Chapter 6: Pages of Earth's Past: Sedimentary Rocks flashcards |

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A clastic sedimentary rock composed of sand-sized grains that include quartz and feldspar.


A distinct layer of sedimentary strata.

biochemical sedimentary rock

Sedimentary rock formed from material (such as shells) produced by living organisms.


Coarse sedimentary rock consisting of angular fragments; or rock broken into angular fragments by faulting.


The phase of lithification in which cement, consisting of minerals that precipitate from groundwater, partially or completely fills the spaces between clasts and attaches each grain to its neighbor.

chemical sedimentary rock

Sedimentary rock made up of minerals that precipitate directly from water solution.

clastic sedimentary rock

Sedimentary rock consisting of cemented-together detritus derived from the weathering of preexisting rock.


A fragment of detritus (e.g., a sand grain or a pebble).


Very coarse-grained sedimentary rock consisting of rounded clasts.

cross bed

A lamination inclined to the main bedding; it represents the slip face of a layer deposited in a current.


The process by which sediment settles out of a transporting medium.


Changes that happen to sediment or sedimentary rock during and subsequent to lithification but at temperatures less than that of the lowest grade metamorphism.


A type of carbonate sedimentary rock that contains significant quantities of dolomite.


The grinding away and removal of Earth's surface materials by moving water, air, or ice.

graded bed

A layer of clastic sediment or sedimentary rock in which clast size progressively decreases from the base to the top of the bed; graded beds form by deposition from a turbidity current.


Sedimentary rock composed of calcite.


The transformation of loose sediment into solid rock through compaction and cementation.


Very fine-grained sedimentary rock that will not easily split into sheets.

organic sedimentary rock

Sedimentary rock (such as coal) formed from carbon-rich relicts of organisms.


The seaward migration of a shoreline caused by a lowering of sea level.

ripple marks

Wave-like ridges and troughs on the surface of a sedimentary layer formed during deposition in a current.


Coarse-grained sedimentary rock consisting almost entirely of quartz.

sedimentary basin

A depression, created as a consequence of subsidence, that fills with sediment.

sedimentary rock

Rock that forms either by the cementing together of fragments broken off preexisting rock or by the precipitation of mineral crystals out of water solutions at or near the Earth_s surface.

sedimentary structure

A characteristic of sedimentary deposits that pertains to the character of bedding and/or the surface features of a bed.


Very fine-grained sedimentary rock that breaks into thin sheets.


Fine-grained sedimentary rock generally composed of very small quartz grains.


(1) The range of clast sizes in a collection of sediment; (2) the degree to which sediment has been separated by flowing currents into different-size fractions.


A succession of sedimentary beds.

stratigraphic formation

A recognizable layer of a specific sedimentary rock type or set of rock types, deposited during a certain time interval, that can be traced over a broad region.


The vertical sinking of the Earth_s surface in a region, relative to a reference plane.


The inland migration of shoreline resulting from a rise in sea level.


A carbonate rock formed by precipitation of carbonate minerals from water at springs or on the surface of caves.

turbidity current

A submarine avalanche of sediment and water that speeds down a submarine slope.

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