There are two versions of this exam.

SO262, Physical Geography

Exam 1a, Fall 2009

 

Definitions (1 sentence)

10@ 4 points each

40

 

Short answer

6 @ 10 points

60

 

Total

 

100

 

 

Read the directions carefully.  You have a selection of questions for the definitions.

Quality of your answers is important.   For full credit you should use correct terminology, and show that you understand the concepts involved.

 

All work on this exam is individual.  You may not any materials (books, notes, computers, calculators), and you may not use IM, texting, talking, or any other means to communicate with other individuals.

 

Red comments are not complete answers.  There are climographs at the end of the page which show the actual locations of the graphs shown.

 


Definitions:  define 10 of the 12 terms with a concise sentence that clearly shows your understanding of the term, and why it is relevant in physical geography:  Each is worth 4 points.

 

1.      Advection fog : moist air passes over a cool surface by advection (wind) and is cooled

2.      Coriolis deflection, southern hemisphere: for fluids, does not matter which way you are going, and magnitude does with sin(latitude)

3.      Cumulonimbus/Cumulous clouds:

4.      Frontal precipitation: rain comes from air rising, cooling, condensing

5.      Jet stream: high altitude, two/hemisphere

6.      Lapse rate: many skips

7.      Ocean gyre: many skips

8.      Physical geography:

9.      SRTM:

10.  Solstice

11.  Specific heat (and how it affects climate):

12.  Stratosphere:

 

Verify that only answered 10 of the 12 terms.  You will have to answer all the remaining questions.



 

(10 points)  What does it mean when we say a map is conformal, and why do we care about that property?  Could the maps above be conformal?  Why or why not?  How would you characterize the distortion on the map above, and why might someone choose it?

 

This is a Van der Grinten projection, which is a compromise, neither equal area nor conformal.  I would not expect you to recognize it, but you should know that it is not a Mercator.

 



(10 points)  How would it be possible to pick out the rain forests of the world from the space shuttle?  Discuss at least two things you would look for, what general latitudes you would look for them at, and the general reasons for the rain forest belts.  As a minimum you must discuss the vertical and horizontal air motion there.

 


 

 (10 pts) You are at the top of the atmosphere, over the Tropic of Capricorn in the southern hemisphere.

  1. On what day(s) of the year would you see the most solar radiation going down toward the earth's surface?  Why would this be the case?
  2. On what day(s) of the year would you see the least solar radiation going down toward the earth's surface?  Why would this be the case?
  3. How much difference would there be between the maximum and minimum, and why would this be the case?
  4. What would be the dominant wavelength of the radiation going downward?
  5. You would see two wavelengths going back to space.  What are they, and what would be different about what happened to them on the earth's surface?
  6. Over the course of the year at your location, would there be more incoming or outgoing radiation?  What is important about this balance (or imbalance)?

 

 I would talk about Dec and June solstices.  If you want so say summer and winter, summer is December in the southern hemisphere.

 

Even without global warming, there is more incoming, and some of it is carried poleward to even out climate worldwide.  With global warming, we are storing heat.  In a budget,

INCOMING = Outgoing + Storage + Surface transport.


 

 

 

 

The climograph above shows the temperature and precipitation at a location over the course of a year.  The temperature line graph follows the scale on the left, and the precipitation bar graph the scale on the right.

 

This is actually in Nigeria, Northern hemisphere, but no penalty for explaining it as southern.

 

(3) List two things about where this location might be, and what allows you to say that.

  

(2) What kind of air masses dominate here in Dec-Jan?  Give a name and characteristics.

  

(2) What kind of air masses dominate in Jul-Aug?  Give a name and characteristics.

  

(3)  What do you think causes this seasonal change?


 

 

(10 points) The two climographs above are for locations at approximately the same latitude, separated by about 250 km.

 

These are in Chile, on the west coast of South America.

 

Discuss two factors that could account for the differences in both temperature and precipitation for the stations.

 

What is a monsoon pattern for precipitation, and could either or both of these stations represent that pattern?



(10 points) Draw the winds near 30˚S.  Insure that you include both the horizontal and vertical motions, the locations of any pressure systems that influence the winds, and the names for the winds.

 

 There is no problem drawing the entire world's 3 cell model, but you only have to draw from the equator to 60 S to show this.

 


  

SO262, Physical Geography

Exam 1b, Fall 2009

 

Definitions (1 sentence)

10@ 4 points each

40

 

Short answer

6 @ 10 points

60

 

Total

 

100

 

 

Read the directions carefully.  You have a selection of questions for the definitions.

Quality of your answers is important.   For full credit you should use correct terminology, and show that you understand the concepts involved.

 

All work on this exam is individual.  You may not any materials (books, notes, computers, calculators), and you may not use IM, texting, talking, or any other means to communicate with other individuals.



Definitions
:  define 10 of the 12 terms with a concise sentence that clearly shows your understanding of the term, and why it is relevant in physical geography:  Each is worth 4 points.

 

1.      Advection fog  moist air passes over a cool surface by advection (wind) and is cooled

2.      Coriolis deflection, northern hemisphere: for fluids, does not matter which way you are going, and magnitude does with sin(latitude)

3.      Equinox:

4.      Frontal precipitation: rain comes from air rising, cooling, condensing

5.      Katabatic wind:

6.      Lapse rate: many skips

7.      Latent heat (and how it affects climate):

8.      Ocean gyre: many skips

9.      Orographic precipitation: rain comes from air rising, cooling, condensing

10.  Physical geography:

11.  SRTM:

12.  Troposphere

 

Verify that only answered 10 of the 12 terms.  You will have to answer all the remaining questions.


 

(10 points)  What does it mean when we say a map is conformal, and why do we care about that property?  Could the maps above be conformal?  Why or why not?  How would you characterize the distortion on the map above, and why might someone choose it?

  

This is a Van der Grinten projection, which is a compromise, neither equal area nor conformal.  I would not expect you to recognize it, but you should know that it is not a Mercator.

 


  (10 points)  How would it be possible to pick out the desert belts of the world from the space shuttle?  Discuss at least two things you would look for, what general latitudes you would look for them at, and the general reasons for the desert belts.  As a minimum you must discuss the vertical and horizontal air motion there.

 

 


(10 pts) You are at the top of the atmosphere, over the equator.

  1. On what day(s) of the year would you see the most solar radiation going down toward the earth's surface?  Why would this be the case?
  2. On what day(s) of the year would you see the least solar radiation going down toward the earth's surface?  Why would this be the case?
  3. How much difference would there be between the maximum and minimum, and why would this be the case?
  4. What would be the dominant wavelength of the radiation going downward?
  5. You would see two wavelengths going back to space.  What are they, and what would be different about what happened to them on the earth's surface?
  6. Over the course of the year at your location, would there be more incoming or outgoing radiation?  What is important about this balance (or imbalance)?

 

Even without global warming, there is more incoming, and some of it is carried poleward to even out climate worldwide.  With global warming, we are storing heat.  In a budget,

INCOMING = Outgoing + Storage + Surface transport.

  


 

The climograph above shows the temperature and precipitation at a location over the course of a year.  The temperature line graph follows the scale on the left, and the precipitation bar graph the scale on the right.

 

This is  at 1100 m altitude in southern Africa, but not as far south as the Tropic of Capricorn.

 

(3) List two things about where this location might be, and what allows you to say that.

 

(2) What kind of air masses dominate here in Dec-Jan?  Give a name and characteristics.

 

(2) What kind of air masses dominate in Jul-Augr?  Give a name and characteristics.

 

(3)  What do you think causes this seasonal change?

 


 

 

(10 points) The two climographs above are for locations at approximately the same latitude, separated by about 150 km.

 

These are in Madagascar.

 

Discuss two factors that could account for the differences in both temperature and precipitation for the stations.

 

What is a monsoon pattern for precipitation, and could either or both of these stations represent that pattern?



 

(10 points) Draw the winds near 60˚N.  Insure that you include both the horizontal and vertical motions, the locations of any pressure systems that influence the winds, and the names for the winds.

 

 There is no problem drawing the entire world's 3 cell model, but you only have to draw from the equator to the two tropics to show this.

 

 


 Climographs used in the test, with their locations.