Sedimentary Rocks

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  • Topic: Sedimentary rock, Sediment, Rock
  • Pages : 3 (859 words )
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  • Published : March 27, 2011
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Plate tectonics are responsible for many of Earth’s natural occurrences. From volcanoes to earthquakes plate tectonics play are large role. Another natural occurrence that is not is discussed as much as volcanoes and earthquakes is the formation of sedimentary rock. Plate tectonics also plays a major role in the formation of this type of rock. Plate tectonics is a term that is used to describe how the different plates that make up the Earth move and the reactions that occur as they are moving. Before explaining how plate tectonics are related the concept of sediments must be understood. Sediments are pieces of solid material are deposited on Earth’s surface by way of wind, water, ice, gravity or chemical precipitation. This occurs through weather and erosion (McClearly, 2005). As convergent plates move towards each other, one plate is subducted under the other plate and as this is occurring the plates are moving accumulated sediment and rocks with them. Divergent boundaries also have an effect on sedimentary rock. In divergent movement the plates are moving away from each other and the young sedimentary rock is pushed to the open boundary (Ryan, 2008). Sedimentary rock actually originates from the disposition of the sediments after they are moved by the movement of plates. The climate controls how sediments are moved and how the rock weather. After weathering and erosion has occurred the sediments stop moving and settle. Where they settle is known as their disposition. The origination of sedimentary work is a combination of natural processes that result in the disposition of sediment. The way the sediment is actually formed is a process known as Lithification. Lithification is physical and chemical processes which loose sediment is transformed into sedimentary rock. Lithification begins with compaction. The weight of sediments on top of other sediments forces the sediment grains closer together, which results in physical changes. The next process that occurs...
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