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Earth Science Week One

by: Maggie Pate Skidmore

Earth Science Week One GG 1113

Marketplace > Mississippi State University > Geology > GG 1113 > Earth Science Week One
Maggie Pate Skidmore
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About this Document

Notes for syllabus week and the week of January 18th
Survey Earth Science
Maurice Testa
Class Notes
EARTH, Science, Survey, space, Geology




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This 4 page Class Notes was uploaded by Maggie Pate Skidmore on Friday January 22, 2016. The Class Notes belongs to GG 1113 at Mississippi State University taught by Maurice Testa in Winter 2016. Since its upload, it has received 107 views. For similar materials see Survey Earth Science in Geology at Mississippi State University.


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Date Created: 01/22/16
Introduction Thursday, January 14, 2016 9:34 AM Why study the Earth? - Water resources - Mineral resources - Rock resources - Natural resources - Land use - Climate change - Waste management - To preserve life on Earth What makes the Earth unique? 1. It has a metallic core and a magnetic field a. Protectsus from radiation (solar rays) 2. It is slightly enriched with radioactiveelements 3. It is enriched with Oxygen a. It's in the rocks, mostlythe crust 4. Earth is a Goldilocks planet a. Not too hot, not too cold, it's just right (Ba-dum-tsh) 5. It has produced a hydrosphere 6. It has an atmospherein chemical disequilibrium a. This is good because it means its not balanced (not equal amounts of gases, which is good because we need more oxygen than the others) 7. It sustains life 8. It is tectonicallyactive a. Has volcanos,mountains, earthquakes, etc Chemistry - Geochemistry= The study of the elemental abundance, distribution and associations on Earth ○ Eight mostimportant elements:  Aluminum  Calcium  Iron  Magnesium  Oxygen  Potassium  Silicon  Sodium ○ Which are most abundant? Which is the odd one out? (Picture on slideshow) - Mineralogy = Building blocks of rocks ○ In excess of 3,500 different mineral compositions ○ Most important group is the SILICATE family of minerals ○ Quarts is one of the mostabundant minerals on Earth  Sand and glass are made out of quarts - Petrology= Rocks ○ Three groups of rocks: 1. Sedimentary □ Loose,eroded rock; looks like its made out of pieces of other rocks 2. Igneous □ Purest form of rock on the planet because it comes from volcanos(changed by heat) 3. Metamorphic □ Rock that has been changed by pressure/heat □ Rock that has been changed by pressure/heat - Physics ○ Geophysics = The study of Earth's form and function ○ Tectonics = Mechanism of planetary activity  Plate movementat the surface caused by mantle convectionbelow ○ Structural geology = Crustal deformation ○ Rock mechanics = Stress and strain as it affects individual rock types - Jobs in Earth Sciences ○ Geologist = petroleum and mining ○ Atmospheric scientist ○ Oceanographer ○ Geographer, surveyor, cartographer, etc. ○ Planetary geology - Scientific Method ○ A reliable way to figure things out  Define a question  Background research  Hypothesis  Test hypothesis  Analyze data  Interpret data  Conclusions  Publish  Retest ○ Alhazen is the father of the scientific method - Theory v. Law ○ Theory - hypothesis that’s been tested multiple times, nothing disproved it yet; explains why ○ Law - generalizes a body of observations,nothing has disproved it yet; it doesn't explain why - Correlation and Causation Is there really an increase in volcanic activity?Why or why not? Solar System Tuesday, January 19, 2016 9:32 AM Perseids MeteorShower - happens everyyear around August - Yellow = sodium - Green = nickel - Redish = slow - Blue = fast Earth is Dangerous - Half of earth's residents are at risk of flood, drought, hurricanes, landlslides, volcanoes,or earthquakes - Earth is in the Milky Way ○ The earth is one of 8 known planets that form a solar system ○ Our sun is a star, one of about 200 billion in our galaxy ○ The Milky Way is one of 24 galaxies making up our local group ○ Our local group is a part of a collection of local groups, and so on ○ The current theories of the universe imply it is bounded, and expanding Focus on the solar system - Inner/terrestrialplanets - Outer/gas giant (Jovian) planets - Outer planets - Planetary rings are common ○ Saturn's rings are made mostly of ice ○ Uranus's rings are mostlyrocky bolder type material - The solar system contains a lot of "junk": meteoroidsand dust ○ A meteoroidin space becomes a meteorin the sky and a meteoriteon the earth's surface - Asteroid: a relatively small, inactive body, composedof rock, carbon or metal, which is orbiting the Sun - Comet: A relatively small, sometimesactive object, which is composedof dirt and ices. Cometsare characterized by dust and gas tails when in proximity to the Sun. Far from the Sun it is difficult to distinguish an asteroid from a comet - Meteoroid: A small particle from an asteroid or cometorbiting the Sun - Meteor: A meteoroidthat is observedas it burns up in the Earth's atmosphere - a shooting star - Meteorite: A meteoroidthat survives its passage through the Earth's atmosphereand impacts the Earth's surface - Dwarf planets are found in a ring of objects beyond Pluto: the Kuiper Belt - Beyond the Kuiper belt is the Oort Cloud Should Pluto be considered a planet or not? Requirements for something to be a planet: 1. It must be in orbit around the Sun 2. It must be large enough that it takes on a nearly round shape 3. It has cleared its orbit of other objects (Pluto doesn't do this because it has all kinds of space drunk flying around it -- the Kuiper Belt) Dwarfs vs. Planets Similarities:Both orbit the Sun and have sufficient mass for self-gravityto make them round Differences: Planets have cleared the neighborhoods around their orbits, while dwarf planets have not; Pluto, for example, orbits through the icy debris of the Kuiper Belt - Lunar Origin The Fission Theory ○ The Fission Theory  The present Pacific Ocean basin is the most popular site for the part of the Earth from which the Mooncame. This theory was thought possible since the Moon's compositionresemblesthat of the Earth's mantle and a rapidly spinning Earth could have cast off the Moon from its outer layers. ○ The Capture Theory  This theory proposes that the Moon was formed somewhereelse in the solar system, and was later captured by the gravitational field of the Earth ○ The Condensation Theory  This theory proposes that the Moon and the Earth condensed out of "nothing" ○ The Giant ImpactorTheory  When Earth and this rogue body collided, the energy involved was 100 million times larger than the event believed to have wiped out the dinosaurs. Earth was put into a spin and ejected large amounts of debris into Earth orbit. Our Moon formed from this debris. ○ Two Moons?!?!  In 2011 a paper was published in Nature suggesting that we once had two moons  There was one bigger moon that broke off from Earth and one molten moon that came from "somewhereelse" and the two moonsmerged and that’s why someof the rock from Earth is found in the Moon but some isn't


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