Planetary Chemistry

University of Cambridge | Oliver Shorttle

Lent IB: the Easter vacation

Map exercise:
Paper 2 of the practical exam includes a map exercise.

Ahead of our first Easter term supervision complete the Skye map exercise (section A) set in the 2016 ESB practical exam, paper 2. You can find the map in a folder on the door of my college office, please replace it once you finished with it.

Crystal lattice question:
Questions on this material could come up in the theory paper and/or in the practical paper.

Radioisotope calculation question:
There is often a radiometric dating questions in the theory papers, so you should be familiar with the equations describing the decay of short-lived and long-lived radioisotope systems and how these can be used to date processes over different timescales.

Ahead of our Easter term supervision, attempt 2018 paper 1, section B, question 6.

Phase diagrams:
The exam typically contains a phase diagram question in the theory papers.

Complete the phase diagram question from 2014 paper 1, section B, question 10.

A structured way to revise the course is by identifying the IB ESB tripos questions that relate to the Michaelmas and Lent term of the material (which you can access through Moodle), and use these to motivate going back to your notes and to textbooks to find relevant information. You should be using this book-research to furnish your answers with more quantitative detail and, especially, specific real-world examples of the processes you are describing.

To help with this I have selected two essay questions that you should produce answers for :

[2021 paper 2 – igneous/geophysics]
(a) How are the minerals present in basalts, and the bulk rock major and minor element compositions of these basalts, used to constrain the extent and depth range of mantle melting under (i) ocean islands and (ii) mid-ocean ridges? [25 minutes]
(b) How might this information be used to investigate the physical causes of mantle convection? [20 minutes]

[2021 paper 2 – metamorphic]
Briefly describe the concept of a “metamorphic facies”. How useful is this concept in decoding the detailed P-T evolution of a geological terrane, and what other lithologies and/or techniques can be used to circumvent any perceived shortcomings? [45 minutes]

— Bring to the first supervision of Easter Term —

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