Earth Science January 2013

Earth Science June 2013 Questions Answers Keys.

The University of the State of New York
REGENTS HIGH SCHOOL EXAMINATION
PHYSICAL SETTING
EARTH SCIENCE
Thursday, January 24, 2013 — 1:15 to 4:15 p.m., only

Directions : Use your knowledge of Earth science to answer all questions. 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. Why is the surface of Mercury covered with meteor impact craters, while Earth’s surface has relatively few craters?

  • (1) Mercury is larger than Earth, so it gets hit with more meteors.
  • (2) Mercury is an older planet, so it has a longer history of meteor impacts.
  • (3) Earth’s less dense water surface attracts fewer meteors.
  • (4) Earth’s hydrosphere and atmosphere destroyed or buried most meteor impact sites.
Answer: (4) Earth’s hydrosphere and atmosphere destroyed or buried most meteor impact sites. 

2. Which information best supports the inference that the universe began with an explosion?

  • (1) measurements of rates of decay using carbon-14
  • (2) measurements of cosmic background radiation
  • (3) calculations of the distance from the Sun to each asteroid in the asteroid belt
  • (4) calculations of the temperature and luminosity of stars
Answer: (2) measurements of cosmic background radiation 

3. A blue shift of the light from a star indicates that the star

  • (1) will soon become a main sequence star
  • (2) will soon become a giant star
  • (3) is moving closer to Earth
  • (4) is moving away from Earth
Answer: (3) is moving closer to Earth 

4. Evidence that Earth revolves around the Sun is provided by the

  • (1) apparent rising and setting of the Sun during one day
  • (2) apparent rising and setting of Polaris during one day
  • (3) seasonal changes in the apparent positions of constellations
  • (4) hourly changes in the apparent direction of the swing of a Foucault pendulum
Answer: (3) seasonal changes in the apparent positions of constellations 

5. What causes many surface winds to deflect to the right in the Northern Hemisphere?

  • (1) rotation of Earth on its axis
  • (2) unequal heating of Earth’s surface
  • (3) gravitational force of the Moon
  • (4) gravitational force of the Sun
Answer: (1) rotation of Earth on its axis 

6. During which Northern Hemisphere season is Earth closest to the Sun?

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

7. An observer on Earth measures the angle of sight between Venus and the setting Sun.

Which statement best describes and explains the apparent motion of Venus over the next few hours?

  • (1) Venus will set 1 hour after the Sun because Earth rotates at 45° per hour.
  • (2) Venus will set 2 hours after the Sun because Venus orbits Earth faster than the Sun orbits Earth.
  • (3) Venus will set 3 hours after the Sun because Earth rotates at 15° per hour.
  • (4) Venus will set 4 hours after the Sun because Venus orbits Earth slower than the Sun orbits Earth.
Answer: (3) Venus will set 3 hours after the Sun because Earth rotates at 15° per hour. 

8. The diagram below represents the horizon and the Sun’s apparent paths, A, B, and C, on three different dates, as viewed from the same location in New York State.

Which table correctly shows the dates on which the apparent paths of the Sun were observed?

Answer: (4)  

9. Scientists infer that most of Earth’s earliest atmosphere was produced by

  • (1) a collision with a giant gas cloud
  • (2) capturing gases from a nearby planet
  • (3) vaporizing comets that impacted Earth’s surface
  • (4) the escape of gases from Earth’s molten surface
Answer: (4) the escape of gases from Earth’s molten surface 

10. An increase in the transparency of Earth’s atmosphere is often caused by

  • (1) a decrease in cloud cover
  • (2) a decrease in solar radiation
  • (3) an increase in airborne dust particles
  • (4) an increase in the duration of insolation
Answer: (1) a decrease in cloud cover 

11. Which station model shows a wind direction from the southeast?

Answer: (2)  

12. The direction of movement of the major surface ocean currents is most affected by Earth’s

  • (1) tilted axis
  • (2) prevailing winds
  • (3) rate of revolution
  • (4) tidal action
Answer: (2) prevailing winds 

13. The winds shift from southwest to northwest as heavy rains and hail begin to fall in Albany, New York. These changes are most likely caused by the arrival of

  • (1) an mT air mass
  • (2) a cT air mass
  • (3) a cold front
  • (4) a warm front
Answer: (3) a cold front 

14. A city located on the coast of North America has warmer winters and cooler summers than a city at the same elevation and latitude located near the center of North America. Which statement best explains the difference between the climates of the two cities?

  • (1) Ocean surfaces change temperature more slowly than land surfaces.
  • (2) Warm, moist air rises when it meets cool, dry air.
  • (3) Wind speeds are usually greater over land than over ocean water.
  • (4) Water has a lower specific heat than land.
Answer: (1) Ocean surfaces change temperature more slowly than land surfaces. 

15. Most of the electromagnetic energy radiated from Earth’s surface is in the form of

  • (1) ultraviolet rays
  • (2) infrared rays
  • (3) gamma rays
  • (4) x rays
Answer: (2) infrared rays 

16. Which two 23.5°-latitude locations are influenced by cool surface ocean currents?

  • (1) the east coast of North America and the west coast of Australia
  • (2) the east coast of Asia and the east coast of North America
  • (3) the west coast of Africa and the east coast of South America
  • (4) the west coast of North America and the west coast of South America
Answer: (4) the west coast of North America and the west coast of South America 

17. The arrival time of the first earthquake P-wave at a seismograph station was 10:11:20 (hours:minutes:seconds). If the epicenter of the earthquake is 8000 km away, what was the approximate arrival time of the first S-wave from this earthquake?

  • (1) 10:02:00
  • (2) 10:09:20
  • (3) 10:20:40
  • (4) 10:32:00
Answer: (3) 10:20:40 

18. The diagram below represents the intensity of the shaking that occurs on different Earth surfaces during the same earthquake.

The greatest earthquake hazard to homes exists when they are built on

  • (1) hard igneous rock
  • (2) sedimentary rock
  • (3) coarse sediments
  • (4) silt and mud

Base your answers to questions 19 and 20 on the block diagram below, which shows a tectonic plate boundary.

Answer: (4) silt and mud 

19. Which tectonic plate boundary is best represented by this diagram?

  • (1) Nazca Plate and Pacific Plate boundary
  • (2) Scotia Plate and South American Plate boundary
  • (3) Juan de Fuca Plate and North American Plate boundary
  • (4) Antarctic Plate and Indian-Australian Plate boundary
Answer: (3) Juan de Fuca Plate and North American Plate boundary 

20. Compared to the oceanic crust, the continental crust is

  • (1) more dense and more mafic
  • (2) more dense and more felsic
  • (3) less dense and more mafic
  • (4) less dense and more felsic
Answer: (4) less dense and more felsic 

21. Most of the sediment that is compacted and later forms shale bedrock is

  • (1) clay
  • (2) silt
  • (3) sand
  • (4) pebbles
Answer: (1) clay

22. In which two Earth regions is oxygen the second most abundant element by volume?

  • (1) crust and hydrosphere
  • (2) hydrosphere and troposphere
  • (3) troposphere and core
  • (4) core and crust
Answer: (2) hydrosphere and troposphere 

23. Which two properties are most useful in distinguishing between galena and halite?

  • (1) cleavage and color
  • (2) luster and color
  • (3) hardness and streak
  • (4) streak and cleavage
Answer: (2) luster and color 

24. The graph below shows the decay of a radioactive material over time

How long does it take for this radioactive material to decay through 2 half-lives?

  • (1) 1 × 103 years
  • (2) 5 × 103 years
  • (3) 10 × 103 years
  • (4) 40 × 103 years
Answer: (3) 10 × 103 years 

25. A 65.5-million-year-old impact crater in Mexico provides evidence for the cause of the

  • (1) breakup of Pangaea
  • (2) evolution of the earliest corals
  • (3) Alleghenian orogeny
  • (4) extinction of ammonoids
Answer: (4) extinction of ammonoids 

26. When did the earliest humans appear on Earth?

  • (1) before the earliest dinosaurs
  • (2) before the earliest flowering plants
  • (3) during the Pleistocene Epoch
  • (4) during the Late Triassic Epoch
Answer: (3) during the Pleistocene Epoch 

27. A landslide is an example of

  • (1) river deposition
  • (2) glacial scouring
  • (3) mass movement
  • (4) chemical weathering
Answer: (3) mass movement 

28. Each of the rock particles below has the same density and volume. Which particle will most likely settle at the fastest rate in moving water?

Answer: (4)  

29. Which rock weathers most rapidly when exposed to acid rain?

  • (1) quartzite
  • (2) granite
  • (3) basalt
  • (4) limestone
Answer: (4) limestone 

30. What is the approximate minimum stream velocity needed to keep a particle in motion that has a diameter of 10 centimeters?

  • (1) 110 cm/s
  • (2) 190 cm/s
  • (3) 325 cm/s
  • (4) 425 cm/s
Answer: (2) 190 cm/s 

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