Encyclopedia of Astrobiology

Living Edition
| Editors: Muriel Gargaud, William M. Irvine, Ricardo Amils, Henderson James Cleaves, Daniele Pinti, José Cernicharo Quintanilla, Michel Viso

Regolith, Terrestrial

  • Nicholas Arndt
Living reference work entry
DOI: https://doi.org/10.1007/978-3-642-27833-4_1365-3



The terrestrial regolith is a layer of unconsolidated material overlying solid rock. It forms as a result of mechanical and chemical weathering, biological processes, deposition of loose material, or brecciation of rock and may consist of soil, alluvium, and other sedimentary deposits, fractured and oxidized rock, and volcanic ash or scoria. Its thickness varies from negligible to several hundred meters. Regolith has been observed on Earth, Moon, some asteroids, and other planets.

See Also


Biological Process Bioorganic Chemistry Sedimentary Deposit Loose Material Solid Rock 
These keywords were added by machine and not by the authors. This process is experimental and the keywords may be updated as the learning algorithm improves.

Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag Berlin Heidelberg 2014

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Maison des GéosciencesLGCA, Université J. FourierSt-Martin d’HéresFrance