Conceptest: Box Modelling: Fluxes & Turnover Times
Which of the following is true of the simplified ocean-atmosphere water cycle depicted in the box model below?
A. There is a net flux of water from ocean to atmosphere.
B. There is a net flux of water from atmosphere to ocean.
C. Water is in steady state, with a longer turnover time in the atmosphere than the ocean.
D. Water is in steady state, with a longer turnover time in the ocean than the atmosphere.
If you would like to help acquire more Before and After statistics for this example, please contact the author.
No data yet. The correct response is D. The fluxes are balanced so the system must be in steady state. The turnover time is defined as the reservoir size divided by the loss rate. As the loss rates are the same for both reservoirs, the larger reservoir (the ocean) corresponds to the longer turnover time.
References and Notes:
The use of ConcepTests and Peer Instruction is discussed in detail on the ConcepTest page.
McConnell, D.A., Steer, D.N. and Owens, K.A., 2003, Assessment and Active Learning Strategies for Introductory Geology Courses, Journal of Geoscience Education, 51(2), 205-216.
McConnell, D.A., Steer et al., 2006, Using Conceptests to Assess and Improve Student Conceptual Understanding in Introductory Courses, Journal of Geoscience Education, (54(1), 61-68.