Dr. Pinsky

FALL 1994




There may be more than one correct answer to each question or there may be NO correct answers. Mark all correct answers on the answer sheet. You will be graded RIGHT MINUS WRONG, answer by answer, not question by question! (i.e., You will receive one point for each correct answer marked and have one subtracted from your score for each incorrect answer marked. You will receive neither penalty nor bonus for any answer left blank.) DO NOT GUESS!!!!!




1. Hurricanes:


a) have most of their rainfall on the eastern side of the eye in the northern hemisphere.

b) occur only in the Atlantic Ocean.

c) form only in bands of latitude which can be as close as about10 north or south of, but not on the equator.

d) derive their energy from earth's rotation.

e) generally spin in the opposite direction in the Western Hemisphere than they do in the Eastern Hemisphere.




2. Concerning the phases of the moon:


a) at "first quarter" the moon appears to be east of the sun by about 90.

b) eclipses of the sun can occur only when the moon is "new".

c) during its monthly motion the moon appears to move through its phases, westward against the background stars.

d) perigee always occurs when the moon is full.

e) if the moon is on your celestial meridian at dawn, it is in a waning phase.


3. Concerning the interior of the earth:


a) the core is in general more dense than the mantle.

b) the innermost region of the core is solid.

c) the core has more volume than the mantle.

d) the gravitational pull is greater, the greater the depth, all the way to the center.

e) the entire core is essentially composed of iron and nickel.


4. Seismic S-waves travel through the earth at about 5 km/sec and P-waves at about 9 km/sec. Consider the seismic waves from an earthquake 900 km away.


a) the S-waves may not arrive at all (in this case) due to the fluid nature of at least part of the earth's core.

b) the P-waves should always arrive before the S-waves.

c) the S-waves will arrive about 180 sec after the quake.

d) the difference in the arrival time for the two kinds of waves will be about 80 seconds.

e) when the first P-waves arrive, the nearest S-wave will still be more than 450 km away.


5. Mars shows evidence of:


a) abundant surface water in liquid form at the present time.

b) winds near the surface.

c) many large frozen lakes with significant water ice present to some significant degree.

d) extensive volcanism in the past.

e) a significant amount of iron present at the surface compared to the earth.



6. Mercury:


a) has the highest surface temperature of any planet in the solar system.

b) has had its entire surface thoroughly mapped by spacecraft.

c) gets a larger fraction of its mass from iron than the earth.

d) has a molten rock surface at local noon.

e) has been examined closely by only one spacecraft (Mariner 10).


For questions 7 - 20 use the following answers:


a) the Moon

b) Mercury

c) Venus

d) Earth

e) Mars


7. Which 2 have the least mass?


8. Which has the most iron at or very near the surface?


9. For which ones would the sky always appear black when viewed from the surface?


10. On which does the greenhouse effect raise the surface temperature?


11. Which has the slowest rotation rate?


12. As seen from space, which have water ice frost on the surface at some place at all times?


13. Which has the greatest compressed density?


14. Which has the greatest uncompressed density?


15. Which has been the most heavily impacted (greatest total number) by large crater making objects over the entire course of its history (after its initial formation, and ignoring subsequent erosion of old craters)?


16. If a thermometer in thermal contact with the soil at the surface reads 100C (212F, the boiling point of water), this could be on:


17. If a thermometer in the atmosphere near the surface reads 0C (32F), this could be on:


18. Man has walked on the surface of:


19. There is no evidence of cratering at present on:


20. There is a magnetic field on:


21. Subduction is associated with:


a) the greenhouse effect

b) plate tectonics

c) deep ocean trenches

d) cratering

e) sexual harassment



22. Coriolis forces on the earth:


a) prevent atmospheric highs and lows from dissipating quickly.

b) are strong inertial forces stemming from the earth's revolution about the sun.

c) cause northbound moving objects near the earth's surface to veer to the right in the northern hemisphere.

d) are stronger in the troposphere than the stratosphere.

e) are the major factor in determining which way the water swirls as it drains in most sinks.


23. Earthquakes tend to occur most often:


a) in association with an active volcanic eruption somewhere in the world.

b) whenever the tide is peaking locally.

c) when sudden movement occurs along a boundary between tectonic plates.

d) mostly along plate boundaries.

e) during the day rather than at night.




24. In our current theory of the evolution of the earth:


a) the earth melted completely due to impacts some time after it formed.

b) plants are instrumental in sustaining our present atmosphere.

c) all cratering activity ceased billions of years ago.

d) the earth formed much earlier than any other planet.

e) our atmosphere has been very different at times over the earth's evolutionary process.



25. Concerning eclipses:


a) penumbral eclipses of the moon are more common than total eclipses.

b) the duration of totality for an eclipse of the moon is usually much longer than for an eclipse of the sun as seen by a stationary observer on the earth's surface.

c) during an eclipse of the moon, one can see the moon due to refraction and scattering by the earth's atmosphere

d) the observation of total eclipses of the sun are rare events compared to total eclipses of the moon.

e) first contact is the instant the moon first touches the penumbra of the earth's shadow.


26. What evidence would a planetary geologist use to identify a "young"

crater on Mercury?


a) sharper rim and central peak compared to older craters, whose

features would have suffered significant erosion by wind and dust

b) lighter colored central region, since older craters would have

acquired a layer of dark dust over time

c) infrared and photographic results showing evidence of water

released recently from the permafrost by the impact

d) few if any smaller craters within it or on its rim

e) the location in an area with a much lower than average crater density.


27. The lower atmosphere of Venus above the surface of the planet can

best be described as:


a) absent (Venus is almost airless)

b) foggy

c) quite dusty

d) very clear

e) very dense (compared to earth's)


28. The terrestrial objects that are seriously thought to have been involved in massive collisions early in their history include:


a) Mercury b) Venus c) Earth d) Mars e) the moon