University of Georgia Department of Geology

GEOL 3030 - Elementary Oceanography

Contents:    GEOL 3030 News    GEOL 3030 web pages    GEOL 3030 Exercise material    GEOL 3030 Web-based readings


GEOL 3030 is an introduction to . . .
  • Marine Geology & Plate Tectonics: the geography & geology of the ocean basins,
  • Physical Oceanography: the how and why of ocean currents, waves, & tides,
  • Biological Oceanography: life in the sea & marine ecology,
  • Chemical Oceanography (just a brief introduction),
  • Paleoceanography: the oceans of the past (and perhaps the future).

    GEOL 3030 meets the UGA environmental literacy requirement.  See our GEOL 3030 course description page for a description of the course, its requirements, its scope, its target population, etc..   That page is intended for students interested in taking the course.

    This page provides day-to-day course information as needed and links to websites useful to the course.

    This page was last updated on Sunday 9 May 2021.


    News

    The final exam has been graded. The distribution of recorded scores is shown below.

    Histogram

    Exam 2 has been graded and will be or was handed back on Monday 19 April 2021. The distribution of recorded scores is shown below.

    Histogram

    Exam 1 has been graded and will be or was handed back on Friday 5 March 2021 after its Covid quarantine. The distribution of recorded scores is shown below.

    Histogram

    Exercise 3 has been graded, the graded exercises were scanned and returned by email, and the exercise was reviewed at the next class meeting.

    Exercise 3 has been distributed on paper in class. It is due Monday, February 22, 2021, at 1:50:00 pm

    Exercise 2 has been graded. Grades of submitted exercises ranged from 59 to 97, with a mean of 81.8. The exercise will be or was returned and reviewed in class on Friday 19 February 2021.

    Exercise 2 has been distributed on paper in class. It is due Friday, February 12, 2021, at 1:50:00 pm

    Exercise 1 has been graded. Grades of submitted exercises ranged from 65 to 100, with a mean of 87.8. The exercise will be or was returned and reviewed in class on Monday 8 February 2021.

    Exercise 1 has been distributed on paper in class. A colorized jpeg of its map is available too.

    Exercise 0 has been graded, and grading sheets have been sent by email to students. Grades of submitted exercises ranged from 72 to 101. The exercise will be or was reviewed in class on Monday 1 February 2021.

    Exercise 0 has been distributed by email, and it is due on Friday 29 January 2021 at 5:00 pm. Two files needed to complete it are ChallengerSummaryPartI.pdf and ChallengerSummaryPartII.pdf .

    Old news:

    GEOL 3030 will have its first meeting on Wednesday 13 January 2021. A seating chart has been distributed by email. Paper copies of the syllabus last touched on 5 January 2021 will be available for those who want one. There will be a brief discussion of the syllabus and then lecture on exam-worthy material.

    GEOL 3030 has been designated by the UGA Department of Geology as a course that will be taught face-to-face in Spring 2021. Attendance will not be taken, but all enrolled students will be expected to come to Room 200A GG for every class meeting (every Monday, Wednesday, and Friday from 1:50 to 2:40 pm). Lectures and other class business will take place at each of those meetings. No use of eLC is planned other than as a means to provide Powerpoint files of the lecture illustrations (pictures, graphs, etc. - but not the lecture outline, which will be captured by students via old-fashioned note-taking). Exams will be given on paper in Room 200A GG. Exercises will be distributed on paper in Room 200A GG and collected (usually a week later) in Room 200A GG. The plan is thus for a pre-Covid-like experience, but with at most 19 students in a room that customarily would seat 88 students, with everybody (including the instructor) in masks, and with exercises and exams embargoed to allow "cooling-off periods" before and after grading.

    Railsback's copy of the 12th edition of Essentials of Oceanography is on reserve at the Science Library Reserves Desk under the call number SPC R152 eo.

     


    Links to GEOL 3030 web pages:

    Answers to questions recently or frequently asked about GEOL 3030.
    Essay questions for the GEOL 3030 final exam.

    Supplememtary reading about ocean circulation. The first four pages (pp. 47-50) are the main reason for providing this reading for those students wanting a broader and more modern view of ocean circulation. The "WOCE" to which the author refers is the World Ocean Circulation Experiment, a huge data-collection effort in the 1990s that was the subject of the entire book from which the reading is taken.

    The eWOCE Gallery at which you can view many profiles of temperature, salinity, O2, PO4, SiO2, and NO3 through the oceans. These summarize data collected by WOCE, the World Ocean Circulation Experiment, and are the most up-to-date picture of ocean circulation.

    GEOL 3030 exams from Spring 2019:
    Exam I
    Exam II
    Exam III (the final exam)

    GEOL 3030 course evaluations

     

    GEOL 3030 exercise material:

    Report on the Scientific Results of the Voyage of H.M.S. Challenger during the years 1872-1876: A Summary of the Scientific Results: First Part .
    Report on the Scientific Results of the Voyage of H.M.S. Challenger during the years 1872-1876: A Summary of the Scientific Results: Second Part.

    A colorized map of the Tharpic Ocean

    An explanation of bathymetric maps for Exercise 1.
    An explanation of bathymetric profiles for Exercise 1.

    The map of seafloor ages for Exercise 2.
    Supplementary instructions about measuring spreading rate for the Plate Tectonics exercise (Exercise 2).
    Help with Part 2 of Exercise 2.

    Everything that you need for Exercise 3 on Ocean Circulation should be in your lecture notes.

    First considerations for getting started on the Tsunami Travel Time exercise (Exercise 4).
    More thoughts on the heart of the Tsunami Travel Time exercise.
    Possible use of a spreadsheet for the Tsunami Travel Time exercise.
    An Excel spreadsheet for people who have never used a spreadsheet. (a download)

    Help finding locations on the map for the Georgia Tides exercise (Exercise 5).
    Suggestions regarding the questions for the Georgia Tides exercise.

    Supplementary instructions about plotting data in the Marine Biology exercise (Exercise 6).
    A suggestion for Question 2 of Part 1 of the Marine Biology exercise.

    Suggestions for the Planet Xornam exercise (Exercise 7).
    A color map of Planet Xornama.

    Suggestions for the (old) Marine Sediments exercise (Exercise 8).

     

    Web-based Readings (in addition to readings in the textbook indicated on the syllabus)

    Suggested readings on marine geology:

    Plate tectonics and earth dynamics
    Plate tectonic boundaries
    Plate tectonics and sinking of cooled oceanic lithosphere
          (now included in the illustration of boundaries above)
    Subduction and rollback
    Rollback and mantle flow
    Origins of Magmas I
    Mid-ocean ridges
    Mid-ocean ridges and their hydrothermal systems, Part I
    Mid-ocean ridges and their hydrothermal systems, Part 2
    The traditional hot-spot / mantle-plume model
          the last three of which are part of the Dynamic Plate Tectonics website
    Oceanic volcanic features: an Euler diagram
    Aseismic ridges vs. chains of ocean islands and/or seamounts

    Assigned readings on physical oceanography:

    Why density of seawater increases with salinity
    Density of seawater at the sea surface
    Variation of atmospheric pressure between and within climatic belts
    The Trade Winds and Westerlies wind belts
    Gyres of currents
    The surface currents of the oceans I: a very simple map
    The surface currents of the oceans II: a less simple map
    The surface currents of the oceans III: NASA imagery
    The surface currents of the oceans IV: seasonal countercurrents in the eastern Pacific and Atlantic
    The surface currents of the oceans V: the Atlantic Conspiracy
    The surface currents of the oceans VI: the Atlantic Conspiracy enlarged
    NASA animations of surface circulation
    The Ekman spiral, dynamic topography, and geostrophic currents
    The Ekman spiral, dynamic topography, and coastal and equatorial upwelling
    Gyres of currents, and eddies
    Some origins of eddies in the (northern hemisphere) oceans
    Cold-core rings and warm-core rings
    Gyres of currents, idealized and eddified
    The thermocline
    The thermocline and deep circulation of the Atlantic - schematic
    The thermocline and deep circulation of the Atlantic - less schematic
    Expressions for the deep circulation of the oceans
    Upwelling at divergences of ocean circulation
    Two styles of upwelling in the Southern Ocean
    Two models of deep ocean circulation
    Models of deep ocean circulation in the 2010s ENSO (El Niño) events
    Shallow-water waves and deep-water waves

    Suggested readings on physical oceanography:

    Global climate zones: a seven-page work-up
    Global climate zones: one detailed page from the above
    An illustration about the "Caribbean Distillery".
    The interaction of ocean currents, tides, and waves.
    An explanation of the interaction of ocean currents, tides, and waves.
    The spring-neap monthly tidal cycle.
    A map of the tides of Earth's oceans.
    A modified map of the tides of Earth's oceans.

    Two optional documents linking the sections above:

    A table showing the conceptual linkage of atmospheric circulation, ocean circulation, and plate tectonics.
    A diagram showing the conceptual linkage of atmospheric circulation, ocean circulation, and plate tectonics.
    w

    Assigned readings on biological oceanography:

    Cycling of nitrogen as a nutrient
    Cycling of phosphorous as a nutrient
    Cycling of silicon as a nutrient
    Cycling of iron as a nutrient
    Iron as a limiting nutrient in the ocean
    Mid-ocean ridges and their hydrothermal systems, Part 2
    Annual ecological cycles - Part 1
    Annual ecological cycles - Part 2

    Suggested readings on biological oceanography:

    Plankton Flashcards, a learning tool regarding marine planktic organisms
    A table on marine mammals
    Photosynthetic and chemosynthetic marine ecosystems:
            the sea surface, hydrothermal vents, and cold seeps

    Assigned readings on chemical oceanography:

    The twenty-four most abundant solutes in seawater
    Variation in concentration of solutes in the oceans I: Nutrients (nitrate, phosphate, silica)
    Variation in concentration of solutes in the oceans Ia: Nutrients and biological productivity
    Variation in concentration of solutes in the oceans II: Dissolved oxygen (O2)
    Variation in concentration of solutes in the oceans III: Carbon dioxide (CO2)
    Variation in concentration of solutes in the oceans IIIa: Carbon dioxide and the carbonate compensation depth (CCD)
    Variation in concentration of solutes in the oceans IV: Oxidation of sinking organic particles - a summary
    Variation in concentration of solutes in the oceans V: Scavenged ions
    Variation in concentration of solutes in the oceans VI: The conservative solutes

    A PDF file of the lecture overhead showing how residence times are calculated.
    Concentrations and residence times of solutes in seawater

    The four-box model of the oceans presented in lecture
    The seven-box model of the oceans presented in lecture

    Assigned readings for the "Three Weird Seas" lecture:

    What's an ocean, and how many does Earth have?
    Size and salinity of lakes, and the ocean(s) I
    Size and salinity of lakes, and the ocean(s) II
    The Black Sea I: Geography
    The Black Sea II: A schematic cross-section
    The Black Sea IIIa: Variation with depth
    The Black Sea IIIb: Chemical variation with depth

    Suggested reading on marine sediments:

    The path from deep-sea sediments to paleoclimate records.

    Assigned readings on paleoceanography:

    a PDF file of a timeline of ocean history - not a reading from which exam questions will be drawn.
    Possible causes of sea-level change
    The path from deep-sea sediments to paleoclimate records
    Oxygen Isotopes - not a reading from which exam questions will be drawn,
            but a reading that will make more sense of the next item.
    Oxygen isotope records of Cenozoic global cooling and glaciation
    The Warm Saline Deep Water hypothesis
    a PDF file of three detailed timelines
    a Phanerozoic paleoenvironmental timeline
    A diagram important in our lecture(s) on "Paleoceanography and the Future".

    Suggested readings on paleoceanography:

    Milankovitch cycles I: eccentricity
    Milankovitch cycles II: tilt
    Milankovitch cycles III: precession




    To the GEOL 3030 course description page.
    To Railsback's main page.
    To The UGA Geology Department main page.
    email to Bruce Railsback