Physical Geography Exam Flashcards

Terms Definitions
All that exists.
Non-linear feature
magnify the errors
At the same time.
Incoming solar radiation
Shortwave energy
mierals/salts, clay,silt sand, gravel, pebbles, rock fragment, rock
Trees grow a....
ring every year.
the disintegration and decomposition of Earth materials, especially rock
What is humidity measured with?

 114. Narrow, jagged, knife-like ridges formed by glaciers eroding into the ridge from both sides are:
similar temperature to innercore, less pressure, and we think it's liquid (molten) iron
Atmospheric Pressure
Decreases with increasing altitude
bending of rock from lateral compresion
Any large and moving natural accumulation of land ice is a(n):
One species gaining nutrition from another is BEST called
Angular or blocky describes a soil's
Sometimes systems don't respond to changing situations immediately. Delays in system changes
a period of extended ice cover
Historical records indicate that global temperatures have been increasing for about the last
100 years

 12. Subsurface water found under the surface in soil and rock:
residual materials
parent materials from underlying bedrock that dominate a soil
Glaciers currently cover a relatively _____ portion of the earth’s land area
Gas molecules and particulate matter deflect light waves and redirect them
an activity that includes the movement of magma toward or onto Earth's surface
exotic streams
dry climate streams that survive because of orginate in humid climates.
depression formed by melting block of ice
Rapid tectonic uplift along a low-gradient, winding stream can lead to the formation of _________
entrenched meanders
The alteration of material within soil layers is called
The process by which species are differentiated and maintained is called
What do severe storms require?
Upper air divergence
broad, high regions that reach high elevations such as on the Tibetan Plateau of Southern Asia.
diffuse radiation
the downward component of scattering light
zone of illuviation
the horizon accumulating materialsthe B horizon
head of the glacier; frost shattering and ice movement carves this
Aphelion Position
Furthest position between the two bodies, 94.56 million miles, occurs on or about July 4
The amount of moisture in the atmosphere is called
_________ is when ice changes directly from the solid phase to the gaseous phase without a transitional liquid phase
stratified drift

 129. Sorted and layered materials deposited by a glacier are BEST called:

 23. A subsurface rock layer that is composed of clay and represents a barrier to flow would be described as a(n):

 58. When sediment is deposited on a hillslope by overland flow processes, it is described as __________.
The state of being twisted or stretched out of shape.
the shaking recorded at a particulr place- and this is a function of both energy and distance from the source
Suspended sediment
-another large component of a stream's load-relatively fine textured material mixed in with the water
the term used to describe all deposits of glacial origin
what is Atmospheric Pressure?
Gas Molecules in motion
a large natural stream of water flowing in a channel to the sea, a lake, or another stream
Bed load
sand, pebbles, and boulders that are moved along the bed of a stream and that are too heavy to be carried in suspension
glaciers curve away the sides of a mountain the result is this a sharened peak
outlet glacier
long tongues extended by ice sheets, creates an ice shelf
A broad, smooth gently sloping surface formed beyond the front of a glacier is a(n):
outwash plain
The process by which wave energy pulls material back down the shoreface after the swash is referred to as ________
A __________ is a topographic high that separates adjacent drainage basins
drainage divide
The climate BEST associated with the mid-latitude deciduous forest is the
moist continental
One species feeding on another is BEST called
When there is an aversion, is the atmosphere stable?
when we are furthest away from the sun
is about2900 km thick and has three parts. The lower part is solid and makes up most ofthe mantle.
end moraine
deposit of glacial material laid down as a ridge that marks the furthest extent of glacial ice
plants that are well adapted to dry climates
In the northern hemisphere, the Coriolis effect causes winds to veer
to the right
The amount of insolation received at a location tends to be highest at
A maritime tropical air mass would tend to bring ________ conditions when it arrived in an area
warm, moist
marine terrace

 80. What is an erosional remnant of a wave-cut platform?

 22. A body of rock or regolith that is water-saturated, porous, and permeable is known as a(n) __________.
A complete turn around an axis or point.
One trip around the sun is called a revolution. 
Physical Maps
Maps that show mountains and other landforms.
the sold portion of the earth that comes from greek word meaning "rock layer"
how often to the plates move?
inches per year
can be moved and spread out across the ground, after being subjected to heat, pressure, and chemical processes
Most streams attempt to cut...
down to base level
Coriolis Effect
Pulls wind to right in northern hemisphere

Pulls wind to left in southern hemisphere
a triangular tract of sediment at the mouth of a river
glacial trough
a deep, U-shaped valley carved by an alpine glacier.
A lake that forms in the depression at the head of an alpine glacier is a(n):
The forest of mixed broadleaf and needleleaf trees with some leathery leaves, moderate dense canopy, and well developed lower vegetation layer such as tree ferns, bamboo, small palms, shrubs and herbs, lianas, and epiphytes is the
subtropical evergreen forest
Dynamic Forecasting
assumption is made that we have a fluid on a rotating earth that is being rotated by the sun, take laws and solve the equations of the earth
strong and weak forces
occur within the nucleus, affecting only protons andneutrons. While protons are all positively charged, they stick together because the strongand weak forces are greater than the electrical force within the nucleus.
stratus, stratocumulus, and nimbostratus
all low clouds, widespread and associated with somber skies and drizzly rain
kinetic energy in streams
ability to erode and transport sediment; energy of motion
What causes thunder?
The lightning strike breaks the sound barrier, causing a sonic boom (aka thunder)
The band of rapidly flowing air found aloft above the polar front is a
jet stream
hydrologic cycle

 9. The transfer of water from land and ocean to the atmosphere and back again to land and oceans in a never ending cycle is:
Conformal Map
A map that maintains the true shapes of land masses, but not the sizes. Lines of longitude and latitude will cross at right angles as they do on a globe.The Mercator is a conformal map.
hot magma
more liquid and less viscous and it dissolved gases easily come out of solution when magma surfaces-therefore eruptions are less likely to be violent
In many parts of the western U.S., flood plains (in the eastern sense of the term) are
not present
Where water Occurs in three forms in the atmosphere
Water vapor
a broad inlet of the sea where the land curves forward
A _______ is a ridge or wall of wood and rock installed along retrograding beaches which can help encourage progradation by trapping sand.
A display of soil layers on the face of a freshly cut vertical exposure through the soil is called a(n)
soil profile
Faint Sun Paradox:
the sun produced less energy then it does today and the earths temperature was still very warm
dry adiabatic lapse rate
the rate of temperature decrease with height for a parcel of dry or unsaturated air rising under adiabatic conditions
Frost forms when ______...
Frost forms when water vapor changes directly to the frozen state (process of sublimation)
The most violent of all storms are associated with ________ clouds
tall, dense cumulonimbus
Great circle route
Travel between any two points along a great circle. It is always the shortest way to go.
95% of earthquakes are where?
pacific rim, southern europe and Southern asia
Adiabatic Processes
the processes by which air cools as it raises in the air.
The soil layers from the surface down on a well-developed and undisturbed soil are
O, A, B, C
When is the sun farthest from the earth?
around july 3rd (aphelion)
What are the 6 storage areas for water?
Atmosphere, oceans, surface freshwater, plants & animals, groundwater, and glacial ice.
if Magma rises slowly there is...
a greater opportunity for compressed gases to react to changed pressure and escape without generating a significant explosion
deepened pre-existing valleys, which are now
deep lakes (Great Lakes and Finger Lakes)
Dynamic Low Pressure Air Masses
Strongly rising air produces a dynamic low.
A very hot Earth surface produces a thermal low
first law of thermodynamics
that there is a set amount of energy in theuniverse and that amount never changes. The amount of energy in that little ball ofeverything before the Big Bang is the same amount that exists in the universe today.Energy cannot be created or destroyed but it can change form. Energy to move a car isnot created out of gasoline, instead the energy existing in the gas is converted into a moreuseable form to run the engine which then moves the car. Solar radiation is absorbed bythe ground and is converted into heat energy.
thick, wedge shaped deposit of sand, gravel, or cobbles in the zone of breaking waves

 74. Beaches are best described as..
80% of all active volcanoes are associated with?
the pacific ahuge zone of fire
the steeper the slope
the easier it is for a given amount of water to erode material
A stream's capacity may decrease as a result of these factors?
less water, less velocity, less sediment
The wet adiabatic rate for a rising parcel of air is less than the dry rate because
latent heat is released when condensation occurs
Locations of Anticyclones and Cyclones
System of highs and lows, 35º to 70º of latitude
East-West migration
Dominates midlatitudes, especially in winter
Cold fronts are emphasized by _______ and warm fronts are emphasized by _______.
Cold fronts = arrowsWarm fronts = half circles
What is the formula for effective wind velocity?
EWV = hurricane wind velocity + storm-center velocity
Big Island of Hawaii is how old?
less than a million years old and has active volcanoes
interplanetary space
high puffy clouds
convergent boundary
move toward eachother
where rocks are bent
a headland or promontory
The positive interaction between species that is beneficial to at least one of the species and does not harm the other is called
relationship between crustal thickness and elevation
altostratus clouds
associated with changing weather
Blanket-like, layered clouds that cover large areas are called
a flat piece of land
drainage divides
the boundaries of watersheds
The Mesosphere
Immediately above the stratopause
Physical weathering. When rock layers rise from depth closer to the earth's surface. They cool down and change shape leaving cracks and joints
Atmospheric moisture deposited at the Earth's surface as rain, hail, sleet, snow etc.
The expansion of deserts is called
Organisms that ingest other organisms as their food source are BEST called
amount of disorder in a system.
compressional waves, back and forth movement
An imaginary line of longitude extending from pole to pole, crossing all parallels at right angles, and being aligned in true north-south directions
Rossby waves form along the
polar front

 111. When two glaciers erode through a ridge making a pass, the landform created is a(n):
the permanent chemical combination of materials with water producing a new chemical structure which is frequently less resistant to weathering
the combined action of physical (mechanical and chemical processes that break down rocks); is essential in producing soil
Hurricane structure
Towering cumulus and cumulonimbus clouds
Formed when magma squeezes across rock layers and cools (vertically).
wind deposited dune that is fine grained, calcaerious, and usually buff colored
When sediment is deposited on a hillslope by overland flow processes, it is described as _______
The Laurentide Ice Sheet is associated with:
Organisms that feed on decaying matter from all levels are
The biome of the dry climates consisting of thinly dispersed plants that may be shrubs, grasses, perennial herbs, and no trees is the
What provides moisture to the air which makes it unstable?
What is energy balance?
energy in= energy out
big bang
happened around 14billion years ago, or at least that’s our best guess. At that time, the universe was a smallball of energy (smaller than a pea? A point with no size?) that was extremely hot (billionsof degrees)
causes of glaciation
milankovitch cycles, tectonic activity or catastrophic events
We are currently experiencing _____ of hurricane activity
Black pavement surfaces tend to have albedos that are _____

 44. The steepness of a stream channel can also be called the __________.

 16. A(n) __________ occurs in an area where the ground water is heated by hot rock near the surface which can force the ground water to flow out under pressure.
Robinson Projection
A projection that maintains overall shapes and relative positions without extreme distortion.
head on collisions between plates of similar desnity can result in?
base level for many streams is...
sea level
Earth rotation
west to east day and night
Define flood.
when discharge exceeds bank full discharge
a loamy deposit formed by wind, usually yellowish and calcareous, common in the Mississippi Valley and in Europe and Asia.
Flood Plain Development
develops over time from lateral erosion
The steepness of a stream channel can also be called the ______
Lakes that are formed during the Pleistocene in areas that are now drier climates are called:
pluvial lakes
The loss of moisture to the atmosphere from the soil and from plants is called
Large plants with a single main trunk, a few lower branches, and a crown are
hot and weak layer of earths crust, mostly solid
energy beingused in motion. It is the energy used by a walking person or the blowing wind or anocean current
angular distance north or south of the equator
suspended load
sediments moving in the flow without contacting the bottom of the stream bed
Small Circle
Plane passing through a sphere that does not pass through its center
A desert has 1/2 precipitation than ______.
potential evaporation
The city of New Orleans was badly damaged as a result of hurricane
Milutin Milankovitch

 154. The man BEST noted for graphing insolation changes on Earth through time in an attempt to understand Pleistocene climatic patterns is:
entrenched meanders

 65. Rapid tectonic uplift along a low-gradient, winding stream can lead to the formation of __________.

 24. The process in which water has condensed in the atmosphere and falls back to Earth is known as __________.
A diagram that shows directions in relation to each other.
A piece of land that is almost completely surrounded by water
cooler magma
is more viscous; this inhibits the release of compressed gas which builds and frequently causes violent explosions
Physical processes make
meandering streams the most common form of river channel
Define net radiation.
difference between all incoming and outgoing radiation
a ring-shaped coral reef or a string of closely spaced small coral islands, enclosing or nearly enclosing a shallow lagoon.
bay mouth bar
Sandbar that seals off the bay, transforming the bay to a lagoon
All varieties and forms of rock debris deposited by glaciers are best called:
glacial drift
A black soil that is high in clay content, associated with savannas, and noted for its wet and dry climate is the
Climate is highly variable it can..
warm and cool quickly
air pressure
the weight of all the air above pressingdown–the higher you go, the less air above you and therefore, the lower thepressure.
bed load (saltation)
sediments bounce along the bottom of the stream bed
Lunar Month
Marked by the return of the new moon
Cold objects emit ____ energy than hot objects, and it is of _____ wavelengths
less; longer
On the Tropic of Capricorn, the sun will reach its highest position in the sky on the
December solstice
glacier terminus

 104. The outer most or lowest end of a glacier is called its:
Holocene Epoch
the past 10,000 years since the end of the most recent ice age
Eruptions featuring little gas...
are usually less explosive than eruptions featuring a larger % gas
glaciers reached as far south (in the U.S.) as
southern Illinois
Define lifting condensation level.
altitude at which condensation begins (switch from DAR to MAR)
ice shelf
A large sheet or shelf of ice that extends into an ocean. The shelf is attached to a glacier, or to land
A debris ridge along the side wall of an alpine glacier is a(n):
lateral moraine
Where do most hurricanes form and where do they head towards?
Atlantic Ocean, the USA
What happens to air when it is compressed?
it warms up
stream discharge
volume of water flowing in a stream at any given time (Q = width * depth * average velocity)
Koppen Climate Classification
A = Humid Tropical ClimatesB = Arid ClimatesC = Humid Mesothermal (Mild Winter) ClimatesD = Humid Microthermal (Severe Winter) ClimatesE = Polar ClimatesH = Highland Climates
high snow fall and low temperatures/intense pressures form the layers of ice and snow above it/more snow accumulation than snow melt

 108. Conditions that permit glacial formation include:
chemical weathering operates best in
warm teperatures where water is present, warm and rainy climates are espeically vulnerable to chemical weather. Also, chemical processes break down rocks much faster
small creeks join to form what?
progressively larger steams which join to form still larger streams
What three major factors control whether or not an easterly wave will eventually become a hurricane?
warm sea-surface temperatures, light easterly winds aloft (no shearing of storms), rotation created by winds coming into the system
Savanna woodland is usually bordered by
equatorial rainforest or low latitude forests
solar noon
the Sun is the highest it will be that day
The layer of the atmosphere in which gases are sorted into layers by weight is the
heterosphere, specifically hte thermosphere
structure of soil
a mesasure of how well a soil hangs together or clumps
drainage divides are "topographic hights" that mark...
places where water flows down slope in one direction or the other.
What happens if the pumping rate is greater than the rate of recharge?
the well goes dry
types of glacial transportation
freeze on the ice and then melt out; meltwater flow
at speeds of more than 100m/day

 121. For several months, a glacier surge may cause a glacier to move:
elevated areas slow the water down and
and forces the heaviest sediments (like sand and course silt) to be deposited on and near the banks creating a natural levee
How do you calculate erosion time given average erosion rate and average elevation?
time to erode = average elevation/average elevation rate
Soil texture is important because it influences the
water and nutrient holding ability of the soil
earth's crust is comprised of several relatively rigid but fragmented what?
plates that move relative to one another by floating or gliding across the relatively plastic mantle below
What are the 5 basic parts of a map?
Title, legend, grid system, direction, and scale
How much water could you evaporate if the water were present?
high in southwest, Up in summer, down in winter
What is the relationship between lag time and radiation surpluses and deficits?
the hottest part of the day is between 3 and 5 PM because this is when solar radiation switches from surplus to deficit
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