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Soil and Glaciers Worksheet

From Visualizing Earth Science, by Merali, Z., and Skinner, B. J, 2009, Hoboken, NJ: Wiley. Copyright 2009 by Wiley. Adapted with permission.

Part 1 

Size grades of soil are named sand, silt, and clay, which includes colloids. Size grades are defined using the metric system. Use Figure 4.8 from the textbook to fill in the following chart. Specify the type and size and description of the particle. In some cases, particle size will be less than some value or greater than another value. For instance, gravel is greater than 2.0 mm.

>2.0 mm
Composed of rock fragments that are not cemented together. Gravel is formed as a result of weathering and erosion of rocks.  
0.5 mm
Granular material made up of finally broken up mineral particles. Sand is more fun than gravel but is still more coarse than silt. There are different types of sands and their composition varies.
0.02 mm
Granular material that is finer than sand but coarser than clay. Minerals that make up silt are quartz and feldspar. Silt is made when soil is at the bottom of a body of water.
0.0001 mm
Fine-grained soil material. Clay minerals are mixed with metal oxides and organic matter. clay becomes hard and brittle when dried, and ranges in color from being grey, Brown, to red orange. It is also a major component of mud.
0.00001 mm
A substance in which one substance of microscopically dispersed insoluble particles is suspended throughout another substance.

Part 2 

Soils have been classified according to a system developed by soil scientists and the U.S. Soil Conservation Service. Using this classification system of soil orders, pick two locations on Earth, one in your current area and another area, and describe the order and the conditions that define it. (See Figure 4.12 in the textbook.) 

1. In Australia, you will find...