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You are watching: What three steps are involved in clastic rock formation

Sedimentary rock along the White Rim roadway at Canyonlands national Park, Utah. photo.


Sedimentary rocks are formed from store of pre-existing rocks or piece of once-living organism that accumulate top top the Earth"s surface. If sediment is buried deeply, it i do not care compacted and also cemented, developing sedimentary rock. These rocks regularly have distinctive layering or bedding and create countless of the picturesque see of the desert southwest. Sedimentary rocks room classified right into three groups: Clastic, Biologic, and Chemical.

Key terms

Cementation: The procedure by i m sorry clastic sediments become lithified or consolidated into hard, compact rocks, usually through deposition or precipitation of minerals in the spaces amongst the individual seed of the sediment.

Compaction: The process of consolidating fine-grained sediments right into rock.

Lithification: The switch of loosened sediment right into solid sedimentary rock. Several processes, consisting of compaction the grains, filling of spaces between grains with mineral cement, and also crystallization act come solidify sediment.

A typical clastic sedimentary rock, sandstone, shows up red as result of iron oxide.

Photo courtesy the Tina Kuhn

Clastic Sedimentary Rock

Clastic sedimentary rocks are made up of piece (clasts) the pre-existing rocks loosened by weathering. This rocks have actually particles ranging in size from microscope clay to huge boulders; your names are determined by the clast or serial size. The the smallest grains are referred to as clay, then silt, then sand. Grains bigger than 2 millimeter are dubbed pebbles. Several of the greatest examples of clastic sedimentary rock can be uncovered at:

Coquina (biologic sedimentary rock) is a rock composed mostly of marine pieces such as molluscs, brachiopods, foraminifera and invertebrates.

Photo courtesy that Tina Kuhn

Biologic Sedimentary Rock

Biologic sedimentary rocks type when life organisms die, heap up, and also are climate compressed and cemented together. Species of biology sedimentary rock encompass coal (accumulated plant material that is carbon-rich), or limestone and also coquina (rocks made of naval organisms). Excellent instances of biology sedimentary rock in national parks have the right to be found at:

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Castile Evaporite (chemical sedimentary rock) of southeastern brand-new Mexico and West Texas are interbedded great of gypsum and calcite

Photo courtesy of pagan Walborn

Chemical Sedimentary Rock

Chemical sedimentary rocks type by chemical precipitation that starts when water traveling v rock dissolves few of the minerals. These minerals are brought away indigenous their source and ultimately redeposited, or precipitated, as soon as the water evaporates away. Come view instances of chemical sedimentary rocks in the national Parks visit: