GEOL 102 Lecture Notes - Lecture 6: Salinity, Photosynthesis, Euryhaline

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10 Feb 2017
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Geology 102 Lecture 6 Notes
Limiting Factors to Life on Earth
Historical Geology
Previous classes- Physical Features and development of the Earth
Directly affects the features and development of life on Earth
Geology as Biological Controls
Physical and chemical properties of an environment limit the distribution and
abundance of biological activity
Important Factors for Life
Water
Temperature
Salinity
pH
Oxygen
UV light
Water
Necessary to all life on Earth
70% cells are water
70% of Earth’s surface is covered by water
Earth has retained an ecosystem with liquid water from its earliest beginnings
Required component in biologically important chemical reactions
Self replication
Metabolism
Photosynthesis
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Universal solvent
Etc.
Serves as a heat buffer
Freeze
Boil
Hydrostatic pressure- physical support for aquatic organisms
Temperature
Can vary greatly by region
High temperatures- biomolecules break down
Low temperatures- chemical reactions (including biologically important
ones) slow down
Provide energy for biologically important chemical reactions
Solar
Geothermal
Chemical reactions
Major factor in defining climatic zones
Largely derived from the sun
Because the Earth is a sphere, sunlight is more direct at the equator and more
diffuse towards the poles
Earth’s tilt affects seasonality which regions get more sunlight during different
parts of the year
Sunlight must pass through the atmosphere
Albedo- the percent of solar radiation reflected from Earth’s surface
Ice and snow-80-90% of light
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Document Summary

Previous classes- physical features and development of the earth. Directly affects the features and development of life on earth. Physical and chemical properties of an environment limit the distribution and abundance of biological activity. 70% of earth"s surface is covered by water. Earth has retained an ecosystem with liquid water from its earliest beginnings. Required component in biologically important chemical reactions. Hydrostatic pressure- physical support for aquatic organisms. Low temperatures- chemical reactions (including biologically important ones) slow down. Provide energy for biologically important chemical reactions. Because the earth is a sphere, sunlight is more direct at the equator and more diffuse towards the poles. Earth"s tilt affects seasonality which regions get more sunlight during different parts of the year. Albedo- the percent of solar radiation reflected from earth"s surface. Goldilocks zone- possible presence of liquid water. Affects global carbon dioxide levels by affecting its solubility in water. Together with temperature, affects ocean circulation- thermohaline circulation.

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