Hodges, Kip Department of Earth, Atmospheric, and Planetary Sciences, Massachusetts Institute of Technology, Cambridge, Massachusetts.
Last reviewed:December 2019
- Convergent plate boundaries
- Topographic expression
- Ancient geological processes
- Related Primary Literature
- Additional Reading
The process of mountain building. As traditionally used, the term orogeny refers to the development of long, mountainous belts on the continents called orogenic belts or orogens. These include the Appalachian and Cordilleran orogens of North America, the Andean orogen of western South America, the Caledonian orogen of northern Europe and eastern Greenland and the Alpine-Himalayan orogen that stretches from western Europe to eastern China (Fig. 1). It is important to recognize that these systems represent only the most recent orogenic belts that retain the high-relief characteristic of mountainous regions. In fact, the continents can be viewed as a collage of ancient orogenic belts, most so deeply eroded that no trace of their original mountainous topography remains (Fig. 2). By comparing characteristic rock assemblages from more recent orogens with their deeply eroded counterparts, geologists surmise that the processes responsible for mountain building today extended back through most (if not all) of geologic time and played a major role in the growth of the continents. See also: Continents, evolution of
The content above is only an excerpt.
for your institution. Subscribe
To learn more about subscribing to AccessScience, or to request a no-risk trial of this award-winning scientific reference for your institution, fill in your information and a member of our Sales Team will contact you as soon as possible.
to your librarian. Recommend
Let your librarian know about the award-winning gateway to the most trustworthy and accurate scientific information.
AccessScience provides the most accurate and trustworthy scientific information available.
Recognized as an award-winning gateway to scientific knowledge, AccessScience is an amazing online resource that contains high-quality reference material written specifically for students. Contributors include more than 10,000 highly qualified scientists and 45 Nobel Prize winners.
MORE THAN 8700 articles covering all major scientific disciplines and encompassing the McGraw-Hill Encyclopedia of Science & Technology and McGraw-Hill Yearbook of Science & Technology
115,000-PLUS definitions from the McGraw-Hill Dictionary of Scientific and Technical Terms
3000 biographies of notable scientific figures
MORE THAN 19,000 downloadable images and animations illustrating key topics
ENGAGING VIDEOS highlighting the life and work of award-winning scientists
SUGGESTIONS FOR FURTHER STUDY and additional readings to guide students to deeper understanding and research
LINKS TO CITABLE LITERATURE help students expand their knowledge using primary sources of information