Influence of Chemical Weathering on Hillslope Forms

Simon M Mudd, Kyungsoo Yoo, Emmanuel J. Gabet

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingChapter (peer-reviewed)peer-review

Abstract

Chemical weathering affects hillslope form through dissolution and mineral transformations that lower the surface. In addition, mineral transformations affect the rheology, hydrology, and nutrient cycling of soils, all of which alter the geomorphic processes sculpting landscapes. Soil rheology is altered by the weakening of rocks from chemical weathering and by changes in soil cohesion from the formation of clays, a major product of weathering reactions. Clay formation can also decrease a soil's hydraulic conductivity and infiltration capacity, thereby altering the partitioning of surface and subsurface flow and potentially increasing rates of hillslope erosion by overland flow. Changes in the hydrological characteristics and nutrient cycling of a soil can affect the plants and animals that disturb and displace it. The complex interactions of these processes suggest that chemical weathering can either accentuate or dampen landscape dissection and relief generation.
Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationTreatise on Geomorphology
EditorsJ. Shroder, R.A. Marston, M. Stoffel
Place of PublicationSan Diego
PublisherAcademic Press
Pages56–65
Number of pages10
Volume7
ISBN (Print)9780123747396
Publication statusPublished - 2013

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