Q. 6 A4.0( 2 Votes )

Answer in a paragraph.

Write a note on weathering- classify and explain.

Answer :

Weathering is the disintegration, breaking down and decomposition of components in the earth's crust through the action of natural or other agents. Weathering can occur due to exposure to the earth's atmosphere. Weathering is controlled and determined by various factors like temperature, rainfall, vegetation and movements of other components in the earth's crust. The main types of weathering can be classified into three. They are:


Physical weathering- It is the disintegration and breaking down of components in the earth’s crust through the action of physical forces. It does not change the chemical composition of rocks. It occurs due to the changes in temperature during the day and the night in cold and dry places. Water, wing, pressure and other physical factors are the agents of disintegration. It can be again classified into different types. They are:


Exfoliation- It is caused by the friction developing between the rocks when they are exposed alternately to heat and cold temperatures. The rocks disintegrate layer-by-layer with the constant changes in the heat resulting in the weathering of rocks. It can either happen through sheeting or shattering.


Granular disintegration- It occurs when the changes in temperature and humidity react on crystalline rocks. This action causes the particles of the rocks to fall out from the surface due to the pressure exerted by the constant reaction with the changes in temperature and frost.


Block disintegration- It is caused by the friction developing between the rocks when they are expanding and contracting during the day and the night. This causes strain and pressure in the joints and hinges of the resulting in their weathering and disintegration.


Chemical weathering- It is the decomposition of components in the earth's crust through chemical reactions. It changes the chemical composition of rocks. Oxygen, carbon dioxide and hydrogen are the agents of decomposition. Chemical weathering is usually common in places with very hot and humid climates. It occurs in the climatic conditions of the hot and humid regions of the equators, tropics and sub-tropics. The action of the constant availability of water and the rising temperature is responsible for the faster weathering of rocks compared to other regions. The reaction between the atmospheric humidity and other elements are responsible for the higher rate of weathering. It can be further classified into different types. They are:


Oxidation- This majorly occurs in ferrous rocks containing iron. The iron in these rocks reacts with the oxygen in the atmosphere resulting in the formation of iron oxide. This chemical reaction decomposes the rocks from within and results in its weathering.


Carbonation- This mainly occurs in carbonate rocks. It is the reaction between the water molecules and the carbon dioxide in the atmosphere resulting in the formation of carbonic acids. The reaction of the carbonic acid with the carbonate rocks decomposes the rocks from within and results in its weathering. It basically occurs in the limestone region in the formation of caves.


Solution- This is the reaction of water with the particles and substances found in the rocks. The action of water in rocks results in breaking down of its particles from within and results in its weathering.


Hydration- This is the reaction some chemical compounds of the rocks with water. When these chemicals are exposed to water, they result in the swelling and enlarging of the minerals in the rocks. This decomposes the rocks from within and results in its weathering.


Biological weathering- Biological weathering occurs because of the actions of the flora, fauna and human interferences. It results in the decomposition of the components due to the biological processes involved with the expansion of the activities of the living organisms. The growth of plants, the penetration of their roots, diffusion of rotten plant and animal cells, burrowing of animals and many other human interferences are the major causes of biological weathering.


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