The Rock Cycle

By: Corban Wilson

The Rock Cycle begins with sediment ( minerals or organic matter deposited by water, air, or ice that settles at the bottom of a lake, pond, or ocean).

Then after thousands of years when the weight of the layers above is immense the bottom layer stars to compact, cement, and solidify the sediments into a sedimentary rock.

Sedimentary rocks are types of rock that are formed by the deposition of material at the Earth's surface and within bodies of water. They are also the most brittle of all the types of rocks.

Metamorphic rocks arise from the transformation of existing rock types, in a process called metamorphism, which means change in form.

Then any type of rock (sedimentary, igneous, or metamorphic rock) can get pushed under the crust (often in subduction zones) where the intense heat and pressure transform the rock into metamorphic rock. This process is called metamorphism. Metamorphic rocks usually take the longest to form and to reach the surface.

After that any rock (metamorphic, igneous, or sedimentary rock) can melt into magma due to the immense heat and pressure underground.

After the magma erupts from a volcano or underwater volcano the lava starts to cool, solidify, and finally crystallize into a igneous rock which is the oldest and newest rock found on earth.

Igneous rock is formed through the cooling and solidification of magma (below ground) or lava (above ground). Igneous rock may form with or without crystallization, either below the surface as intrusive rocks or on the surface as extrusive rocks.

Then after thousands of years of weathering (the breaking down of rocks, soil and minerals as well as artificial materials through contact with the Earth's atmosphere, plants, and waters) and erosion (processes which remove soil and rock from one location on the Earth's crust, then transport it to another location where it is deposited. Eroded sediment may be transported just a few millimetres, or for thousands of kilometers) any type of rock starts to crumble and disintegrate and eventually the rock weathers into sediment and the whole rock cycle can begin again.

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