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Encyclopedia > Regolith

Regolith (Greek: "blanket rock") is a layer of loose, heterogeneous material covering solid rock. Regolith is present on Earth, the Moon, some asteroids, and other planets. The origins of regolith on Earth are weathering and biological processes; if it contains a significant proportion of biological compounds it is more conventionally referred to as soil. On bodies without an atmosphere, regolith is caused by the gravitational reaggregation of debris resulting from impact with other objects. Sedimentary, volcanic, plutonic, metamorphic rock types of North America. ... Earth, also known as Terra, and Tellus mostly in the 19th century, is the third-closest planet to the Sun. ... Crust composition Oxygen 43% Silicon 21% Aluminium 10% Calcium 9% Iron 9% Magnesium 5% Titanium 2% Nickel 0. ... An asteroid is a small, solid object in our Solar System, orbiting the Sun. ... A planet is generally considered to be a relatively large mass of accreted matter in orbit around a star that is not a star itself. ... Earth, also known as Terra, and Tellus mostly in the 19th century, is the third-closest planet to the Sun. ... Weathering is the process of decomposition and/or disintegration of rocks, soils and their minerals through natural, chemical, and biological processes that is, in place. ... Biota can refer to several things: The plant and animal life of a region; see biota (ecology) A municipality in Zaragoza, Aragon, Spain; see Biota (municipality) A superdomain in taxonomy; see Biota (taxonomy) Biota Holdings, the Australian biotech company This is a disambiguation page — a navigational aid which lists other... Soil is unconsolidated rock particles mixed with organic matter from plant decay. ... Atmosphere is the general name for a layer of gases that may surround a material body of sufficient mass. ... Gravity is the force of attraction between massive particles. ...


On Earth, the presence of regolith is one of the important factors for most life, since few plants can grow on or within solid rock, and animals would be unable to burrow or build shelter without loose material. Life is a multi-faceted concept. ... Divisions Land plants (embryophytes) Non-vascular plants (bryophytes) Marchantiophyta - liverworts Anthocerotophyta - hornworts Bryophyta - mosses Vascular plants (tracheophytes) Lycopodiophyta - clubmosses Equisetophyta - horsetails Pteridophyta - true ferns Psilotophyta - whisk ferns Ophioglossophyta - adderstongues Seed plants (spermatophytes) †Pteridospermatophyta - seed ferns Pinophyta - conifers Cycadophyta - cycads Ginkgophyta - ginkgo Gnetophyta - gnetae Magnoliophyta - flowering plants Adiantum pedatum (a fern... Phyla Porifera (sponges) Ctenophora (comb jellies) Cnidaria (coral, jellyfish, anenomes) Placozoa (trichoplax) Subregnum Bilateria (bilateral symmetry) Acoelomorpha (basal) Orthonectida (flatworms, echinoderms, etc. ...


On the Moon, regolith has been formed by the action of micro-meteroids breaking down surface rocks into a powder. This powder is more reflective than the basalt that makes up the lunar maria, and therefore looks brighter when viewed from Earth. During the early phases of the Apollo Moon landing program there were concerns that the regolith would not support the weight of the lunar module and that the module might sink beneath the surface. A map showing the location of Mare Imbrium The Lunar maria (singular: mare, pronounced MAH-ray) are large, dark, basaltic plains on Earths Moon, formed by ancient basaltic flood eruptions caused by extremely large meteoroid impacts. ...


External link

  • Lunar Regolith and Fragmental Breccias

  Results from FactBites:
 
regolith: Definition and Much More from Answers.com (843 words)
Regolith is present on Earth, the Moon, some asteroids, and other planets.
This regolith has been formed over the last 4.6 billion years by the impact of large and small meteoroids and the steady bombardment of micrometeoroids and solar and galactic charged particles breaking down surface rocks.
During the early phases of the Apollo Moon landing program there were concerns that the regolith would not support the weight of the lunar module and that the module might sink beneath the surface.
NEAR Science Update (927 words)
That is, the regolith of Eros is completely unprotected from the energetic photon radiation, the charged particle radiation, and the micrometeoroid fluxes of deep space, whereas the regolith on Earth is shielded by an atmosphere equivalent to 30 feet of water (in terms of the total mass above an area on the ground).
In the lunar regolith, the space weathering leads to darkening and reddening of the material while reducing spectral contrast (i.e., overall reduction of albedo, change in spectral slope to be less reflective of blue light, and reduction of absorption band depth).
This continual overturning of the regolith is referred to as impact gardening.
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