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chapter 4 vocabulary

core Earth's center,where pressures and temperatures are very high.
mantle The section of Earth's interior that lies above the outer core and has the most mass.
magma Liquid rock within Earth.
plate tectonics The theory that Earth's crust is divided into rigid plates that slowly move across the upper mantle.
continental drift The process of which Earth's plates slowly move across the upper layer.
rift valleys Places on Earth's surface where the crust stretches until it breaks.
abyssal plains Areas of the ocean floor where rocks gradually sink because they have no supporting heat below them; the world's flattest and smoothest regions.
continental shelves Areas where continental surfaces extend under the shallow ocean water around the continents.
trench A deep valley marking a collision of plates, where one plate slides under another.
folds Places where rocks have been compressed into bends by colliding plates.
faults Places where rock masses have been broken apart and are moving away from each other.
weathering The process of rocks break and decay over time.
sediment Small particles of weathered rocks.
erosion Movement of surface materials from one location to another by water, wind, or ice.
glaciers Thick masses of ice, including great ice sheets and bodies of ice thst flow down mountains like slow rivers.
plateau A elevated flatland that rises sharply above nearly land on at least one side.
alluvial fan Fan-shaped deposit of mud and gravel often found along the bases of mountains.
delta Accumulation of sediments at the mouth of a river.
desalinization To remove salts and other chemicals from seawater or soil.
hydrologic cycle The continuous process by which water is circulated throughout the Earth and its atmosphere.
headwaters The water from which a river rises; a source. Often used in the plural
tributary A stream that flows into a larger stream or other body of water.
watershed A ridge of high land dividing two areas that are drained by different river systems
drainage basin An area drained by a river system. A drainage basin includes all areas that gather precipitation water and direct it to a particular stream, stream system, lake, or other body of standing water.
estuaries the tidal mouth of a large river, where the tide meets the stream
wetlands land consisting of marshes or swamps; saturated land
groundwater water held underground in the soil or in pores and crevices in rock.
water table the level below which the ground is saturated with water.
humus soft, sticky matter resulting from the mixing of earth and water
leaching To remove soluble or other constituents from by the action of a percolating liquid.
contour plowing plowing along the contours of the land in order to minimize soil erosion.
soil exhaustion
crop rotation
soil salinization
acid rain
fossil water
fossil fules
hydroelectric power
geothermal energy
Created by: quindoughty