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Glossary of Science Chapter 6 Rocks and Minerals

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solar system
The sun, with the group of celestial bodies which, held by its attraction, revolve round it.
planet
Any of the celestial bodies (other than comets or satellites) that revolve around the sun in the solar system
gravity
The force of attraction between all masses in the universe; especially the attraction of the earth's mass for bodies near the surface.
inertia
The tendency of a body at rest to remain at rest or of a body in straight line motion to stay in motion in a straight line unless acted on by an outside force.
lithosphere
The outer part of the earth, consisting of the crust and upper mantle.
crust
Rocky surface that makes up the top of the lithosphere, includes continents and ocean floor.
hydrosphere
The water vapor in the earth's atmosphere.
atmosphere
Gaseous mass or envelope surrounding the earth.
constellation
A cluster of stars
fault
A fracture of a rock formation caused by a shifting or dislodging of the earth's crust.
geologist
A scientist who studies the earth's crust.
magma
Molten rock material under the earth's crust, from which igneous rock is formed by cooling.
lava
Molten rock that reaches the earth's surface through a volcano.
weathering
Action of the elements on a rock in altering its color, texture, or composition, or in rounding off its edges.
erosion
Wearing away of the earth's surface by any natural process.
deposition
The natural process of laying down a deposit of something.
mineral
A naturally occurring, inorganic solid substance having a chemical composition and characteristic crystalline structure, color and hardness.
luster
brightness
streak
The fine powder or mark yielded by a mineral when scratched or rubbed against a harder surface.
hardness
resistance of a metal or other material to denting, scratching, or bending.
cleavage
The state of being split; a fissure or division.
ore
metal
gem
A precious stone of any kind, such as the ruby, emerald, topaz, sapphire.
rock
Any natural deposit forming a part of the earth's crust.
igneous rock
Rock formed by the solidification of molten magma sedimentary rock: rock formed from consolidated clay sediments.
fossil
The remains of an animal or plant found in solidified rocks.
metamorphic rock
Rock altered by pressure and heat.
humus
Partially decomposed organic matter.
meteorite
Chunk of rock from space that strikes the surface of earth or the moon.
pollution
The state of being contaminated with harmful substances.
rock cycle
Relationships between igneous, sedimentary, and metamorphic rocks.

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