Powered by Rock – Week 1

Earth’s Energy Systems – Introduction

(updated Thurs. Jan 23rd)

Nuclear power station, France (from Wikimedia Commons)

Lecture slides from Week 1:

2014_PoweredbyRock_lect1_intro (PowerPoint file)

2014_PoweredbyRock_lect1_intro (PDF)

Generally useful online energy resources:

Prof. David MacKay’s book ‘Sustainable Energy – Without the Hot Air’ can be downloaded free from his website here.

The International Energy Agency (IEA) website can be found here.

The UK Department of Energy & Climate Change (DECC) website is here. Its DUKES (Digest of UK Energy Statistics) is particularly useful, and can be found here.

Gridwatch (live data of UK National Grid power sources) can be found here.

The British Geological Survey (BGS) website has lots of energy information here. Various free publications are provided courtesy of the NERC Open Research Archive (NORA) which can be found here.

The United States Geological Survey (USGS) Energy Resources Program also provides lots of data. It can be found here.

The World Health Organization (WHO) provides significant information on the health impacts of different fuel sources, in its Fuel For Life publication. It can be found here.

Durham University also provides some information via the CeREES Geoenergy website here, and the Durham Energy Institute website here.

 

An Introduction to Geology: 10

PREDICTIVE GEOSCIENCE

Life on Mars? (Image from Wikimedia Commons)

Lecture notes: 2013_IntroGeol_Lect10_future_SML (PDF) 2013_IntroGeol_Lect10_future_SML (PowerPoint)

Earthquakes

The global seismic hazard assessment programme (1992-1999).

Predicting earthquakes (USGS web resources)

Earthquakes and seismology (BGS resources)

The L’Aquila Earthquake, Italy (by Dr Richard Walters, University of Leeds)

Did toads predict the L’Aquila earthquake? (from Nature Blogs)

Volcanoes

International Earthquake and Volcano Prediction Center.

Cycles in felsic volcanic eruptions might be caused by gas waves (from Nature)

Using thermal imaging to predict volcanic eruptions (from National Geographic)

What will happen when the Yellowstone super-volcano erupts? (from io9)

The Yellowstone super-volcano is also rather larger than previously thought (from BBC News)

Plate tectonics

Measuring plate motion (by Andrew Alden, Geology About)

Using GPS to measure plate movements (University of Colorado)

Calculate the speed your plate is moving at! (from UNAVCO)

The Earth in 50 million years (from Chris Scotese’s Paleomap project)

Climate & Extinctions

The Big Five Mass Extinctions (from the Natural History Museum)

Has the Earth’s Sixth Mass Extinction Already Arrived? (paper by Barnosky et al.)

Why previous predictions of future extinctions were problematical (from Nature)

Movement of marine life follows climate change (article in Science Daily)

More species in a warmer world? (article in Nature)

 

An Introduction to Geology: 9

ECONOMIC GEOLOGY

Chino copper mine, New Mexico (from Wikimedia Commons)

Lecture slides: 2013_IntroGeol_Lect9_econ_SML (ppt) or 2013_IntroGeol_Lect9_econ2 (pdf)

English Heritage/BGS county atlases of building stones.

GeoScenic, the national archive of geological photographs.

Minerals UK (BGS website)

Coal mining map of the UK (from the Coal Authority)

This Exploited Land: ironstone and the railways in the North Yorks Moors

Cleveland Ironstone: a history (from the Tees Valley RIGS website)

Map of UK oil and gas fields (from DECC)

UK energy analysis (by US Energy Information Administration)

Economic geology in 2013 (review issue of Nature Geoscience, including the paper ‘Metals for a low-carbon society’ by Vidic and colleagues: Vidal_etal2013_renewables_metals)

The Future of the Global Minerals and Metals Sector (BGS article)

Geology of the Coed-y-Brenin (from Geology Wales)

Geology of the Great Orme copper mines (from Wales Underground)

Treasures from the Deep (RSC article on the challenges of deep sea mining)

Rare earth elements: a beginner’s guide (from the BGS)

Rare earths and renewables (an article I wrote for the Newfoundland Independent)

Geothermal energy (BGS website)

 

An Introduction to Geology: 8

Fossils & Palaeontology

The Walcotts investigating the Burgess Shale (from Wikimedia Commons)

Lecture slides: 2013_IntroGeol_fossils_Lect8 (pdf) or 2013_IntroGeol_fossils_Lect8_SML (ppt)

3D Fossils (new project led by the British Geological Survey)

British Fossils (book by Peter Doyle)

St Hilda’s ammonite, Hildoceras bifrons (NHM website)

The Palaeontological Association (UK-based organization promoting palaeontological science)

Palaeontology Online (articles about the cutting edge of fossil research, written by palaeontologists)

Palaeocast (Palaeontology podcasts and photos on a wide variety of topics)

Fossil evidence of early life: Oldest_fossil_evidence_PaleoSoc (a short guide by the Paleontological Society)

The fossil record of cyanobacteria (UCMP website)

The earliest evidence of life (Phys.org article). If you want the full scientific version, it can be found here: 3.48 billion year-old microbially induced sedimentary structures.

Tracking Ancient Life

TRACE FOSSILS

Chondrites (from Wikimedia Commons)

The lecture presentation: 2013_TrackingAncientLife_SML

Charles Darwin – worms and vegetable mould (from Darwin Online)

Darwin’s wormstone at Down House, Kent.

Phil Manning’s Dinosaur CSI website.

An amazing dinosaur trackway site in Bolivia.

Dinosaur speed calculator (from the University of Sheffield)

Why that previous theory might be wrong! (from Heinrich Mallison, Berlin)

How fast did ancient people run? (My blog post on interpreting fossil trackways)

The deep sea animals that live in trees (National Geographic article about boring marine creatures).

 

An Introduction to Geology: 7

ICE & WATER

Ice and Water, Argentina (from Wikimedia Commons)

Lecture notes (pdf file): 2013_IntroGeol_Lect7_climate

Oxygen isotopes as ancient temperature proxies (from the JOIDES Resolution project).

Using earthworm poo as a palaeo-thermometer (the original paper can be read here).

Milutin Milankovitch: Seeking the Cause of the Ice Ages (from AMNH)

A tutorial on Milankovitch cyclicity (from Science Courseware)

Erratics: rocks from afar (pebbles of the Yorkshire Coast, by Coast Alive).

Mapping the glacial deposits and landforms of the Vale of York: Hall_etal2010_gcl_map_ValeYork (paper by Hall et al. 2010).

Coastal erosion maps (from the Environment Agency).

Coastal Explorer, assessing coastal erosion in the East Riding of Yorkshire.

An overview of the Snowball Earth hypothesis (Gabrielle Walker’s book is highly recommended).

 

An Introduction to Geological Maps

 GEOLOGICAL MAPS

William Smith’s geological map (1820) – from Wikimedia Commons

Lecture notes (PowerPoint format): 2013_IntroGclMaps

Exercise 1 (pdf from Earth Learning Idea website): 2013_GclMaps_Ex1

Exercise 2 (pdf): 2013_GclMaps_mapping_intro

Exercise 3 (pdf): 2013_GclMaps_Ex3

Geological map resources:

The British Geological Survey has various Open Geoscience resources (including the Geology of Britain viewer, and the iGeology app). There is also the BGS Lexicon of Named Rock Units.

Geological mapping of the Vale of York: Hall_etal2010_gcl_map_ValeYork (paper by Hall et al.)

ScottishGeology.com has a simplified geological map of Scotland.

OneGeology – Making Geological Map Data Accessible

US National Geologic Map Database

A History of Mapping:

A cannon at Hampton: William Roy and the start of the Ordnance Survey (Twickenham Museum)

William Smith (NHM biography)

William Smith – a man who changed the world (BGS biography)

The Map That Changed The World (by Simon Winchester)

John Phillips – Time Lord of York (my article for YorkMix)

Phillips’ 1855 geological map of Yorkshire

The Mapping of Assynt:

An Assynt mapping fieldtrip (courtesy of Leeds University)

A 3D reconstruction of the geology of Assynt (by the British Geological Survey)

A pilgrimage to Assynt (by Metageologist)

A biography of Charles Lapworth (Birmingham University)

How did Peach & Horne map Assynt? (Leeds University)

 

An Introduction to Geology: 6

STRUCTURAL GEOLOGY & PLATE TECTONICS

Plate tectonic map, from Wikimedia Commons.

Lecture notes as a pdf: 2013_IntroGeol_Lect6_tect_SML

Lecture notes as a PowerPoint file: 2013_IntroGeol_Lect6_tect_SML

The day the Earth moved (Extremely interesting Cosmos article on the theory of plate tectonics).

Rheology in structural geology, by the University of Leeds (just in case you missed it)

Leeds also provide further teaching resources on structural geology here.

An online geology dictionary/glossary can be found here.

What heats the Earth’s core? (from phys.org)

Early Earth had molten magma oceans, new study suggests.

The Iapetus Suture on the Isle of Man (Manx Geological Survey)

 

An Introduction to Geology: 5

METAMORPHIC ROCKS

Gneiss (image from Wikimedia Commons)

A pdf of the lecture slides – 2013_IntroGeol_Lect5_meta

Types, grades and facies of metamorphism (a guide by the British Geological Survey).

Classification of metamorphic rocks (from Kentucky University)

A list of metamorphic mineral types (from UC Santa Barbara)

Metamorphic minerals (National Museum of Wales guide)

An atlas of metamorphic minerals in thin section (from Oxford University)

Barrovian metamorphism (from James Madison University)

George Barrow, metamorphic pioneer (from Oxford Dictionary of National Biography)

Chiastolite slate from the Lake District (from the NE Geological Society)

A simple introduction to rock deformation – rheology – can be found here (from the University of Leeds). It might prove useful for lecture 6 too!

An Introduction to Geology: 4

SEDIMENTARY ROCKS

Lower Jurassic mudstones and limestones, Lyme Regis (from Wikimedia Commons)

PowerPoint presentation for lecture 4: 2013_IntroGeol_Lect4_sedy

A Geological Society information page on sedimentary rocks can be found here.

A BBC Bitesize summary of sedimentary rocks can be found here.

A list of US Geological Survey resources on sedimentary geology can be found here.

For information on the soils of the UK, go to the NERC Soil Portal.

The British Society of Soil Science also provides lots of educational information about soils, including lots of free downloads.