Earth and Environmental Sciences
EESC V1001y Dinosaurs and the History of Life: Lectures and Lab 4 pts.Not offered in 2014-2015. Given in alternate years. Suggested preparation: basic high school science and math. Lab is a hands-on introduction to geochronology, paleontology, and historical geology with field trips. (See V1401 for lectures.) Lab Required. CC/GS: Partial Fulfillment of Science Requirement.
EESC V1003x Climate and Society: Case Studies 3 pts. Explores a series of environmental hazards (ozone depeletion, El Nino, global warming) as examples of risk management. For each module, students will learn the scientific principles underlying each hazard and then will examine how social and economic policies were developed amd implemented to mitigate the perceived risk. CC/GS: Partial Fulfillment of Science Requirement.
EESC V1010y Geological Excursion To Death Valley, Ca 2 pts. Enrollment limited to 20. The trip is restricted to first-years and sophomores from Columbia College/General Studies, Barnard College, and the School of Engineering and Applied Science. Early application is advised, and no later than November 8. A spring-break excursion focused on the geology of Death Valley and adjacent areas of the eastern California desert. Discussion sessions ahead of the trip provide necessary background. Details at: http://eesc.columbia.edu/courses/v1010/ Discussion Section Required. Discussion Section Required.
Students who wish to take only the lectures should register for V1411.
EESC V1011x Earth: Origin, Evolution, Processes, Future 4 pts. What is the nature of our planet and how did it form? This class explores Earth's internal structure, its dynamical character expressed in plate tectnics and earthquakes, and its climate system. It also explores what Earth's future may hold. Lecture and lab. Students who wish to take only the lectures should register for V1411. Lab Required. CC/GS: Partial Fulfillment of Science Requirement.
Course limited to 160.
EESC V1030x Oceanography 3 pts. Explore the geology of the sea floor, understand what drives ocean currents and how ocean ecosystems operate. Case studies and discussions centered on ocean-related issues facing society. CC/GS: Partial Fulfillment of Science Requirement.
Primarily for Juniors and Seniors.
EESC V1053y Planet Earth 3 pts. Prerequisites: High school science and mathematics. Enrollment limited to 50. How the Earth works. The unifying concept of plate tectonics is used to examine surface and internal processes in the Earth, including earthquakes, volcanoes, mountain-building, ridge-axis hot springs, formation of continents, renewable and non-renewable energy. CC/GS: Partial Fulfillment of Science Requirement.
EESC V1201y Environmental Risks and Disasters 3 pts. Prerequisites: High school science and math. First-years and sophomores will have priority. An introduction to risks and hazards in the environment. Different types of hazards are analyzed and compared: natural disasters, such as tornados, earthquakes, and meteorite impacts; acute and chronic health effects caused by exposure to radiation and toxic substances such as radon, asbestos, and arsenic; long-term societal effects due to environmental change, such as sea level rise and global warming. Emphasizes the basic physical principles controlling the hazardous phenomena and develops simple quantitative methods for making scientifically reasoned assessments of the threats (to health and wealth) posed by various events, processes, and exposures. Discusses methods of risk mitigation and sociological, psychological, and economic aspects of risk control and management. Discussion Section Required. CC/GS: Partial Fulfillment of Science Requirement.
EESC V1401y Dinosaurs and the History of Life: Lectures 3 pts.Not offered in 2014-2015. Given in alternate years. Suggested preparation: basic high school science and math. Dinosaurs: a spectacular example of a common, highly successful form of life, dominant for 135 million years. Where did they come from? Why were they so successful? Why did they die out? A basic introduction to the interface between geology and biology. CC/GS: Partial Fulfillment of Science Requirement.
Lectures only of EESC V1011.
EESC V1411x Earth: Origin, Evolution, Processes, Future: Lectures 3 pts. The lectures of V1011. What is the nature of our planet and how did it form? This class explores Earth's internal structure, its dynamical character expressed in plate tectonics and earthquakes, and its climate system. It also explores what Earth's future may hold. CC/GS: Partial Fulfillment of Science Requirement.
EESC V1600x Earth Resources and Sustainable Development 3 pts. Prerequisites: None; high school chemistry recommended. Survey of the origin and extent of mineral resources, fossil fuels, and industrial materials, that are non renewable, finite resources, and the environmental consequences of their extraction and use, using the textbook Earth Resources and the Environment, by James Craig, David Vaughan and Brian Skinner. This course will provide an overview, but will include focus on topics of current societal relevance, including estimated reserves and extraction costs for fossil fuels, geological storage of CO2, sources and disposal methods for nuclear energy fuels, sources and future for luxury goods such as gold and diamonds, and special, rare materials used in consumer electronics (e.g., "Coltan", mostly from Congo) and in newly emerging technologies such as superconducting magnets and rechargeable batteries (e.g., heavy rare earth elements, mostly from China). Guest lectures from economists, commodity traders and resource geologists will provide "real world" input. Discussion Session Required. CC/GS: Fulfills Science Requirement.
Enrollment limit: 20. Instructor's permission required.
EESC V1900y Geological Excursion to the Eastern Sierra, CA 2 pts.Not offered in 2014-2015. Spring break field trip to the Eastern Sierra, CA, restricted to first-years and sophomores from Columbia College/General Studies, Barnard College, and the School of Engineering and Applied Science. (Trip alternates with EESC V1010.) Excursion focuses on the geology and environment of Mono Lake and adjacent areas. Discussion sessions ahead of the trip provide necessary background. Early application advised; deadline: November 12. Details at: http://eesc.columbia.edu/courses/v1900/ Discussion Section Required.
EESC V2100x and y Earth's Environmental Systems: The Climate System 4.5 pts. Prerequisites: high school algebra. Recommended preparation: high school chemistry and physics. Priority given to Columbia and Barnard earth science, environmental science, and environmental biology majors should enrollment limits be reinstated. Origin and development of the atmosphere and oceans, formation of winds, storms and ocean currents, reasons for changes through geologic time. Recent influence of human activity: the ozone hole, global warming, water pollution. Laboratory exploration of topics through demonstrations, experimentation, computer data analysis, and modeling. Science Requirement: Partial Fulfillment. Lab Required. CC/GS: Partial Fulfillment of Science Requirement.
Students majoring in the Earth and Environmental Sciences should plan to take V2200 before their senior year to avoid conflicts with the Senior Seminar.
EESC V2200x and y Earth's Environmental Systems: The Solid Earth System 4.5 pts. Prerequisites: high school algebra. Recommended preparation: high school chemistry and physics. Priority given to Columbia and Barnard earth science, environmental science, and environmental biology majors should enrollment limits be reinstated. A course on how the solid Earth works, today and in the past, focusing on Earth in the Solar system, continents and oceans, the Earth's history, minerals and rocks, weathering and erosion, hydrological cycle and rivers, geochronology, plate tectonics, earthquakes, volcanoes, fossil fuels. Laboratory exploration of topics through examination of rock samples, computer data analysis, field exercises, and modeling. Lab Required. CC/GS: Partial Fulfillment of Science Requirement.
EESC V2300y Earth's Environmental Systems: The Life System 4.5 pts. Prerequisites: high school algebra. Recommended preparation: high school chemistry and physics. Priority given to Columbia and Barnard earth science, environmental science, and environmental biology majors should enrollment limits be reinstated. Role of life in biogeochemical cycles, relationship of biodiversity and evolution to the physical Earth, vulnerability of ecosystems to environmental change; causes and effects of extinctions through geologic time (dinosaurs and mammoths) and today. Exploration of topics through laboratories, demonstrations, computer data analysis, modeling, and field trips. REQUIRED: Lab EESC V2310. Students should see the Directory of Classes for lab sessions being offered and select one. Lab Required. CC/GS: Partial Fulfillment of Science Requirement.
EESC V2310y EES- Life Systems Required Lab: Sections 001, 002, 003, 004,005 Required Lab for V2300 This three hour lab is required of all students who enroll in EESC V2300. There are currently five lab sections. Lab Required.
EESC W2330x Science for Sustainable Development 3 pts. Provides an introduction to natural science approaches essential to understanding central issues of sustainable development. Topics may include: climate, ecology/agriculture/biodiversity, energy, natural disasters, population dynamics, public health and water resources. Treatment includes background, methods and applications from selected settings throughout the world. Taught by specialists in a number of fields. CC/GS: Partial Fulfillment of Science Requirement.
EESC W3000x and y Tutorial Study in Earth and Environmental Sciences 1-3 pts. Prerequisites: declared major in Earth and environmental sciences and the department's permission. Students with particular interest in one of the many components of the Earth and environmental sciences should approach a director of undergraduate studies during the registration period so that tutorial-level exposure to the subject can be arranged. Each point requires two hours each week of readings, discussion, and research work under the close supervision of a member of the Department of Earth and Environmental Sciences, Lamont-Doherty Earth Observatory, American Museum of Natural History, or Goddard Institute for Space Studies. In consultation with the supervisor, the student selects a topic for intensive study and the time and place of the tutorial discussion sessions. May be repeated for credit up to a maximum of 12 points, with a maximum of 6 points with each staff member.
EESC W3010y Field Geology 2 pts. This course may be repeated for up to 9 points of credit if taken in different areas. Fee: to be determined. Field study in various geologic settings. Plans for the courses are announced at the beginning of each term. Priority is given to Majors in the Department of Earth and Environmental Sciences at Columbia College, School of General Studies and Barnard Environmental Science majors. Discussion Section Required.
EESC W3015x The Earth's Carbon Cycle 3 pts.Not offered in 2014-2015. Prerequisites: introductory chemistry and environmental science or their equivalents, or instructor's permission. Given in alternate years. Three problems are considered: the identity of the missing sink for fossil fuel CO2, the cause of the low atmospheric CO2 content during glacial time, and the possibility of a tie between tectonics and atmospheric CO2 content.
EESC V3101x Geochemistry for a Habitable Planet 3 pts. Prerequisites: Any 1000-level or 2000-level EESC course; MATH V1101 (Calculus I) and CHEM C1403 (General Chemistry I) or their equivalents. The origin, evolution and future of our planet, based on the book How to Build a Habitable Planet by Wallace S. Broecker. This course will focus on the geochemical processes that built Earth from solar material, led to its differentiation into continents and ocean, and have maintained its surface at a comfortable temperature. Students will participate in a hands-on geochemistry project at Lamont-Doherty Earth Observatory.
EESC V3201y Solid Earth Dynamics 3 pts. Prerequisites: Any 1000-level or 2000-level EESC course; MATH V1101 (Calculus I) and PHYS V1201 (General Physics I) or their equivalents. Concurrent enrollment in PHYS V12101 is acceptable with permission of the instructor. Properties and processes affecting the evolution and behavior of the solid Earth. This course will focus on the geophysical processes that build mountains and ocean basins, drive plate tectonics, and otherwise lead to a dynamic planet. Topics include heat flow and mantle circulation, earthquakes and seismic waves, gravity, Earth's magnetic field, and flow of glaciers and ice sheets.
EESC BC3800x-BC3801y Senior Research Seminar 3 pts. Prerequisites: Enrollment limited to senior majors (juniors with permission of the instructor). Guided, independent, in-depth research culminating in the senior thesis in the spring. Weekly seminar to review work in progress and share results through oral and written reports. Prerequisite to EESC W3901.
EESC W3901y Environmental Science Senior Seminar 3 pts. Prerequisites: BC 3800 or BC 3801 and a good grounding in basic sciences. This is a required course for graduating senior majors. Each student is responsible for oral research presentations and an extended written report on a related subject of his or her choice. Offered jointly with Barnard College.
EESC W4001x Advanced General Geology 4 pts. Prerequisites: one term of college-level calculus, physics, and chemistry. A concentrated introduction to the solid Earth, its interior and near-surface geology. Intended for students with good backgrounds in the physical sciences but none in geology. Laboratory and field trips. Lab Required.
EESC W4008x Introduction to Atmospheric Science 3 pts. Prerequisites: advanced calculus and general physics, or the instructor's permission. Basic physical processes controlling atmospheric structure: thermodynamics; radiation physics and radiative transfer; principles of atmospheric dynamics; cloud processes; applications to Earth's atmospheric general circulation, climatic variations, and the atmospheres of the other planets.
EESC W4009y Chemical Geology 4 pts.Not offered in 2014-2015. Prerequisites: physical chemistry or instructor's permission. Given in alternate years. Thermodynamics as applied to Earth systems.
EESC W4020y Humans and the Carbon Cycle 3 pts.Not offered in 2014-2015. Prerequisites: One semester of college-level calculus and chemistry or the instructor's permission. Basic science underlying the human impact on the carbon cycle and climate. Physical, chemical, and biological aspects of the natural and anthropogenically-perturbed carbon cycle. Topics include: socioeconomic factors driving human CO2 emissions; ocean and terrestrial biosphere sinks and their recent trends; CO2 on glacial-interglacial time scales; climate-carbon feedbacks; model predictions of climate change and their uncertainties; the IPCC process; ocean acidification; strategies for mitigation.
EESC W4040y Climate Thermodynamics and Energy Transfer 3 pts.Not offered in 2014-2015. Prerequisites: EESC W4008, advanced calculus, and general physics, or instructor's permission. Given in alternate years. Thermodynamics of atmospheric and oceanic processes fundamental to the climate system. Physical mechanisms of vertical energy transfer: surface fluxes, boundary layers and convection.
EESC W4050x Global Assessment and Monitoring Using Remote Sensing 3 pts. Prerequisites: Calculus I and Physics I & II are required for Undergraduates who wish to take this course. Enrollment limited to 24 students. General introduction to fundamentals of remote sensing; electromagnetic radiation, sensors, interpretation, quantitative image analysis and modeling. Example applications in the Earth and environmental sciences are explored through the analysis of remote sensing imagery in a state-or-the-art visualization laboratory. Lab required. Priority given to graduate students in the natural sciences and engineering. Advanced level undergraduates may be admitted with instructor's permission. Lab Required.
EESC W4076y Geologic Mapping 3 pts. Prerequisites: Permission from instructor to register for this course. Fieldwork on weekends in April and two weeks in mid-May immediately following the end of examinations. Enrollment limited. Estimated expense: $250. The principles and practices of deciphering geologic history through the observation of rocks in the field, mapmaking, construction of geological cross-sections, and short written reports. Graduating undergraduate seniors may have to miss graduation. Please be advised.
EESC W4085x Geodynamics 3 pts. Prerequisites: calculus, differential equations, introductory physics. Given in alternate years. An introduction to how the Earth and planets work. The focus is on physical processes that control plate tectonics and the evolution of planetary interiors and surfaces; analytical descriptions of these processes; weekly physical model demonstrations.
EESC W4090y Introduction to Geochronology and Thermochronology 3 pts.Not offered in 2014-2015. Prerequisites: One term of college-level calculus, and solid Earth system science or its equivalent. Given in alternate years. An overview of approaches to estimating ages of sedimentary sequences and events in Earth history. Intended for students with good backgrounds in the physical sciences, who want to use geochronological techniques in their studies. The geochronology emphasis will be on emerging improvements in precision and accuracy of the Ar-Ar and U-Pb systems as well as alternative approaches to directly dating sedimentary strata in the first half. The thermochronology emphasis will be on exploring approaches to understanding uplift and erosion histories. The course will consist of a formal lecture on one day and a recitation on the second day which will emphasize examples and problem solving.
EESC W4113x Introduction to Mineralogy 4 pts.Not offered in 2014-2015. Prerequisites: introductory geology or the equivalent, elementary college physics and chemistry, or the instructor's permission. Elementary crystallography and crystal structures, optical properties of minerals, mineral associations, and economic minerals. Laboratory: identification of minerals in hand specimens and use of the petrographic microscope. Lab Required.
EESC W4223x Sedimentary Geology 4 pts.Not offered in 2014-2015. Prerequisites: introductory geology or instructor's permission. Given in alternate years. Two required weekend field trips in September. An overview of sedimentology and stratigraphy for majors and concentrators in Earth and environmental sciences, and for graduate students from other disciplines. Lectures, class discussions, labs, and field exercises are integrated, with emphasis on processes, the characteristics of sediments and sedimentary rocks, interpretation of the geological record, and practical applications. Details at http://eesc.columbia.edu/courses/w4223/ Lab Required.
EESC W4230y Crustal Deformation 3 pts. Prerequisites: introductory geology and one year of calculus.
preparation: higher levels of mathematics. Introduction to the deformation processes in the Earth's crust. Fundamental theories of stress and strain; rock behavior in both brittle and ductile fields; earthquake processes; ductile deformation; large-scale crustal contractional and extensional events.
EESC W4300x The Earth's Deep Interior 3 pts.Not offered in 2014-2015. Prerequisites: Calculus, differential equations, one year of college physics, and EESC W4950 or its equivalent. Given in alternate years. An introduction to properties of the Earth's mantle, fluid outer core, and solid inner core. Current knowledge of these features is explored, using observations of seismology, heat flow, gravity, geomagnetism, plus information on the Earth's bulk composition.
EESC W4330x Introduction to Terrestrial Paleoclimate 3 pts. Given in alternate years. An overview of the archives in which evidence of terrestrial paleoclimate is preserved, the approaches to developing and applying proxies of climate from these archives, approaches for constraining the time represented by the information, and interpretations that have been developed from such archives. Important archives to be included are ice cores, caves, wetlands, lakes, trees, and moraines. The time interval covered will be mostly the last few tens of thousand years, and chronometers based on radiocarbon, U-series and surface exposure dating will be presented. The course will consist of a formal lecture on one day and a recitation on the second day which will emphasize examples and problem solving.
EESC W4400x Dynamics of Climate Variability and Climate Change 3 pts. Prerequisites: undergraduate course in climate or physics; undergraduate calculus. An overview of how the climate system works on large scales of space and time, with particular attention to the science and methods underlying forecasts of climate variability and climate change. This course serves as the basic physical science course for the M.A. Program in Climate and Society.
EESC W4401x Quantitative Models of Climate-Sensitive Natural and Human Systems 4 pts. Prerequisites: undergraduate-level coursework in introductory statistics or data analysis; knowledge of calculus An overview of how climate-societal and intra-societal relationships can be evaluated and quantified using relevant data sets, statistical tools, and dynamical models. Concepts and methods in quantitative modeling, data organization, and statistical analysis, with applications to climate and climate impacts. Students will also do some simple model experiments and evaluate the results. Lab Required.
Course is required for the MA in Climate and Society program.
Open to a maximum of 8 additional graduate students, admitted by application to and with permission of instructor.
EESC W4404y Regional Climate and Climate Impacts 3 pts. Prerequisites: EESC W4400 and EESC W4401. The dynamics of environment and society interact with climate and can be modified through use of modern climate information. To arrive at the best use of climate information, there is a need to see climate in a balanced way, among the myriad of factors at play. Equally, there is a need to appreciate the range of climate information available and to grasp its underlying basis and the reasons for varying levels of certainty. Many decisions in society are at more local scales, and regional climate information considered at appropriate scales and in appropriate forms (e.g., transformed into vegetation stress) is key. Students will build a sufficient understanding of the science behind the information, and analyze examples of how the information can and is being used. This course will prepare the ground for a holistic understanding needed for wise use of climate information.
EESC W4480x Paleobiology and Earth System History 3 pts.Not offered in 2014-2015. Prerequisites: High-school biology, introductory college-level geology Given in alternate years. Course is a survey of the biological and biogeochemical evolution of the Earth System. Students focus not only on a narrative of the panoply of biodiversity though time, but also on the development and the testing of evolutionary and geochemical hypotheses within a historical science. Case studies of mass extinctions and biological innovation as well as current topics and debates will be examined in detail. There are 4 full-day Field trips.
Given in alternate years.
EESC W4550y Plant Ecophysiology 3 pts.Not offered in 2014-2015. Prerequisites: general biology or instructor's permission. Given in alternate years. Plant organismal responses to external environmental conditions and the physiological mechanisms of plants that enable these responses. An evolutionary approach is taken to analyze the potential fitness of plants and plant survival based on adaptation to external environmental factors. 2-hour lab on Fridays at Lamont.
EESC W4600x Earth Resources and Sustainable Development 3 pts. Prerequisites: None; high school chemistry recommended. Survey of the origin and extent of mineral resources, fossil fuels, and industrial materials, that are non renewable, finite resources, and the environmental consequences of their extraction and use, using the textbook Earth Resources and the Environment, by James Craig, David Vaughan and Brian Skinner. This course will provide an overview, but will include focus on topics of current societal relevance, including estimated reserves and extraction costs for fossil fuels, geological storage of CO2, sources and disposal methods for nuclear energy fuels, sources and future for luxury goods such as gold and diamonds, and special, rare materials used in consumer electronics (e.g., "Coltan", mostly from Congo) and in newly emerging technologies such as superconducting magnets and rechargeable batteries (e.g., heavy rare earth elements, mostly from China). Guest lectures from economists, commodity traders and resource geologists will provide "real world" input. Discussion Section Required. CC/GS: Partial Fulfillment of Science Requirement.
Given in alternate years. Enrollment limited to 20. Priority based on seniority (graduate students, graduating seniors, etc.)
EESC W4630y Air-sea interaction 3 pts. Prerequisites: Solid background in mathematics,physics and chemistry. Some background in fluid mechanics (as in EESC W4925/APPH E4200)or instructor's permission. An overview of oceanic and atmospheric boundary layers including fluxes of momentum, heat, mass, (eg., moisture salt) and gases between the ocean and atmosphere; vertical distribution of energy sources and sinks at the interface including the importance of surface currents; forced upper ocean dynamics, the role of surface waves on the air-sea exchange processes and ocean mixed layer processes.
EESC W4701y Introduction to Igneous Petrology 4 pts.Not offered in 2014-2015. Prerequisites: introductory geology or the equivalent. Recommended preparation: EESC W4113 and knowledge of chemistry. Given in alternate years. Compositional characteristics of igneous and metamorphic rocks and how they can be used as tools to investigate earth processes. Development of igneous and metamorphic rocks in a plate-tectonic framework.
EESC W4835x Wetlands and Climate Change 3 pts.Not offered in 2014-2015. Prerequisites: introductory biology or chemistry, or instructor's permission. Given in alternate years. Enrollment limited to 20. Priority given to juniors and seniors. Analysis of modern wetland dynamics and the important ecological, biogeochemical, and hydrological functions taking place in marshes, bogs, fens, and swamps, with a field emphasis. Wetlands as fossil repositories, the paleoenvironmental history they provide, and their role in the carbon cycle. Current wetland destruction, remediation attempts, and valuation. Laboratory analysis and field trips.
EESC W4885y The Chemistry of Continental Waters 3 pts.Not offered in 2014-2015. Given in alternate years. Recommended preparation: a solid background in basic chemistry. Introduction to geochemical cycles involving the atmosphere, land, and biosphere; chemistry of precipitation, weathering reactions, rivers, lakes, estuaries, and groundwaters; students are introduced to the use of major and minor ions as tracers of chemical reactions and biological processes that regulate the chemical composition of continental waters.
EESC W4887x Isotope Geology I 3 pts. Given in alternate years. Prerequisites: Basic background in chemistry and physics. Introduction to nuclear and radiochemistry, origin of the chemical elements, principles of radiometric dating, processes responsible for the chemical makeup of the solar system and the Earth.
Given in alternate years.
EESC W4888y Isoptope Geology II 3-3 pts. Prerequisites: Introductory Chemistry and Earth Science coursework. Given in alternate years. This class will be an introduction to the field of stable isotope geochemistry and its application to environmental processes and problems. The utility of stable isotopes as tacers of environmental processes will be examined with respect to the disciplines of paleoclimatology, paleoceanography, hydrology and hydrogeology. We will focus on the light elements and stable isotopes of hydrogen, carbon, oxygen, nitrogen in water, carbonates and organic compounds and why they fractionate in the environment. Radiocarbon as a tracer and dating tool will alos be presented. The theoretical background for isotope fractionation will be discussed in class. The mechanics of how mass spectrometers analyze different isotope ratios will be explored during experiments in the laboratory at Lamont-Doherty. Additional key parts of the class will be a review of paper and student-lead reviews of published papers on relevant topics and a reveiw paper.
EESC W4917x Earth/Human Interactions 3 pts. Enrollment: limited to 20. Priority given to senior natural and social science majors, then graduate students. Based upon the most current understanding of our planet our interactions, and how we make decisions, a new knowledge-based "green" framework is developed for our relationship to our planet and to each other as well as its general implications for human stewardship of our planet. This new knowledge-based framework is explored using case studies, class participation, and term papers on specific current scientific and policy issues like global warming that impact the sustainability and resilience of our planet.
EESC W4920y Paleoceanography 3 pts.Not offered in 2014-2015. Given in alternate years. The course examines the ocean's response to external climatic forcing such as solar luminosity and changes in the Earth's orbit, and to internal influences such as atmospheric composition, using deep-sea sediments, corals, ice cores and other paleoceanographic archives. A rigorous analysis of the assumptions underlying the use of climate proxies and their interpretations will be presented. Particular emphasis will be placed on amplifiers of climate change during the alternating ice ages and interglacial intervals of the last few million years, such as natural variations in atmospheric "greenhouse gases" and changes in deep water formation rates, as well as mechanisms of rapid climate change during the late Pleistocene. The influence of changes in the Earth's radiation distribution and boundary conditions on the global ocean circulation, Asian monsoon system and El Nino/Southern Oscillation frequency and intensity, as well as interactions among these systems will be examined using proxy data and models. This course complements W4937 Cenozoic Paleoceanography and is intended as part of a sequence with W4330 Terrestrial Paleoclimate for students with interests in Paleoclimate.
Enrollment limit: 24. Priority given to graduate students and then graduating seniors.
EESC W4923y Biological Oceanography 3 pts. Prerequisites: Introductory college-level biology and chemistry. Given in alternate years. An overview of the biology and ecology of the oceans with a focus on the interaction between marine organisms and the physics and chemistry of the oceans.
EESC W4924y (Section 001) Introduction to Atmospheric Chemistry 3 pts. Prerequisites: Physics V1201, Chemistry C1403, Calculus III, or equivalent or permission from instructor. EESC V2100 preferred. Physical and chemical processes determining atmospheric composition and the implications for climate and regional air pollution. Atmospheric evolution and human influence; basics of greenhouse effect, photolysis, reaction kinetics; atmospheric transport of trace species; stratospheric ozone chemistry; tropospheric hydrocarbon chemistry; oxidizing power, nitrogen, oxygen, sulfur, carbon, mercury cycles; chemistry-climate-biosphere interactions; aerosols, smog, acid rain.
EESC W4925x Principles of Physical Oceanography 3 pts. Prerequisites: Recommended preparation: a solid background in mathematics, physics, and chemistry. Physical properties of seawater, water masses and their distribution, sea-air interaction influence on the ocean structure, basic ocean circulation pattern, relation of diffusion and advection with respect to distribution of ocean properties, ocean tides and waves, turbulence, and introduction to ocean dynamics.
EESC W4926y Principles of Chemical Oceanography 3 pts. Prerequisites: Instsructor's permission for students without one year of chemistry. Course open to undergraduates with one year of chemistry. Given in alternate years. Recommended preparation: a solid background in mathematics, physics, and chemistry. Factors controlling the concentration and distribution of dissolved chemical species within the sea. Application of tracer and natural radioisotope methods to large-scale mixing of the ocean, the geological record preserved in marine sediments, the role of ocean processes in the global carbon cycle, and biogeochemical processes influencing the distribution and fate of elements in the ocean.
EESC W4929y Mixing and Dispersion in the Ocean 3 pts.Not offered in 2014-2015. Prerequisites: Recommended preparation: some background in fluids, as provided by courses like EESC W4925 or APPH E4200, or the instructor's permission. Given in alternate years. Mixing and dispersion in the ocean is of fundamental importance in many oceanographic problems, including climate modeling, paleo and present-day circulation studies, pollutant dispersion, biogeography, etc. The main goal of this course is to provide in-depth understanding (rather than mathematical derivations) of the causes and consequences of mixing in the ocean, and of the properties of dispersion. After introducing the concepts of diffusion and turbulence, instruments and techniques for quantifying mixing and dispersion in the ocean are reviewed and compared. Next, the instabilities and processes giving rise to turbulence in the ocean are discussed. The course concludes with a series of lectures on mixing and dispersion in specific oceanographic settings, including boundary layers, shallow seas, continental shelves, sea straits, seamounts, and mid-ocean ridge flanks.
EESC W4930y Earth's Oceans and Atmosphere 3 pts. Prerequisites: Recommended preparation: a good background in the physical sciences. Physical properties of water and air. Overview of the stratification and circulation of Earth's ocean and atmosphere and their governing processes; ocean-atmosphere interaction; resultant climate system; natural and anthropogenic forced climate change.
Given in alternate years. Limited to 20 students with priority given to EESC (DEES) graduate students.
EESC W4937y Cenozoic Paleoceanography 3 pts. Prerequisites: College-level geology helpful but not required. Given in alternate years. Enrollment limit: 20; EESC graduate students have priority. Introduces the physical and chemical processes which govern how and where ocean sediments accumulate and examines major climate and oceanographic changes in the Cenozoic. Major topics addressed are: modes of biogenic, terrigenous, and authigenic sedimentation, depositional environments, pore fluids and sediment geochemistry, diagenesis, major events in Cenozoic paleoceanography, and sediment stratigraphic principles and methods.
Given in alternate years.
EESC W4947y Plate Tectonics 3 pts. Prerequisites: Course in solid earth geology or geophysics Prepares students for research and oral exams with cross-discliplinary analysis of the plate-tectonic cycle. Driving forces and mantle convection, plate kinematics, magmatism, structure, thermal and chemical evolutions of mid-ocean ridges and subduction zones, continental rifts and collisions, and hot spots. Includes literature readings of great debates, and emphasizes integration of geophysical, geological and geochemical observations and processes.
EESC W4949x Introduction to Seismology 3 pts. Prerequisites: Advanced calculus and general physics, or the instructor's permission Methods and underpinnings of seismology including seismogram analysis, elastic wave propogation theory, earthquake source characterization, instrumentation, inversion of seismic data to infer Earth structure.
Of Related Interest
Applied Physics and Applied Math
E4200 Physics of fluids
Civil Engineering and Engineering Mechanics
E3250 Hydrosystems engineering
Earth and Environmental Engineering (SEAS)
Environmental Science (Barnard)
BC3017 Environmental Data Analysis