Geology Chapter 1 Notes

Geology Chapter 1 Notes - Geology 1 Chapter 1-Geology is...

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Geology 1 Chapter 1 -Geology is the scientific study of the Earth’s processes and materials -Different aspects of our physical environment are interrelated (i.e. one geological phenomenon may affect several others) -System is a group of interdependent parts that together form a more complex whole -Earth system: four principal interrelated subsystems that interact with one another constantly and with substantial consequences -Lithosphere: solid Earth beneath our feet -Relatively strong, external layer (outermost 100km) -Mountain building, volcanism, ocean-basin formation, and earthquakes -All atmospheric gases from lithosphere (expelled by volcanism) -interacts directly with atmosphere -Hydrosphere: waters in various states and locations -Rivers, oceans, lakes, glacial ice, underground reservoirs,… -Evaporating and then reappearing -> erosion -Erosion: loosening and transporting of materials at the Earth’s surface -Interacts with lithosphere -Atmosphere: envelope of gases surrounding planet -78% nitrogen and 21% oxygen -Protects and sustains life on Earth by shielding life forms from a substantial portion of potentially deadly solar radiation -Water vapor in atmosphere -> rain, snow -Interacts with biosphere and hydrosphere -Biosphere: Earth’s inventory of living animal and plant organisms -Interacts with all subsystems -Mount Usu -Acid rain-> hydrosphere -Steam and other gases-> atmosphere -Ash layer-> lithosphere -Cooler weather and etc. -> biosphere -Subsystems derive energy from two primary sources: one, external: the sun; and one internal: the Earth’s internal heat engine -External/sun: generates weather, climate and drives the forces of erosion -Internal: From residual heat of planet’s initial formation and from radioactive decay of elements such as uranium. Generates earth quakes, volcanoes, mountains -Both internal and external are enhanced by gravity (water flow downhill etc.) -Catastrophism: Earth evolved through a series of immense worldwide upheavals -Uniformitarianism: Small subtle changes occur over vast amounts of time -Big Bang Theory 1) Very small, very hot volume of space containing enormous amount of energy 2) Space expanded rapidly with big bang aprox. 13 billion years ago 3) Expand and cool…million years later (3000 C) H and He exist 4) As continues to expand, matter more concentrated in space. Concentrated pockets attract more has by gravity. enough gas gathered, resulting gas clouds collapsed inward b/c gravity galaxies
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Geology 2 5) Within galaxy, some gas clouds collapsed further stars -Evidence of asteroid dust veil block sunlight plummeting temperatures devastate food chain extinction 1) 2.5 cm types of clay with iridium from 65 million years (iridium rare on earth, but common in meteorites) 2) Presence of tektites in sediment layers. Formed when superheated rocks at impact site hurled into air in the molten state, dispersed in atmosphere and cooled rapidly 3) High concentration of carbon soot within iridium layer (evidence of global wildfire?) 4) Yucatan Peninsula, other possible impact sites
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This note was uploaded on 05/04/2008 for the course ESS 101 taught by Professor Swanson during the Spring '05 term at University of Washington.

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Geology Chapter 1 Notes - Geology 1 Chapter 1-Geology is...

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