Apr 25, 2024  
2020-2021 Undergraduate Catalog 
    
2020-2021 Undergraduate Catalog [ARCHIVED CATALOG]

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GEOL 425 - Environmental Geochemistry


Description:
Global geochemical cycles, influences of rocks and soils on water chemistry, behavior of isotopes and trace elements. Includes class project studying local environmental geochemistry topic. Three lectures plus one three-hour lab per week. GEOL 425 and GEOL 525 are layered courses; students may not receive credit for both.

Prerequisites:
Prerequisites: CHEM 181, and CHEM 181LAB, and CHEM 182, and CHEM 182LAB and MATH 153.

Credits: (5)

Learner Outcomes:
Upon successful completion of this course, the student will be able to:

  • Describe geochemical cycles of water and carbon in terms of their principle reservoirs, residence times in those reservoirs and fluxes between major reservoirs. They can differentiate between long-timescale processes (such as silicate weathering) an1 short-timescale processes (such as anthropogenic increase in atmospheric CO2).
  • Have a basic knowledge of acids and bases, their properties and behavior. Students understand the relative strengths of acids and bases and related equilibria.
  • Comprehend and can describe in their own words the laws of thermodynamics. They understand how the equilibrium constant of a reaction can be derived from expressions for chemical potential and Gibbs free energy.
  • Understand the relationship between minerals and natural wate1 in terms of solubility equilibria, and know how factors such as temperature and pH will effect mineral solubility.
  • Have basic laboratory skills necessary to carry out a supervised geochemical study (e.g. can perform Gram titration of waters in field, can collect water samples using clean methods, can measure water content, textures and LOI of soils, etc.)
  • Have basic knowledge of water and soil chemistry, controls on pH, cation and anion concentrations.
  • Understand the role of the oceans in geochemical cycles and as buffers for our environment. They know the controls on ocean chemistry.
  • Given an environmental geochemical problem, students are aware of geochemical techniques (isotopes, trace elements, etc.) which might be used to address that problem.
  • Be aware of current topics of research in environmental geochemistry and can read and critically discuss a research article.

Learner Outcomes Approval Date:
02/19/1998

Anticipated Course Offering Terms and Locations:



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