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EAS100 Study Guide - Final Guide: Continental Drift, Seismometer, AsthenospherePremium

Earth and Atmospheric Sciences
Course Code
Daniel Alessi
Study Guide

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University of Alberta
EAS 100
Planet Earth
Fall 2018
Final Exam
Prof: ALESSI, D.

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Topics Included:
1. The Earth System: Our Place in Space
2. The Geosphere: Earth Beneath Our Feet
3. The Hydrosphere: Earth’s Blanket of Water and Ice
4. The Atmosphere: Earth’s Gaseous Envelope
5. The Biosphere: Life on Earth
6. The Anthroposphere: Humans and the Earth System

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Part One The Earth System: Our Place in Space
Chapter One The Earth System
Earth system science study of all of the planet as a system of many parts that interact
and the changes that occur within this system
o One of the most important tools for this science is remote sensoring of Earth
Ongoing collection of information from a target from a distance
System is any part of the universe that can be isolated from everything else in order to
observe changes whatever the observer defines it to be
o Isolated system no matter OR energy can be exchanged with surroundings
o Closed system energy can be exchanged, but NOT matter
We consider Earth closed since matter within the system is basically fixed
o Open system BOTH matter and energy can be exchanged with surroundings
Earth’s 4 major reservoirs and the interactions between them are the foundation of Earth system
science. Each are extensively explored in later chapters:
o Geosphere: The solid Earth, primarily rock and regolith
o Hydrosphere: All of Earth’s water (lakes, streams, ocean, snow, and ice)
o Atmosphere: The mixture of gases that surround the Earth and protect life
o Biosphere: All of Earth’s organisms. This is what makes Earth unique as far as we
Life zone all life on Earth exists in a zone about 20km wide, where Earth’s reservoirs
interact to make habitable areas
Feedback is a special kind of system response when the output and input are the same,
causing change
o Negative feedback system’s response is in the opposite direction from the initial
o Positive feedback increase in output causes even more increase in output
The scientific method:
o Conduct investigations and experiments
o Form a hypothesis
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