Encyclopedia of Planetary Landforms

2015 Edition
| Editors: Henrik Hargitai, Ákos Kereszturi

Contraction Crack

Reference work entry
DOI: https://doi.org/10.1007/978-1-4614-3134-3_102


Cracks, which occur when stresses build up in a material due to contraction either due to thermal cooling (as in thermal contraction polygons and columnar basalt) or loss of material, particularly volatiles (as in desiccation).


A type of  fracture

A type of  tension crack



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© Springer Science+Business Media New York 2015

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Physikalisches Institut, Bern UniversitätBernSwitzerland