science final study guide

Flashcard maker : Shelby Arnold
On average, how many damaging earthquakes occur each year?
The point within Earth from which earthquake wave energy radiates is known by which of the following terms?
During the 1906 San Francisco earthquake, the Pacific Plate moved 4.7 meters (15 feet) north relative to the North American Plate. Which of the following types of stress was exerted on the rocks during this earthquake?
shear stress
Which of the following events allows rocks on either side of a fault to rebound elastically, causing an earthquake?
Friction along the fault plane is overcome.
What do we call seismic waves that are transmitted along the outside of Earth?
surface waves
Which of the following motions best describes the movement of S waves as they travel through rocks following the release of energy during an earthquake?
shaking particles at right angles to the direction of travel
Which of the three types of seismic waves travels through rock with the greatest velocity?
P waves
Which of the following types of seismic body waves travels only through solids?
S waves
Early in the study of earthquakes, seismologists learned that P waves arrive at seismograph stations all over Earth, but a shadow zone exists for S waves. Which of the following responses best explains this phenomenon?
The outer core of Earth is liquid.
Which type of seismic waves generally cause the most structural damage as they travel through Earth?
surface waves
Earthquakes with a deep focus are most often associated with which of the following tectonic settings?
As stress is applied to rocks and deformation occurs, which of the following terms best characterizes the energy that is stored in the process?
elastic energy
Earthquakes occurring at depths up to 700 km (435 mi) are associated with which of the following plate boundaries?
convergent boundaries
Which of the following responses provides the best reason for why the asthenosphere is not capable of storing elastic energy?
Elastic energy can only be stored in cold, brittle rocks.
How can the epicenter location of earthquakes at an oceanic-oceanic convergence zone be used to determine which plate is being subducted?
The epicenters will be located on the plate that is not being subducted.
Which kind of seismic wave is fastest-moving?
P waves
Which kind of seismic wave is responsible for the most shaking (and thus, the most damage to human structures)?
surface waves
A ________ is an instrument that is used to record earthquake vibrations.
On a typical seismogram, ________ will show the highest amplitudes.
surface waves
How does triangulation determine the epicenter of an earthquake?
On a map, a circle is drawn around each of three recording stations, with the radius being the distance from the station to the epicenter of the earthquake. The epicenter is located where the three circles intersect.
Which type(s) of seismic waves tend(s) to cause the greatest destruction to buildings?
surface waves
What are the differences between P waves, S waves, and surface waves?
P waves are the fastest and have the lowest amplitudes; S waves are the second fastest and have the second lowest amplitudes; surface waves are the slowest and have the highest amplitudes.
What is an earthquake, and how do earthquakes generally occur?
a sudden shaking of the ground that is caused by the rapid movement of one block of rock past another block of rock at a fault
Plants consume water during photosynthesis. They also release it to the atmosphere during ________.
________ is the process by which liquid water changes into water vapor.
What is the primary energy source that drives the hydrologic cycle?
the Sun
What is evapotransapiration?
the transfer of water directly from the land’s surface into the atmosphere
External processes that occur at or near Earth’s surface and are powered by ________.
the Sun
External processes include weathering, mass wasting, and ________.
The downslope movement of rock or soil due to the influence of gravity is ________.
mass wasting
Contrast weathering, mass wasting, and erosion.
Weathering is the physical breakdown of rock at Earth’s surface, mass wasting is the transfer of rock and soil downslope due to gravity, and erosion is the physical removal of material by a mobile agent such as water or wind.
How might a forest fire influence mass wasting?
Because plants on a slope bind the regolith with their roots and shield the soil surface from raindrops, a wildfire that destroys these plants would render the soil looser and more susceptible to the erosional forces of rain.
What is the relationship between earthquakes and landslides?
If a slope exists under conditions that favor mass wasting but it has not had any movement occur, the shaking force from an earthquake may jar the material loose from the slope.
Why doesn’t sea level drop even though oceans have a higher rate of evaporation than precipitation?
Surface water running off into the oceans make up the difference between evaporation from the oceans and precipitation into the oceans, creating a balance.
Distinguish between internal and external processes.
The sun drives external processes, and heat inside the Earth drives internal processes.
Which of the following is the primary step that allows water to enter the groundwater system?
Which of the following statements about the global water supply is true?
Decreased precipitation could impact water supply available for humans.
Rank the following sources of water from largest to smallest in terms of percentage of the world’s total supply.
SmallestLargest Oceans -Glaciers-Groundwater- Non-glacial ice and snow- Lakes-Rivers
Which of the following locations contains the most water in Earth’s hydrosphere aside from the oceans?
In the hydrologic cycle, water that falls on land in the form of precipitation returns to the ocean in which of the following pathways?
groundwater flow
All of the responses are correct.
further precipitation
Which of the following conditions is associated with high infiltration rates?
permeable soil
abundant vegetation
gentle slopes
When considering the movement of water on Earth within the hydrologic cycle, which of the following choices is responsible for driving this process?
The hydrologic cycle works because water exists on Earth in solid, liquid, and gaseous states.
Water in the hydrologic cycle readily moves from the land to the oceans through several pathways. How does the vast majority of water get from the ocean to the land surface?
clouds and precipitation
According to the hydrologic cycle, once precipitation has fallen on land, what paths might the water directly take? PLEASE SELECT ALL THAT APPLY.
runoff into a lake,runoff into the sea,infiltration into the ground
What are the three main zones of a river system from highest to lowest?
zone of sediment production, zone of transportation, and zone of deposition
How do gradient, discharge, channel size, and channel roughness typically change from the head to the mouth of a stream?
From the head of a stream to its mouth, the gradient and channel roughness decrease while the discharge and channel size increase.
In what ways does a stream transport its load, and which part of the load moves most slowly? PLEASE SELECT ALL THAT APPLY.
as a bed load, which is the slowest mode of particle transport in streams,
as a suspended load
as a dissolved load
What is the difference between capacity and competence?
Capacity is the maximum load of solid particles a stream can transport per unit time, whereas competence is a measure of a stream’s ability to transport particles based on size rather than quantity.
Where are bedrock channels more likely to be found?
Bedrock channels are typically found in the headwaters of river systems where streams have steep slopes.
What is groundwater, and how does it relate to the water table?
Groundwater is water that occupies the zone of saturation within the ground. The water table is the upper limit of the groundwater.
Please contrast porosity and permeability.
Porosity is the percentage of the total volume of rock or sediment that consists of pore spaces, whereas permeability is the ability of a rock or sediment to transmit fluid.
The Mississippi Delta is an example of which of the following?
zone of deposition
If you were to examine the longitudinal profile of a typical river, you would probably find that the gradient is ________.
steepest near the headwaters
Gravel would most likely exist in the ________ of a river.
bed load
Calcium and sodium ions make up much of the ________ of streams.
dissolved load
Streams erode downward until they reach ________.
their base level
Groundwater is the largest reservoir of ________.
freshwater that is readily available to humans
Groundwater tends to flow through bodies of rock or sediment that ________.
have a high permeability
Daily changes in the elevation of the ocean surface are called ________.
A ________ is characterized by a single high and low tide each tidal day.
diurnal tidal pattern
A ________ is characterized by two high tides and two low tides each tidal day, with both the high and low tides having approximately the same height.
semidiurnal tidal pattern
When does the spring tide occur?
when the Sun, Moon, and Earth are aligned in a straight line
The daily tidal range is of the least magnitude during ________.
neap tides
How is climate different from weather?
Climate is the sum of all statistical weather information that helps describe a region.
Air is best described as ________.
a mixture of gases, with solid particles and liquid droplets in it
Which one of the following is the most abundant gas in the atmosphere?
Weather is ultimately driven by ________.
energy input from the Sun
________ is when Earth is closest to the sun, whereas the farthest point is called ________.
Perihelion; aphelion
The line separating the dark half of Earth from the lighted half is called ________.
the circle of illumination
All places at the same ________ have identical angles of sunlight and lengths of daylight.
A day of the year when the length of the night is equal to the length of the day is known as a(n) ________.
The tilt of Earth’s axis from the perpendicular to the plane of Earth’s axis is called ________.
the inclination of axis
Which of the following happens on June 21 or 22 each year?
The Northern Hemisphere experiences the longest day of the year.
The amount of water vapor in the air is called ________.
Dust in the atmosphere is responsible for which of the following?
reflection of solar energy
Even though ground-level ozone is a health hazard, the “ozone layer” in the stratosphere is a health benefit because ________.
it screens out some harmful solar radiation
it screens out some harmful solar radiation
Which of the following gases is the greatest absorber of energy emitted by Earth?
carbon dioxide (CO2)
In which layer of the atmosphere do most weather phenomena occur?
Ozone is concentrated in the middle part of the ________.
The lowest layer of the atmosphere is the ________.
Why is the ozone layer crucial to our existence?
Creation of ozone molecules absorbs harmful UV rays.
What is the primary cause of the seasons?
changes in the angle of the Sun above the Earth’s horizon
On Earth, what causes the development of winds, ocean circulation patterns, and weather?
unequal heating of Earth’s surface
Which represents the point in Earth’s revolution around the Sun when it is at aphelion?
in early July
As the angle of the Sun’s rays striking Earth flattens out at a particular location, how does this affect the amount of solar heating at that location?
Solar rays are more spread out and less intense.
If the tilt of Earth on its rotational axis were changed to vertical (perpendicular to the plane of orbit), how would that affect seasonality?
No seasonality would occur on Earth.
Which of the following characteristics of Earth’s relationship to the Sun explains the existence of Earth’s seasons?
Earth orbits around the Sun, completing one orbit each year.
Earth’s axis always points in the same direction relative to the stars.
Earth’s axis is tilted relative to its orbital plane.
Earth spins on its axis, completing one rotation each day.
What is the June solstice?
the time of the year when Earth’s geographic North Pole is leaning most directly toward the Sun
How does the inclination of Earth’s axis change over the course of a year?
The inclination of Earth’s axis does not change.
What is the December solstice?
the time of the year when Earth’s geographic North Pole is leaning most directly away from the Sun
When are the Sun’s rays perpendicular to Earth’s surface at the equator?
March Equinox
September Equinox
Which location receives the most sun energy per unit area during the winter solstice?
Equatorial regions
Which location receives the most sun energy per unit area during the spring equinox?
Equatorial regions
When do the Sun’s rays hit the Northern Hemisphere mid-latitudes at the highest angle?
Summer solstice
What causes it to be colder in the winter and warmer in the summer in the northern hemisphere?
Summer temperatures are warmer because more sun energy per unit area is received during this time.
The Moon has __________ because all energy is reradiated back to space.
a relatively low average surface temperature
The Sun emits __________ radiation, but it is radiated back off of planetary bodies as __________ radiation.
shortwave; longwave
f the greenhouse effect ceased to exist on Earth, which of the following would result?
The average surface temperature would drop to below the freezing temperature of water.
Which of the following is true about Venus?
The dense atmosphere of Venus is ________, causing most incoming solar radiation to be _________.
The view that the sun is the center of the solar system is called a ________.
heliocentric model
Approximately how much further away from the sun is Saturn, as compared to Earth?
10 times as far
One astronomical unit (AU) is equal to approximately ________.
150 million kilometers (93 million miles)
Which of the following is an example of a terrestrial planet?
The material expelled when a meteorite strikes the surface of a planet is called ________ and it creates a(n) ________.
ejecta; impact crater
The moon’s light-colored areas are called ________.
lunar highlands
Which of the following is the oldest feature on the Moon’s surface?
the lunar highlands
Which planet revolves around the sun the fastest?
The dominant force currently shaping the Martian surface is ________.
wind erosion
Which is the largest planet in the solar system?
Saturn’s well-developed rings are made of ________.
numerous particles of water ice and rocky debris
Which of the following is a dwarf planet?
Why is Pluto classified as a dwarf planet?
Pluto is not large enough to sweep its orbit clear of other debris.
Who discovered that planetary orbits are ellipses rather than circles?
Johannes Kepler
What differentiates terrestrial planets from Jovian planets?
Terrestrial planets are smaller, more dense, and closer to the Sun than Jovian planets, which are larger, less dense, and farther from the Sun.
Compare the Moon’s maria to its highlands.
The maria are smooth plains of dark basaltic lava, whereas the highlands are light elevated areas filled with breccia.
How are the appearances of craters used in the relative dating of the Moon’s surface features?
Craters that are surrounded by bright rays are younger than rayless craters because the rays are material ejected from the crater onto the surrounding surface.
What other body in our solar system most resembles Mercury?
the Earth’s Moon
How are Venus and Earth similar to and different from each other?
Venus and Earth are similar in that they have similar interior compositions; however, Venus has a weaker magnetic field than Earth, has a thicker atmosphere than Earth, and is more heavily cratered than Earth.
What surface features do Mars and Earth have in common?
What surface features do Mars and Earth have in common?
What is the nature of Jupiter’s Great Red Spot?
What is the nature of Jupiter’s Great Red Spot?
How are Jupiter and Saturn similar to one another?
Both planets have rings.
The internal structures of both planets are very similar.
The internal structures of both planets are very similar.
It is possibly the most volcanic body in our solar system.
What evidence suggests that Mars had an active hydrologic cycle in the past? PLEASE SELECT ALL THAT APPLY.
Mars has surface structures similar to dendritic drainage patterns on Earth.
Ice caps are found on Mars below 30 degrees latitude.
Mars has empty stream-like valleys.
Why are the largest volcanoes on Earth so much smaller than the largest ones on Mars?
The tectonic plates on Earth are still in motion, constantly moving active volcanoes away from the mantle plumes below. However, the tectonic plates on Mars are not in motion, so active volcanoes remain over the lava plumes and grow extremely large because of repeated eruptions.
How did the lunar maria most likely originate?
huge impact basins that were nearly filled with basaltic lava flows
The soil-like layer of the moon composed of igneous rocks, breccia, glass beads, and fine lunar dust is called ________.
lunar regolith
Valles Marineris, a series of vast canyons on Mars, most likely formed by ________.
Which of the terrestrial planets has the least dense atmosphere?
It was stated in the animation that in our solar system, Mars generates more interest by scientists and nonscientists than any other planet. For which reason do you think Mars generates so much interest by these groups?
Besides Venus, Mars is the planet closest to Earth and has many similarities.
Olympus Mons, thought to be the largest volcano in the solar system, can be found on which planet?
The blue color of both Uranus and Neptune is caused by the presence of which gas in their atmospheres?
Which satellite in the solar system exhibits active volcanism?
Which is the only planet in the solar system whose axis of rotation is in an orientation parallel to its orbital plane?
What evidence observed on Mars indicates that at one time it may have had a warmer climate and a water cycle similar to that on Earth?
What evidence observed on Mars indicates that at one time it may have had a warmer climate and a water cycle similar to that on Earth?
large valleys that resemble river channels
The following images show five planets in our solar system. Rank these planets from left to right based on the amount of time it takes them to orbit the Sun, from longest to shortest. (Not to scale.)
longest time to shortest
The following images show five planets in our solar system. Rank these planets from left to right based on their average surface (or cloud-top) temperature, from highest to lowest. (Not to scale.)
highest to lowest
The following images show four planets in our solar system. Rank these planets from left to right based on the number of moons that orbit them, from highest to lowest. (Not to scale.)
highest to lowest
Which of the following is a possible distance of the Kuiper Belt from the Sun?
50 AU
Which of the following is a possible distance of the asteroid belt in our solar system from the Sun?
3 AU
Which of the following describes a trend that occurs with increasing distance from the Sun?
Distance between planets increases.
Cosmology is the study of ________.
the universe
A light-year is ________.
the distance light travels in one (Earth) year
According to the big bang theory, the first two elements to form in the universe were ________.
hydrogen and helium
Our solar system resides in the ________.
Milky Way galaxy
It is believed our solar system formed approximately ________ years ago.
4.6 billion
The first galaxies and stars are believed to have formed ________ years ago.
13.8 billion
Our Sun is current in the ________ stage of solar evolution.
main sequence star
A star’s ________ can be determined from its color.
surface temperature
Very large red stars, such as Betelgeuse in the constellation Orion, are called ________.
Approximately ________ percent of all stars are ________.
90; main sequence stars
Which are the hottest stars?
blue main-sequence stars
Supernova explosions occur in ________ stars.
If a star ends its life cycle as a black hole, that implies it has a ________ mass.
The Crab Nebula is a planetary nebula that formed due to a ________ in the year 1054 A.D., an event recorded by Chinese astronomers.
On an H-R diagram, where do stars spend most of their life span?
as main-sequence stars
How does the Sun compare in size and brightness to other main-sequence stars?
The Sun has a medium brightness and a medium size among the other main-sequence stars.
What element is the fuel for main-sequence stars?
What is the final state of a medium-mass (Sunlike) star?
a white dwarf with a mass less than 1.4
Why are black holes hard to find in spite of the fact that they are thought to be abundant?
The gravity of a black hole is so powerful that even light cannot escape it; thus, the black hole cannot be seen.
The Milky Way galaxy is an example of a(n) ________ galaxy.
Which choice correctly describes the three types of galaxies?
1. spiral galaxies, which are flat, disk-shaped, and have arms extending from a central nucleus; 2. elliptical galaxies, which are semi or nearly spherical and have no arms; 3. irregular galaxies, which show no symmetry or patterns
What type of galaxy is our Milky Way?
a spiral galacy
Our own galactic cluster, called the Local Group, consists of more than ________.
40 galaxies
Which of the following is a galaxy classification?
How did astronomers determine that the universe is expanding?
The lights emanating from other galaxies are moving away from the Milky Way, which we can detect as the shift of the galaxies’ spectral lines towards the red end of the spectrum.
Compared to a main-sequence star with a short lifetime, a main-sequence star with a long lifetime is __________.
less luminous, cooler, smaller, and less massive
Compared to a high-luminosity main-sequence star, stars in the upper right of the H-R diagram are __________.
cooler and larger in radius
Compared to a low-luminosity main-sequence star, stars in the lower left of the H-R diagram are __________.
hotter and smaller in radius
Which of the following statements is true regarding the life cycle of a star?
Every star begins its life cycle as a nebula.
Which of the following best describes the transition from a protostar to main sequence star?
Thermonuclear fusion begins in the core.
What causes the transformation of a red giant to a planetary nebula?
Fusion ceases in the core and collapse under the force of gravity occurs, leading to an enhancement of hydrogen fusion in the shell.
The __________ stage is present in the evolution of medium-mass stars, but absent in low-mass stars.
red giant
A __________ or __________ are created during the last stage of high-mass star evolution.
neutron star, black hole
A central bulge of differing color
Which of the following is a very common feature of spiral galaxies?
A __________ is a relatively small concentration of stars that are closely packed in a spherical form.
globular cluster
A central bulge is characteristic of what galaxy type?
Which of the following represents the small- to large-scale classification of celestial bodies?
stars, galaxies, clusters, groups
What might cause the distorted shape of an irregular galaxy?
The collision of two galaxies

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