Soils & Sediments
Sediments: broadly defined, consists of:
They form a surface veneer, or cover, over bedrock. Also called regolith
This cover's thickness varies from zero where bedrock is exposed to several kilometers
Some sediments transform into soil.
Sediments are produced by weathering of preexisting rock. Weathering is the combination of processes that corrode and/pr break up solid rock into loose debris.
Physical & Chemical Weathering
Physical and chemical weathering work together to:
Weathering occurs faster at edges and
corners of a block than on a flat face.
Different rocks in an outcrop weather
at different rates.
Inscriptions on a granite headstone
(left) last for centuries, but those on a marble headstone (right) may
weather away in decades. These gravestones are in the same cemetery and
are about the same age.
Soils forms through:
All of these produce unique layers, called horizons,
that are seen in a soil profile.
Weather & Climate:
Mineral composition and resistance to weathering are important.
Slope steepness and wetness:
Water erosion forming Badlands