Observing the Earth’s surface

Atmosphere and hydrosphere get in contact with rocks and minerals on the Earth’s surface, where rocks spontaneously adapt to the conditions of our planet. The Earth’s surface is continuously evolving and modifying in time to create different landscapes. The elements that characterize a landscape are various and range from soil conformation (grasslands and mountains) to water bodies (lakes, rivers and waterfalls), animals (fauna) vegetation (flora), climate and man’s works (cities, roads, castles and many infrastructures). A natural landscape, without any human intervention, is often the result of two opposite forces, a battle that has been going on for thousands of years, between the geological processes that occur inside the Earth (the movement of earth plates, volcanic activity, the processes that lead to the creation of new mountains) and the processes that occur externally to the Earth’s surface (erosion and water transport of material, changes due to particular climate conditions and many others).

Special reports

From the Multimedia section

  • earth

    Waterfall

    Look

    earth

    More info on landscapes

    Listen
  • earth

    Venezuelan forest

    Look

    earth

    The compass

    Look
  • earth

    Landscapes: factors that shapes

    Listen

    earth

    The history of the Earth in one day 1

    Look

Facts

  • Mountains on the Earth

    The different landscapes that we analysed in the previous section are distributed...

  • Different plains

    In South America plains are different from North to South...

  • 16 May 2011

    Rock glaciers

    In the mountains, also in our Alps, in detrital screes...