Physical Geography Final New Material

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Landforms

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134 Terms

1

Landforms

surface features of the land, balance between internal forces and denudation processes

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crustal deformation processes

deformation of rigid rock through tension (stretching), compression (shortening), and shear (twisting)

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Rocks under strain may

fold (bend) if ductile, fault (break) if brittle

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Fold belts and landforms

folding occurs when convergent plate. boundaries intensely compress rocks and deform them

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faults and fault landforms

brittle rocks yield to stresses, normal, reverse, and strike-slip

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syncline

a fold that is concave upward

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anticline

a fold that is convex upward

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normal fault

rocks pulled apart by tensional stress

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9

reverse fault

rocks are forced together by compressional stress

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strike-slip fault

offsetting linear features

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11

earthquake occurrence

slippage along fault causes a rapid release of energy that creates a sudden vibration of the earth

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fault scarp

a break in the ground caused by an earthquake

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focus

the place inside the earth’s crust where the earthquake originates

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epicenter

the location on the surface of the earth, above the origin of an earthquake

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15

Hazard

existence of a potentially dangerous situation or event

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vulnerability

susceptibility of a community to the hazard

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risk

the probability that injury or damage will occur

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magnitude

the energy release as the fault ruptures

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intensity

severity of shaking at a location, can vary place to place, best indicator of impact

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Mercalli scale

damage intensity scale, ranges from I (minor) to XII (catastrophic)

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Richter scale

measures the amplitude of seismic waves, logarithmic

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Moment magnitude scale

used since 1993, more accurate for large earthquakes, accounts for amount of fault slippage

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23

tsunami

a seismic wave caused by a disturbance

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tsunami genesis

ground movement at subduction zones, underwater landslide, undersea volcanic eruption

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weathering

a denudation processes of disintegration

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erosion

removal transport deposition

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27

erosional agents

flowing water, wind, wave action, ice (glaciation), slope processes (gravity)

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Physical weathering

mechanical breakdown of rocks

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29

plant roots

roots can enter crevices and break rock segments apart

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frost action

water expands upon freezing, wet, cool environments

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salt-crystal growth

water evaporates creating minerals, crystal growth breaks rock, occurs in arid environments

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Pressure-Release

Rocks brought near the surface are exposed to lower pressure and expand

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33

exfoliation

layers of rock peel off in slabs or plates

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34

chemical weathering

breakdown through alteration of chemical composition of rock

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hydrolysis

water changes the chemical composition of minerals in rock, making them less resistant to weathering

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oxidation

some metallic elements, disrupts structure, rocks easier to weather, iron rusting

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dissolution of carbonates

water vapor and carbon dioxide create acidic rainwater, minerals dissolve in solution eroded away, limestone and marble

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38

karst topography

sinkholes, disappearing streams, underground streams and caves

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joints

small fractures or cracks in rock

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40

rock resistance

different materials have different resistance to weathering

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41

mass movement

downslope movement by gravity, also called mass wasting

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42

rockfall

dry, individual rocks, fast events, forms a talus slope

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43

landslide

a sudden rapid movement of a cohesive mass that is not saturated with moisture

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flows

when moisture content is high, earth flow and more fluid mud flow, often caused by heavy rains

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45

soil creep

slow, transport of material downslope, particle by particle

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drainage basin

terrain that contributes water to a stream, also called a watershed

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47

drainage patterns

the arrangement of channels, determined by steepness, rock resistance, climate, and hydrology

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stream gradient

every stream has a degree of inclination or gradient, affects velocity of flow and energy, may change with tectonic uplift

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stream discharge

volume of water per unit time, changes with cross sectional area or velocity

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hydrograph

chart displaying change in discharge over time

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51

storm flow

from precipitation that reaches the channel over a short time frame through overland or underground routes.

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base flow

from precipitation that percolates to the ground water and moves slowly through substrate before reaching the channel

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flooding

overbank flow that is unconfined to a channel

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causes of flooding

heavy rains, saturated soils, rapid snowmelt, when a natural or artificial dam breaks or a levee breaks

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stage

height of a river above a locally defined elevation

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flood stage

full channel

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flood control

two approaches to reduce vulnerability: engineering and regulatory

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engineering approaches

levees, dikes, flood walls, floodways, channel modification, and dams

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regulatory approaches

floodplain zoning, floodplain building codes, floodplain buyout programs, mortgage limitations

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hydraulic action

water dislodges and drags rocks

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abrasion

rock particles mechanically erode streamed

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sediment load

eroded materials delivered to stream

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stream capacity

the total load a stream can transport

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stream capacity equilibrium

if load is equal to capacity

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aggradation

if load exceeds the capacity

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degradation

if capacity exceeds the load

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what can change stream capacity

slope (greater slope=less capacity) and channel shape and size

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stream transport

sediment can be transported three ways: dissolved load, suspended load, and bedload

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dissolved load

in solution from chemical weathering

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suspended load

are fine-grained particles held aloft by turbulence

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71

bed load

coarser materials are dragged, rolled, or pushed

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72

meandering stream

in gradual slopes, snakelike form, has erosional and depositional features

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braided stream

maze of interconnected channels, common in glacial environments, plentiful sediment supply, load greater than capacity

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stream gradient

the grade (or slope) of a stream measured by the ratio of drop in elevation per unit horizontal distance

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75

cut bank

occurs when moving water digs out, and washes away the stream bank, below water level.

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76

point bar

crescent-shaped swaths of sand to dot the shorelines of meandering rivers that usually appear along the inner side of a river bend, where the bank wraps around the sandy patch, forming deposits

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77

cut-off meanders

also called oxbow lakes, these are U-shaped lakes that form when a wide meander of a river is cut off, creating a free-standing body of water

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78

floodplain

flat, low-lying areas on either side of stream, frequently inundated by floods, receding water leaves alluvial deposits

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79

alluvial terraces

level areas above a stream, older abandoned floodplains, created from increased erosion and incision

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80

delta

depositional plains that form a triangular shape, decreased velocity at the mouth of a river creates reduced capacity that leads to deposition

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81

eolian processes

refers to the work of wind, like moving water it causes erosion, transportation, and deposition

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82

eolian erosion

two main wind-erosion processes: deflation and abrasion

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83

deflation

removal and lifting of individual loose particles, desert pavement (sediments coverage finer material)

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84

abrasion

the grinding of rock surfaces by “sandblasting”, ventifacts (rocks cut by wind)

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85

dunes

wind-sculptured accumulations of sand formed by deposition

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86

loess

sedimentary deposits of dust, can be deep, makes fertile soils

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87

climatic setting of arid landscapes

evaporation exceeds the precipitation, sporadic convective showers

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vegetation cover of arid landscapes

sparse shrubs, much open ground, subject to wind erosion and rain splash, runoff

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desert landscapes

intermittent rain + wind, differential weathering, buttes, messes, arches

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90

arroyo

canyon cut by flashy runoff

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91

basins

receive runoff, nutrients from uplands

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playa

dry lake beds, only wet after rain even

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93

oceans

cover 71% of the earth, affects climate system, supplies water vapor, important biologically, affects coastal geomorphology

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94

shoreline processes

interface between land and sea, affected by processes from water and land

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95

land side processes

rivers move sediment to shorelines, winds move sand and sediments away from, toward, and along the beach

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96

waves

undulations in the ocean surface caused by winds, help shape coastal landforms

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97

erosion by waves

most coastline erosion is done by waves, swirl away loose pieces of rock, crashing and grinding of sediment (corrosion)

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98

shape of coastline and wave erosion

wave energy concentrated on the headline causes more erosion, resulting in a straighter coastline

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99

sediment transport

waves near the coastline provide energy for moving sediment along the shoreline

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100

tides

daily fluctuations in water level caused by gravitational pull of sun and moon, affect sediment erosion and transportation, ship navigation, fishing, and coastal engineering

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