AST1002- Exam 2

mass per unit volume

Jovian planets
Jupiter, Saturn, Uranus, Neptune

Which planet, by itself, contains the majority of mass of all the planets?

Planetary orbits
almost circular with low eccentricity

Which planet’s orbit behaves least like the others?

What is NOT icy in composition

The _______ planets lie closer to the sun

The Jovian planets spin ________ than the Earth

The largest asteroid, and probably the only one to be spherical is _________

How much advance warning did we have o the close approach of asteroid 2002 MN in June 2002?
None. It was found three days after its closest approach

The Kuiper Belt is found where in the solar system?
beyond the orbit of Neptune

The tail of a comet always points
away from the sun and becomes longest and brightest at perihelion

The Oort Cloud is believed to be
a spherical cloud of cometary nuclei far beyond the Kuiper Belt

What does not fall into the category o interplanetary debris?
rings around the Jovian planets

Which of the following have an icy composition?
most comets and rings of Saturn

The Trojan asteroids are found
60 degrees ahead or behind Jupiter, sharing its orbit around the Sun

The most distant objects in our solar system are in
the Oort Cloud

Images of asteroids become
blurry due to outgassing as the Sun heats them up

The most detailed look we’ve had of an asteroid comes from
spacecraft sent to an asteroid

Relative to the comet, the ion tails tells us
the direction of the Sun

Iron meteorites are believed to come from
the core of a differential asteroid, now broken up

Meteor showers are
usually annual events as the orbits intersect

Meteorites are important because
they contain pristine material from the solar nebula, large ones may cause mass extinctions, and some come from the Moon and Mars as well as the asteroid belt

A meteor is
a streak of light in the atmosphere

A meteorite is
a chunk of space debris that has struck the ground

Long period comets are believed to originally come from
the Oort cloud

The orbits of most comets lie
almost entirely beyond the orbit of Neptune

Objects in the Kuiper belt
lie beyond the orbit of Neptune and perpendicular to the ecliptic

Which of these bodies is mostly likely to break up overtime
comet nuclei

The Manicouagan reservoir near Quebec is an example of
a large meteorite impact

The nucelus o a comet is typically
a few kilometers in size and very low in density

Before it arrived in orbit about Jupiter, the Galileo spacecraft flew past
the asteroid Gaspra

If a comets ion tail is pointing perpendicular to it’s direction of travel, the comet is
close to or at perihelion

As the solar nebula contracts, it
spins faster due to conservation of angular momentum

In terms of composition, the Jovian planets are
more like the Sun than are the Terrestrial planets

According to th Solar Nebula theory, planets should be
a common result of star formation

As a rotating gas cloud contracts, it spins
faster due to an increase in angular momentum

The larger terrestrials planets have surface features that tend to be more

So far, beyond the solar system the extrasolar planets have been mostly
large Jovians with terrestrial type orbits

Most of the extrasolar planets found so far were detected by
noting the Doppler shifts of the star as the planet orbits it from side to side

Most extrasolar planets found to date have
orbital periods of more than a year

Which of the layers of the Earth is unique among the terrestrial planets?

At what phase would you expect to find extremely high and low tides?
both new and full Moons

Wat is true of spring tides?
The difference between high and low tides is the greatest

At what phase would the tides be least noticeable?
third quarter

The Moon’s near side always faces Earth due to
Earth’s tidal force

The smallest high tide occur when the Moon phase is
first or third quarter

What is true of the Moon’s orbital and rotational periods?
They are equal

Almost all of the Earth’t atmospheric gases lie in the

Which portion of our atmosphere blocks ultraviolet radiation best
the stratosphere

Life on Earth occurs in the

Which gas is least abundant in our atmosphere?
carbon dioxide

Without the greenhouse effect in our atmosphere
the Earth’s present oceans would be frozen

Which of these gases are outgassed from our volcanic eruptions?
water vapor, methane, and carbon dioxide

The major presence of water detected on the Moon is in
the floors of deep craters in the polar regions as ice deposits that never thaw

The averae rate of erosion on the Moon is far less than here because
the Moon lacks wind, water, and an atmosphere

We determine the structure of the Earth’s core using
seismic wave data

The atmospheric gases primarily responsible for our greenhouse effect are
water vapor and carbon dioxide

In noting that the Earth is “differentiated”, we mean that
the density increases as you descend downward toward the core

Seismic waves can most usefully map
the interior mantle and core of the Earth and other worlds

P waves travel _______ and thus arrive _______ than do the S waves
faster, sooner

T/F The Grand Canyon is a result of plate tectonics

The far side of the Moon was first mapped
by early Russian spacecraft

The lunar mare are found
mainly on the near side

The age range that best describes the lunar maria is
3.9-3.2 billion years

The rate of cratering in the lunar highlands shows us that
they range from 4.6-4.4 billion years old on average

What is true of the lunar highlands
they are the oldest part of the lunar surface

The presence of a magnetic field is good indication that
the Earth has a large amount of swirling molten nickel and iron in its outer core

When strong solar winds are displaced poleward by our magnetic fields, we get
intense auroral displays

The region in which charged particles are trapped by out magnetic fields is the
Van Allen radiation belt

Earth’s magnetic fields prevents
charged particles in the solar wind from reaching the surface

T/F The Earth’s core generated a stable and permanent magnetic field much as a regular bar magnet

Which theory seems to best explain the Moon’s origin?
Impact Theory

Which planet gets to bright that it can be seen in daylight at times?

Which three worlds have almost identical densities?
Mercury, Venus, and Earth

Which planet shows the widest range of surface temperatures between day and night?

How does Mercury’s rotation relate to the Sun?
It’s rotation rate is 2/3 as long as its year, due to tidal resonances

Venus’ rotation takes _________ than its orbit around the Sun

The atmospheric pressure on Venus is much __________ than on Earth

What is the chief component of the Venusian atmosphere?
carbon dioxide

The chief gas in the martian atmosphere is
carbon dioxide

Which planetary body has the densest atmosphere?

One of the effects of Mercury’s very slow spin is
extreme variations in its surface temperatures

Mercury’s surface most resembles the
lunar far side

The scarps on Mercury were probably caused by
the crust cooling and shrinking

Our most detailed maps of Venus come from
the Magellan spaceprobe

Venus’ surface
has two continent sized uplands

Like Olympus Mons, volcanoes on Venus
only form at the equator

Valles Marinerus is the most striking example of a

The deepest depression found on the surface of Mars is the
valles Marineris rift

We have not yet found meteoroids and meteorites derived from

The NASA missions that landed on Mars in 1976 were the
Vikings I and II

What characterizes a shield volcano?
It sits above a hot spot in the planet’s mantle

What is true of Mars?
Iron oxide on the surface is responsible for its reddish color

The Tharis region on Mars has so few craters which suggests
it’s the youngest region on the planet

The largest difference between Mars’ northern and southern hemispheres is that
the northern hemisphere appears younger with ancient seabeds preserved

The presence of a Mercurian magnetic field surprised the planetary scientist on the Mariner 10 team because
the dynamo theory predicted that Mercury was spinning too slowly for one

Much of the water on Mars is thought to be
in a layer of permafrost just below the surface

Our most detailed knowledge of the Jovian planets come from
spacecraft exploration

The spacecraft Cassini went into orbit around

The Galileo mission put a spacecraft into orbit around Jupiter which used
a gravity assist from both Venus and Earth

One of the discoveries made by the Voyager probes at Jupiter was
a thin ring of dust around the equator

Which three astronomers played a role in finding Neptune?
Adams, Leverrier and Galle

Small deviations in a planets orbital motion imply
the nearby presence of a massive body

Adams and Leverrier predicted the position of Neptune based on its perturbation of

If Saturn was in a bathtub, it would

At which planet can the pole remain in darkness for 42 years, then have 42 years of constant daylight?

What would Juputer have needed to be a star?
sufficiently more mass to make the planet hotter

Describe the seasons of Uranus and what causes them
Its strange tilt produces extreme seasonal variations, especially at the poles

The reason the Jovian planets lost very little of their original atmosphere is due to their
large mass

Essentially, the Great Red Spot on Jupiter is
a large cyclonic storm

Alternating zones of rising and sinking gas in Jupiters atmosphere
create light and dark bands

The only probe in the atmosphere of any Jovian planet was launched by
Galileo into Jupiter’s equatorial zone

The two outer Jovians appear bluish in color because
methane gas in their atmospheres absorb red light well

Which common gas is less abundant in the top of Saturn’s atmosphere

Why does Saturn radiate even more excess heat than Jupiter?
helium rain falling inward generates heat as it descends

Which planet had the Great Dark Spot in 1989 but had lost it by 1995?

The magnetic field tilts of which two bodies are the most unusual?
Uranus and Neptune

What is the source of Jupiter’s intense radio waves and magnetism?
liquid metallic hydrogen swirling the rapidly spinning mantle

Jupiter radiates back into space twice the energy it absorbs from the distant Sun. Where is this energy coming from, for the most part?
the slow escape of gravitational energy left from its formation

What is true of Jupiter’s magnetosphere?
It has a tail that extends at least to Saturn’s orbit

What is thought to lie at the center of Jupiter?
a massive core of rocky materials with some iron mixed in

Which element is critical to the formation of the volcanic surface of Io?

What is thought to cause Io’s volcanism?
Jupiter’s gravity

Which of the Galilean moons is densest and most geologically active?

Which are the four Galilean moons of Jupiter?
Io, Europa, Ganymede, and Callisto

The surface of Europa is most like the Earth’s ________ pole

In size and density, both Io and Europa resemble
our Moon

The mare on Ganymede were formed by
water erupting and spreading over the surface

Of the Jovian satellites, which shows the oldest, most cratered surface?

The largest moon in the solar system, bigger but not as massive as Mercury, is

A moon with a smooth, uncratered surface would imply
the surface is very young

Which moon has the densest atmosphere?

Which of these moons are most interesting to exobiologists?
Titan and Triton

The Huygens probe of the ESA made a succesful landing on

The atmosphere of Titan is composed mainly of

What is true of Titan’s atmosphere?
It was discovered by the Voyager I spacecraft

The erupting geysers of nitrogen gas on Triton
produced the frozen nitrogen surface

Voyager I was unable to image Titan’s surface because of
“smog” in Titan’s atmosphere

Which moon of Saturn shows the largest impact crater relative to its size?

For a moon the same density as its planet, the Roche limit lies at _______ times the radius of its planet

Which statement about Jupiter’s rings is true?
They lie inside Jupiter’s Roche limit

The Cassini Division is a gap in Saturn’s rings caused by
gravitational interaction with Mimas

Inside the Roche Limit,
large moons are torn apart

Which moon orbits a planet only twice as big as it is?

Pluto was discovered in

The two names most associated with the discovery of Pluto are
Lowell and Tombaugh

Charon’s orbit is
highly inclined to Pluto’s orbital plane

What is so unusual about Pluto’s orbit?
It is the most inclined to the ecliptic of the 9 planets?

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