart until they fall off.
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Other cards in this set

Card 2

Front

Rock types with large crystals break down grain by grain. Dark minerals absorb more heat and expand more than lighter ones. Causes the rock to disintegrate.

Back

Granular Disintegration

Card 3

Front

Takes place in mountainous areas within hot deserts. Water is frozen and melted due to high diurnal temperature change. When the water freezes it opens cracks in the rocks. These eventually shatter.

Back

Preview of the back of card 3

Card 4

Front

Caused by differential expansion and contraction of surface layers of rock. Outermost layer heats up and expands most, so creates a weakness parallel to the surface. Causes outer layer to peel off.

Back

Preview of the back of card 4

Card 5

Front

Occurs in well-jointed sedimentary rocks. Joints and bedding planes are lines of weakness in rocks that can become opened up. Can result in angular rocks breaking off of the cliff face.

Back

Preview of the back of card 5
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