Study Guide for Test 3

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1 Study Guide for Test 3 Note: All of the material here may not be included in Test 3. The extent of the coverage for test 3 will be made clear in class. Any remaining material may be included on the Final Exam. The extent of the final exam coverage will be made clear in class. Chapter As seen from Earth, the brightness of Venus changes as it moves along its orbit. Why? 2. Why is it hotter on Venus than Mercury? 3. What is the greenhouse effect? What role does it play in the atmosphere of Venus? 4. What is the primary component of the atmosphere of Venus? 5. What is the atmospheric surface pressure of Venus compared to Earth s? 6. Is there evidence for volcanoes on Venus? Is there any possibility any are active today? 7. Do planetary scientists see evidence for plate tectonics on Venus? 8. What is unusual about how Venus spins on its axis? 9. Does Venus rotate faster or slower than Earth? 10. What spacecraft has soft-landed on the surface of Venus? Why did it last only a short time before electronic failure? 11. Can we see the surface of Venus in visual wavelengths from an orbiting space probe? 12. How was the surface of Venus mapped? What was the name of the space probe that mapped the surface? What did the radar maps reveal? 13. About how old is the surface of Venus? How do we scientist estimate the age of the surface? What is very unusual about the age of the surface? What are the equilibrium resurfacing hypothesis and global catastrophe hypothesis? 14. Does Venus have a global magnetic field? Chapter When is the best time to view Mars? 16. What is the name of the spacecraft that began orbiting Mars in October 2001?

2 17. Why is it reasonable to assume that the primordial atmospheres of Venus, Earth, and Mars were roughly the same? 18. Describe Mars s atmosphere today. 19. What is the most likely type of storm on the surface of Mars? 20. How is the greenhouse effect different on Mars than Venus? 21. What is the surface atmospheric pressure on Mars compared to Earth? 22. What is the current knowledge concerning life on Mars? What was the name of the space probes giving us this information? 23. Was there ever liquid water on the surface of Mars? How do we know? Is there any liquid water today? Where might this water be now and in what phase state? 24. What are the polar caps on Mars made of? What are the residual polar caps made of? 25. Why is Mars red? 26. Why does the surface colors change seasonally on Mars? 27. What is Olympus Mons? 28. What is the Marineris Valley? 29. What are the moons of Mars? Are they like our Moon? How are they different? 30. In what ways is Mars similar to Earth as far as rotation and seasons? Chapter What are the two most plentiful elements on Jupiter? Why is Jupiter s composition different from Earth s? 32. How does Jupiter s mass compare to Earth s? Its density? 33. What is thought to be the source of Jupiter s excess internal heat? 34. What are belts and zones in Jupiter s atmosphere? 35. What is the Great Red Spot? About how long has it been observed? 36. How did Comet Shoemaker-Levy achieve fame? 37. What is liquid metallic hydrogen? What significance is it on Jupiter as far as the magnetic field is concerned? 38. Why do scientist believe that Jupiter has a rocky inner core? 39. How do we describe Jupiter s rotation at different latitudes? Does Jupiter rotate fast or slow compared to all other planets? 40. Are their any spacecrafts orbiting Jupiter today? What is its name? 41. When is the best time to view Jupiter?

3 Chapter Four large moons about Jupiter are easily seen with a small telescope from Earth. Who saw them first? What are their names? 43. Describe their orbits. 44. The densities of these moons show a trend. What is this pattern and how does it mimic our solar system? 45. Which moon is volcanically active? What heat source powers this moon? 46. What is the source of particles in the plasma torus about Jupiter? 47. On which moon are you most likely to find an ocean and therefore life? 48. Which is the largest moon in our solar system? 49. Which moons have their own intrinsic magnetic fields? 50. Callisto is a bit of a mystery it appears undifferentiated and yet supports an induced magnetic field. What does this mean about the interior of this moon? 51. Does Jupiter have a ring? What is the ring composed of? Chapter Who first saw that Saturn had an unusual structure about it? 53. Who first described this structure as a ring? 54. Who first proved that the ring was composed of an indefinite number of individual particles as opposed to a solid structure? 48. Why does Saturn have a ring system? 55. What other planets have rings? 56. What are Saturn s rings made of? 57. What is the Cassini division? 58. How do the ring particles move about the planet? Which particles move the fastest? (hint think of Kepler s laws) 59. How thick is the ring system in meters? 60. What is the Roche Limit? What happens when a moon enters into this limit? What happens when a spacecraft enters into this limit? 61. What are the two main constituents of Saturn s atmosphere? 62. What is the source of Saturn s internal heat? Is it the same as Jupiter s? 63. Compare Jupiter s internal structure to Saturn s: which has the larger core, which has the larger layer of metallic hydrogen? 64. What is Saturn s inner core made of?

4 65. How does Saturn rotate on its axis, as a solid or differentially? 66. Why is Titan of interest? What are the constituents of its atmosphere? 67. What is the name of the spacecraft now en route to Titan? 68. What is the density of Saturn? 69. What does Mimas look like? How has it sculpted the rings of Saturn? 70. What does Enceladus look like? Which moon is the most reflective large object in our solar system? Chapter Who discovered Uranus? How was it discovered? 72. How was Neptune discovered? 73. Originally the tilt of Uranus s rotation axis was deduced form the orbits of its moons. Why was this? 74. Describe what Uranus and Neptune look like. Why are they the color that they are? 75. What is a contributing cause to Uranus being featureless that is not shared by the other Jovains? 76. What is interesting about the orientation of Uranus s spin axis? 77. How does the orientation of Uranus s and Neptune s magnetic axis differ from those on any other planet? 78. What was the name of the space probe that flew by Uranus and Neptune? 79. How were the rings of Uranus discovered? Rings of Neptune? 80. Why is it reasonable to assume that Neptune will be surrounded by a broad system of rings, perhaps similar to Saturn, sometime in the future? 81. Which planet has an orbit that is most eccentric? 82. Which planet has an orbit that is most inclined to the ecliptic? 83. Does Pluto s orbit cross any other planet s orbit? 84. What is Pluto s Moon s name? 85. Does Pluto have an atmosphere? 86. Why is Pluto in a class by itself instead of being called a terrestrial or Jovian planet? 87. Has a space probe visited Pluto? 88. Is Pluto larger or smaller in volume when compared to our Moon?

5 Chapter What is an asteroid? What are they made of? 90. What is a meteor, meteoroid, and meteorite? 91. What happens when we have a meteor shower? 92. What are comets made of? 93. What are the two components to a comet s tail? Does a comet always have a tail? 94. Which direction does the tail always point relative to the sun? 95. What is the Oort cloud? 96. Where is Halley s Comet now? 97. What is the Kuiper Belt? 98. How can you tell if a rock you found is a meteorite, that is, what are some defining characteristics? 99. What is a NEO (Near Earth Object)? Can these be trouble? How would an intelligent dinosaur likely answer that question?

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