Repeat for each of the latitude bans and voil a picture of the gestrophic wind
driven surface ocean currents on our water covered Earth with no continents!
NOTES SLIDE (not shown in c lass): Upwelling doesnt ju
The nitrogen cycle is much more complex than the P cycle
N is found in the environment in many different oxidation states from the most
reduced form (-3) in ammonia and amino acids to the most oxidized form (+5) in
N2 (oxidation state = 0) is the
Evolution of life and atmospheric
DESCRIBE the most fundamental steps in the
evolution of life on Earth and the parallel
evolution of atmospheric composition
EXPLAIN how genomic information can be
used to clarify the early evol
Last lecture, we described the mechanism of seafloor spreading and how it
explains continental drift
The earth does not increase in size, but old seafloor is being destroyed at the
subduction zones at the same rate as new seafloor is being produced
As we have already indicated during last lecture, organisms do not live in isolation but interact with
each other and their environment to form ecosystems.
Any ecosystem can be represented schematically as shown above
Energy is continuously added and di
Last time, we saw that the carbon cycle as a whole can be viewed as a series of
nested loops recycling C through the atmosphere at different rates by exchanging
carbon with reservoirs of different size.
Exchanges of carbon between the atmosphere and these
First lets recall what is primary productivity
Primary productivity is also called the rate of primary production, i.e. the rate at
which CO2 is transformed into biomass (made of organic carbon; Corg) by
photosynthesis or phototrophy.
In the ocean, the
Knowing this, we are now going to move to the next goals.
During the following lectures, we will see how these different components interact with each
other to form an integrated system which is able to maintain climatic and environmental
Lets start with a simple clicker question
To produce large changes in atmospheric CO2 concentration, the atmosphere
must exchange carbon with a larger reservoir, because, it only takes a small
fraction of a large carbon reservoir to change atmospheric C
Circulation in the deep ocean plays an important role in cycling nutrients and
carbon within the marine ecosystem. Biological particles that sink from the
surface to depth usually dissolve or decompose at depth, adding nutrients and
carbon to the deep o
We saw last lecture that, during the last 800,000 years, atmospheric CO2 has
varied between low values (180ppm) during ice ages and higher values (280ppm)
during interglacial periods (periods of warmer climate similar to today)
We have concluded that thes
First, lets describe the long-term evolution of climate
To do this, we need some understanding of the geological time scale.
The geological time is divided into intervals at different levels
At the broadest level, we distinguish between two primary Eons:
In previous lectures we established that the mean temperature of the planet and
therefore its mean climate is controlled primarily by three variables
Last time we looked at changes in the solar constant on different timescales
Today we will concentrate on
NOTES SLIDE (not shown in class): The physical motion of ocean currents influences marine ecosystems, the
transport of heat crucial to the climate system, and the transport of goods and people across the oceans.
FISHERIES (image is a school of ancho
Why are the hydrologic cycle and surface ocean circulation relevant to human society? The three listed
here are just a few of t he many connections between these topics and us:
AVAILABILITY of FRESH WATER (image is an aerial view of the Fraser River)
Density stratification is a k ey c oncept in all Earth-related s ciences. The
materials t hat make up t he s olid Earth f rom c ore t o c rust are s tratified according
to density with the denser s tuff in the middle and the less dense s tuff at the
Heres where we ended Radiation Balance 1.
Using the Stefan-Boltzmann equation, we can calculate the energy emitted by
the Sun. We now know the Sun s temperature, so we can put it into StefanBoltzmann s equation and solve for F, the flux of energy leavi
FYI: This is NOT a concept sketch!
One of the goals for Radiation Balance is about Earth s effective radiating
temperature. What did we take into account to get to this point? Here s a
summary of the full process of figuring out the Earth s effectiv
What determines how much solar energy Earth gets? The solar constant is
the amount of solar radiation or energy (in Joules) reaching Earth per unit
time (seconds) and per unit surface area (metres2). Units of the solar
constant are Joules/metre2*seconds,
More specifically, during todays lecture we are going to describe the factors that
control the distribution of nutrients in the ocean.
This is because nutrient availability has a strong influence on the distribution and
seasonality of primary production a
How is the organic carbon cycle affecting atmospheric CO2?
First of all, how is organic matter being produced?
By photosynthesis on land (terrestrial plants) and at sea (marine plants).
Photoautotrophs use CO2 to produce organic matter
What else is happ
In the northern hemisphere, an object in motion will get deflected to the
In the southern hemisphere, an object in motion will get deflected to the LEFT.
The left and right orientation can get confusing. You need to imagine
yourself standing at th
Which of these simplifying assumptions contributed to overestimating the
temperature of the surface?
Answer: all (A, B, C) are simplifying assumptions that contribute to
overestimating the temperature of the surface because these assumptions,
Which information (data) you do not need to
figure out the total amount of solar radiation
(solar heat) received by the Earth?
A. The temperature of the Sun
B. The Suns radius
C. The Earths radius
D. The distance from the Sun to the Earth
E. The Earths ro
EOSC 112 The Fluid Earth: Atmosphere and Ocean, Fall 2016
Ice caps are melting, surface temperatures are rising, and fisheries are collapsing. These
phenomena are a clear reminder that we live on a dynamic planet whose workings we are only
now starting to
Last class, we calculated the average solar radiation (W/m2) reaching the
Earth, which turns out to be about 342 W/m 2.
Recall that this is the amount of solar energy that reaches the top of the
Earths atmosphere and is our first constraint on the radiati
H2O + CO2 C(H2O) + O2
2 H2S + CO2 C(H2O)2 + 2 S
2 H2 + CO2 C(H2O)2
Instead of fixing CO2 by oxygenic photosynthesis, as most phototrophs do today,
these early photosynthetic organi
On Wednesday, we introduced the overarching goals for this course
This is the first one. On this image of Earth taken from space, you can see all
four major components of the Earth system, the continents (part of the
geosphere), the clouds (in the atmos