Soal Latihan dan Jawaban Reading Comprehension 33

Wednesday, March 21st, 2012 - reading comprehension

Any rock that has cooled and solidified from a molten state is an igneous rock.

Therefore, if the Earth began as a superheated sphere in space, all the rocks making up

its crust may well have been igneous and thus the ancestors of all other rocks. Even

today, approximately 95 percent of the entire crust is igneous. Periodically, molten

(5)  material wells out of the Earth’s interior to invade the surface layers or to flow onto the

surface itself. This material cools into a wide variety of igneous rocks. In the molten

state, it is called magma as it pushes into the crust and lava when it runs out onto the



All magma consists basically of a variety of silicate minerals (high in siliconoxygen

(10)  compounds), but the chemical composition of any given flow may differ

radically from that of any other. The resulting igneous rocks will reflect these

differences. Igneous rocks also vary in texture as well as chemistry. Granite, for

instance, is a coarse-grained igneous rock whose individual mineral crystals have

formed to a size easily seen by the naked eye. A slow rate of cooling has allowed the

(15)  crystals to reach this size. Normally, slow cooling occurs when the crust is invaded by

magma that remains buried well below the surface. Granite may be found on the

surface of the contemporary landscape, but from its coarse texture we know that it must

have formed through slow cooling at a great depth and later been laid bare by erosion.

Igneous rocks with this coarse-grained texture that formed at depth are called plutonic.


(20)  On the other hand, if the same magma flows onto the surface and is quickly cooled

by the atmosphere, the resulting rock will be fine-grained and appear quite different

from granite, although the chemical composition will be identical. This kind of rock is

called rhyolite. The most finely grained igneous rock is volcanic glass or obsidian,

which has no crystals. Some researchers believe this is because of rapid cooling; others

(25)  believe it is because of a lack of water vapor and other gases in the lava. The black

obsidian cliffs of Yellowstone National Park are the result of a lava flow of basalt

running head on into a glacier. Some of the glacier melted on contact, but suddenly

there also appeared a huge black mass of glassy stone.


Reading Comprehension 33


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