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Flashcards in Test One Key Terms Deck (85)
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1

Age of Earth

4.6 billion years old

2

Asthenosphere

the soft, weak layer below the lithosphere

3

Craton

the stable interior of the continents

4

Density

mass per unit volume

5

Differentiation

process by which Earth came to have its present interior structure

6

Earth's spheres

Hydrosphere, Atmosphere, Geosphere, Biosphere

7

Geologic Hazard

natural processes that adversely affect people

8

hypothesis

a tentative or untested explanation

9

Lithosphere

the rigid outer layer of Earth that consists of the crust and the upper mantle

10

Layers of Earth

Crust
Mantle
Core

11

Natural Disaster

flood, earthquake, hurricane, tornado, etc. causes damage and or loss of life

12

Plate tectonics

Continental plates include things like Mountains
Ocean floors include things like ocean ridges

13

Shield

expansive, flat regions of deformed crystalline rocks in the cratons

14

Theory

a well-tested and widely accepted view that the scientific community agrees best explains certain observable facts

15

Uniformitarianism

the physical, chemical, and biologic laws that operate today have operated throughout the geologic past

16

Continental drift

a supercontinent once existed and began to break apart about 200 million years ago

17

Convection currents

in the mantle where warm buoyant rocks rise and cool, dense rocks sink, is the underlying driving force of plate tectonics
major force for transporting heat away from the interior of Earth

18

Convergent boundaries

destructive margins
plates move together

19

Divergent boundaries

constructive margins
plates move apart

20

Magnetic reversal

the north pole becomes the south pole and the south becomes the north pole

21

Mantle plume

cylindrically shaped upwelling of hot rock

22

Mid-ocean ridge

along well developed divergent plate boundaries and the seafloor is elevated

23

Paleomagnetism

magnetite is the frozen in position and indicates the and indicates the position of the north pole at the time of rock solidification

24

Pangea

supercontinent that consistedof all Earth's landmasses
began breaking apart about 200 million ago

25

Plate tectonics

The lithosphere is broken into two dozen smaller sections called lithospheric plates that are in constant motion

26

Rift valley

along the crest of the ridge is a canynon-like feature

27

rifting

elongated depression will develop within the region of the divergence

28

Seafloor spreading

the mechanism that operates along the ridge to create new ocean floor

29

Slab pull

The subduction of cold oceanic lithosphere

30

Subduction zone

the leading edge of one plate is bent downward as it slides beneath the other