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Fundamentals of Physical Geography

2nd Edition
James Petersen
ISBN: 9781133606536

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BuyFindarrow_forward

Fundamentals of Physical Geography

2nd Edition
James Petersen
ISBN: 9781133606536
Textbook Problem

An area of oceanic crust has a density of 3.0 grams per cubic centimeter and a thickness of 4 kilometers. The same size area of continental crust has a density of 2.7 grams per cubic centimeter. How thick in kilometers would the continental crust have to be for its total mass to equal that of the oceanic crust?

To determine

The thickness in kilometers the continental crust of 2.7 gram per cubic centimeter should have to be for its total mass to equal to that of the oceanic crust with a density of 3 gram per cubic centimeter and thickness of 4 kilometers with the same area of continental crust.

Explanation

The continental crust is always less denser than the oceanic crust. Hence, the continental

crust should be taller than the oceanic crust to attain the same mass with the same area. When the masses of continental crust and oceanic crust are equal, their density ratio is equal thickness or height.

The formula to determine the thickness of continental crust is as follows:

Thicknessofcontinentalcrust=(densityofoceaniccrustdensityofcontinentalcrus)thicknessof

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