AskDefine | Define stratum

Dictionary Definition

stratum

Noun

1 one of several parallel layers of material arranged one on top of another (such as a layer of tissue or cells in an organism)
2 an abstract place usually conceived as having depth; "a good actor communicates on several levels"; "a simile has at least two layers of meaning"; "the mind functions on many strata simultaneously" [syn: level, layer] [also: strata (pl)]

User Contributed Dictionary

English

Pronunciation

  • /stɹɑːtʌm/

Noun

  1. One of several parallel horizontal layers of material arranged one on top of another
  2. A layer of sedimentary rock having approximately the same composition throughout
  3. Any of the regions of the atmosphere, such as the stratosphere, that occur as layers
  4. A layer of tissue
  5. A class of society composed of people with similar social, cultural, or economic status

Synonyms

Translations

One of several parallel horizontal layers of material arranged one on top of another
A layer of sedimentary rock having approximately the same composition throughout
Any of the regions of the atmosphere
A layer of tissue
A class of society composed of people with similar social, cultural, or economic status

Extensive Definition

In geology and related fields, a stratum (plural: strata) is a layer of rock or soil with internally consistent characteristics that distinguishes it from contiguous layers. Each layer is generally one of a number of parallel layers that lie one upon another, laid down by natural forces. They may extend over hundreds of thousands of square kilometers of the Earth's surface. Strata are typically seen as bands of different colored or differently structured material exposed in cliffs, road cuts, quarries, and river banks. Individual bands may vary in thickness from a few millimeters to a kilometer or more. Each band represents a specific mode of deposition -- river silt, beach sand, coal swamp, sand dune, lava bed, etc.
Geologists study rock strata and categorize them by the material in the beds. Each distinct layer is usually assigned to a "formation" name usually based on a town, river, mountain, or region where the formation is exposed and available for study. For example, the Burgess Shale is a thick exposure of dark, occasionally fossiliferous, shale exposed high in the Canadian Rockies near Burgess Pass. Slight distinctions in material in a formation may be described as "members" or sometimes "beds." Formations are collected into "groups." Groups may be collected into "supergroups."
The stratum is the fundamental unit in a stratigraphic column and forms the basis of the study of stratigraphy.
limestone and shale strata in East Tennessee College of Wooster students.

External links

stratum in Catalan: Estrat
stratum in German: Bank (Geologie)
stratum in Spanish: Estrato
stratum in Basque: Estratu
stratum in Persian: چینه
stratum in French: Strate (géologie)
stratum in Galician: Estrato
stratum in Korean: 지층
stratum in Italian: Giacimento
stratum in Dutch: Laag (stratigrafie)
stratum in Japanese: 地層
stratum in Polish: Warstwa (geologia)
stratum in Portuguese: Estrato geológico
stratum in Russian: Пласт (геология)
stratum in Slovak: Vrstva (geológia)
stratum in Vietnamese: Địa tầng
stratum in Ukrainian: Надра

Synonyms, Antonyms and Related Words

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