Earth Science January 2016 Questions Answers Keys.
The University of the State of New York
Regents high school examination
Thursday, January 28, 2016 — 9:15 a.m. to 12:15 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. The Foucault pendulum and the Coriolis effect both provide evidence of Earth’s
- (1) revolution
- (2) rotation
- (3) tilted axis
- (4) elliptical orbit
2. When it is solar noon at a location at 75° W longitude, what is the solar time at a location at 120° W longitude?
- (1) 9 a.m.
- (2) 12 noon
- (3) 3 p.m.
- (4) 12 midnight
3. The diagram below represents an observer measuring the altitude of Polaris.
At which latitude is this observer located?
- (1) 16° N
- (2) 37° N
- (3) 53° N
- (4) 90° N
4. Which characteristic of the planets in our solar system increases as the distance from the Sun increases?
- (1) equatorial diameter
- (2) eccentricity of orbit
- (3) period of rotation
- (4) period of revolution
5. New York State’s highest peak, Mt. Marcy, is located at approximately
- (1) 44°10 N 74°05 W
- (2) 44°05 N 73°55 W
- (3) 73°55 N 44°10 W
- (4) 74°05 N 44°05 W
6. The diagram below represents the orbital position of Earth on October 21.
Which Northern Hemisphere season is occurring when Earth reaches position X?
- (1) winter
- (2) spring
- (3) summer
- (4) fall
7. The diagram below represents eight positions of the Moon in its orbit.
Why are high tides on Earth greatest when the Moon is in position A and in position E?
- (1) The Moon is closer to the Sun.
- (2) The Moon is closer to Earth.
- (3) The Moon, the Sun, and Earth are aligned.
- (4) The Moon is in the same phase at both locations.
8. The model below represents the apparent path of the Sun across the sky on March 21 as seen by an observer on Earth.
At which latitude is the observer located?
- (1) 90° N
- (2) 42° N
- (3) 23.5° N
- (4) 0°
9. According to astronomers, the age of the universe is estimated to be
- (1) 1.3 billion years
- (2) 4.6 billion years
- (3) 7.9 billion years
- (4) 13.8 billion years
10. Light from distant galaxies most likely shows a
- (1) red shift, indicating that the universe is expanding
- (2) red shift, indicating that the universe is contracting
- (3) blue shift, indicating that the universe is expanding
- (4) blue shift, indicating that the universe is contracting
11. Which gas is inferred to have been absent from Earth’s atmosphere during the Early Archean Era?
- (1) carbon dioxide
- (2) nitrogen
- (3) oxygen
- (4) water vapor
12. How old is a bone that has 12.5% of the original amount of radioactive carbon-14 remaining?
- (1) 5,700 years
- (2) 11,400 years
- (3) 17,100 years
- (4) 22,800 years
13. Which weather instrument is most useful in measuring relative humidity?
- (1) barometer
- (2) anemometer
- (3) psychrometer
- (4) wind vane
14. If the air temperature is 20°C and the relative humidity is 58%, what is the dewpoint?
- (1) 5°C
- (2) 12°C
- (3) 15°C
- (4) 38°C
15. Equal areas of which type of Earth surface will absorb more insolation and radiate more energy back toward space in the same amount of time?
- (1) light colored and rough
- (2) dark colored and rough
- (3) light colored and smooth
- (4) dark colored and smooth
16. The map below shows the location of India and the Indian Ocean.
Which statement best describes the monsoon winds during the rainy season in India?
- (1) Warm, moist air flows from India to the Indian Ocean.
- (2) Warm, moist air flows from the Indian Ocean to India.
- (3) Cold, dry air flows from India to the Indian Ocean.
- (4) Cold, dry air flows from the Indian Ocean to India.
17. Which ocean current directly warms Western Europe?
- (1) North Atlantic Current
- (2) South Equatorial Current
- (3) Canary Current
- (4) Labrador Current
18. Which group of organisms survived mass extinctions that marked the ends of both the Paleozoic Era and the Mesozoic Era?
- (1) ammonoids
- (2) graptolites
- (3) eurypterids
- (4) gastropods
19. In which region of the electromagnetic spectrum is most of Earth’s outgoing terrestrial radiation?
- (1) infrared
- (2) visible
- (3) ultraviolet
- (4) x rays
20. Most scientists infer that increasing levels of carbon dioxide in Earth’s atmosphere are contributing to
- (1) decreased thickness of the troposphere
- (2) depletion of ozone
- (3) increased absorption of ultraviolet radiation
- (4) increased global temperatures
21. The bedrock cross section below contains rock formations A, B, C, and D. The rock formations have not been overturned.
Which sequence represents the relative ages of these rock formations, from oldest to youngest?
- (1) B → A → C → D
- (2) B → D → C → A
- (3) D → C → A → B
- (4) D → B → A → C
22. A volcanic ash layer between sedimentary rock layers is used by geologists to
- (1) determine Earth’s absolute age
- (2) predict global warming
- (3) locate an earthquake epicenter
- (4) correlate widely separated rock formations
23. The satellite photograph below shows the Mississippi River entering into the Gulf of Mexico. Arrows show the direction of river flow
This depositional feature in the Gulf of Mexico is best identified as
- (1) a delta
- (2) a sandbar
- (3) a barrier island
- (4) an outwash plain
24. Examination of the fossil record shows a general tendency of organisms to become increasingly more complex through geologic time. This finding supports the theory that living things have undergone
- (1) metamorphism
- (2) evolution
- (3) radioactive decay
- (4) mass extinctions
25. Crustal formation, which may cause the widening of an ocean, is most likely occurring at the boundary between the
- (1) African Plate and the Eurasian Plate
- (2) Pacific Plate and the Philippine Plate
- (3) Indian-Australian Plate and the Antarctic Plate
- (4) South American Plate and the North American Plate
26. How long after receiving the first P-wave from an earthquake centered 4000 kilometers away does a seismic station receive its first S-wave from the same earthquake?
- (1) 1 minute
- (2) 5 minutes 35 seconds
- (3) 7 minutes
- (4) 12 minutes 40 seconds
27. Which evidence recorded at seismic stations following an earthquake supports the inference that Earth’s interior changes from solid rock to molten iron and nickel at the mantle-core boundary?
- (1) P-waves arrive earlier than S-waves.
- (2) P-waves and S-waves are both recorded at all stations.
- (3) Only S-waves are recorded at all stations.
- (4) Only P-waves are recorded on the opposite side of Earth.
28. Which graph best indicates the densities of the planets in our solar system?
29. The diagram below represents cross sections of equal-size beakers A, B, and C filled with beads.
Which statement best compares the porosity in the three beakers?
- (1) Beaker A and beaker B have the same porosity, and beaker C has the least porosity.
- (2) Beaker A and beaker B have the same porosity, and beaker C has the greatest porosity.
- (3) Beaker B has the greatest porosity, beaker A has less porosity, and beaker C has the least porosity.
- (4) Beaker C has the greatest porosity, beaker B has less porosity, and beaker A has the least porosity
30. On the map of the United States shown below, four lines have been drawn and labeled A, B, C, and D.
The length of which line best represents the distance from Earth’s surface to the top of the mesosphere?
- (1) A
- (2) B
- (3) C
- (4) D
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