Eas 56100/eas b1400– Geophysics Spring Semester, 2018 Designation

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EAS 56100/EAS B1400– Geophysics

Spring Semester, 2018

Designation: EAS 56100 is an elective course for Geology, ESE, and EESS majors. EAS B1400 is an elective course for EAS graduate students.
Course Description:

This course covers the physical principles that govern the behavior and techniques used to infer the earth’s internal structure, composition, and mineral resources. It provides earth scientists and engineers with the techniques to determine earth structures, locate environmental pollutants, and prospect for natural resources from remote locations. Topics include: Seismology, geodesy, gravity, and magnetic and thermal properties of the earth.

Course Structure: This three-credit course has two 75-minute lectures per week.
Textbook: Mussett, A.E., and Khan, M.A., Looking into the Earth: An Introduction to Geological Geophysics, Cambridge University Press, 2000. ISBN # 052178574X
Supplementary Texts:

Fowler, C.M.R., The Solid Earth: An Introduction to Global Geophysics, First Edition, Cambridge University Press, 1990. ISBN # 0-521-38590-6.

(On reserve at CCNY Science Library, Call # QC806.F625/1990)
Possibly others on reserve at the Science Library or on Blackboard
Course Objectives:

After taking this course, students will be able to:

1. Describe the basis for measuring earthquake magnitude and earthquake focal mechanisms.

2. Describe the way in which data from earthquakes can be used to identify explosions and determine the interior structure of the earth.

3. Interpret reflection seismic data

4. Describe the factors influencing the earth’s gravity field.

5. Describe the earth’s magnetic field and its effects.

6. Describe applications of gravity and magnetic data.

7. Describe the way in which geophysical measurements are made in boreholes.

8. Describe the way in which geophysics is used in oil exploration and in environmental studies.

Instructor: Prof. Patricia Kenyon, Earth and Atmospheric Sciences Dept.

Office: J-933; Phone: (212) 650-6472

Office hours: the half hour after class, W, 2:00-4:00 PM, or by


Grading: There will be two in-class exams, a final, and between 6 and 8 problem sets. These will count toward your final grade as follows:
Exams 40%

Problem Sets 40%

Final 20%

Exams will consist primarily of short answer and minor essay questions. Exams, including the final, will not be cumulative. No exam grades will be dropped. Makeup exams will be given only with a major, documented excuse.

Problem sets will usually involve mathematical calculations or analysis of sample situations. Problem sets will include a basic set of problems for all students, plus additional problems at the end that are required for graduate students. Undergraduate students may do the grad student problems for extra credit.
Attendance: Attendance will be taken and is mandatory at all lectures. If you miss a lecture, please get the notes from another student. If you miss more than 4 lecture classes, I reserve the right to assign you a grade of WU.
Electronic Devices: Cell phones must be turned off or set on vibrate during lectures. During exams, all electronic devices except your calculator, when needed, must be silenced and remain in your purse or pack.
Getting Help: Brief questions during lecture are permitted and encouraged. If you are lost, please ask; you may not be the only one in that position. For more extensive help with course content, you are encouraged to see Prof. Kenyon, either by appointment or during her regular office hours.
Academic Integrity:

The CCNY policy on academic integrity will be followed in this course. A document describing this policy can be found on the CCNY website at the following URL: www.ccny.cuny.edu/about/integrity.cfm. All students must read the details regarding plagiarism and cheating in order to be familiar with the rules of the college. Cases where academic integrity is compromised will be prosecuted according to these rules.


EAS 56100/B1400 - Spring, 2018






Seismic wave propagation


Earthquake magnitudes and depths


Focal-plane solutions for earthquakes


Structure of the earth’s interior


Slow earthquakes and other recent research


Introduction to seismic surveying


Seismic reflection data acquisition and reduction


Interpretation of seismic reflection data




Applications of seismic reflection data


The earth’s shape and gravity field


Isostasy and the geoid


Gravity anomalies and surveying


Analysis of gravity data


Applications and recent developments in gravity surveying


Principles of magnetism


Earth’s magnetic field and paleomagnetism




Magnetic surveying


Applications of magnetic data


Heat flow in the earth


Borehole geophysics I


Borehole geophysics II


Electrical properties and surveying


Electromagnetic properties and surveying


The use of geophysics in energy prospecting


Environmental and engineering applications of geophysics

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