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GEO 103 Exam

Physical Geography

Wegeners Theory (explain) The continents were once interconnected and slowly drifted apart. They once formed Pangaea
Key Mechanism in Plate Tectonics The discovery of seafloor spreading along the mid-Atlantic ridge.
Def. Plate Tectonics The movement of Earth's underlying plates (pieces of crust).
Major Plates + Directions
Plate Margin: Divergent, Convergent, Transform Divergent: spreading away from eachother Convergent: Colliding with each other Transform: sliding past each other, locking up, creating stress, releasing earthquakes, creating fault-lines.
Convergent Margin: 3 variations oceanic --> oceanic; subduction, eq's continental ---> continental oceanic ---> continental (oceanic subduction, eq's) continental ---> continental (compression, formation of mountain ranges e.g. Himalayas).
Explanation of a Hot Spot Magma chamber that occurs underneath the earth's crust and results in volcanism. These do not occur along plate boundaries.
Formation of Hawaiian Islands The Hawaiian islands were formed above a hotspot. They're a formation, or chain of islands occurring because the plate is slowly moving over the hotspot.
How plate tectonics intersect with other sciences (Biology, Paleontology) Climatology: Mountain ranges resulting from plate activity affect weather patterns.
Def. Terranes Pieces of crust that are "attached" to continental landform. Composed of various rock-types. West coast of North America = best example.
Focus vs. Epicenter Epicenter is the area of breakage (disruption) underneath the surface. Focus is immediately above surface.
Richter Scale vs. Mercalli Scale Richter is accurate because it measures an earthquake via distance+amplitude. Mercalli is based on subjective reports.
P vs. S Waves P = Primary waves (fast, initial wave). S = secondary waves (slow, cause more damage).
Microzonation Map Details geographical locations based on susceptibility to earthquakes. Helps assess damage risk in a specified area based on underlying soil. Unconsolidated sediment is less stable than hard rock (granite)
Classification Systems of Volcanoes 1. Based on height of eruptive cloud Hawaiian vs Plinian. 2. Volume of erupted materials.
Volcanic Landforms 1. Shield Volcano 2. Composite (Strato) Volcano 3. Cinder Cones 4. Calderas 5. Lava Domes
Tsunamis Mass wasting underwater causes major water displacement, or,
Physical Weathering Expansion through "diurnal" temperature change. - Plant growth - Frost weathering (faults/cracks in rocks fill with water, water expands as it freezes and causes breakage). 3. Growth of salt crystals
Chemical Weathering Water + CO2 = carbonic acid (H2CO3). Feldspar dissolves in acid and forms quartz (resistant to chemical change). 2. When oxygen reacts with iron to form rust.
Def. Weathering Breaking down and reformation of rock/earth material.
Catasthrophism Major landforms (e.g. massive craters) are the result of short-lived, violent occurences. For example, meteorites.
Uniformitarianism The modern geologic paradigm. The face of Earth, it's major land formations are shaped through gradual processes.
Geologic Time Scale Divided into Eras, Epochs etc. because these demarcate major changes in geological/paleontological events (extinction of dinosaurs).
Major Plates/Directions North American Plate -- northwest. Juan De Fuca Plate -- east, ramming into the northwest of US.
Created by: jeremycliffordaz