Why we have so much abundance of sand and rocks on earth.
Sand is considered as the common material which can be formed in any part of the earth. However, the sands are mostly available in the northwest part of India than any other places.
Sand Formation and why it was Abundant on earth:
Sand is formed by the weathering or the natural disintegration of rocks, particularly of granite or sandstone. Unlike other natural resources such as coal or iron ore, sand and gravel are defined by their particle size rather than mineral composition. By definition, sand grains range in size from one-sixteenth of a millimeter to two millimeters.
The next smaller size grains are known to be silt and the larger unconsolidated particles are called gravel. These particles can also be classified by their size as granule, pebble, cobble, and boulder. Sand is most commonly made of quartz, which is the world’s most common mineral. Sands come in a wide variety of colors and its grains may be purely quartz, mostly quartz, partially quartz, or entirely non-quartz. The Indian sand dunes are mostly quartz.
Most of the sands are found in great abundance which is in northwest part of India. This abundance is the direct result of some glaciers and the natural geological processes of wind consist of the water movement which can be occurred since the last glaciers approximately 14,000 years ago in the northwest part of India. It is a glacier that scooped out bedrock and created Lake Michigan.
This glacier breaks the solid rock which is under the deposits such as soil or alluvium. These rocks are grinded and can be deposited on the ground and also in the lakes. Thus, many of the major sand and gravel deposits in the state were originally placed in deposits formed either directly by glaciers or by glacial melt waters.
However, in the thousands of years since the glaciers left, rivers and particularly the currents within Lake Michigan have moved great quantities of sand and gravel and deposited them elsewhere.
Most of the sand and gravel has been deposited near the southern end of the lake. This is because, for most of the history of the lake, sand has been moving southward which is carried by lake currents on both sides of the lake. Waves at the south shore of Lake Michigan wash sand up onto the beach. Then when it dries much of it is blown away from the lake by dry northwest winds.
When the wind slows up, it drops the sand which is carried by him. Various natural objects such as grass, trees, or rocks can be used to make the wind slow up. It can cause the wind to drop enough sand that small piles of sand can be formed. These sand themselves can cause more wind to slow up and the more sand is to be dropped. In this way, large sand dunes can be slowly formed.
The process is similar to the way that wind blows dry snow into drifts. Except at times when the wind is exceedingly strong, gravel is simply too heavy to be moved by winds. It is not too heavy, however, to be carried by the moving waters of fast-moving streams or the waves of Lake Michigan. When these waters slow up, just like the winds, they drop their sediment loads. Gravel then can accumulate in riverbeds wherever water tends to slow up.
This also happens most days along the beaches of the Great Lakes where waves have the strength to wash gravel up onto the shore, but not enough strength to carry it back into the lake.
Top Facts about Sand
- Natural sand is made up of fragments of rock, minerals, shells, and organic material.
- Africa’s Sahara Desert is the world’s largest sand desert.
- Colors of sand include white, yellow, brown, red, and black.
- Beaches and dunes rely on sand to maintain their ecosystems.
- In the production of concrete and glass, sand plays a crucial role.
- Australia’s Fraser Island is the largest sand island in the world.
- Additionally, sand is used for filtration, traction on ice and snow, and for sandblasting.
- Sand and gravel were used in the construction of the Great Wall of China.
- Mars and Venus also have sand dunes.
- Aeolian geomorphology is the study of sand and sand formations.
Uses of Sand by Humans
Natural granular materials such as sand are essential to human life and society. They serve an array of critical purposes, and play a vital role in our daily lives.
Construction is one of the most significant uses of sand. Sand is a key ingredient in the production of concrete, which is essential for the construction of buildings, roads, bridges, and other infrastructure. Additionally, sand is also used in the manufacture of glass as a filler. In modern society, glass is a vital material, being used for windows, mirrors, screens, and many other purposes.
Beaches, sand dunes, and other sandy environments are popular destinations for those who want to enjoy the outdoors. Sand plays a crucial role in beach and dune ecosystems, as it provides a soft surface for sunbathing, playing, and other activities.
Additionally, sand is used to purify and filter water. Sand is also found in water treatment plants to remove impurities from water and improve its quality. Sand is also used in oil and gas production to remove impurities and maintain the integrity of these valuable resources.
As well as its practical uses, sand has cultural and historical significance. One of the Seven Wonders of the Ancient World was the Great Wall of China, which was constructed of sand and gravel. Sculptures and sand castles are popular activities among people of all ages, and sand dunes have inspired artists and writers for centuries.
The importance of sand for human society cannot be overstated. From construction to recreation, filtration to artistic expression, sand is integral to our lives, as well as to our health, well-being, and quality of life. Sand is an essential part of our world, whether we are enjoying a day at the beach or constructing a new house.