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EESA06H3 (234)
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Chapter 1

Chapter 1 - Introduction to Physical Geology and the environment.docx

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University of Toronto Scarborough
Environmental Science
Nick Eyles

Chapter 1: Introduction to Physical Geology and the Environment What is Geology? Geology – the study of earth Moving Continents 1.1 William Smith – Father of English Geology, first to publish a geological map 1.2 William Logan – first to systematically describe the geology of Canada (Candian) - Cross-section – a hypothetical vertical slice thru the land 1.3 Alfred Wegener – theory of continental drift in 1912 “The Origin of Continents and Oceans” - Pangea – continents has previously been clustered together in a large land mass 1.4 J. Tuzo Wilson – plate tectonics theory in the early 1970s (Canadian) - Transform faults – large-scale faults that offset the crust laterally but neither created nor destroyed material, now recognized as a major plate boundary type - Hot spots – active volcanoes, young volcanic islands stuck in the middle of the oceans - Volcanic islands chains (ex: Hawaiian Islands) resulted from a moving plate drifting over a stationary magma plume in the mantle – support for plate tectonic theory Time and Geology Deep time – vastly greater amounts of time (more than hours, years) Mid-ocean ridge – a giant mountain range that lies under the ocean Earth is estimated to be at least 4.55 Ga years old What do Geoscientists Do? 1.5 Exploration Geologists – looking for gold, diamonds and other metals Geoscientists – expand the scope and responsibilities of modern geologist into additional scientific fields - Geochemists – working in a ordered environment of the laboratory and use high-technology equipment to analyze the chemistry of rocks or minerals - Mineralogists – study minerals 1.6 Petrologists – study the makeup of rocks and how they form - Geophysicists – using high-tech equipment in the field, using boats, planes, or satellites to learn more of the nature of the physical conditions on or under the Earth’s surface - Petroleum/coal geologists – search for oil and gas and coal - Seismologists – study how to measure and mitigate earthquake activity - Paleontologist – studies the fossilized remains of ancient organisms - Glacial Geologists – study landforms and sediments left behind by ice sheets (glaciers) - Hydro-geologists – study and protect sediments that contain and transmit water 1.7 Environmental Geoscientists – finding and managing drinking water, dealing with a wide range of wastes ranging from radioactive waste to household (municipal) waste 1.8 Engineering Geologists – work with the challenges of engineering structures that form part of the human landscape, landscape stability problems. 1.9 Geomatician – collect, organize, analyze and create images from any spatial and geographical data available in digital form What is the Scientific Method? Scientific Method – the process by which scientists first identify a problem, then they select a methodology to collect data in order to help solve the problem, then they analyze and interpret the information, and come up with a hypothesis, after several test, form a theory Hypothesis – a theoretical explanation where the geologist How did the Earth form? - Nebula – a cloud of gas and dust particles - Bulbous core & flattened disc – created by gas and dust rotate and contract - Sun created from a nuclear fusion - Planets - dust in the outer disc condensed to form rocks and metals that combi
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