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Processes of Coastal Erosion
- "Rock on rock"
- Particles carried by the waves crash against each other and are broken up into smaller particles.
2. Corrasion (also known as abrasion):
- "Rock on cliff"
- Particles carried by the waves crash against the cliffs, eroding the cliffs.
- "Rusting / dissolving"
- Salt in the seawater slowly dissolves the cliffs.
- The material produced is carried away by the process of solution.
4. Hydraulic Action:
- The water traps air in cracks and caves in the rock.
- This air is compressed by the incoming waves placing great pressure on the rocks, causing them to crack eventually.
5. Wave Pounding:
- Steep waves have great energy, which is released forward as they break against the cliffs.
- Constant pounding can cause great damage to both natural cliffs, and man-made sea defences.
- In storm conditions the waves may create up to 30 tonnes per square metre of pressure.
6. Sub-Aerial processes:
- The impact of rainwater, wind and frost on the cliffs.
- Rainwater can cause surface erosion.
- Frost shattering can occur in colder climates.
- Rainwater can also increase the chances of mass movement occurring.
- Wind (Aeolian) erosion can aid in the erosion of the cliffs.