Difference between Exfoliation and Carbonation Processes
Exfoliation and carbonation are two distinct weathering processes that differ in their mechanisms and their impacts on the environment. Exfoliation is a mechanical process of weathering, while carbonation is a chemical process. Exfoliation is the process of the outermost rock layers flaking off due to the expansion and contraction of the underlying layers caused by changes in temperature. This type of weathering is more commonly seen in regions with large temperature swings and is often linked to expansion due to freeze-thaw cycles. These exfoliated rock layers can be seen as concentric, curved sheets on the surface of the rock (Lam and Chorley, 2019). Carbonation, on the other hand, is a chemical process of weathering that involves the dissolution of carbon dioxide in water to form carbonic acid. This acid then reacts with the minerals present in the rock and causes them to dissolve, releasing ions into the environment (Ahmed et al., 2017). Carbonation is more common in humid climates, where the abundance of water and carbon dioxide increases the rate of weathering. Overall, exfoliation and carbonation are distinct processes of weathering that differ in… Cont…
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