Middleton, Gerald V. Department of Geology, McMaster University, Hamilton, Ontario, Canada.
Last reviewed:January 2020
- Sedimentary cycle
- Major controls
- Modification by transport
- Chemical sedimentation
- Biological effects
- Sedimentary environments and facies
- Basin analysis
- Related Primary Literature
- Additional Reading
The study of natural sediments, both lithified (sedimentary rocks) and unlithified, and of the processes by which they are formed. Branches of this discipline have been known as sedimentation or sedimentary petrology, or they have been included in stratigraphy. Sedimentology includes all those processes that give rise to sediment or modify it after deposition: weathering, which breaks up or dissolves preexisting rocks so that sediment may form from them; mechanical transportation; deposition; and diagenesis, which modifies sediment after deposition and burial within a sedimentary basin and converts it into sedimentary rock. Sediments deposited by mechanical processes (gravels, sands, muds) are known as clastic sediments, and those deposited predominantly by chemical or biological processes (limestones, dolomites, rock salt, chert) are known as chemical sediments. Figure 1 shows a diagram of the processes that are involved in the sedimentary cycle. See also: Stratigraphy; Weathering processes
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 46 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