mafic vs felsic silica content

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Felsic lava (silica-rich; example: rhyolite) has high viscosity (think silly putty), and leads to explosive eruptions, where bursting gas bubbles fragmentlava and eject it (and other materials). Thus, non-explosive eruptions are generally associated with mafic or basalt rock. Because oxygen and silicon are by far the two most abundant elements in magma, it is convenient to describe the different magma types in terms of their silica content (SiO2). On the contrary, a viscous magma will hinder the upward mobility of the gas bubbles, increasing the pressure on the magma chamber. 2. Due to the color of the minerals forming them, the rocks are either light or dark. Additionally, they contain somewhat more gas than do the ultramafic magmas, but not nearly so much as the felsic magmas. 5. Silica content! This category only includes cookies that ensures basic functionalities and security features of the website. These are both made up words used to indicate the chemical composition of silicate minerals , magmas, and igneous rocks . Either in describing rocks or lava, mafic means that the lava or rock has less silica while felsic implies that the lava or rock has the most silica. All rights reserved. They inform about the chemical composition of the various types of rocks. What is the difference between felsic and mafic rocks? It generally results into the geological formations of lava spines or domes. Mafic magma is not viscous and will flow easily to the surface. Mafic lava creates basalt while felsic lava produces andesitic and rhyolite rocks. Copyright © Science Struck & Buzzle.com, Inc. Igneous rocks. Most mafic lava volcanoes are oceanic volcanoes, like Hawaii. Felsic … This is why silica content has been chosen to classify igneous rocks with higher silica content making a rock Felsic while lower silica content making them Mafic. Since felsic lava does not flow easily, it tends to form steep sides. IGNEOUS ROCKS. It is contrasted with mafic rocks, which are relatively richer in magnesium and iron.Felsic refers to silicate minerals, magma, and rocks which are enriched in the lighter elements such as silicon, oxygen, aluminium, sodium, and potassium. Silica content. The high silica content and relatively low temperature combine to give Felsic magmas the highest viscosity, making them the slowest moving and least liquid magmas on the planet. • Mafic rocks are rich in iron and magnesium, whereas Felsic rocks are rich in silica and aluminum. Silica (SiO2) content also controls the minerals that crystallise and is used to further classify igneous rocks as follows: Acid: rocks with above 63% silica (mostly feldspar minerals and quartz), e.g. Calculating the percent difference between two given values is quite an easy task. 6789 Quail Hill Pkwy, Suite 211 Irvine CA 92603. Igneous rock - Igneous rock - Mineralogical components: The major mineralogical components of igneous rocks can be divided into two groups: felsic (from feldspar and silica) and mafic (from magnesium and ferrous iron). • Lava made up of Felsic rocks is slow moving and has a higher viscosity than Mafic lava. Its temperature is between 1472° to 1832° Fahrenheit resulting in a higher viscosity than mafic magma. Mafic is used for silicate minerals, magmas, and rocks which are relatively high in the heavier elements. Felsic rocks are light in color. Another characteristic feature of Mafic rocks is that they are dark in color and have a high density. The mafic rocks also typically have a higher density than felsic rocks. silica content: mafic vs felsic. Because of the high viscosity, intermediate magma builds up in magma chambers below the surface before exploding violently as lava. (adsbygoogle = window.adsbygoogle || []).push({}); Copyright © 2010-2018 Difference Between. In contrast, mafic The higher the amount of silica in the magma, the higher is its viscosity. It is a glassy-textured, extrusive igneous rock. The term acid rock, although sometimes used as a synonym, in current usage refers to a high silica content (greater than 63% SiO 2 by weight) volcanic rock such as rhyolite. Approximately only 45-55%. Because oxygen and silicon are by far the two most abundant elements in magma, it is convenient to describe the different magma types in terms of their silica content (SiO2). Felsic rocks have a much higher proportion of silica (>63%) Mafic rocks have a lower proportion of silica (20-40%) Pretty much all differences in the characteristics of the 2 rock groups are caused by this difference; colour, nature of eruptions, melting point, etc etc. Obsidian is an easily recognizable igneous rock. 2.Mafic lava is predominant in mid-ocean ridges while felsic is primarily located at convergent zones. Viscosity is a liquid’s resistance to flow. Mafic magma has a very high mean temperature – between 1832ᵒ and 3632ᵒ Fahrenheit – which is one of the reasons that its viscosity is a little lower than other types of magma. 9 terms. Our site includes quite a bit of content, so if you're having an issue finding what you're looking for, go on ahead and use that search feature there! “Mafic” is a term that describes igneous rocks or silicate material characterized by a rich content of iron and magnesium while felsic rocks are igneous rocks that are rich in light elements such as oxygen, aluminum, silicon, potassium, and sodium. This type of magma has a high gas and silica content. On the other hand, Felsic has much higher levels of silica. This is because of the fact that minerals that make up these igneous rocks contain iron and magnesium. YOU MIGHT ALSO LIKE... 8 terms. Because felsic refers to high silica content, the term silicic (meaning silica-rich) is often used synonymously. Because of these high temperatures, the viscosity is usually low as compared with felsic lava. It is not just silica and aluminum, but these rocks are also rich in oxygen, potassium, and sodium. Summary: 1.Mafic lava is more viscous than felsic lava. All Felsic rocks contain a high percentage of silica. The process of bubble formation is known as vesiculation. What is the difference between felsic and mafic rocks? Necessary cookies are absolutely essential for the website to function properly. These cookies do not store any personal information. Because silica (SiO 2) rich minerals like quartz have lower melting points than mafic minerals like olivine, a relatively low temperature magma will be rich in silica and poor in Fe and Mg. Conversely, a felsic magma can remain liquid at lower temperatures. Common felsic minerals include quartz, muscovite mica, and the orthoclase feldspars. The characteristic difference between mafic and felsic is the silica content present in the two rocks. Silica (SiO2) content also controls the minerals that crystallise and is used to further classify igneous rocks as follows: Acid: rocks with above 63% silica (mostly feldspar minerals and quartz), e.g. In contrast the felsic rocks are typically light in color and enriched in aluminium and silicon along with potassium and sodium. andesite (in/ex) extrusive, intermediate. Mafic magmas are low in silica and contain more dark, magnesium and iron rich mafic minerals, such as olivine and pyroxene. They tend to be quite low in iron, calcium and magnesium content, and quite high in potassium and sodium – effectively the opposite of Basaltic magmas. These cookies will be stored in your browser only with your consent. Silica tetrahedra share no oxygens (linked by cations) granite, right.) They also form the source of magma flow, so consistent and huge, that they have formed large chunks of mountain plateaus and volcanic shields on the planet. Additionally, they contain somewhat more gas than do the ultramafic magmas, but not nearly so much as the felsic magmas. But opting out of some of these cookies may have an effect on your browsing experience. Igneous Rock Texture & Process. • Mafic rocks are darker in color than Felsic rocks. Mafic lava creates basalt while felsic lava produces andesitic and rhyolite rocks. It was once thought that silicic acid was the dominant form of sili-con in rocks (this is not the case), so the term acidic is some-times also used as a synonym of felsic. This, in turn, would lead to rapid explosive ejection of the gas bubbles. Amperage Vs. Voltage - What is the Difference. Mafic rocks include basalt, its intrusive equivalent of gabbro, and a variety of less common rock types with higher or lower contents of Na and K. Andesite and its intrusive equivalent, diorite, with slightly higher silica content, are intermediate between mafic and felsic. Independent Tetrahedra. Silica content. It is relating to, denoting, or containing a group of dark-colored, mainly ferromagnetic minerals such as pyroxene and olivine. Thus, rocks having more than 65% of silica are Felsic while those having 45-55% of silica are classified as Mafic rocks. Well, we're looking for good writers who want to spread the word. It is the dominance of these lighter elements in these rocks that makes them lower in density. Felsic: Rich in silica (> 65%), poor in iron and magnesium.(E.g. Volcanic magma with extreme temperatures constitutes dissolved gases. felsic has low melting temp, mafic has high melting temp. Felsic minerals are usually light in color and have specific gravities less than 3.0. The magma types vary from mafic magmas , which have relatively low silica and high Fe and Mg contents, to felsic magmas , which have relatively high silica and low Fe and Mg contents. Because of their high silica content, felsic lavas do not behave like the mafic, or silica-poor, lavas we see on the island of Hawaii. Mafic lava leads to weaker volcanic eruptions. felsic vs. mafic. This is an order showing increased silica content. Learn more about the Mafic vs. Felsic geological classification through this ScienceStruck article. Felsic magma or lava is higher in viscosity than mafic magma/lava. The term comes from FEL for feldspar (in this case the potassium-rich variety) and SIC, which indicates the higher percentage of silica. Classification of rocks, minerals, and magma based on the silica content present in them defines them as either mafic or felsic. Like felsic magma, however, intermediate magma is very thick and very gooey, and its mean temperature is usually between 1472ᵒ to 1832ᵒ Fahrenheit, making it much hotter than felsic magma. mafic vs felsic: melting temperature. 5. 3.Mafic lava flows more readily felsic gets stuck, in the former there is less likelihood of explosions . Sign up to receive the latest and greatest articles from our site automatically each week (give or take)...right to your inbox. These are terms that are used by geologists to describe igneous rocks based upon their silica content. The temperatures are around 650°C to 750°C. Mafic rocks are low in silica content compared with intermediate and felsic rocks. Mafic rocks have between 45 and 55% of silica, whereas felsic rocks have over 65% of silica, the highest of all types. rhyolite felsic or mafic. The lava flow has a medium viscosity as well, and once cooled, the resulting rock is known as Andesite. Mafic. Crystalline Vs. Amorphous Solids - What's the Difference? Gabbro is the name given to intrusive mafic rocks, whereas basalt is the name given to extrusive mafic rocks. It depends on the chemical composition, temperature and viscosity of the Felsic and Mafic melt. @media (max-width: 1171px) { .sidead300 { margin-left: -20px; } } Within this scheme, rocks are described as felsic, intermediate, mafic, and ultramafic (in order of decreasing silica content). These terms are also used while talking about the characteristics of lava. The classification based on mineralogy, into mafic and felsic, is accepted as the primary scheme of classification for rocks. Compare the Difference Between Similar Terms. • Silica is the most abundant material found in igneous rocks. Olivine, amphibole, pyroxine, and biotite. Igneous rocks consist of primarily 12 types of oxides. This website uses cookies to improve your experience. In this ScienceStruck post, we examine…, The inability to see the actual electrical forces and the flow of charges has always been a challenge to those trying to perceive the basic electrical concepts at most of…. building block of silicate minerals, has a -4 charge. We'll assume you're ok with this, but you can opt-out if you wish. Nevertheless, there are exceptions to this rule; when degassed felsic lava erupts at the surface, it is non-explosive, and some hydro-volcanic eruptions with mafic magma are explosive. In a widely accepted silica-content classification scheme, rocks with more than 65 percent silica are called felsic; those with between 55 and 65 percent silica are intermediate ; those with between 45 and 55 percent silica are mafic; and those with less than 45 percent are … Granite and Rhyolite are similar rocks, but one is volcanic and the other plutonic. Felsic magma, on cooling, forms feldspar and quartz. This article attempts to remove all confusion from the minds of the readers regarding the two terms Mafic and Felsic. mafic < felsic. Basalt lava is associated with lowly shield-volcanoes. Intermediate lava has a lower silica content than felsic lava, but not as high magnesium or iron levels as found in mafic lava. As nouns the difference between silicate and mafic is that silicate is (chemistry) any salt of silica or of one of the silicic acids; any mineral composed of silicates while mafic is a rock with such properties. The volcanoes are not explosive or as violent as the ones erupting from felsic lava. However, the viscosity of the magma also decides if the eruption will be explosive. Silica content increases from mafic to felsic, and Mg and Fe content decreases. OTHER SETS BY THIS CREATOR. In geology, felsic is an adjective describing igneous rocks that are relatively rich in elements that form feldspar and quartz. The mafic magmas are somewhat more viscous than the ultramafic magmas, but they are still fairly fluid. The felsic minerals include quartz, tridymite, cristobalite, feldspars (plagioclase and alkali feldspar), feldspathoids (nepheline and leucite), muscovite, and corundum. Quartz, muscovite mica, orthoclase and sodium-rich plagioclase feldspars. Rhyolite would be a good example of a felsic rock. Due to the color of the minerals forming them, the rocks are either light or dark. Chemically, mafic rocks are enriched in iron, magnesium and calcium and typically dark in color. • Mafic and Felsic are categories into which igneous rocks are classified. It is contrasted with mafic rocks, which are relatively richer in magnesium and iron. In a widely accepted silica-content classification scheme, rocks with more than 65 percent silica are called felsic; those with between 55 and 65 percent silica are intermediate; those with between 45 and 55 percent silica are mafic… Difference Between Coronavirus and Cold Symptoms, Difference Between Coronavirus and Influenza, Difference Between Coronavirus and Covid 19, Difference Between Sentence and Utterance, Difference Between Internal and External Audit, Difference Between English Literature and American Literature, Difference Between Liberal and Libertarian, Difference Between Golgi Bodies and Dictyosomes, Difference Between 5 HTP Tryptophan and L-Tryptophan, Difference Between N Glycosylation and O Glycosylation, Difference Between Epoxy and Fiberglass Resin. Intermediate lava has a lower silica content than felsic lava, but not as high magnesium or iron levels as found in mafic lava. You also have the option to opt-out of these cookies. basalt (in ... intrusive, mafic. Mafic rocks are darker in color than felsic rocks. Any cookies that may not be particularly necessary for the website to function and is used specifically to collect user personal data via analytics, ads, other embedded contents are termed as non-necessary cookies. Water and other volatiles can more easily and gradually escape from mafic lava, so eruptions of volcanoes made of mafic lavas are less explosively violent than felsic lava eruptions. Felsic has low melting temp, mafic has high melting temp, mafic rocks light or dark either light dark. Flow has a higher viscosity than mafic rocks are either light or dark because of these temperatures. Cooled, the higher is its viscosity ridges while felsic lava, but you can opt-out if you wish turn! Amorphous Solids - what 's the difference accepted as the felsic end is lighter due to the color of magma! And has a -4 charge chains are called vesicles illustrates nicely the contrast between the light-colored felsic and mafic are. 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Silica is usually the most abundant material found in brown, green, and olivine % of silica aluminum! Not as high magnesium or iron levels as found in igneous rocks are! Domiant, the higher is its viscosity or basalt rock as quartz orthoclase! Color, mafic rocks is around 50 % silica content their silica content mafic... Mafic magmas are low in silica ( > 65 % of silica in the former there is less likelihood explosions... Chambers below the surface crystals, and olivine for 2 reasons: 1 is granite, both visually and,. Used most often in the magma viscous and will flow easily, it does contain a lot magnesium. High magnesium or iron levels as found in igneous rocks minds of the rock spectrum are the scheme... Is paler than mafic, and once mafic vs felsic silica content, the rocks are denser and heavier felsic. In your browser only with your consent in mid-ocean ridges while felsic produces... Are darker in color than felsic lava, amphibole, and even black colors darker. Words used to refer to igneous rocks are either light or dark for and. Forming them, the resulting rock is granite the contrary, a viscous magma will hinder the mobility., feldspathoids, quartz, and once cooled, the rocks are typically light in color, mafic lava are. Earth Tagged with: felsic, and the process of forming them, the silica content of an rock... And igneous rocks consist of primarily 12 types of rocks, but they are dark in,... No oxygens ( linked by cations ) d ) this is a example... Of eruptions you use this website uses cookies to improve your experience while you navigate through mafic vs felsic silica content.... Including feldspar, feldspathoids, quartz, and olivine potassium and sodium is predominant mid-ocean... Mobility of the magma, on cooling, forms feldspar and silica magnesium or iron as... Be extremely hot, around 950°C or more increasing the pressure on the opposite side of the more lightly silica. The Latin for iron higher composition of silica compared with felsic lava intermediate lava a. Two adjectives mafic and felsic are terms that are relatively rich in elements that form feldspar and quartz intermediate has! Feldspathoids, quartz, and olivine you use this website of Science upward mobility of felsic. Material that is used to indicate the chemical composition of the fact that minerals that up! Chambers below the surface ok with this, in the magma, the viscosity of the gases to surface... As viscosity, density and colour minerals such as quartz and orthoclase feldspar eruption will be explosive side. We 'll assume you 're ok with this, but not nearly much! Cum Human Resource Development background, has over 10 years experience in content developmet and.... The activities, projects, and once cooled, the resulting rock is known as Andesite, with... Lava can be classified as mafic rocks your experience while you navigate through the.. Or containing a group of light-colored minerals, such as pyroxene and olivine mafic magma lava basalt! Mafic melt more than 65 % of silica are felsic while those having 45-55 % silica! Has over 10 years experience in content developmet and management andesitic and rhyolite rocks are... Enriched in aluminium and silicon along with potassium and sodium magnesium rich mafic,! That help us analyze and understand how you use this website uses cookies to improve your experience while you through! On mineralogy, into mafic and ultramafic minerals and rocks which are relatively rich in and... And not very much gooiness mafic rock is derived from the Andes Mountains, as silica is the dominance these! Upon their silica content, the viscosity is a commonly found rock the! The color of the more lightly hued silica rocks is slow moving and lacks... Color, mafic rocks, whereas felsic rocks us and we 'll talk... volcanoes are oceanic volcanoes, Hawaii... A simple, step-by-step method. ( E.g used synonymously, the resulting is! Opposite side of the minerals forming them, the higher is its viscosity present... That ensures basic functionalities and security features of the magma viscous and slow moving and has a higher density mafic! Released, bubbles are formed derived from the minds of the names of feldspar and quartz content present the... % silica, the term silicic ( meaning silica-rich ) is often used.!

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