Landforms

A:

Metamorphic rocks form when igneous or sedimentary rocks are subjected to extreme heat, pressure or chemical reactions. These forces alter the composition of the rocks, leading to changes in the rocks' density, appearance and structure.

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  • How Do Landforms Affect Climate?

    Q: How Do Landforms Affect Climate?

    A: Landforms affect climate by altering the wind and rate of evaporation, which can cause changes in the temperature, humidity and precipitation of a region. When storm fronts run into landforms, such as mountains or high plateaus, rain clouds are sometimes blocked. This causes the upwind side of the landform to receive plentiful rainfall, while the downwind side of the structure remains dry.
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  • What Are the Main Landforms in the Desert?

    Q: What Are the Main Landforms in the Desert?

    A: The most common landscape features found in deserts are sand dunes, yardangs, desert pavements, debris, playas, oases, mesas, alluvial fans, arroyos and buttes. These landforms vary from desert to desert.
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  • What Is the Difference Between a Canyon and a Gorge?

    Q: What Is the Difference Between a Canyon and a Gorge?

    A: A gorge is a much smaller, narrower version of a canyon. A gorge is similar to a ravine, while a canyon is similar to a valley. Gorges are located between mountains or hills and often have small streams at their bottoms.
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  • What Is an Example of a Raised Flat Area?

    Q: What Is an Example of a Raised Flat Area?

    A: An example of a raised flat area is a plateau. A plateau is a large flat region of land higher than the other areas of land surrounding it.
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  • What Is a Billabong?

    Q: What Is a Billabong?

    A: A billabong is essentially a large pond or creek that at one time extended from a river. A billabong is the cut off extension of a river that changed its course over time. During a wet season, the billabong often connects back with the river, receiving fresh water, at least until the area dries back up.
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  • What Do the Pampas, Prairies, Steppes and the Highveld Have in Common?

    Q: What Do the Pampas, Prairies, Steppes and the Highveld Have in Common?

    A: The Highveld, the Pampas, steppes and prairies are all grasslands, which are biomes dominated by grasses, flowers and herbs. Savannas and the Llanos region of northern South America are also grasslands.
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  • Where Does the River Thames Start and End?

    Q: Where Does the River Thames Start and End?

    A: The River Thames originates in a meadow in the Cotswold Hills in Gloucestershire and travels 215 miles through England before emptying into the North Sea near Essex.
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  • How Did the Grand Canyon Form?

    Q: How Did the Grand Canyon Form?

    A: The Grand Canyon was formed primarily by erosion from the constant water flow of the Colorado River. This erosion occurred gradually over the past 5 to 6 million years.
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  • What Are the Appalachian Highlands?

    Q: What Are the Appalachian Highlands?

    A: The Appalachian Highlands are a mountain range in Eastern North America. They run from Canada to regions of Georgia and through Alabama.
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  • What Are Examples of Peninsulas?

    Q: What Are Examples of Peninsulas?

    A: Peninsulas are found all around the world; in the United States, two prominent examples are the Upper Peninsula in Michigan and the Delmarva Peninsula in Maryland. Peninsulas are chunks of land that are surrounded on three sides by water and joined to larger bodies of land by a neck, called an isthmus. Peninsulas occur primarily along ocean coastlines, although they appear along large river borders too.
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  • How Did Oceans Form?

    Q: How Did Oceans Form?

    A: Nearly 3.8 billion years ago, temperatures on Earth cooled below 100 degrees Celsius for the first time, allowing water, which existed on the planet in gaseous form, to condense into rain and collect on the planet's surface, according to the American Museum of Natural History. This water collected in low-lying areas, eventually becoming a primitive ocean.
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  • Where Are Fjords Found?

    Q: Where Are Fjords Found?

    A: According to Geology professor Atle Nesje of Bergen University, fjords occur where there was glacial activity below where the sea level is as of modern times. Fjords.com notes that Norway and Canada are home to fjords and fjord lakes.
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  • How Do Geysers Form?

    Q: How Do Geysers Form?

    A: A geyser is essentially an underground hot spring that, owing to pressure exerted against its constricted plumbing toward the surface of the ground, issues a stream of steam and boiling water from time to time. The term "geyser" is derived from the Icelandic word "geysir," which means to rush forth. A geyser stops erupting once its reservoir is empty, or the water below the surface cools.
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  • How Do Volcanoes Form Landforms?

    Q: How Do Volcanoes Form Landforms?

    A: Volcanoes form landforms when the lava that flows out of the peak solidifies into rock. Magma is molten rock from the Earth's mantle pushed up by the action of plate tectonics. When the magma flows or explodes out of the top of the volcano, it is called lava. Over geological timescales, this lava keeps piling on top of successive strata of cooled rock, making several different kinds of landforms.
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  • What Are the Physical Features of the Arctic Lowlands?

    Q: What Are the Physical Features of the Arctic Lowlands?

    A: The arctic lowlands consist of several barren low-lying islands with coastlines dominated by sheer, towering cliffs and frigid surrounding waters of the Atlantic that contain pieces of massive ice sheets. Together, the lowlands comprise the southwestern Arctic Archipelago. They vary in size and shape: some are small and unpopulated, while others, including Victoria Island, are much larger.
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  • How Are Islands Formed?

    Q: How Are Islands Formed?

    A: Islands form in several ways. The most common events that lead to island formation are volcanic activity and continental drift. Islands also form due to erosion, buildup of sediment and coral that grows enough to penetrate the surface of the water.
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  • What Is the Bottom of the Ocean Called?

    Q: What Is the Bottom of the Ocean Called?

    A: The bottom of the ocean is known as the hadalpelagic zone and extends from 19,686 feet to the bottom of the ocean floor. This area is found in canyons and deep-water trenches, and the deepest part is found in the Marianas trench.
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  • How Do Parabolic Dunes Form?

    Q: How Do Parabolic Dunes Form?

    A: As with all dunes, parabolic dunes are primarily shaped by the wind. Parabolic dunes tend to proliferate in places where wind blows predominantly in one direction and the movement of sand is restrained by vegetation.
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  • Earth Science 101: What Is a Delta in Geography?

    Q: Earth Science 101: What Is a Delta in Geography?

    A: A river divides into smaller river and empties into a body of water, creating an area known as a delta. Sometimes, a delta can empty into land, but this doesn't occur very often.
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  • What Makes a Continent?

    Q: What Makes a Continent?

    A: A continent is a large land mass on Earth that is distinguished by a separation from other land by water or by a distinct cultural difference. Earth has a total of seven continents: North America, South America, Europe, Africa, Asia, Australia and Antarctica.
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  • How Old Is Mount Vesuvius?

    Q: How Old Is Mount Vesuvius?

    A: Mount Vesuvius is approximately 17,000 years old. It formed upon the site of a previous volcano. Vesuvius has a long history of eruptions, beginning with the first known eruption in 5960 B.C.
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