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121 Cards in this Set

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What is the relationship between the Kirkwood gaps in the asteroid belt and the Cassini division in the rings of Saturn

Both the Kirkwood gaps in the Cassini division are caused by disruptions of the orbits of small objects by larger planets or moons. In both cases, the periods of the small objects are simple fractions of those of the larger disturbing object.

The first satellite discovered in orbit about Pluto was Charon what is unusual about this moon?

Compared with Planet-satellite systems in the rest of the solar system Charon is very large and very close to Pluto.

The size of Charon

The main gravitational effect that organizes the particles in the rings of Saturn into specific orbits is

Gravitational perturbations by the large moons orbiting these planets.

The internal structure of mercury is

Dense iron core taking up almost half of the volume of the planet and a rocky mantle surrounding the core.

The major chemical constituent of the layers of material continuously being deposited on the surface of IO ,the innermost moon of Jupiter, by volcanic action is


The mass of Jupiter compared with that of Earth is

About 300 times larger

The chemical constituent that absorbs UV radiation in the stratosphere Earth's atmosphere, there by heating these layers to relatively high temperatures, is

O3, ozone.

What is unique about the Pluto-Charon system, compared with all the other planets in the solar system?

Both Pluto and Charon are in synchronous rotation, so each object maintains the same face toward the other object at all times

Rocks lay down at around the time of the Permian/Triassic mass extinction 250 million years ago contain a surprising amount of fullerenes( football shaped carbon molecules). What evidence is there that the fullerenes came from outer space?

Gases trapped inside the fullerenes could have come only from stars

How is nitrogen thought to have become the dominant gas in the atmosphere of the moon Titan a satellite of Saturn?

From the breakup of ammonia by solar UV into nitrogen and hydrogen; the light hydrogen atoms are the lost to space

What evidence is there that plate tectonics may have occurred in very early times on Mars?

Magnetic fields at the surface of Mars show interlocking patterns similar to those in regions where plates are separating on the earth

Viking 1 and Viking 2,the planet exploring spacecraft, were sent to which planet?


The plumes that were seen rising from the surface of Triton, Neptune's largest satellite are believed to be

Nitrogen gas driven through fissures from beneath the surface by radioactive heat

Which solar system object was found on January 1st 1801 located between the orbits of Mars and Jupiter?

Asteroid Ceres

What is the pattern followed by the average densities of the Galilean moons of Jupiter with increasing distance from the planet?

Average density decreased with distance from the planet

Gaymede, largest Galilean moon of Jupiter,is

Larger than mercury but smaller than Mars

The number of times a typical comment can pass close to the Sun before it is completely vaporized or destroyed is about


The region outside the orbit of Neptune in which a large number of objects composed of rock and ice circle the Sun not far from the plane of the ecliptic is called the

Kipper Belt

How many moons are known to orbit Jupiter

More than 60

which of the following statements about Earth is true

Life developed in a carbon dioxide rich atmosphere and then converted it into an oxygen-rich atmosphere

Where would the Sun appear to rise on Venus if you could see through the clouds

In the West

The Martian moon Phobos orbits near the equator or plain of Mars in just over 7.5 hours in the same direction as the planet's rotation. How then would you see Phobos move across the Martian sky from the surface of the planet?

Phobos would rise in the West, move rapidly across the sky, set in the east , and appear several times per Martian day

Continental drift on earth is now thought to be caused by

Circulation currency in the deep interior causing slabs of Earth's crust to move slowly

How were the first rings of Uranus discovered

From the earth when each ring momentarily blocked the light from a background star

The coldest layer of Earth's atmosphere is located between

Mesosphere and thermosphere

What was the first direct evidence that some other solar-type stars might have planets

Warped disk of dust and gas around some young stars

Which fact first gave Alfred Wegener the idea that continents have drifted and are still drifting over Earth surfaces

The shapes of the east coast of the North and South America fit nicely against those of the west coast of Europe and Africa

Which of the following significant features would be noticed by space travelers approaching earth for the first time

One hemisphere of the earth is almost entirely covered with water

The existence of the Great Red Spot on Jupiter has been known since

The time of Hooke in Cassini in the 1600's

Of the following objects in the solar system which one has the greatest orbital eccentricity and therefore the most elliptical orbit


The large amount of free oxygen in Earth's present atmosphere is primarily a result of

Biological processes such as photosynthesis

How do we measure the mass of an extrasolar planet

We use Newton's law of gravity using the measured distance of the planet from its star in the planets gravitational pull on the star

The collision of the Deep Impact probe with the nucleus of the comet temple 1 in 2005 revealed the nucleus as a rubble pile held together by


What is the material that produces the distinct red color of Mars

Rust or iron oxides

Neptunes high cirrus clouds consist of

Methane ice crystals

The Polar caps on Mars are most probably made up of

Water and carbon dioxide ices

So which of the following descriptions would you identify a rock as a fallen meteorite

Irregular and very heavy solid iron rock with a distinctive crystal structure throughout its interior

The Martian magnetic field is

Weak and localized not at all like the global magnetic field of the Earth

Which of the following biochemical materials have been found and identified in carbonaceous chondrites that have hit Earth

Amino acids or proteins

As a result of Huygens-Cassini mission all of the following features except one were detected on the surface of Titan. which one was not detected

A heavily cratered surface

Observations of technical activity different on Venus and on earth. a reasonable explanation is that on Venus

The crust appears to be thicker and is therefore too rigid to break up into moving plates

The albedo of mercury is about 0.1 this means that

Mercury reflects 1/10of the sunlight falling on it

The average age of the surface of Venus has been determined primarily from

The number of impact craters per unit area of surface

What is the principal reason we have no volcanoes on the earth anywhere near the size of Olympus Mons

Because the tectonic activity on earth, a volcano does not sit over the same spot for a long period And continue to grow

Moon produces title disturbances on the oceans of Earth. In general, there are

Too high and two low tides per day.

what did the Magellan spacecraft tell us about Venus's upper atmosphere, before the spacecraft burned up on entry into the atmosphere?

The density of Venus's upper atmosphere berries markedly from one place to another

The most common media rights to hit Earth are

Stony meteorites

The first postulated that continents drift around the Earth's surface

Alfred Wegener

Jupiter has a magnetic field that is

Much more powerful than that of the earth

Which of the following objects was farthest from the Sun in 1990


The highest temperature in the Vensian atmosphere occurs

At the planet's surface

The great dark spot on Neptune

Disappeared sometime between the Voyager fly by in 1989 and when the Hubble Space Telescope photographed Neptune in 1994

Most extrasolar planets have been found

Around stars in the disk of our galaxy

In the collisions of the fragments of Comet shoemaker-levy 9 with Jupiter the pieces

We're not able to penetrate deeply into Jupiter's atmosphere ; their impacts disturbed only the high atmosphere

The surface of Europa ,one of the Galilean moons of Jupiter, appears to be covered with

A smooth layer of ice crossed by many cracks

The clouds in the atmosphere of Venus consists primarily of

Droplets of sulfuric acid

Deep oceanic trenches on earth are locations at which

Cool surface material on earth 6 below other material at the tectonic plate boundary

The shape and dimensions of the magnetosphere surrounding Jupiter are controlled by

The opposing pressure of the ionized gas of the solar wind and the planets magnetic field

The infrared camera of the Hubble Space Telescope was able to see through the haze layers of the atmosphere of Uranus to show

A system of Jupiter-like bands and zones above which are giant and consistently changing methane clouds

Is the basic structure of Earth's interior

Solid iron inner core, molten iron outer core, rocky mantle, lighter rocky crust

The most likely explanation for the retrograde rotation of Venus is that

Impact of a massive object on it early in its history

The heat energy that powers tectonic activity on the surface of Earth originates deep in Earth's core. How does the energy move from the core to the surface

Conduction through the solid lower mantle and convection in the upper mantle (asthenosphere)

Which spacecraft visited Saturn in 2004 to image both the planet and its moons and to send a probe into Saturnian atmosphere emulating the previous Galileo mission to Jupiter


How was Neptune discovered

By a careful application of Newton's laws to the somewhat irregular motions of Uranus

If you were standing on Pluto how often would you see the satellite charon on rise above the horizon each day

Never charon is a synchronous satellite with an orbital period exactly equal to Pluto's rotation periodaron is a synchronous satellite with an orbital period exactly equal to Pluto's rotation period

Which of the following places on earth experiences frequent earthquakes and volcanic activity because of its location


Critters are not a parent on earth at the present time in the abundance seen on the moon because

Plate tectonics has returned cratered surface layers into Earth's interior and weathering has obliterated the more recent craters

what are the most common shapes of lunar craters and why

Round because the incoming projectiles vaporized and exploded to form the crater

A particular star shows spectral lines of the lithium isotope. what conclusion do astronomers draw from this observation

The star has vaporized one of its planets the spiraled in too close to the star because the stars own lithium isotope was destroyed by nuclear reaction long ago

Jupiter's satellite IO has numerous black spots on its surface. What are these black spots

Volcanic vents

What is the most likely cause of the smooth and relatively creator- free surfaces of lunar Maria

The lava in these basins flowed in the relatively late geological history of the moon, after the period of major bombardment

The gravitational effect that can find the particles of the F ring of Saturn to orbit is the

Gravitational influence of two small shepherding satellites in the orbits adjacent to the ring

What is the lunar regolith?

Layer of fine powder covering the lunar surface

The sulfuric acid clouds on Venus

Are confined to a narrow layer about 60 kilometers above the planet's surface and cover the whole planet

Mercury can be seen easily from the earth only

When Mercury is near the Sun, just after sunset or just before sunrise

The severe atmospheric conditions that quickly destroyed spacecraft that soft landed on the surface of Venus were

High temperatures, high pressures, and corrosive acid clouds and mist

The auroral ovals over the magnetic poles of Jupiter and Saturn have been detected and imaged in what kind of light

Ultraviolet light

The polar caps on Mars are most probably made up of

Water and carbon dioxide ices

there are half a dozen large Maria on the side of the Moon facing earth and only one mare on the far side. Which of the following explanations is most likely?

The crust on the far side is sticker (because of the Earth's pull on the moons core) and thus it is more difficult for lava to flow into large craters on the far side

The major difference between the orbital paths of comments that we see in the inner solar system and those of the asteroids in the asteroid belt is that

cometary orbits are highly elliptical and at random inclinations to the ecliptic plane compared with the circular orbits of asteroids in the ecliptic plane

The material from which our solar system formed is believed to be

A cold dark cloud of gas and dust

What is the major constituent of the atmosphere of Mars

Carbon dioxide

The molecular oxygen in Earth's present atmosphere was most probably produced

By biological activities such as photosynthesis from living things

Where in the planetary system is the massive extinct super volcano Olympus Mons


The average sidereal period for an asteroid moving around the Sun in the asteroid belt, according to Kepler's law, is

4. 68 years

What is the most probable heat source that produced extensive, maybe even total, melting of the moon at an early stage in its history

Decay of radioactive elements within it and the impact energy of Meteoric bombardment

The presence of oxygen in Earth's atmosphere is thought to result directly from what type of process

Biological activity of plants and animals

Clouds extend above the surface of Venus to a maximum altitude of

Almost 70 kilometres

Fusion is the process by which

Elements are transformed into heavier elements by nuclear reaction

Most of the weight of our bodies comes from the heavy elements such as carbon and oxygen. This fact immediately tells us that

The solar system did not form directly from the material created by the big bag

The planet with the greatest mean density is


What is believed to be the basic structure of the interior of Uranus

Rocky core, thick layer of highly compressed liquid water, thick outer layer of liquid hydrogen, thin gaseous atmosphere

Where are the 5 moderate sized satellites of Uranus in relation to the rings

All five are well outside the ring system

The cause of the meteor showers seen at regular times each year on earth is most probably

Earth moving through the remnant dust and rock fragments of an old comet that are orbiting the Sun in the comets old orbit

Earth's stratosphere is warmer than the layers above and below it because

Ozone in the stratosphere absorbs specific wavelengths of ultraviolet radiation from the Sun

Which of the following statements correctly describes how Neptune differs from Uranus

A number of storms and ice clouds are visible in Neptune's atmosphere, whereas Uranus's atmosphere appears almost featureless

the low average density of large, outer planets, which have high masses and hence high gravitational fields, is an indication of what fact about their interiors?

The large, outer planets are composed mainly of light elements, such as hydrogen and helium

Dust grains released by the melting of ice in a comet nucleus

Become a uniform, curved tail moving away from the comment under radiation pressure from the sunlight

The rings of Saturn are seen by

Reflected and scattered sunlight

what is the most probable Micheal mechanism to have caused the very long cracks and streaks that criss cross the surface of Europa, one of the moons of Jupiter?

Title flexing by Jupiter cracked the icy surface, allowing subsurface fluids to gush out and freeze in place

Comments are typically

Chunks of ice that begin to vaporize if they pass close to the Sun

What is the cause of the great mountain ranges on earth, such as the Rockies, the Andes, and the Himalayas?

Two tectonic plates that are moving at different velocities across the face of the earth collide

The rotation period of Jupiter is

Relatively short, on the order of 10 hours

The Kuiper belt is

A flat or doughnut shaped distribution of distant comets around the Sun, extending about 500 AU

How long is a lunar day that is, the time between sunrise and sunset on the moon

About 1 month

Caps on Mars are now noon to consist of

Carbon dioxide ice, which evaporates easily, overlaying sicker and more long-lived water ice

What evidence is there that Mars may have had an internal magnetic dynamo in its youth

Magnetic fields at the surface of Mars show interlocking patterns similar to those produced on Earth by magnetic reversals in the Earth's internal dynamo

What are neap tides?

High tides that are significantly lower than the average high tide

The exploratory life sciences experience abroad the Viking spacecraft Landers found evidence of

Very reactive chemistry in the Martian surface rocks, but no evidence of life or remnants of life forms

what fraction of the total mass of earth atmosphere is contained in the troposphere, the lowest layer of Earth's atmosphere


Which of the following chemicals is the most abundant in the outer atmosphere of Jupiter

Ammonia (NH3)

Pluto was discovered in


The age of the moon rocks have been determined primarily by what method

Measurements of radioactive elements in the rocks

The reason there are very few impact craters on the surface of Venus compared to the surface of mercury and Mars is thought to be that

the sick atmosphere of Venus has protected it from most incoming objects, and the surface has melted periodically to obliterate old craters

The physical mechanism that is thought to control the motion and position of material in the narrow F ring around Saturn is the

Confining gravitational interaction between this material and to shepherd satellites

Asteroids whose orbits carry them across Earth's orbit are known as

Apollo asteroids

The surface temperature of Venus has been found by radio observations and by remote exploration by spacecraft to be approximately

750 K

Which of the following kinds of materials is not found on the moon


The tail of a comet

Is longest when the comet is closest to the Sun

What were the results of the impacts of the fragments on comet shoemaker-levy 9 into Jupiter

Fireballs hotter than the sun's surface made dark splotches that lasted for months

Miranda is a satellite of