Download Key Terms – Water on Earth water vapor – The invisible, gaseous

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Key Terms – Water on Earth
water vapor – The invisible, gaseous form of water
groundwater – Water that fills the cracks and pores in underground soil and rock layers
water cycle – The continuous process by which water moves from Earth’s surface to the
atmosphere and back, passing through the living and nonliving parts of the environment.
evaporation – The process by which molecules at the surface of a liquid, such as water,
absorb enough energy to change to a gaseous state, such as water vapor.
transpiration – The process by which plants release water vapor through their leaves
precipitation – Forms of water such as rain, snow, sleet, or hail that fall from clouds and
reach Earth’s surface
irrigation – The process of supplying water in areas of land to make them suitable for
growing crops
aquifer – An underground layer of rock or soil that holds water
wave – The movement of energy through a body of water
crest – The highest point of a wave
wavelength – The horizontal distance between two wave crests
frequency – The number of waves that pass a specific point in a given amount of time.
trough – The lowest point of a wave
wave height – The vertical distance from the crest of a wave to the trough
tides – The daily rise and fall of Earth’s waters on shores
spring tide – A tide with the greatest difference between high and low tide that occurs
when the sun and the moon are aligned in a line with Earth
neap tide – A tide with the least difference between low and high tide that occurs when
the sun and moon pull at right angles to each other.
continental shelf – A gently sloping, shallow area of the ocean floor that extends
outward from the edge of a continent
continental slope – An incline leading down from the edge of the continental shelf.
mid ocean ridge – The undersea mountain chain where new ocean floor is produced; a
divergent plate boundary.
trench – A deep canyon in the ocean floor
estuary – A coastal inlet or bay where fresh water mixes with salty ocean water