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processes, geomorphological

processes, geomorphological The set of mechanisms that operate at and near the Earth's land surface, breaking down and transferring rock material and consequently fashioning land-forms at small and medium scales. Processes operating on the surface are termed ‘exogenetic’; those originating below the surface ‘endogenetic’. Two categories may be recognized: (a) zonal processes, which are broadly controlled by climate (e.g. the work of glaciers); and (b) azonal processes, which operate on a worldwide basis (e.g. fluvial processes). The rate at which such processes operate may be measured by direct field recording or by making use of historical records. See EROSION RATE.

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