Soil Genesis and Development, Lesson 2 - Processes of Weathering Glossary


Process of moving a substance from one matrix into another.


Reaction with carbonic acid.

carbonic acid

A weak acid formed when water combines with carbon dioxide.


The process by which water splits into hydrogen (H) and hydroxide (OH). Hydrogen and hydroxide replace elements on minerals.

mass wasting

Movement of disintegrated rock materials by sliding or falling to the base of a slope by the force of gravity.


microscopic organisms such as bacteria and fungi


Removal or exchange of electrons usually by combining with oxygen.


Negative log of the hydrogen ion concentration (pH = -log [H+]), the higher the pH of an environment the less H+ ion concentration, the more basic the environment becomes.


Soils are dynamic natural bodies having properties derived from the combined effect of climate and biotic activities (organisms), as modified by topography, acting on parent materials over periods of time. (Brady, N.C., and R.R. Weil. 2007. The Nature and Properties of Soils. Fourteenth Edition. Prentice Hall, Inc. Upper Saddle River, NJ. 980 pp.)


The complex combination of physical, chemical and biological processes that decompose, disintegrate and alter rocks and minerals at or near the Earth's surface. Weathering can be subdivided into chemical weathering, physical weathering, and biological weathering.  (Soil and Environmental Science Dictionary)