Study Guide for First Exam SYGN 101 General Information Guide – this is the information I would like you to be able to address. I start with general concepts, then more specific information to know. Some questions are present more than once under different headings. Introduction to ESS – Very General – Answers in parentheses in some cases 1. What is a system? 2. Know the sources of energy for the earth system 3. How does the solar constant affect the earth system? (Answer: Atmosphere as a heat engine) 4. What are the major components of the earth system? (Answer: Geosphere, Hydrosphere, Biosphere – any others? You better check.) 5. How do components of the earth system interact? (Answer: mass and energy transfer between components of the Earth system) 6. Composition of the Earth's atmosphere (Answer: major gases – N2 and O2 in particular) 7. Hydrosphere -- what are major reservoirs of water on earth (e.g., oceans, ice, etc.) 8. How is water transferred between reservoirs? (Answer: the hydrologic cycle) 9. What is the biosphere? 10. Know the basic photosynthesis reaction. 11. What is the Geosphere? 12. What are the three types of rocks? Earth's place in the solar system 1. Where is the CO2 on Earth if it is not in the atmosphere? (Into carbonate rocks and less so into biomass through photosynthesis.) 2. Why does the Earth have such a high concentration of oxygen in its atmosphere? Where does the O2 come from? 3. What would the Earth's temperature be without an atmosphere? The Sun 1. What are the layers of the Sun from its interior to surface? 2. How is the Sun's energy created? 3. What is the solar constant? (1370 watts/m2) 4. What are sunspots and at what period do sunspot cycles regularly occur? 5. What is the temperature of the Sun's photosphere? 6. What is electromagnetic radiation? Introductory Material and Earths Composition – More Specific 1. Describe the earth's basic internal structure (similar to #3). 2. Understand the rock cycle and how the formation of various types of rocks can be interrelated. 3. List the principle zones of the earth (crust, mantle, outer core, inner core), and contrast them in terms of their thickness and chemical makeup. 4. What is the difference between relative age and absolute age? 5. How are radioactive materials used to establish the age of rocks? Give 2 examples of radioactive isotopes and daughter products that are used for the dating. Volcanoes and Igneous Rocks 1. Contrast magma and lava. 2. Distinguish between rocks and minerals. 3. Describe the process of crystallization in minerals (cooling and Bowen’s series). 4. List the two or three most common elements of the earth's crust. 5. List and distinguish among the common silicate minerals. 6. Describe the chemical classification of minerals (felsic, mafic). 7. Describe how the rate of cooling influences the size of crystals in igneous rocks. 8. List the different igneous rock textures (aphanitic, phaneritic, porphyritic, and glass) and explain their origins. 9. What is the Bowen's Reaction series - explain its significance to melting and crystallization. 10. Discuss the various types of magma and how they relate to Igneous rocks (high silica, viscous; low silica, less viscous). 11. List the various kinds of intrusive igneous bodies (dike, sill, laccolith, batholith) and describe each in terms of the criteria used to classify plutons. 12. List and describe the factors that determine the nature of an igneous eruption (explosive or runny). 13. List the categories of materials that may be emitted during a volcanic eruption. 14. Compare and contrast the three basic types of volcanoes (shield, composite, and cinder cone) as to size, shape and eruptive style. 15. Name a prominent example of each of the three basic types of volcanoes. 16. Relate the distribution of volcanic activity to the plate tectonics model. Sedimentary Rocks 1. Explain the formation of sedimentary rocks in terms of the rock cycle. 2. Explain and give examples of the various environments of deposition of sediment. 3. List and understand the basic groups(types) of sedimentary rocks. 4. Describe the ways in which sedimentary rocks are lithified. Metamorphic Rocks 1. List the agents of metamorphism and briefly describe the effects of each agent. 2. Briefly describe the textural differences exhibited by metamorphic rocks (foliated, non-foliated). 3. Discuss the types of metamorphism. Plate Tectonics 1. List the basic types of plate boundaries (divergent, convergent, transform) and describe the relative motions of each. 2. List the driving mechanisms that might cause plate motion (Thermal convection, mantle plumes, hot spots). 3. Be able to cite the lines of evidence in support of the Plate Tectonics Theory, Continental Drift and Sea floor Spreading. 4. Understand how geomagnetic reversals provide evidence of sea floor spreading. 5. Understand the tectonic processes resulting in the formation of major Earth features such as mountain belts, ocean basins, deep sea trenches, volcanic areas, etc. 6. How did the theory of Plate Tectonics come about? Who is Alfred Wegener. 7. What are the various features associated with the basic types of plate boundaries (subduction zone, trenches, 8. etc.). 9. Briefly outline how mountain building is related to plate tectonics. Earthquakes 1. Discuss the principle of the seismograph. 2. List and contrast the basic types of earthquake waves (body waves - P & S, surface waves -L). 3. Distinguish between the focus and epicenter of an earthquake. 4. Describe the world-wide distribution pattern of earthquake activity. 5. Explain the Richter earthquake magnitude scale and the Modified Mercalli scale of earthquake intensity. 6. Explain how the epicenter of an earthquake is located. 7. Describe the effects of earthquake activity. Stress, Strain and Geological Features 1. Define the basic type of stresses to which rocks may be subjected. 2. Define the basic types of behavior rocks may exhibit when subjected to deforming forces, strain. 3. Contrast the various types of folds (anticlines, synclines, basins, domes). 4. Contrast the different types of faults (normal, reverse, strike-slip, thrust). 5. Describe the type of stress that produces each type of fault. 6. Understand the basics of strike and dip. Some Additional Questions 1) What are the three main compositional layers of the earth? What is (are) the major material(s) comprising each of the layers? 2) What are the three main types of plate margins 3) What are the approximate ages of: the earth, the oldest rocks found on earth, the oldest fossils? Why are the oldest rocks found younger than the estimated age of the earth. What evidence is there of the age of the earth (meteorites, moon rocks) 4) What are the major divisions of geological time (Eons: Precambrian, Phanerozoic; Phanerozoic divided into Eras: Paleozoic, Mesozoic, Cenozoic; Cenozoic, most recent, divided into Tertiary and Quaternary)? 5) What type(s) of eruptions are most dangerous? Where do volcanoes with this eruptive style occur? 6) What are the main differences between extrusive and intrusive igneous rocks that would allow you to distinguish them? 7) Describe the process(es) by which sedimentary rocks are transformed into igneous rocks. 8) How can the principles of original horizontality and superposition be applied to the relative dating of sedimentary strata 9) What are the major factors controlling metamorphism? What are the sources of heat for metamorphism? What creates metamorphic pressures? 10) Draw a simplified diagram of the rock cycle. Include igneous, sedimentary and metamorphic rocks. 11) What are the critical differences between minerals and rocks?