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Difference Between Foliation and Layering

Foliation vs Layering

Foliation and layering are the two terms related to the formation of rocks. They differ from each other in a variety of areas. Foliation and layering involve different kinds of rock formation.

In sedimentary and metamorphic rocks, foliation and layering is presented as  a pattern. Describing the differences between these two may entail an assessment of  different rocks, either by looking at the mineral very closely or checking the components only visually.

Foliation

Foliation is a penetrating pattern formed in the metamorphic rocks. Foliation may be defined as a general planar structure resulting through parallel alignment of sheets of silicate material. The result is the banded appearance of the rock.

Metamorphic rocks are formed by the transformation of existing rocks through the process of metamorphism. In the formation of metamorphic rock, the original rock is subjected to heat and pressure causing the rock to undergo physical and chemical changes.

Foliation means a pattern of penetration caused by the realignment of minerals like mica. It is also used to state the appearance of metamorphic rocks. So by the principle of stress direction, a product called metamorphic rock is formed. A close observation of the perpendicular formation has to be made to decipher the direction of the shortening. It is formed by stress and fire. It is caused by an alteration of minerals from pressure and heat.

Slate is a foliated metamorphic rock origination from shale through the process of foliation. Other examples are phyllite, schist and gneiss.

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Layering

The formation of layers of rocks over the other is described as layering. Over time the  deposition of rocks is a type of environment reflected when small rocks are embedded against sedimentary rocks. Sedimentary rocks with layering have very thin layers of fine and coarse fragments or sediments. When observed closely, one will be able to trace soft and fossil sediment deformations and marks.

Sedimentary rocks are formed due to the deposition of material at the surface of the Earth. They are formed by the process called sedimentation. The particles that form the sedimentary rocks through accumulation are called sediments. Sediments are particles formed by erosion and weathering from a source area and later transported by water, wind, glaciers, or ice.

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Both foliation and layering help the researchers in understanding and analyzing the changes that have occurred in the seasons and axial movements that have taken place over the expanse of time. They play an important role in the geology and disciplines such as geomorphology, pedology, geochemistry, and structural geology.

Summary:

  1. Foliation is developed by stress and fire while layering is developed by  the embedding of fine and coarse deposits.

  2. Foliation is caused due to an alteration of minerals from pressure and heat while layering is developed by seasonal changes.

  3. Foliation has layers while layering contains marks on them.


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