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dearastronomer
2012-Feb-12, 09:16 PM
In the context of education and public outreach, what are some of the best strategies you've applied to tie both Geology and Astronomy together?

To me, one of the obvious starting points is meteorites and asteroids. I've also at times tied together nucleosynthesis and dust accretion.

Thoughts?

mswhin63
2012-Feb-13, 04:46 AM
I agree, this is especially important for me, as my son is extremely interested in geology. He is still in high school but I want to assist him as much as possible in his venture. If we talk about my son, if I was to suggest "nucleosynthesis and dust accretion", he would more than likely scale the walls :), I want to build a GPR (Ground Penetrating Radar) and already bought a metal detector for him and I would like to dual night-time observing session and meteor hunting expedition in the sticks (Aussie Slang for "bush") one day.

IreneAnt
2012-Feb-13, 10:35 PM
Here are some thoughts off the top of my head...

Asteroids --> Impact Craters
Impact craters are spectacularly visible. There are plenty of them on the Moon that you can see with the naked eye, a pair of binoculars, a small telescope, or using satellite data sets available on line (eg: LROC ACT REACT Quick Map (http://target.lroc.asu.edu/da/qmap.html)).

Asteroids --> Impact Craters --> Extinction of Life
We now know that asteroid impacts played large roles in several (maybe all) extinction events throughout Earth's history, including the extinction of the dinosaurs.

Distance from the Sun vs. Composition
In a general sense, as you move further away from the Sun, the bulk density of the planets in our Solar System decreases. This is thought to be related to the fact that the more "volatile" elements, like hydrogen and oxygen, wouldn't condense out of the planetary disc very easily too close to the Sun, but would do so out near Jupiter. Since these element are light, planets further from the Sun (that have a lot of these light elements) would be lighter than those that formed close to the Sun (and have less of these light elements). This is why planets like Earth and Mars have rocky surfaces, and the moons around Saturn and Jupiter have icy surfaces.

Distance from Sun vs. Habitability Zone
Your distance from the Sun has a direct relationship to the temperature your planet will experience. Too close and you are too hot. Too far and you are too cold. While there are life forms that can survive extreme temperatures, most prefer and thrive in temperatures close to the triple point of water. So, for habitability you want a planet where the temperature is close to the triple point of water - the so-called Goldilocks Zone (because its not too hot, not too cold, but just right).

That's all I have for now.
I may come back and edit in more if I come up with them later.
Hope it helps.

John Mendenhall
2012-Feb-14, 11:33 PM
Geology under the clouds. For Titan and Venus we know; how about the rest? Come to think of it, how about geology under the water/ice? Ganymede, Europa, Callisto, Pluto(?), Charon(?), etc.

Placidstorm
2012-Feb-27, 12:20 AM
I don't know how I missed this . But for those of you like me and thought Irene was miss typing ( trickle ) here is a link for (triple point) .
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Triple_point

Thanks Irene , once more you have made me smarter . :cool:

IreneAnt
2012-Feb-28, 09:41 PM
Always happy to help :)

GrahamDungworth
2012-May-02, 02:34 PM
Tie them together according to their respective ages. How old is the universe? How old is the Earth and the Solar System? Early results for the magnitude of the Hubble constant infact lead to a paradox in the 1930's, the universe appeared to be much younger than the age of the Earth.

mutleyeng
2012-May-11, 02:25 PM
what i often wonder is could astrogeology be the key to understanding abiogenesis?
could early earth rock be found on the moon, perhaps containing pre-life atmosphere...or very early earth chemestry, even signs of biology?

taking this thought a little further, could any modeling be done to find candidate locations of earth rock strikes on the moon?
presumably they would be different in charactor from asteroid craters

BendelaVega
2012-May-23, 11:27 PM
I too, use meteoritics when going into the schools to do public outreach. The first defiant question is always, "How do you know they are meteorites?" With that initial hook set, I can then reel them in.

grapes
2012-Jul-17, 10:37 AM
Geodesy (the study of the "shape" of the Earth) has taken great leaps forward with the maps made possible by GPS and, earlier, satellite orbit determination.

The rebound of the land that used to be under the Pleistocene ice sheets has been documented geologically. Today, we can "weigh" Greenland, and measure its changes.

The shape of the earth, if exaggerated, has been compared to a rough rock (see the textbook illustration by Vaníček), but if shrunk to the size of a billiard ball, the earth would be as smooth as a billiard ball. And nearly as round--actually, as round as the better billiard balls, but maybe not as round as the best billiard balls. :) That's an easy thing to investigate, and calculate.

Ara Pacis
2012-Jul-21, 05:55 AM
Not sure I follow. Would ocean tides link to astronomy well enough, especially how it's related to the lunar distance increasing and eventually making total solar eclipses no longer possible? How about big impacts creating magmatic inflow and altering the minerals that can be mined in an area of impact.

dgavin
2012-Jul-23, 07:05 PM
I think my dream as an amatuer vulcanologist, would be to see siesmographs placed on IO near it's active volcanoes. It would be instresting to see if there are siesmic diffences between plate tectonic volcanism of earth, to the gravitational induced volcanism of IO.

hewhocaves
2012-Oct-01, 04:03 AM
In part I'm kind of confused by the topic. Why can't you like geology for its own sake? I study karst geochemistry. There's not much interaction with astronomy there. (A little climate change but that's probably all).

Having said that, I've always thought an amusing masters thesis would be to determine how lava tubes form on other planets - what would the changes in atmosphere, lithological composition and gravity do to the optimal angle (that is the best angle for forming a lava tube). You could then use dem mapping to determine the most likely places on a planetary body for lava tubes. Great theoretical work and no one can field check you lol

cran
2012-Oct-17, 08:31 PM
Distance from the Sun vs. Composition
In a general sense, as you move further away from the Sun, the bulk density of the planets in our Solar System increases.
decreases.

KaiYeves
2012-Oct-17, 08:38 PM
In addition to what everyone else has said, what about volcanism beyond Earth and comparing Earth's volcanoes to those on other worlds?

cran
2012-Oct-17, 09:17 PM
In addition to what everyone else has said, what about volcanism beyond Earth and comparing Earth's volcanoes to those on other worlds?Yes; that's good.

IreneAnt
2012-Oct-23, 02:51 PM
Distance from the Sun vs. Composition
In a general sense, as you move further away from the Sun, the bulk density of the planets in our Solar System increases.

decreases.

Sigh. Yes.
Thank you very much cran for catching my mental dyslexia. ;)
I have corrected the original post accordingly.