Can You Answer the Following Questions?
ATMOSPHERE OF EARTH
1. The three basic chemical components of the earth's atmosphere are _________________, _________________, and _________________.
2. Plant biology is responsible for the artificially high concentration of ________________ in the earth's atmosphere which equals approximately *________________ percent.
3. The bulk of the earth's atmosphere is ________________, and it is probably a result of the eruptive processes of volcanoes. Its percentage in the atmosphere is approximately *_________________. Gases emitted during volcanic eruptions are also indirectly responsible for producing the carbonate rocks (rocks which contain carbon within their atomic structure, such as limestone-- CaCO3) and directly supplying the water vapor which cooled and condensed to form the oceans.
*4. The decay of radioactive Potassium 40 into _______________ has made it possible for this gas to be brought to the surface of the earth by ______________ eruptions to produce the _______________ percent of this gas which is found in the atmosphere.
5. The four basic layers of the earth's atmosphere, stated in their correct order from lowest to highest levels are the _______________, the _______________, the _______________, and the _______________.
6. These four atmospheric layers are defined by their decrease or increase in ______________ with increasing altitude.
7. The temperature in the lowest segment of earth's ocean of air becomes _______________ with increasing elevation because there is less pressure from overlying layers, and the air expands.
8. Above the first layer of the earth's atmosphere, called the ________________, the temperature begins to ________________, yet the atmospheric pressure is still decreasing.
9. This second layer of atmosphere, mentioned in the last problem,
is called the _______________. The reason for the change in temperature
results from the absorption of ______________ radiation by ozone molecules
(O3). This region can also be called the _______________ layer. Chlorofluorocarbons,
which many times are used as the
10. On Mars, daily temperatures vary to a much GREATER/LESSER (circle one) extent than on the earth because the Martian atmosphere is extremely ________________, and therefore, it cannot retain much heat.
CIRCULATION OF THE ATMOSPHERE
11. The region of the earth which receives the most energy from the sun is called the _________________, while the areas of earth which receive the smallest amounts of solar energy are called the _________________.
12. The most basic reason for the major wind patterns on the earth, or for that matter any planet, is the _____________________________________________________________
13. One might expect the major wind zones of earth to operate in a strictly north to south configuration; however, this is not the case. The earth's _______________ deflects the circulating air, causing the major wind systems to blow from either the _______________ or _______________ directions.
14. The deflection mentioned in the previous problem is called the _______________ effect or "force," and on earth, it produces basically ONE/TWO/THREE (circle one) major climatic zonal regions.
*15. An air mass in the northern hemisphere, moving from a lower to a higher latitude position, will be deflected to the RIGHT/LEFT (circle one).
*16. An artillery shell fired towards the equator from a southern hemispheric position will be deflected towards the LEFT/RIGHT (circle one) of its assumed strike position unless there is a directional compensation.
*17. Based upon the "Orbital and Physical Characteristics of the Planets" sheet, why should Venus' global wind circulation reflect a single cell which simply transports warmer air from the equator to the poles and cooler air back from the poles to the equator? ________________________________________________________________________
*18. Conditions on Jupiter favor a much more complicated multicellular circulation pattern because of Jupiter's ___________________________. This is the reason why the planet presents a striped or zebra-like pattern to telescopic observers. Similar situations are evident for the other Jovian worlds, but their appearance is less distinct because of hazier atmospheres.
THREE MAJOR ROCK GROUPS
19. The three most common elements contained within the earth are ________________, ________________, and _________________.
20. The three major rock groups are i_______________ , s_______________, and m_______________ rocks.
21. ________________ rocks form from the cooling of any molten material, either at depth, near the surface, or on the surface. Granites and basalts are two representatives of this major classification of rock.
22. ________________ rocks form from the dep _______________of other rocks which have been eroded by wind, water, weathering, or from the chemical pre _______________of minerals in saturated solutions of water. An example of the former is sandstone while a good example of the latter is limestone.
23. ________________ rocks form when s_______________ or i_______________ rocks undergo a period of heating or compressional stress which changes the structural arrangement of that rock's molecules. Limestone changes to marble when subjected to these types of conditions.
24. Of the three major rock types, _________________ rocks would not be expected to be found on the airless and waterless moon.
INTERIOR OF EARTH
25. The four basic layers of the earth from surface to interior are called the _______________, _______________, _______________ and _______________.
26. The various layers of earth are based upon differences in c_______________ and d_______________.
27. The various layers of earth were created as the result of a molten body which cooled. As rock crystallized the denser minerals __________________________________________
28. The process mentioned in the previous problem is called chemical or crustal ______________________.
29. The two most familiar types of seismic (earthquake) waves are known as the ________________ and the ________________ waves. A synonym for each of the above words would be ________________ waves and ________________ waves.
30. _______________ waves travel faster than _______________ waves. Therefore the time delay between the reception of these two types of seismic waves tells the seismologists the _______________ to the epicenter of the earthquake from the seismic station.
31. Seismologists theorize that the earth's outer core is liquid because _______________ do not penetrate liquids. Therefore, when an earthquake occurs, certain seismic stations record both the _______________ and the _______________ while other stations record only the ______________. The inescapable conclusion is that the earth's outer core must be liquid.
32. A material may be kept in its solid state, when its temperature is much higher than its melting point, if there is a sufficiently high amount of _________________.
33. The earth's inner core is SOLID/LIQUID (circle one). Increasing temperatures are no match for the increase in _________________ which dominates the 11,000 °F (6000 K) temperatures of this region.
THE DYNAMIC EARTH-- PLATE TECTONICS
34. Give several reasons why continental drift is currently accepted as the overall theory of earth evolution. Consider (a) continental shapes, (b) fossil records, and (c) magnetic pole reversals
35. The earth's crust is broken into a number of _______________, which, like ice cubes, jostle for position over a denser but plastic asthenosphere which may slowly be moving. In the case of ocean plates, the motion may be more gravity driven, the plates sliding from higher to lower seafloor elevations over periods of tens of millions of years.
36. The location of the denser asthenosphere is just below the _________________ and above the _____________. The asthenosphere, however, is really a part of the ______________.
37. The earth is a dynamic planet with new crustal material being created in regions where material is upwelling. The best example of this phenomenon is along the __________________________________.
38. In locations where new crust is being regenerated, active _________________ are found. State the name of a country which lies in such an active region of earth's crust. ____________________
39. Since the earth has a finite surface area, any region where there is crustal material being formed precludes that there must be a location or locations where surface material is being destroyed. Such areas are called __________________ zones.
40. In such a district, one plate is sliding under another plate. The friction between the two plates as they jerk past each other makes such an area prone for ________________. The increase in pressure on the subducting material, plus the friction which results as the two plates scrape past each other melts rocks, normally creating ________________ in back of the plate boundaries. In front of the plate boundaries a deep ________________ can be found.
41. One region of the world which meets the conditions expressed in the last two problems is ___________________________________________.
42. The North American plate is pressing southwestward against the Pacific plate, causing the Pacific plate to move northwestward toward Alaska. Why does this spell trouble for Los Angeles and San Francisco? _________________________________________________
43. The action of two plates crashing into each other results in the formation of ________________. State two examples which support this contention.
44. The type of geological structure which forms the Hawaiian Islands is called a ____________________.
45. As the Pacific plate moves towards the northwest, it passes over a _________________ in the middle of the ocean basin which has produced a series of volcanoes known today as the Hawaiian Islands. This is the mechanism by which volcanoes have formed on Mars and possibly Venus.
46. The statement that the continents are really floating over the upper portion of the earth's ___________________ is true, because the continental crustal material is less ___________________ than the material which is below it.
47. Based upon the last problem, the regions of the world where the crust is thickest are found under _________________, while the areas where the crust is thinnest are found under ________________.
48. If magma works its way towards the surface and domes up a region, the surface area becomes LARGER/SMALLER (circle one). Eventually the upward pressure becomes so great that __________________ occurs. This releases the pressure by creating more ______________________.
49. When the ground along a fracture zone, such as was mentioned in the last statement, moves away from the region of weakness in opposite directions, the fault is called a ___________________.
50. The viscosity of lava is an indication of its resistance to flow. Lava with a high viscosity will flow _____________________________, while lava with a low viscosity will flow _________________________.
51. A _________________ is the region surrounding matter which is either affected by some inherent property or condition of that matter. In turn, this matter will affect other _________________ that happens to be positioned within the field boundary.
52. Two good examples of the above statement would be the conditions of matter which produce a ______________________ field and a ______________________ field.
*53. A magnetic field may be also created if the s a of innumerable atoms are made to point in the same direction. This is not how the magnetic fields of the earth and most other planets are generated, but it does approximate the mechanism which allows Mercury, with a solid core, to maintain a magnetic field.
54. A _________________ is composed of positively charged ions and electrons.
55. A flow of electrons will produce an electric current as well as a _____________________. In fact particles in motion, whether positively or negatively charged, will create a field
56. A charged particle approaching a field line will have difficulty penetrating the field and will most likely yield to the field by beginning to _________________ around it.
EARTH'S MAGNETIC FIELD
57. The earth's magnetic field is produced by a directional flow of ________________ within the outer liquid core. The earth's ________________ shapes this flow into a series of loops which amplify the magnetic field, allowing it to extend into space.
58. If the electrical currents in the earth's interior were flowing in random directions, all of the individual fields generated would ________________ each other.
59. A field such as a magnetic field affects the matter in the space which surrounds it. Thus if an electron or an ion approaches the earth's magnetic field, the charged particle will be made to ___________________________________________________________.
60. Plasma is continuously streaming away from the sun, and this phenomenon is known as the _______________________.
61. Almost all of the solar wind plasma which reaches earth is TRAPPED/DEFLECTED (circle one) by earth's magnetic field.
62. As an electron approaches the magnetic field of earth, it first encounters the ______________________ where it begins to feel the influence of earth's field. In this region the solar magnetic field is STRONGER/WEAKER (circle one) than earth's field.
63. At this point the velocity of the plasma is abruptly reduced, causing more plasma to "pile" up behind it. This creates a ______________________.
64. As the electron gets closer to the earth, it may eventually reach a position where the solar and terrestrial magnetic fields are equal. This region is called the _________________.
65. Once beyond this neutral region, the electron is under the influence of the magnetic field of __________________.
66. If the particle is energetic enough to continue its penetration of the field, it will now become trapped within the _________________ of earth. The particle, depending upon its charge, will begin to move toward one of two regions of intensified field strength above the earth's surface. These regions are called the _______________________ belts.
67. Occasionally, energetic solar flares shower the earth's magnetic environment with bursts of high energy plasma. These distort the magnetosphere, including the Van Allen belts, causing them to "brush" against the upper atmosphere dumping electrons and protons into the regions surrounding the north and south magnetic poles. This event produces the ______________________ and the ______________________.
68. The magnetosphere of earth allows very few charged particles to reach the earth's atmosphere or its surface. This effectively blocks our planet from receiving the dangerous effects of the ______________________.
Since the solar wind is not very effective in populating the Van Allen radiation belts, it has been proposed that very high energy cosmic rays (electrons, protons, helium nuclei, etc., from supernova events) act as a triggering mechanism. They move unimpeded through the magnetosphere and shatter air molecules in the upper atmosphere. Some of the neutrons from these collisional events head away from the earth, but within the magnetosphere they spontaneously decay into an electron and a proton. These charged particles are trapped in the magnetosphere providing the populations of particles for the Van Allen belts. The lifetime of a charged particle in the Van Allen radiation belts ranges from years to hundreds of years. The average life (mean life) of a free neutron is about 15 minutes.
69. Venus does not possess a magnetic field, even though it is assumed to have an iron core (density 5.4 gm/cm3). What Venus lacks is either a _________________ core or a rapid enough _________________.