Visualizing Earth Science, 1st Edition
January 2009, ©2009
Authors Zeeya Merali and Brian Skinner focus on visual learning in their debut of their first edition, Visualizing Earth Science. This text weaves illustrated timelines throughout to exemplify how concepts fit together and develop over time. Students will quickly learn difficult concepts with this innovative, visual approach.
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What Is Earth Science?
Using the Scientific Method.
Earth System Science.
WHAT AN EARTH SCIENTIST SEES: Island or Open System.
Earth in Space.
The Solar System.
The Terrestrial Planets.
What Makes Earth Unique?
Humans and Earth.
Renewable and Nonrenewable Resources.
Why Study Earth Science?
Amazing Places: Earth.
CHAPTER 2 MINERALS: EARTH’S BUILDING BLOCKS. Minerals, Elements, and Compounds.
Elements, Atoms, and Ions.
Compounds, Molecules, and Bonding.
What Is a Mineral?
Composition of Minerals.
Telling Minerals Apart.
CASE STUDY: Minerals for Adornment.
Minerals of Earth’s Crust.
Silicates: The Most Important Rock Formers.
WHAT AN EARTH SCIENTIST SEES: Living in a Mineral World.
Amazing Places: The Naica Mine, Chihuahua, Mexico.
CHAPTER 3 ROCKS: KEEPERS OF EARTH’S HISTORY.
Rocks: A First Look.
The Three Rock Families.
The Rock Cycle.
Rate of Cooling.
WHAT AN EARTH SCIENTIST SEES: Putting Rocks Under a Microscope. Chemical Composition.
Clastic Sediments and Clastic Sedimentary Rocks.
Lithification of Clastic Sediment.
Chemical Sediments and Chemical Sedimentary Rocks.
WHAT AN EARTH SCIENTIST SEES: A Change in the Atmosphere. Biogenic sediments and Biogenic Sedimentary Rocks.
Interpreting Environmental Clues.
CASE STUDY: Sedimentary Facies and the History of Humankind Metamorphic Rocks.
The Limits of Metamorphism.
The Importance of Stress.
Rocks as Resources.
Rocks as Construction Materials.
Mineral Resources in Igneous Rocks.
Mineral Resources in Chemical and Biogenic Sedimentary Rocks.
Gold in Metamorphic Rocks.
Amazing Places: The Navajo Sandstone.
CHAPTER 4 WEATHERING, SOILS, AND MASS WASTING. Weathering: The Earth System at Work.
Weathering: How Rocks Disintegrate?
Mechanical Weathering: Breaking Rocks Apart.
WHAT AN EARTH SCIENTIST SEES: Joint Formation.
Chemical Weathering: Breaking Rocks by Chemistry.
Factors Affecting Weathering.
Soil: The Most Important Product of Weathering.
Factors that Influence Soil Formation.
CASE STUDY: Bad and Good Soil.
Erosion and Mass Wasting: Gravity at Work.
Erosion by Water.
Erosion by Wind.
Erosion by Ice.
Gravity and Mass Wasting.
Tectonics and Mass Wasting.
Resources Formed by Weathering and Erosion.
Resources Formed by Chemical Weathering.
Resources Formed by Erosion.
Amazing Places: Monadnock–and Monadnocks
CHAPTER 5 WATER ON AND UNDER THE GROUND.
The Hydrologic Cycle.
Water in the Earth System.
How Water Affects the Land.
Streams and Streamflow.
Large-scale Topography of Stream Systems.
WHAT AN EARTH SCIENTIST SEES: Drainage Basins
Surface Water as a Hazard and Resource.
Surface Water Resources.
Global Irrigation and Industrial Water Consumption
CASE STUDY: California’s Mono Lake, in the Sierra Nevada. Fresh Water Underground.
The Water Table.
How Groundwater Moves.
Where Groundwater is Stored.
Groundwater Depletion and Contamination.
When Groundwater Dissolves Rock.
Amazing Places: Lechuguilla Cave.
CHAPTER 6 EXTREME CLIMATIC REGIONS: DESERTS, GLACIERS, and ICE SHEETS.
Deserts and Drylands.
Types of Deserts.
Wind Deposits and Desert Landforms.
Stream Erosion and Deposition in Deserts.
Glaciers and Ice Sheets.
Components of the Cryosphere.
WHAT AN EARTH SCIENTIST SEES: Periglacial Landforms.
Amazing Places: Death Valley.
CHAPTER 7 PLATE TECTONICS: SCULPTOR OF EARTH’S EVER-CHANGING LANDSCAPE.
A Revolution in Earth Science.
Wegener’s Hypothesis of Continental Drift.
The Puzzle Piece Argument.
Matching the Rocks and Fossils.
Magnetism and Magnetic Poles that Seem to Wander.
The Plate Tectonic Model.
Plate Tectonics in a Nutshell.
Types of Plate Margins.
WHAT AN EARTH SCIENTIST SEES: The Red Sea and the Gulf of Aden.
Earthquakes and Plate Margins.
The Search for a Mechanism.
Earth’s Internal Heat.
Convection as Driving Force.
The Tectonic Cycle.
The Supercontinent Cycle.
Amazing Places: The Hawaiian Islands.
CHAPTER 8 EARTHQUAKES AND EARTH’S INTERIOR. Earthquakes and Earthquake Hazards.
Earthquakes and Plate Motions.
Earthquake Hazards and Predictions.
CASE STUDY: The Sumatra-Andaman Tsunami of 2004.
Designing for Earthquake Safety.
The Science of Seismology.
WHAT AN EARTH SCIENTIST SEES: Richter Magnitude: A Logarithmic Scale.
Looking Into Earth’s Interior.
How Earth Scientists Look into Earth’s Interior—Seismic Methods.
How Earth Scientists Look into Earth’s Interior—Other Methods.
WHAT AN EARTH SCIENTIST SCEES: Diamonds: Messengers from the Deep.
How and Why Rocks Break.
Stress and Strain.
Kinds of Deformation.
Kinds of Faults.
Amazing Places: Loch Ness.
CHAPTER 9 VOLCANOES AND OTHER IGNEOUS PROCESSES.
Volcanoes and Volcanic Hazards.
Eruptions, Landforms, and Materials.
AN EARTH SCIENTIST SEES: Crater Lake.
Hazards and Prediction.
CASE STUDY: Lakes of Death in Caneroon.
Why and How Rocks Melt.
Heat and Pressure Inside Earth.
Cooling and Crystallization.
Bowen’s Reaction Series.
Plutons and Plutonism.
Batholiths and Stocks.
Dikes and Sills.
Amazing Places: Mount St. Helens.
CHAPTER 10 HOW OLD IS OLD? THE ROCK RECORD AND DEEP TIME.
WHAT AN EARTH SCIENTIST SEES: The Principle of Stratigraphic Superposition.
Gaps in the Record.
Fossils and Correlation.
The Geologic Column.
Eras and Eons.
Periods and Epochs.
The First Attempts.
Radioactivity and Numerical Ages.
Magnetic Polarity Dating.
CASE STUDY: Dating Human Ancestors.
The Age of Earth.
Amazing Places: The Grand Canyon.
CHAPTER 11 A BRIEF HISTORY OF LIFE ON EARTH.
The Ever-Changing Earth.
Changes in the Atmosphere and Hydrosphere.
Life in Three Not-so-easy Steps.
Archaean and Proterozoic Life.
Evolution and the Fossil Record.
Evolution and Natural Selection.
How Fossils Form.
Life in the Phanerozoic Eon.
The Paleozoic Era.
WHAT AN EARTH SCIENTIST SEES: A Sample of Cambrian Life.
From Sea to Land.
The Mesozoic Era.
The Cenozoic Era.
Amazing Places: The Burgess Shale.
CHAPTER 12 THE OCEANS.
The Ocean Basins.
Depth and Volume of the Oceans.
WHAT AN EARTH SCIENTIST SEES: Undersea Topography.
The Composition of Seawater and the Movement of Sediment.
Biotic Zones and Deep-Sea Sediments.
Ocean Water and Its Circulation.
The Ocean Conveyor Belt.
How Oceans Regulate Climate.
Amazing Places: Monterey Bay, California.
CHAPTER 13 Where Ocean Meets Land.
Changes in Sea Level.
Global Changes in Volume.
Wave Action Along Coastlines.
WHAT AN EARTH SCIENTIST SEES: Breaking Waves.
Erosion and Transport of Sediment by Waves.
Shorelines and Coastal Landforms.
Beaches and Barrier Islands.
Humans versus the Sea.
Protection against Shoreline Erosion.
Effects of Human Interference.
CASE STUDY: The Black Sea Coast.
Amazing Places: The Florida Keys Reef.
CHAPTER 14 THE ATMOSPHERE: COMPOSITION, STRUCTURE, AND CLOUDS.
The Thermal Structure of the Atmosphere.
WHAT AN EARTH SCIENTIST SEES: The Bora Bora Sunset.
Moisture in the Atmosphere.
Changes of State.
The Solar Energy System.
Solar Energy Losses in the Atmosphere.
Counterradiation and the Greenhouse Effect.
Formation of Clouds.
The Adiabatic Principle.
Thunderstorms and Unstable Air.
Anatomy of a Thunderstorm.
Amazing Places: Hole Punch Clouds.
CHAPTER 15 GLOBAL CIRCULATION AND WEATHER SYSTEMS.
Air Pressure and Altitude.
Why Air Moves.
Cyclones and Anticyclones.
Cyclones and Anticyclones.
Global Wind Patterns.
The Geostrophic Wind.
Global Circulation at Upper Levels.
Rossby Waves, Jet Streams, and the Polar Front.
WHAT AN EARTH SCIENTIST SEES: Jet Stream Clouds.
Amazing Places: New Orleans Before and After Katrina.
CHAPTER 16 GLOBAL CLIMATES PAST AND PRESENT.
Global Climate Change in The Past.
What We Know.
How We Know It: The Temperature Record
Causes of Climate Change.
WHAT AN EARTH SCIENTIST SEES: The Gubbio Sediments.
Rapid Climate Change: The Younger Dryas Event
Global Climates Today.
Present-Day Climate Change.
What We Know.
What We Think.
Amazing Places: Barrow, Alaska.
CHAPTER 17 Earth’s Place in Space.
Astronomy and the Scientific Revolution.
Ideas from Antiquity.
Kepler and the New Astronomy.
Galileo and Newton.
The Solar System.
WHAT AN EARTH SCIENTIST SEES: The Crab Nebula.
WHAT AN EARTH SCIENTIST SEES: Saturn’s Rings.
Other Solar Systems.
Stars and Stellar Evolution.
The Hertzsprung-Russell Diagram.
Stellar Evolution: Birth to Death.
The Universe and How It Came to Be.
Edwin Hubble and the Discovery of Galaxies.
The Big Bang.
CASE STUDY: The Afterglow of the Big Bang.
The Universe Today.
Amazing Places: Mars.
- Learning Objectives at the beginning of each section head indicate in behavioral terms what the student must be able to do to demonstrate mastery of the material in the chapter.
- Visualizing Features are specially designed multi-part visual spreads that focus on a key concept or topic in the chapter, exploring it in detail or in broader context using photos and figures.
- Concept Check questions at the end of each section give students the opportunity to test their comprehension of the learning objectives.
- Marginal Glossary Boxes introduce each chapter s most important terms, often reinforced with a thumbnail photograph.
- What an Earth Scientist/Geologist Sees highlight a concept or phenomenon, using photos and figures that would stand out to a professional in the field, and help students develop observational skills.
- Process Diagrams present a series of figures or a combination of figures and photos that describe and depict a complex process, helping students to observe, follow and understand the process.
- The illustrated Case Studies that cap off the text sections of each chapter offer a wide variety of in-depth examinations that address important issues in the field of environmental science.
- Illustrations, Photos, and Cartoons support concepts covered in the text, elaborate relevant issues, and add visual detail. Many of the photos originate from National Geographic s rich sources.
- Tables and graphs, with data sources cited at the end of the text, summarize and organize important information.
- Critical Thinking Questions encourage critical thinking and highlight each chapter s important concepts and applications.
- The Chapter Summary revisits each learning objective and redefines each marginal glossary term, featured in boldface here, and included in a list of Key Terms.
- Self Tests, often including a visual, help students evaluate their readiness to move on to the next chapters, and to prepare for classroom quizzes and exams.