We explain what relief is, the types of relief that exist and what are the main characteristics of this surface.
The relief refers to the set of forms that the surface of the earth acquires in different parts of the world. The relief is considered to be the product, on the one hand, of:
The relief of the Earth that we see today is the result of a very long and complex geological and atmospheric process . Plate tectonic and continental drift theories are among the most widely accepted to account for major relief phenomena.
There are different forms or types of reliefs, and below we expose their main characteristics and peculiarities.
It has remained with minimal changes for hundreds of thousands of years; however, because of its intervention, in recent decades man has tended to modify it .
The flat and extensive reliefs at the same height as the sea level are called plains or plains. These have generally been formed from sedimentary rocks. They allow the development of agricultural activities with great ease . Likewise, they allow the layout of roads at a relatively low cost, since it is not necessary to dynamite large rock masses.
When the relief presents a subsidence , it is facing a depression, some are absolute depressions, with a negative elevation with respect to sea level, while others are relative depressions, that is, lower areas with respect to the surroundings, although with elevations positive. Depressions can be the result of erosion, glaciation, volcanic eruptions, etc.
All these elevations are the product of orogenic processes . Our geological history records three major orogenic processes: the one that generated the Caledonian folding, the one that formed the Hercynian folding and the one that generated the Alpine folding, about 65 million years ago.
In turn, during the Primary era more than 500 million years ago the so-called shields emerged , mountain massifs formed and razed by erosion during the Secondary era. These are the nuclei of the continents that we know today; They are made up of very old rocks that in some areas were covered by newer sedimentary materials.
Coastal areas can present particular reliefs , for example cliffs, that is, elevations that drop steeply towards the sea.
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