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Estimating Exchange Rates of Water in Embayments using Simple Budget Equations. part of Quantitative Skills:Activity Collection

Simple budgets may be used to estimate the exchange of water in embayments that capitalize on the concept of steady state and conservation principals. This is especially true for bays that experience a significant exchange of freshwater. This exchange of freshwater may reduce the average salt concentration in the bay compared to seawater if it involves addition of freshwater from rivers, R, and/or precipitation, P. Alternatively, it may increase the average salt concentration in the bay compared to seawater if there is relatively little river input and high evaporation, E. Since freshwater input changes the salt concentration in the bay, and salt is a conservative material, it is possible to combine two steady state budgets for a bay, one for salt and one for water, to solve for the magnitude of the water flows that enter and exit the bay mouth. Students will make actual calculations for the inflow and outflow of water to Puget Sound, Washington and the Mediterranean Sea and compare them to actual measured values.

Kohler Curves part of Quantitative Skills:Activity Collection

An assignment teaching students about Kohler curves that enhances their quantitative skills.

What is the fate of CO2 produced by fossil fuel combustion? part of Quantitative Skills:Activity Collection

A box model is used to simulate the build up of carbon dioxide in the atmosphere during the industrial era and predict the future increase in atmospheric CO2 levels during the next century.

Using a Mass Balance Model to Understand Carbon Dioxide and its Connection to Global Warming part of Quantitative Skills:Activity Collection

Students explore the increase in atmospheric carbon dioxide over the past 40 years with an interactive on-line model.

Atmospheric Vertical Structure and the First Law of Thermodynamics part of Quantitative Skills:Activity Collection

This set of homework problems is intended to help students begin to discover the importance and utility of conservation principles derived from the First Law of Thermodynamics and provide a first step in evolving from the p-V diagrams the students have seen in their physics coursework toward the thermodynamic diagrams used in meteorology.

Assessing the error of linear and planar field data using Fisher statistics part of Quantitative Skills:Activity Collection

Instruction on use of Fisher statistics to determine the mean and 95% confidence interval of geological vectors, lines or planes, with examples, problems and an Excel spreadsheet for computation.

Continental Crust Mass Balance Calculation part of Quantitative Skills:Activity Collection

A quantitative skills-intensive exercise using data from the Mineral Mountains, Utah, to calculate mass balance and to address the "space problem" involved with emplacing plutons into the crust.

Viscosity of the Mantle: Constraints from Post-glacial Rebound part of Quantitative Skills:Activity Collection

This laboratory experiment emphasizes the exponential nature of post-glacial rebound and reinforces the relationship between the rate of rebound and the viscosity of the mantle.

Three-Point Problem by Simultaneous Linear Equations part of Quantitative Skills:Activity Collection

Students are introduced to the use of linear algebra in an intuitive and accessible way, through classroom activity and homework set. The familiar three-point problem is cast in terms of three dimensional analytic geometry, fostering understanding of mathematical models for simple geometric forms.