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GEOLSCI 107: Journey to the Center of the Earth (GEOLSCI 207, GEOPHYS 184, GEOPHYS 274)

The interconnected set of dynamic systems that make up the Earth. Focus is on fundamental geophysical observations of the Earth and the laboratory experiments to understand and interpret them. What earthquakes, volcanoes, gravity, magnetic fields, and rocks reveal about the Earth's formation and evolution.
Last offered: Winter 2019 | UG Reqs: WAY-SMA

GEOLSCI 110: Rock Deformation and Tectonics (GEOLSCI 294)

Theory, principles, and practical techniques to measure, describe, analyze, and interpret deformation-related structures on Earth. Collection of fault and fold data in the field followed by lab and computer analysis; interpretation of geologic maps and methods of cross-section construction; structural analysis of fault zones and metamorphic rocks; measuring deformation; regional structural styles and associated landforms related to plate tectonic convergence, rifting and strike-slip faulting; the evolution of mountain belts and formation of sedimentary basins. Prerequisite: GEOLSCI 1, calculus. Recommended: 102, 105.
Terms: Spr | Units: 5 | UG Reqs: GER: DB-NatSci, WAY-SMA
Instructors: Miller, E. (PI)

GEOLSCI 123: Evolution of Marine Ecosystems (BIO 119, EARTHSYS 122, GEOLSCI 223B)

Life originally evolved in the ocean. When, why, and how did the major transitions occur in the history of marine life? What triggered the rapid evolution and diversification of animals in the Cambrian, after more than 3.5 billion years of Earth's history? What caused Earth's major mass extinction events? How do ancient extinction events compare to current threats to marine ecosystems? How has the evolution of primary producers impacted animals, and how has animal evolution impacted primary producers? In this course, we will review the latest evidence regarding these major questions in the history of marine ecosystems. We will develop familiarity with the most common groups of marine animal fossils. We will also conduct original analyses of paleontological data, developing skills both in the framing and testing of scientific hypotheses and in data analysis and presentation.
| UG Reqs: GER: DB-NatSci, WAY-SMA

GEOLSCI 128: Evolution of Terrestrial Ecosystems (EARTHSYS 128, GEOLSCI 228)

The what, when, where, and how do we know it regarding life on land through time. Fossil plants, fungi, invertebrates, and vertebrates (yes, dinosaurs) are all covered, including how all of those components interact with each other and with changing climates, continental drift, atmospheric composition, and environmental perturbations like glaciation and mass extinction. The course involves both lecture and lab components. Graduate students registering at the 200-level are expected to write a term paper, but can opt out of some labs where appropriate.
Last offered: Winter 2019 | UG Reqs: WAY-SMA

GEOLSCI 135: Sedimentary Geochemistry and Analysis (GEOLSCI 235)

Introduction to research methods in sedimentary geochemistry. Proper laboratory techniques and strategies for generating reliable data applicable to any future labwork will be emphasized. This research-based course will examine how the geochemistry of sedimentary rocks informs us about local and global environmental conditions during deposition. Students will collect geochemical data from a measured stratigraphic section in the western United States. These samples will be collected during a four-day field trip at the end of spring break (attendance encouraged but not required). In lab, students will learn low-temperature geochemical techniques focusing on the cycling of biogeochemical elements (O, C, S, and Fe) in marine sediments throughout Earth history. The focus will be on geochemistry of fine-grained siliciclastic rocks (shale) but the geochemistry of carbonates will also be explored. This is a lab-based course complemented with lectures. Students who wish to take the course for less than 4 units must receive approval from the instructor. This course must be taken for a minimum of 3 units and a letter grade to be eligible for Ways credit.
| UG Reqs: WAY-SMA

GEOLSCI 180: Igneous Processes (GEOLSCI 280)

For juniors, seniors and beginning graduate students in Earth Sciences. Structure and physical properties of magmas; use of phase equilibria and mineral barometers and thermometers to determine conditions of magmatic processes; melting and magmatic lineages as a function of tectonic setting; processes that control magma composition including fractional crystallization, partial melting, and assimilation; petrogenetic use of trace elements and isotopes. Optional labs emphasize identification of volcanic and plutonic rocks in thin section and interpretation of rock textures. Students taking the lab component should enroll in 4 units, as required for the Geological Sciences major; for the lab, GS 102, 103, or consent of instructor are prerequisites.
Terms: Spr | Units: 3-4 | UG Reqs: WAY-SMA
Instructors: Stebbins, J. (PI)

GEOPHYS 20N: Predicting Volcanic Eruptions

The physics and chemistry of volcanic processes and modern methods of volcano monitoring. Volcanoes as manifestations of the Earth's internal energy and hazards to society. How earth scientists better forecast eruptive activity by monitoring seismic activity, bulging of the ground surface, and the discharge of volcanic gases, and by studying deposits from past eruptions. Focus is on the interface between scientists and policy makers and the challenges of decision making with incomplete information. Field trip to Mt. St. Helens, site of the 1980 eruption.
Terms: Spr | Units: 3 | UG Reqs: GER: DB-NatSci, WAY-AQR, WAY-SMA
Instructors: Segall, P. (PI)

GEOPHYS 54N: The Space Mission to Europa

Jupiter's icy moon Europa is a leading candidate in the search for life in our solar system outside of Earth. NASA's upcoming Europa Clipper mission would investigate the habitability of the moon using a suite of nine geophysical instruments. In this course, we will use the mission as a central text around which to explore the intersection of science, engineering, management, economics, culture, and politics involved in any modern big science enterprise.
Last offered: Autumn 2018 | UG Reqs: WAY-SMA

GEOPHYS 60N: Man versus Nature: Coping with Disasters Using Space Technology (EE 60N)

Preference to freshman. Natural hazards, earthquakes, volcanoes, floods, hurricanes, and fires, and how they affect people and society; great disasters such as asteroid impacts that periodically obliterate many species of life. Scientific issues, political and social consequences, costs of disaster mitigation, and how scientific knowledge affects policy. How spaceborne imaging technology makes it possible to respond quickly and mitigate consequences; how it is applied to natural disasters; and remote sensing data manipulation and analysis. GER:DB-EngrAppSci
Last offered: Autumn 2018 | UG Reqs: GER:DB-EngrAppSci, WAY-SMA

GEOPHYS 90: Earthquakes and Volcanoes (EARTHSYS 113)

Is the "Big One" overdue in California? What kind of damage would that cause? What can we do to reduce the impact of such hazards in urban environments? Does "fracking" cause earthquakes and are we at risk? Is the United States vulnerable to a giant tsunami? The geologic record contains evidence of volcanic super eruptions throughout Earth's history. What causes these gigantic explosive eruptions, and can they be predicted in the future? This course will address these and related issues. For non-majors and potential Earth scientists. No prerequisites. More information at: https://stanford.box.com/s/zr8ar28efmuo5wtlj6gj2jbxle76r4lu
Terms: Spr | Units: 3 | UG Reqs: GER:DB-EngrAppSci, WAY-AQR, WAY-SMA
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