www.whyville.net May 9, 2002 Weekly Issue

More Than Rocks

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More Than Rocks

Science Writer

Hola, this is Joykissed! Now, I bet most of you people think geology is just the study of rocks. This may be big news but... that's not all! Geology is the study of Earth and its matter, processes, and history.

In fact, geology is just one of the four types of Earth Science. There is also meteorology (the study of weather and the forces and processes that cause it), astronomy (the study of objects in space, including stars, planets, and comets - not astrology!), and oceanography (the study of Earth's oceans). All of those studies are important, they investigate things most people take for granite (is that how you spell it!?! Editor's Note: "Granite" is the rock, "granted" is the right word for your phrase, unless you're making a bad rock pun! ;-)), such as water, sand, the atmosphere, mountains, etc.

The main studies of geology are: mineralogy (just take a guess), petrology (the science of rocks, their nature and origin), and stuff like volcanoes (volcanology), earthquakes (seismology), maps, mountains, fossils (paleontology), and land use.

In meteorology one would learn about storm patterns, climates, and what factors cause our daily weather. The atmosphere (which helps cause our daily weather) consists of the troposphere, stratosphere (contains ozone layer), mesosphere, thermosphere, and exosphere. Also the clouds, mainly stratus, cirrus, cumulus, and nimbus, help to predict the weather.

Sorry, I don't have anything about astronomy and oceanography -- I have not learned about those in school yet!

Did you know that just throwing away your batteries is a kind of pollution? I suggest finding out how you can help the Earth survive. Let me fill you in on our atmosphere. (This info was borrowed from a friend, plus some of my own) --> " Chlorofluorocarbons, known as CFCs (used in aerosol sprays and bug repellent), float up to the uppermost parts of the atmosphere. There the ultraviolet rays from the Sun break them apart. There are three chlorine atoms in one molecule of CFC. Each of these can break up over 100,000 ozone molecules.

Here's how it works: a chlorine atom breaks up an ozone molecule, attaches itself to one of the oxygen atoms, and leaves behind a loose oxygen atom. Then a free-floating molecule breaks the bond between the chlorine atom and the oxygen atom, joining with the oxygen atom. The chlorine is thus free to find yet another ozone molecule, break it apart, and continue the process. What is left after all this are lots of molecules of oxygen, which are unable to absorb ultraviolet radiation. When the UV light isn't absorbed high in the atmosphere, it penetrates way down to the surface of the Earth, and thus creates global warming.

Now you may think twice about spraying your hair, I mean, don't you think you could just use water, and are bugs that bothersome!?!?

Hope you enjoyed this, because it took a long time!




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