EARTH 520
Plate Tectonics and People

Overview

Print Print

Lesson 4 will take us two weeks to complete. In this lesson, we'll investigate the structure of the interior of the Earth. The Neat-o Interdisciplinary Idea for this lesson is optics. We'll complete a lab investigation of the index of refraction of water in order to make some simple observations about how light travels through materials with different optical properties. We'll extend this knowledge to seismic waves and then observe seismic waves to infer some simple aspects of the material properties of the interior of the Earth.

What will we learn in Lesson 4?

By the end of Lesson 4, you should be able to:

  • List different methods scientists use to infer the material properties of the Earth's interior.
  • Measure the angle of incidence and angle of refraction of light passing through water.
  • Calculate the index of refraction of water.
  • Use the index of refraction to predict raypaths through layered media.
  • Pick P wave arrival times on a seismogram.
  • Construct a travel time curve for P waves.

What is due for Lesson 4?

The tables below provide an overview of the requirements for Lesson 4. For assignment details, refer to subsequent pages in this lesson.

Lesson 4 will take us two weeks to complete. 27 Sep 2017 - 10 Oct 2017.

Lesson 4 Assignments, Week 1
Requirement Submitted for Grading? Due Date
Reading assignment: "Mineral physics quest to the Earth's core" and "Driving the Earth machine? " Yes - We will discuss these two papers in a discussion forum in Canvas multiple participation spanning 27 Sep - 3 Oct 2017
Optics lab Yes - submit your worksheet to the Canvas assignment called "Optics Lab." 3 Oct 2017
Lesson 4 Assignments, Week 2
Requirement Submitted for Grading? Due Date
P wave path problem set Yes - submit your worksheet to the Canvas assignment called "P wave path problem set" 10 Oct 2017
Teaching and Learning Discussion I Yes - this activity will be part of your overall discussion grade. The discussion will take place in the "Teaching/Learning I" discussion forum in Canvas multiple participation spanning 4 - 10 Oct 2017

Questions?

If you have any questions, please post them to our Questions? Discussion Forum (not e-mail). I will check that discussion forum daily to respond. While you are there, feel free to post your own responses if you, too, are able to help out a classmate.