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Geography

Grade 5

The physical structure of south africa

Module 7

The structure of the rsa

  • The surface of the RSA is not as flat as a tabletop. The uneven nature of the surface has to do with the structure or morphology of the land. Landforms such as coastal plains, lowlands, plateaux, mountains and rivers constitute the structure of the land.
  • If you look at the relief map of the RSA below, or at any physical map of the RSA in an atlas, you will understand that different parts of our country are situated on different altitudes above sea level.

Figure 1

  • Different colours are used on such a relief map to indicate the different altitudes above sea level:

Green = lowest areas, e.g. coastal regions

Yellow = just higher than the green areas (Little Karoo)

Orange = higher areas

Brown = mountains

Purple / white = highest mountain peaks

Blue = water

  • Use your atlas and colour your map according to the above-mentioned colour key.

Morphological areas of the rsa

Coastline and coastal plains

  • The coastline is the area where the land meets the sea. The RSA has a very long and almost unbroken coastline with few capes (points such as Cape Point) and few bays (such as Table Bay and False Bay). The only area where both these are to be found, is the Cape Peninsula.

Figure 2

  • The coastal plain is the low-lying area along the coast. The coastal plain of the RSA forms a narrow band between the sea and the mountains of the escarpment.

The little karoo and the great karoo

Figure 3

  • There is, however, an area between the sea and the escarpment where one first has to climb a few “steps” to reach the escarpment. These “steps” are called the Karoo. “Karoo” is a word meaning hard. Thus it is a hard, dry region.
  • It comprises two flat smaller plateaux between mountain ranges.
  • From the south coast (Mossel Bay) the land rises gradually from the coastal plain to the Outeniqua Mountains and the Langeberg. The low-lying area that follows this and lies just before the Swartberg Mountains is called the Little Karoo. To the north of the Swartberg range lies the Great Karoo , which is situated one step higher than the Little Karoo. It is found just before the Nuweveld Mountains, which form part of the escarpment.

Plateau and escarpment

  • The escarpment indicates where the plateau of the interior begins, and forms an unbroken mountain chain. It begins with the Kamiesberg range in the northwest, and towards the south it becomes the Roggeveld Mountains . It then veers towards the east, where the Nuweveld , Sneeu , and Storm mountain ranges are found. In the northwest one finds the Drakensberg range. Here the escarpment is much higher than elsewhere. The highest peaks of the Drakensberg are Mont-Aux-Sources (3 299 m) and Thaba Ntlenyana (3 482 m). The escarpment forms our country’s most important watershed.
  • The mountains of South Africa were formed by curvature, shifting or folding, just like all other mountains throughout the world. The Hex River Mountains, the Cederberg Mountains, the Swartberg range and the Langeberg Mountains are, for example, all fold mountains in sedimentary rock. Many of these have become flattened by erosion, and one does not see much of it. Examples of igneous rock can be seen in the Drakensberg range.
  • Unfortunately the escarpment prevents moist air from the sea reaching the interior plateau , which causes frequent droughts in the interior of the country.
  • The interior plateau is the vast stretch of land that is situated to the interior of the escarpment. It covers the greatest part of the RSA and lies from 900 m (west) to 3 000 m (east) above sea level.

Questions & Answers

where we get a research paper on Nano chemistry....?
Maira Reply
what are the products of Nano chemistry?
Maira Reply
There are lots of products of nano chemistry... Like nano coatings.....carbon fiber.. And lots of others..
learn
Even nanotechnology is pretty much all about chemistry... Its the chemistry on quantum or atomic level
learn
Google
da
no nanotechnology is also a part of physics and maths it requires angle formulas and some pressure regarding concepts
Bhagvanji
hey
Giriraj
Preparation and Applications of Nanomaterial for Drug Delivery
Hafiz Reply
revolt
da
Application of nanotechnology in medicine
what is variations in raman spectra for nanomaterials
Jyoti Reply
I only see partial conversation and what's the question here!
Crow Reply
what about nanotechnology for water purification
RAW Reply
please someone correct me if I'm wrong but I think one can use nanoparticles, specially silver nanoparticles for water treatment.
Damian
yes that's correct
Professor
I think
Professor
Nasa has use it in the 60's, copper as water purification in the moon travel.
Alexandre
nanocopper obvius
Alexandre
what is the stm
Brian Reply
is there industrial application of fullrenes. What is the method to prepare fullrene on large scale.?
Rafiq
industrial application...? mmm I think on the medical side as drug carrier, but you should go deeper on your research, I may be wrong
Damian
How we are making nano material?
LITNING Reply
what is a peer
LITNING Reply
What is meant by 'nano scale'?
LITNING Reply
What is STMs full form?
LITNING
scanning tunneling microscope
Sahil
how nano science is used for hydrophobicity
Santosh
Do u think that Graphene and Fullrene fiber can be used to make Air Plane body structure the lightest and strongest. Rafiq
Rafiq
what is differents between GO and RGO?
Mahi
what is simplest way to understand the applications of nano robots used to detect the cancer affected cell of human body.? How this robot is carried to required site of body cell.? what will be the carrier material and how can be detected that correct delivery of drug is done Rafiq
Rafiq
if virus is killing to make ARTIFICIAL DNA OF GRAPHENE FOR KILLED THE VIRUS .THIS IS OUR ASSUMPTION
Anam
analytical skills graphene is prepared to kill any type viruses .
Anam
Any one who tell me about Preparation and application of Nanomaterial for drug Delivery
Hafiz
what is Nano technology ?
Bob Reply
write examples of Nano molecule?
Bob
The nanotechnology is as new science, to scale nanometric
brayan
nanotechnology is the study, desing, synthesis, manipulation and application of materials and functional systems through control of matter at nanoscale
Damian
Is there any normative that regulates the use of silver nanoparticles?
Damian Reply
what king of growth are you checking .?
Renato
What fields keep nano created devices from performing or assimulating ? Magnetic fields ? Are do they assimilate ?
Stoney Reply
why we need to study biomolecules, molecular biology in nanotechnology?
Adin Reply
?
Kyle
yes I'm doing my masters in nanotechnology, we are being studying all these domains as well..
Adin
why?
Adin
what school?
Kyle
biomolecules are e building blocks of every organics and inorganic materials.
Joe
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Source:  OpenStax, Social sciences: geography grade 5. OpenStax CNX. Sep 23, 2009 Download for free at http://cnx.org/content/col10986/1.2
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