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Volcanic and Tectonic Landforms

Visualizing Physical Geography Copyright 2008 John Wiley and Sons Publishers Inc.

Continental landforms are the result of endogenic and exogenic processes.


Endogenic process: works from within the Earth
Produces initial landforms Uplifts; brings fresh rock to the surface Powered by Earths internal energy

Exogenic process: works at Earths surface


Wears down initial landforms Creates sequential landforms

Visualizing Physical Geography Copyright 2008 John Wiley and Sons Publishers Inc.

Volcanic Landforms Volcanic Activity


Volcano: conical, circular structure built by accumulation of lava flows and tephra (volcanic ash)

Visualizing Physical Geography Copyright 2008 John Wiley and Sons Publishers Inc.

Volcanic Landforms
Volcanic Activity Many volcanoes are located on subduction boundaries or rift zones.

Visualizing Physical Geography Copyright 2008 John Wiley and Sons Publishers Inc.

Volcanic Landforms Stratovolcanoes


The nature of an eruption depends on the type of magma involved. Felsic lavas associated with stratovolcanoes
Rhyolite, andesite Thick, resistant to flow Builds steep slopes around volcanic vents Tall, steep cone, with crater

Stratovolcano: volcano constructed of multiple layers of lava and tephra (volcanic ash)

Visualizing Physical Geography Copyright 2008 John Wiley and Sons Publishers Inc.

Volcanic Landforms Stratovolcanoes


Most active stratovolcanoes on circum-Pacific mountain belt Associated with subduction zones Felsic lavas produce explosive eruptions
Large amounts of gas under high pressure Central part of volcano may explode, leaving caldera: central depression

Visualizing Physical Geography Copyright 2008 John Wiley and Sons Publishers Inc.

Volcanic Landforms
Stratovolcanoes
Exogenic processes erode stratovolcanoes

Visualizing Physical Geography Copyright 2008 John Wiley and Sons Publishers Inc.

Volcanic Landforms Shield Volcanoes


Shield volcanoes are associated with mafic lava (basalt)
Lava thin, not viscous Holds little gas Usually quiet eruptions Lava travels long distances, spreads out in thin layers Shield volcanoes are rounded domes, with gentle slopes

Shield Volcano: low, often large, dome-like accumulation of basalt lava flows emerging from long , radial fissures on flanks

Visualizing Physical Geography Copyright 2008 John Wiley and Sons Publishers Inc.

Volcanic Landforms Shield Volcanoes


Some shield volcanoes form over hotspots: stationary plumes of basaltic lava welling up from the mantle

Visualizing Physical Geography Copyright 2008 John Wiley and Sons Publishers Inc.

Volcanic Landforms Shield Volcanoes


The Hawaiian chain was formed by the movement of the Pacific Plate over a hotspot.
Chain of islands shows motion of the plate Active volcanoes at the southern end Guyots (sunken islands) at the northern end

Visualizing Physical Geography Copyright 2008 John Wiley and Sons Publishers Inc.

Volcanic Landforms Shield Volcanoes


Basaltic lava also erupts: Along midocean ridges
Seafloor spreading Many volcanic islands along mid-Atlantic Ridge

Beneath continental plates


Hotspot generates large volume of basaltic lava Forms flood basalts Basaltic lava on Heimaey Island, Iceland, on mid-Atlantic Ridge

Continental flood basalts, Columbia Plateau, U.S.


Visualizing Physical Geography Copyright 2008 John Wiley and Sons Publishers Inc.

Volcanic Landforms

Geothermal Energy Sources


Geothermal energy is energy from the heat in the Earth
Regions near hot springs and geysers have hot water that can be tapped and used to drive turbines to generate electricity.

Visualizing Physical Geography Copyright 2008 John Wiley and Sons Publishers Inc.

Tectonic Landforms Fold Belts Compression from tectonic activity produces folds in rock strata Anticlines: upbends Synclines: troughs
Folds: corrugations of strata caused by crustal compression

Visualizing Physical Geography Copyright 2008 John Wiley and Sons Publishers Inc.

Tectonic Landforms

Fold Belts
Folds erode to form ridge-and-valley landscape Ridges and valleys parallel Folds may be plunging folds

Visualizing Physical Geography Copyright 2008 John Wiley and Sons Publishers Inc.

Tectonic Landforms

Faults and Fault Landforms


Fault: sharp break in rock with a slippage of the crustal block on one side with respect to the block on the other Fault lines may extend for many kilometers Most major faults extend down several kilometers Fault slippage varies from 1 cm to 15 m Four main types of faults:
Normal Transcurrent Reverse Overthrust

Visualizing Physical Geography Copyright 2008 John Wiley and Sons Publishers Inc.

Tectonic Landforms

Faults and Fault Landforms


Normal faults are produced by crustal extension

Visualizing Physical Geography Copyright 2008 John Wiley and Sons Publishers Inc.

Tectonic Landforms

Faults and Fault Landforms


The East African Rift Valley is a graben

Visualizing Physical Geography Copyright 2008 John Wiley and Sons Publishers Inc.

Tectonic Landforms

Faults and Fault Landforms


Transcurrent or Strike-slip Faults are produced when tectonic plates move past each other horizontally

Visualizing Physical Geography Copyright 2008 John Wiley and Sons Publishers Inc.

Tectonic Landforms

Faults and Fault Landforms


Reverse and overthrust faults are produced by compression in the crust

Visualizing Physical Geography Copyright 2008 John Wiley and Sons Publishers Inc.

Tectonic Landforms

Faults and Fault Landforms


Repeated faulting can produce high fault scarps Landforms are modified by erosion

Visualizing Physical Geography Copyright 2008 John Wiley and Sons Publishers Inc.

Earthquakes Earthquake: a trembling or shaking of the ground produced by passing seismic waves
Most earthquakes produced by sudden slippage along faults
Energy builds up until the fault slips, releasing seismic waves

Earthquake magnitudes may be described on the Richter Scale

Visualizing Physical Geography Copyright 2008 John Wiley and Sons Publishers Inc.

Earthquakes Earthquakes usually occur on plate boundaries


Large-magnitude earthquakes are generated along subduction zones Transcurrent faults on transform boundaries cause moderate to strong earthquakes Spreading plate boundaries produce moderate earthquakes Some earthquakes occur in the centers of continents, away from plate boundaries

Visualizing Physical Geography Copyright 2008 John Wiley and Sons Publishers Inc.

Earthquakes Earthquakes Along the San Andreas Fault San Francisco Earthquake, 1906
700 lives lost $30 billion damage

Generated by movement on San Andreas Fault This portion of the San Andreas has not moved since 1906

Visualizing Physical Geography Copyright 2008 John Wiley and Sons Publishers Inc.

Earthquakes Earthquakes Along the San Andreas Fault


Loma Prieta Quake, 1989
62 lives lost $6 billion damage Occurred on fault near the San Andreas Did not fully relieve strain on San Andreas

Southern California: likelihood of very large earthquake within 30 years is 50%

Visualizing Physical Geography Copyright 2008 John Wiley and Sons Publishers Inc.

Earthquakes Seismic Sea Waves


Tsunami: train of sea waves triggered by an earthquake (or other seafloor disturbance) traveling over the ocean surface

Banda Aceh, Indonesia, before and after 2004 tsunami

Kalutara Beach, Sri Lanka, before and during 2004 tsunami

Visualizing Physical Geography Copyright 2008 John Wiley and Sons Publishers Inc.

Landforms and Rock Structure

Exposed Batholiths and Monadnocks


Batholiths: huge bodies of intrusive igneous rock
Form hilly or mountainous uplands Monadnock: a mountain that rises out of a surrounding plain and that develops because it consists of more resistant rock than the bedrock of the surrounding region

Visualizing Physical Geography Copyright 2008 John Wiley and Sons Publishers Inc.