drift, deposit of mixed clay, gravel, sand, and boulders transported and laid down by glaciers. Stratified, or glaciofluvial, drift is carried by waters flowing from the melting ice of a glacier. The flowing water sorts the particles, generally depositing layers of coarser particles nearer the point of origin. Till, or boulder clay, which makes up the greater part of the drift, is unstratified, consisting of disorganized heaps of rocks that range widely in size. Till is deposited directly by the glacier itself without water transport. The drift may take the form of a drumlin, a kame, an esker, a moraine, or an outwash plain; its thickness varies noticeably from place to place and is not dependent upon topographical factors. Presence of drift proved useful in establishing the existence of time periods when large parts of the surface of continents were covered with glaciers (see glacial periods). Large sections of continental Europe and North America are covered by drift.
Drift is a slow change and may refer specifically to:

In the literal sense of a change in position of a body:

  • Drifting (motorsport), which is a sport where drivers intentionally induce oversteer, to be judged on their technique.
  • Drift (railroad), which in railroading is the cutting off of power and using inertia alone to maintain forward movement.
  • The condition where a motor vehicle's rear wheels slip at a greater angle than the front wheels; see oversteer.
  • Intentional use of oversteer for faster cornering in low road surface traction conditions; see Opposite lock
  • Ice drift: drift of sea ice
  • Snow drift: a deposit of snow created by the wind

In science and technology:

In geography (In South Africa, drift is a synonym for ford):

In culture:

See also:

Search another word or see drifton Dictionary | Thesaurus |Spanish
Copyright © 2015, LLC. All rights reserved.
  • Please Login or Sign Up to use the Recent Searches feature