Coast

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Coastal definition

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Atmosphere Atmosphere: gases that surround the earth. The lowest layer is 8km thick and is called the troposphere. It is within this that all weather occurs and most living things exist.
Biosphere Biosphere: all living things.
Lithosphere Lithosphere: rocks and soil- the earth's upper crust.
Hydrosphere Hydrosphere: the storage of water on earth in all its forms (gas, liquid, solid).
Nitrogen Fixation Nitrogen Fixation is the process in which nitrogen gas from the air is continuously made into nitrogen compounds. These compounds (primarily nitrates and ammonium compounds) are made by nitrogen-fixing microorganisms in the soil and by lightning.
Nitrification Nitrification is the process in which ammonia in the soil is converted to nitrates. Nitrification is performed by nitrifying bacteria. Plants absorb the nitrates and use them to make proteins.
Denitrification Denitrification is the reverse of the combined processes of nitrogen fixation and nitrification. It is the process by which nitrogen compounds, through the action of certain bacteria, give up nitrogen gas that then becomes part of the atmosphere. The amount of gas released by this process is relatively small.
Decay Processes Decay Processes are those by which the organic nitrogen compounds of dead organisms and waste material are returned to the soil. These compounds are chiefly proteins and urea. The many bacteria and fungi causing decay convert them to ammonia and ammonium compounds in the soil.
Coast Coast: all the land adjacent to the sea that receives some form of marine influence including sea winds or salt spray
Shoreline Shoreline: the water’s edge at any particular time.
Shore Shore: the area between the shoreline at low tide and the coastline.
Intertidal zone Intertidal zone: he land between low tide and high tide shorelines.
Backshore Backshore: refers to the beach located landward of the high tide
Hinterland Hinterland: the region surrounding the coast landward of the coastline.
Surf zone Surf zone: marks the area where the sea floor rises up towards the shore, and can be identified by the steepening of waves as they begin to break
Offshore zone Offshore zone: the deep water seaward of the surf zone
Fetch Fetch: Uninterrupted stretches of flat sea floor
Constructive waves Constructive waves: Are created in calm weather, they break on the shore and bring sand that builds up the beach. They have a swash that is longer than their backwash. They are low with long wavelengths.
Destructive waves Destructive waves are formed in storm conditions. They have stronger backwash than swash which results in the withdrawal of sand from beaches. They are typically tall with short wavelengths
Swash Swash is when a wave breaks and water is washed up the beach, if a wave has stronger swash than backwash sand is deposited which builds up the beach.
Backwash Backwash is the withdrawal of water when a wave breaks on the beach.
Hydraulic Action Hydraulic Action: The pressure of the water against a rock or hard surface (trapping pockets of air).
Abrasion Abrasion: The materials carried by waves act as sand paper on the rocks eroding the coastline.
Corrosion Corrosion: Chemical erosion usually occurs around limestone.
Attrition Attrition: The load being carried by the wave begins to rub away.
Wave refraction Wave refraction: wave bands that approaches a headland will slow faster at the headland. The parts of the wave away from the headland keep moving, causing the wave to bend around the headland.
Wave Period Wave Period: is the number of waves that pass a given point in one minute.
Wave height Wave height: is the height of the wave measured from crest to trough
Wave length Wave length: is the distance between the crests of two consecutive waves.
The wave crest The wave crest: is the top of the wave.
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