Earth Science August 2014

Earth Science August 2014 Questions Answers Keys.

The University of the State of New York
Regents high school examination
Physical setting
Earth science
Thursday, August 14, 2014 — 12:30 to 3:30 p.m., only

Directions : For each statement or question, choose the word or expression that, of those given, best completes the statement or answers the question. Some questions may require the use of the 2011 Edition Reference Tables for Physical Setting/Earth Science. Record your answers on your separate answer sheet.

1. Which evidence best supports the theory that the universe was created by an explosion called the Big Bang?

  • (1) impact craters found on Earth
  • (2) cosmic background radiation
  • (3) the different compositions of terrestrial and Jovian planets
  • (4) the blue shift of light from distant galaxies
Answer: (2) cosmic background radiation 

2. Which star is more massive than our Sun, but has a lower surface temperature?

  • (1) 40 Eridani B
  • (2) Sirius
  • (3) Aldebaran
  • (4) Barnard’s Star
Answer: (3) Aldebaran 

3. Which color of visible light has the shortest wavelength?

  • (1) violet
  • (2) green
  • (3) yellow
  • (4) red
Answer: (1) violet 

4. The table below shows the times of ocean high tides and low tides on a certain date at a New York State location.

At approximately what time on the following day did the next high tide occur at this location?

  • (1) 4:40 a.m.
  • (2) 5:40 a.m.
  • (3) 4:40 p.m.
  • (4) 5:40 p.m.
Answer: (2) 5:40 a.m. 

5. The best evidence of Earth’s rotation is provided by the

  • (1) shape of Earth’s orbit
  • (2) shape of the Milky Way galaxy
  • (3) changes in the total yearly duration of insolation at a location on Earth
  • (4) apparent changes in the direction of swing of a Foucault pendulum
Answer: (4) apparent changes in the direction of swing of a Foucault pendulum 

6. The model below shows the apparent path of the Sun as seen by an observer in New York State on the first day of one of the four seasons.

This apparent path of the Sun was observed on the first day of

  • (1) spring
  • (2) summer
  • (3) fall
  • (4) winter
Answer: (4) winter

7. Which processes are most likely to cause a rise in the water table?

  • (1) runoff and erosion
  • (2) precipitation and infiltration
  • (3) deposition and burial
  • (4) solidification and condensation
Answer: (2) precipitation and infiltration

8. During which phase change does water release the most heat energy?

  • (1) freezing
  • (2) melting
  • (3) condensation
  • (4) vaporization
Answer: (3) condensation 

9. What is the average air pressure exerted by Earth’s atmosphere at sea level, expressed in millibars and inches of mercury?

  • (1) 1013.25 mb and 29.92 in of Hg
  • (2) 29.92 mb and 1013.25 in of Hg
  • (3) 1012.65 mb and 29.91 in of Hg
  • (4) 29.91 mb and 1012.65 in of Hg
Answer: (1) 1013.25 mb and 29.92 in of Hg 

10. Which two processes lead to cloud formation in rising air?

  • (1) compressing and cooling
  • (2) compressing and warming
  • (3) expanding and cooling
  • (4) expanding and warming
Answer: (3) expanding and cooling 

11. The weather station model below shows some of the weather data for a certain location.

What is the wind speed shown on the station model and which instrument is used to measure the wind speed?

  • (1) 15 knots, measured by a wind vane
  • (2) 15 knots, measured by an anemometer
  • (3) 25 knots, measured by a wind vane
  • (4) 25 knots, measured by an anemometer
Answer: (4) 25 knots, measured by an anemometer 

12. If air has a dry-bulb temperature of 2°C and a wet-bulb temperature of –2°C, what is the relative humidity?

  • (1) 11%
  • (2) 20%
  • (3) 36%
  • (4) 67%
Answer: (3) 36% 

13. Which current has a cooling effect on the climate of the west coast of South America?

  • (1) Falkland Current
  • (2) Peru Current
  • (3) Benguela Current
  • (4) Brazil Current
Answer: (2) Peru Current 

14. Near which two latitudes are most of Earth’s dry climate regions found?

  • (1) 0° and 60° N
  • (2) 0° and 30° S
  • (3) 30° N and 60° N
  • (4) 30° N and 30° S
Answer: (4) 30° N and 30° S 

15. Which event followed a massive volcanic eruption and led to the cooling of global temperatures?

  • (1) thunderstorms that developed near the eruption
  • (2) the release of carbon dioxide and methane gases
  • (3) the outflow of magma over Earth’s surface
  • (4) the addition of ash particles into the atmosphere
Answer: (4) the addition of ash particles into the atmosphere 

16. Rifting of tectonic plates in eastern North America during the Jurassic Period was responsible for the

  • (1) formation of the Catskill delta
  • (2) first uplift of the Adirondack Mountains
  • (3) Alleghenian orogeny
  • (4) opening of the Atlantic Ocean
Answer: (4) opening of the Atlantic Ocean 

17. The surface bedrock of Mt. Marcy, New York, is composed primarily of which rock?

  • (1) anorthosite
  • (2) marble
  • (3) quartzite
  • (4) hornfels
Answer: (1) anorthosite 

18. Much of the evidence for the evolution of lifeforms on Earth has been obtained by

  • (1) studying the life spans of present-day animals
  • (2) radioactive dating of metamorphic rock
  • (3) correlating widespread igneous ash deposits
  • (4) examining fossils preserved in the rock record
Answer: (4) examining fossils preserved in the rock record 

19. The table below shows the radioactive decay of carbon-14. Part of the table has been left blank.

After 22,800 years, approximately what percentage of the original carbon-14 remains?

  • (1) 15%
  • (2) 12.5%
  • (3) 6.25%
  • (4) 3.125%
Answer: (3) 6.25% 

20. The diagram below represents a model of Earth’s surface and internal structure. Letters A, B, C, and D represent four different layers. Some depths below Earth’s surface are shown.

Which Earth layer is inferred to be composed of solid nickel and iron?

  • (1) A
  • (2) B
  • (3) C
  • (4) D
Answer: (4) D 

21. Oceanic crust is sliding beneath the Aleutian Islands in the North Pacific Ocean, forming the Aleutian Trench at a

  • (1) convergent plate boundary between the Pacific Plate and the North American Plate
  • (2) convergent plate boundary between the Pacific Plate and the Juan de Fuca Plate
  • (3) divergent plate boundary between the Pacific Plate and the North American Plate
  • (4) divergent plate boundary between the Pacific Plate and the Juan de Fuca Plate
Answer: (1) convergent plate boundary between the Pacific Plate and the North American Plate 

22. Which New York State landscape region is composed of mostly horizontal sedimentary bedrock and has a high elevation?

  • (1) Hudson Highlands
  • (2) Manhattan Prong
  • (3) the Catskills
  • (4) Taconic Mountains
Answer: (3) the Catskills 

23. Which mineral is commonly mined as a source of the element lead (Pb)?

  • (1) galena
  • (2) quartz
  • (3) magnetite
  • (4) gypsum
Answer: (1) galena 

24. The block diagram below represents a landscape where caverns and sinkholes have gradually developed over a long period of time.

Why did these caverns and sinkholes form?

  • (1) The bedrock chemically reacted with acidic groundwater.
  • (2) This type of bedrock contained large amounts of oxygen and silicon.
  • (3) Glacial deposits altered the shape of the bedrock.
  • (4) Crustal uplift formed gaps in the bedrock.
Answer: (1) The bedrock chemically reacted with acidic groundwater. 

25. The block diagram below represents a stream flowing from a mountain region.

A brief, heavy rainstorm occurs in the mountains. How will the volume of water and the rate of erosion in the stream change shortly after the rainstorm?

  • (1) The volume of water will decrease and the rate of erosion will increase.
  • (2) The volume of water will increase and the rate of erosion will decrease.
  • (3) Both the volume of water and the rate of erosion will decrease.
  • (4) Both the volume of water and the rate of erosion will increase.
Answer: (4) Both the volume of water and the rate of erosion will increase. 

26. The photograph below shows scratched and polished bedrock produced by weathering and erosion.

Which agent of erosion most likely carried sediment that scratched and polished this bedrock surface?

  • (1) a moving glacier
  • (2) running water
  • (3) wave action
  • (4) wind

Base your answers to questions 27 and 28 on the diagram below and on your knowledge of Earth science. The diagram represents the Moon at different positions, labeled A, B, C, and D, in its orbit around Earth.

Answer: (1) a moving glacier 

27. At which two Moon positions would an observer on Earth most likely experience the highest high tides and the lowest low tides?

  • (1) A and B
  • (2) B and C
  • (3) C and A
  • (4) D and B
Answer: (3) C and A

28. During which Moon phase could an observer on Earth see a lunar eclipse occur?

Answer: (4)  

29. The graph below shows the varying amount of gravitational attraction between the Sun and an asteroid in our solar system. Letters A, B, C, and D indicate four positions in the asteroid’s orbit.

Which diagram best represents the positions of the asteroid in its orbit around the Sun? [Note: The diagrams are not drawn to scale.]

Answer: (1)  

30. The map below shows four major time zones of the United States. The dashed lines represent meridians of longitude. The locations of New York City and Denver are shown.

What is the time in New York City when it is noon in Denver?

  • (1) 10 a.m.
  • (2) 2 p.m.
  • (3) 3 p.m.
  • (4) noon.
Answer: (2) 2 p.m. 

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