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February 10, 2011

Geology Word of the Week: O is for Ophiolite

Shadows over Oman mantle peridotite, January 2009. def. Ophiolite:An ophiolite is a segment of ocean crust and mantle tectonically exposed on land by obduction (overthrust), usually when an ocean basin closes. An ophiolite sequence consists of variably altered oceanic rocks, including marine sediments, ocean crust, and part of the mantle. The name ophiolite means “snakestone” from “ophio” (snake) and “lithos” (stone) in Greek. The rock sequence is named for the …


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