When exposure is known in soil science and geography, the location of a slope with respect to the direction or the direction of incidence of the mid-day sun's rays. The exposure direction can be specified numerically as the direction of the surface normal in degrees, relative to true north:
- Exposure = 0 ° means a slope that is oriented to the north ( northern slope, often referred to as " shady side " )
- Exposure = 90 °: the eastern slope, slope with plenty of morning sun
- Exposure = 180 °: southern slope, " sunny side "
- Exposure = 270 °: western slope, slope very sunny (but exposed in Central Europe most to the weather ).
- Intermediate values ( at 5 ° or 10 ° rounded) are verspeichert inter alia, in pedological databases.
As an adjective, the word " exposed " is used, eg: south exposed.
In the topography and geomorphology is called instead of exposure and on the direction of the fall line.
The exposure has especially on steep slopes (such as in the Alps) great influence on the local climate and vegetation. Therefore, the people there have addressed especially in the early period and the Middle Ages usually after exposure of the slopes: south-facing slopes were used for settlements and cultivated areas, north-facing slopes remained forested. In many areas Accordingly, one finds local or Ried names like " sunny side " and " Sonnenberg " or " dark side ".