The lectures and topics cover such issues as solid Earth structure and evolution, plate tectonics, oceans and atmospheres, climate change, and the relationship between geological and biological evolution. Satisfies the menu requirement of the Caltech core curriculum. Topics covered include ancient Earth surface environments and the rise of atmospheric oxygen.Weekly seminar by a member of the Division of Geological and Planetary Sciences or a visitor to discuss a topic of his or her current research at an introductory level. Microbial and molecular evolution, photosynthesis, genes as fossils.
The work, led by geochemist Ken Farley of the California Institute of Technology (Caltech), could not only help in understanding the geologic history of Mars but also aid in the search for evidence of ancient life on the planet.
Many of the experiments carried out by the Mars Science Laboratory (MSL) mission's Curiosity rover were painstakingly planned by NASA scientists more than a decade ago. Keck Foundation Professor of Geochemistry and one of the 29 selected participating scientists, submitted a proposal that outlined a set of techniques similar to those already used for dating rocks on Earth, to determine the age of rocks on Mars.
The smooth floor of Yellowknife Bay is made up of a fine-grained sedimentary rock, or mudstone, that researchers think was deposited on the bed of an ancient Martian lake.
In March, Curiosity drilled holes into the mudstone and collected powdered rock samples from two locations about three meters apart.
An introduction to the ideas and approaches of earth and planetary sciences, including both the special challenges and viewpoints of these kinds of science as well as the ways in which basic physics, chemistry, and biology relate to them. Although Ge 11 abcd is designed as a sequence, any one term may be taken as a standalone course.
In addition to a wide-ranging lecture-oriented component, there will be a required field trip component (two weekend days). Systematic introduction to the origin and evolution of life and its impact on the oceans, atmosphere, and climate of Earth.Unsurprisingly, the first factor in determining whether someone gets a lot of date requests is physical attractiveness.The second factor, which may be less obvious, involves people's own individual preferences—how compatible a potential partner may be, for instance.Once the rock samples were drilled, Curiosity's robotic arm delivered the rock powder to the Sample Analysis on Mars (SAM) instrument, where it was used for a variety of chemical analyses, including the geochronology—or rock dating—techniques.One technique, potassium-argon dating, determines the age of a rock sample by measuring how much argon gas it contains.The course is designed to introduce students to research and research opportunities in the division and to help students find faculty sponsors for individual research projects. Systematic introduction to the physical and chemical processes that have shaped Earth as a planet over geological time, and the observable products of these processes - rock materials, minerals, land forms. Banded iron stones, microbial mats, stromatolites, and global glaciation. Numerical calibration of the geological timescale, the Cambrian explosion, mass extinctions, and human evolution.