Individual Week 1 Review Questions
Critical and Creative Thinking Questions
3. How do you think the principle of uniformitarianism accounts for occasional catastrophic events such as meteorite impacts, huge volcanic eruptions, or great earthquakes?
The principle of uniformitarianism states the processes occurring on Earth today are very similar in manner as those throughout much of geologic times. In other words “the present is the key to the past.”(Murck, B. W., Skinner, B. J., & Mackenzie, D. (2010)). When looking at past geological events and occurrences that happened in the past with additions of new testing and technology they can ...view middle of the document...
Mars and Venus are Earth’s neighboring planets each having different chemical compositions, but all has experienced volcanic activity and meteor impacts. Minerals present on the moon are also present on Earth’s surfaces due to geological processes and activities within the solar system that has taken place over many years. I expect that the same minerals would be present on both Mars and Venus due to their chemical makeup. Due to all of the meteorite collisions Earth, Venus and Mars have had a differentiation in their geospheres. Earths geosphere differentiated into three layers: a relatively thin, low-density, rocky crust; a rocky, intermediate-density mantle; and a metallic, high-density core (Murck, B. W., Skinner, B. J., & Mackenzie, D. (2010)). Venus and Mars have a difference in composition and size they to formed similar layers to that of Earth.
3. Which of the following materials are minerals, and why (or why not)? Water; beach sand; diamond; wood; vitamin pill; gold nugget; fishbone; emerald.
Water - Is not a mineral because it is a liquid not a solid.
Beach Sand – Is not a mineral itself, but contains several minerals within it such as quartz and silica (Si02) which are the primary components in beach sand.
Diamond – Is a mineral often times colorless, but some with color and are considered rare. It is also the hardest mineral with a value of 10 on Mohs Scale of Relative Hardness.
Wood – Is not a mineral its chemical composition varies, its organic, and is not crystalline in structure.
Vitamin Pill – Is not a mineral because it is man-made not naturally occurring.
Gold Nugget – Is a mineral because Gold occurs in hydrothermal veins deposited by ascending solutions; as disseminated particles through some sulfide deposits and in placer deposits (Gold Mineral Properties and Uses).
Fishbone – Is not a mineral because bones form by organic processes.
Emerald – Is a mineral a green variety of the mineral called beryl.
3. How old are the rock formations in the area where you live and attend college or university? How can you find out the answer to this question?
I live and attend college in the Valley of the Sun. Many of the rock formations here are extremely old dating back nearly 2 billion years during a time period geologists called the Precambrian Period (GeoHistory). Information to answer this question can be found in news articles, biology journals, historical websites, and government and educational readings as well.
4. Choose one of the geologic periods or epochs listed in Figure 3.8 and find out all you can about it: How are rocks from that period identified? What are its most characteristic fossils? Where are the best samples of rocks from your chosen period found?
Rocks formed during the cretaceous period are identifiable in more ways than one would think. The cretaceous period occurred at the end of the Mesozoic Era. Rocks such as limestone, basaltic, clays, salts, gypsum, sandstone,...