Geologist and Basic Principles of Geology

Learn about the Geologist and Basic Principles of Geology.
Submitted by Devyani Nagare, on February 22, 2022


Geologists undergo an overall study of the evidence via observation and results of processes that are taking and took place from years in the past. They study the history of the earth and determine how the circumstances and processes of the past are affecting the present and future.

Geologists study natural hazards like floods, landslides, earthquakes, and volcanic eruptions. Nobody can completely avoid natural hazards but Geologists work to understand the hazard and avoid the maximum loss by building important structures.

Like, with the past information available of a flooded area in the past, a geologist can prepare the flooded area in the future. In some cases, Geologists study Earth materials, Earth history, natural resources, and the environment.

Basic Principles of Geology

It includes several rules or laws that geologists use to determine the history of rock how rocks were created and the transformation of rocks. Following are a few basic principles:

  1. Uniformitarianism
  2. Original horizontality
  3. Superposition
  4. Cross-cutting relationships
  5. Walther's Law

1) Uniformitarianism

Uniformitarianism is the process that alters the earth's crust, this process is been taken place for millions of years. This is a helpful process to determine how rock changes, as the altering process, is similar to that of millions of years ago and at present. In short, the laws of nature were never been different.

2) Original horizontality

It suggests that sediment is deposited horizontally. All the geological features like mountain, rock and many other represents the layers of the bottom are deformed and are topped with newly deposited layers.

3) Superposition

As beds of rock are made with layers, the top is usually younger than those deposited below. Basically, you can't add another layer if one already doesn't exist. This law is useful to generalize the ages of rock.

4) Cross-cutting relationships

To examine, rock units are cut by faults and to determine the rock units have been weathered, so that geologists can further determine the relative ages of rocks and timing of events.

5) Walther's Law

Walther's law deals with comparative space through time, in this case, the depositional are laterally adjacent on the surface and appear in a stratigraphic sequence and if any layer is missing, there is missing time.

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