What types of weathering take place in Arctic regions?
Weathering occurs when rocks and soils breakdown due to interaction with the environment. In physical or mechanical weathering, due to cold temperatures, much of the rock material in the Arctic region experiences frost wedging. When water permeates pore spaces in rock and then proceeds to freeze, the ice expands. This creates pressure inside the rock and can lead to the rock splitting or fracturing. Another type of physical weathering is abrasion. Wind can cause weathering of rocks and soil by abrasion which further reduces the sizes of the particles involved. Another example is chemical weathering. When minerals in rock react with oxygen in the air, oxidation occurs. For example, iron and oxygen form iron oxide which is rust. This can speed along the weathering process. Acid rain can interact with certain minerals in rock causing weathering to occur.