Three Types of Rock
Part of Hall of Planet Earth.
Igneous rocks form when molten rock (magma or lava) cools and solidifies. Sedimentary rocks originate when particles settle out of water or air, or by precipitation of minerals from water. They accumulate in layers. Metamorphic rocks result when existing rocks are changed by heat, pressure, or reactive fluids, such as hot, mineral-laden water. Most rocks are made of minerals containing silicon and oxygen, the most abundant elements in the Earth’s crust.