Physical / Mechanical Weathering

This happens when rocks disintegrate into large blocks and other smaller fragments and particles without changing any of their constituent minerals. Physical or mechanical weathering are caused by these agents:

Expansion – This leads to exfoliation.

Crystal growth or frost action – This leads to block disintegration in temperature latitudes as well as on high mountains.

Thermal Expansion and Contraction –¬† This is usually common in desert lands where changes in temperature are great.

Organic or Biological activities – Plant and animal decay lead to formation of acids which help in rock break-up.

Colloid Plucking – This is a form of minor physical or mechanical weathering and not common generally.

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