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EES exam 1
Terms in this set (52)
developed in Scotland in 1780s and 1790s. Study of the earth and its structure and substances
a web of attitudes, speculations, methods, and undertakings about the nature of the objective universe
limited of science
restricted to investigating the natural world.
Seeks natural explanations for what we observe in the world around us.
Does not directly address questions of ultimate reality.
Does not make moral judgements.
Does not make aesthetic judgements.
Cannot tell you how to use scientific knowledge.
Only as good as its underlying philosophical assumptions
Assumptions of Science
There is a physical universe that exists and can be explored by our senses.
The physical universe is orderly, at least on some level.
For historical sciences like geology, an assumption of uniformitarianism (the present is the key to the past) is needed.
observation, question, hypothesis, test, theory
Problem with simplified scientific method
Human reasoning is not always purely inductive.
Scientists are human beings, not machines.
And there are biases and egos.
a substance that is naturally formed, solid, has a characteristic chemical formula, and has a characteristic crystalline structure.
Process of mineral formation
Crystallization from a cooling melt.
Precipitation from a solution: hot water or acid solutions, evaporation, precipitation of minerals in large void spaces, secretion by organisms.
Solid state diffusion.
What is the mineralogical basis and benefit for fluoridating municipal water supplies?
apatite (the mineral in teeth) contains the element fluorine. Most fluorine in apatite increases its hardness. Most public water is fluoridated because it reduces cavities.
Basic building block of the silicate minerals
What are the 8 most important rock-forming silicates? How are dark-colored silicates different from light-
quartz, plagioclase, feldspar, potassium, mica, olivine, pyroxene, and amphibole. The last four contain iron which is the reason that they are darker.
What are the 5 most important rock-forming non-silicates?
Calcite, gypsum, halite, hematite, and magnetite.
What is asbestos? What are the main asbestos minerals? Which type is the most heavily mined?
A group of minerals that form tiny, flexible fibers. 1) White chrysotile (most common). 2) Brown amosite. 3) Blue crocidolite.
White is the most heavily mined.
What are the effects of asbestos on human health? Which settings pose the most risk for lethal exposure?
Which type of asbestos is the most dangerous?
Lung diseases, asbestosis which is inflammation of the lung. Also mesothelioma. Mining, plumbing, and construction can be the most dangerous settings. Blue is the most dangerous.
An aggregate of minerals and/or a mass of glass
What are the three main types of rocks, and the processes involved in their formation?
Igneous: formation from the cooling of a liquid melt (magma). Heat and pressure. Have a lot of crystals.
Sedimentary: form from the cementing together of fragments of pre existing rocks or by the precipitation of minerals from the water.
Metamorphic: Form from the growth of new minerals (recrystallization) in pre existing rocks in response to increased heat and pressure.
What are the components (materials and processes) of the rock cycle?
Weathering and erosion, deposition, melting, cooling, uplift, heat and pressure.
How are intrusive and extrusive igneous rocks different in terms of their texture (grain size)?
Intrusive rocks have more crystals because they are below the surface.
How are igneous rock classified? What are some common varieties of igneous rocks? (know volcanic and
plutonic equivalents for various compositions)
Intrusive (plutonic) and extrusive (volcanic).
Peridotite: most abundant on earth, intrusive, low silica
Gabbro: intrusive, low silica
Basalt: extrusive, medium silica
Diorite: intrusive, medium silica
Andesite: extrusive, medium silica
Granite (most abundant rock in continental crust): intrusive, high silica
Rhyolite: extrusive: high silica
What is the most abundant rock type at the Earth's surface: igneous, metamorphic, or sedimentary?
How are sedimentary rocks classified? Be able to name some major examples of each type.
Clastic (detrital): formed from fragments of preexisting rocks.
Chemical: formed from minerals precipitated from water
Clastic ex: mudstone, siltstone, sandstone, breccia
Chemical: rock salt, gypsum, limestone, coal.
What is the geological basis for the location of the racehorse industry in the Bluegrass region?
Limestone weathers and produces high calcium soil in bluegrass. Horses eat high calcium grass which produces strong bones (apatite)
What are the effects of heat and pressure on rocks buried deep within the Earth?
Recrystallization or new minerals are grown
What are a few metamorphic rock types and what original rock types are they made from?
Gneiss: wide variety
What is foliation and how does it form?
pressure squeezes the flat or elongate minerals within a rock so they become aligned. These rocks develop a platy or sheet-like structure that reflects the direction that pressure was applied in.
What are the most abundant chemical elements in Earth? How do we know the average composition of the Earth?
Iron, oxygen, silicon, magnesium. Types of stony meteorites are samples from the original
How old is the Earth, and how do we know this?
4.56 billion years. Rocks, volcanos, meteorites.
What are some characteristics (composition, thickness, physical state, mineral composition, physical
behavior, age, etc.) of the inner core? outer core? mantle? deep mantle? uppermost mantle? continental
crust? oceanic crust?
Inner core: solid, mostly iron and nickel
Outer core: liquid, mostly iron and nickel, convects flow are currents of molten iron which produce earth's magnetic field
Mantle: solid rock, few percent melt in uppermost part, convection occurs over geological time scales
CC: compositionally diverse. thick
Oceanic crust: not as old, compositionally homogeneous: basalt.
Why is the inner core solid, while the cooler, outer core is liquid?
The temperature and pressure increase the deeper you go into the earth so this causes the solid inner core because the intense pressure and heat.
Which layer in the Earth is responsible for the Earth's magnetic field?
What is mantle convection and what causes it?
the slow creeping motion of Earth's solid silicate mantle caused by convection currents carrying heat from the interior to the planet's surface.
Where is the mantle partially molten?
In the uppermost part
What is the lithosphere?
The portion of the earth that behaves rigidly. Does not convect. Crust and uppermost mantle make up the lithosphere. 13 major ones.
How fast are the lithospheric plates moving relative to each other?
Rates of a few cm/yr
How were the boundaries between the tectonic plates identified? (i.e., what feature always occurs along
active plate boundaries?)
Defined by zones of seismic activity
What are the three types of plate boundaries, and what are their relative movements?
Divergent: move away
Convergent: move together
Transform: move past one another
What are some geological evidences for the breakup of supercontinents?
Fit of the continents, locations of ancient glaciations, distribution of terrestrial fossils, matching rock units and mountain belts
What is seafloor spreading? How do we know it is happening? How does it occur?
Ocean crust varies in age in regular patterns, generation of new ocean crust at mid ocean ridges. Destruction of old ocean crust.
Where are the youngest portions of the ocean floor located? the oldest?
The youngest ocean floor is located on the mid ocean ridge. The oldest is located near the continents next to a subduction zone
Why is there no oceanic crust around today older than ~200 million years?
Because of subduction
What are the three types of faults, what kinds of stresses produce motion along them, and how are they related to the three types of plate boundaries?
Normal: stress is tensile, pulling apart, can make it move down.
Reverse (thrust): stress is compression, pushing together, shortening.
Right lateral strike slip fault: stress is shear (horizontal displacement)
Know terminology related to earthquakes: epicenter, focus, fault plane, scarp
Epicenter: point on surface above focus
Focus: when rupture on fault plane started.
Scarp: amount of slip on fault
What are the four types of seismic waves? What are their relative velocities and motions?
Body waves: travel through the interior of the earth in all directions from the focus
P waves: primary, fastest, compressional (push/pull)
S waves: secondary, 2/3 velocity of P waves, shear
Surface waves: travel on surface toward the epicenter, slower than body, responsible for damage to structures. Buildings kill people.
What is seismic amplification? What causes it? How was this important during the 1989 Loma Prieta
earthquake in the Bay Area of California?
A function of the type of material at the ground surface
How does a modern seismograph work?
Has a ground motion detection sensor called a seismometer. Records motion of the ground.
Why do seismic waves travel along curved paths within the deep Earth?
Seismic velocity of rocks increases with depth in the mantle, result of increasing pressure with depth
What is the Mercalli intensity scale based on?
Measures intensity of ground shaking. Types of damage and accounts of observers
How is the Richter magnitude determined for an earthquake? How is it different from the Mercalli intensity?
From seismograph measurements. Measure of the size of the earthquake at the focus.
What are the main types of seismic hazards?
Shaking and ground rupture, liquefaction, landslides, fires, disease, tsunami
Explain the methods and limitations of (a) short-term and (b) long-term earthquake prediction.
Preceded by natural precursors: Foreshocks, low frequency radio waves, weird animal behavior.
Long term involves the assessment of the probability of an earthquake of a certain magnitude occurring along a particular fault over a period of time.
In general, does movement along a fault increase or decrease its chance of producing a future earthquake?
Rock salt and gypsum
formed from the evaporation of sea or saline lake water
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