Earth Science - What Makes Earth Unique

Earth's atmosphere has a gaseous layer that regulates the planet's surface temperature. Its cooling mechanisms protect living organisms


The four subsystems of the earth are the geosphere hydrosphere, atmosphere, biosphere.

Layers of the Atmosphere

  • troposphere - 14.5 km

  • stratosphere - good ozone 50 km

  • mesosphere - 85 km (space)

  • thermosphere - 600 km (space)

  • exosphere - 10,000 km (satellites)

The geosphere is composed of the:

  • inner core

  • outer core

  • mantle

  • crust


The climate system is made up of:

  • greenhouse gases

  • gases that trap heat like water vapor, carbon dioxide, methane, nitrous oxide, ozone

  • the hydrosphere

  • soil and vegetation

  • topography


Minerals are naturally occuring, solid.

Physical Properties of Minerals

  • color - the result of the reflection of visible light, not enough to identify minerals because may be same-ish color but differ in chemical structure

  • luster - ability to reflect light from the surface

  1. polished metals reflect light

  2. nonmetallic luster may be glassy, waxy, pearly, brilliant

  • streak - the color of a mineral in powdered form maybe different from its solid form

  1. metallic minerals have dark streaks

  2. nonmetallic generally light

  • cleavage - split along a weak plane forming a flat surface

  • fracture - the capacity of mineral to break along curved surfaces

  • density - compactness of a sample of matter m/v. Every metal has a unique density.

  • hardness - resist abrasion or scratching. Use Mohs scale to arrange minerals from softest to hardest talc softest, diamond hardest.



  • specific gravity - mineral's weight to an equal volume of water

  • reaction with acids - minerals that contain co32

  • fluorescence - glow when bombarded with ultraviolet light. Minerals may not glow under ordinary light, minerals are selective of light that causes it to glow.

  • phosphorescence - siga gihapon bisag wala nay light.

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