Undergraduate Course: Global Geophysics (EASC10037)
Course Outline
School  School of Geosciences 
College  College of Science and Engineering 
Credit level (Normal year taken)  SCQF Level 10 (Year 4 Undergraduate) 
Availability  Available to all students 
SCQF Credits  10 
ECTS Credits  5 
Summary  The course introduces students to the threedimensional structure of the Earth, some of the processes taking place in the Earth¿s interior, geophysical methods that can be used to investigate them, and some current controversies.
Topics covered include the following.
1. Potential theory.
2. Gravity anomalies and the geoid.
3. Core dynamics.
4. Coremantle boundary.
5. Mantle rheology.
6. The deep interior of the Earth.
7. The Oceanic lithosphere.
8. The Continental lithosphere.

Course description 
Potential Theory
Laplace¿s equation in spherical polar and cylindrical coordinates; properties, examples and geometry of spherical harmonics; McCullagh's formula.
Gravity Anomalies and the Geoid
Theory and concepts of the reference potential, the reference surface and normal gravity; the anomalous potential, gravity anomalies and the geoid; temporal variability of J2; International Gravity Formulae.
Mantle Rheology and Structure
Deformation mechanisms; direct evidence; laboratory experiments; numerical experiments; mantle tomography.
Coremantle Boundary
Thermal and compositional structure of D''; the postperovskite phase; coremantle coupling, lengthofday changes.
Core Dynamics
NavierStokes equation; nondimensional numbers; torsional osciallations and waves in the core; core oscillations and nutations; inner core superrotation.
Continental Lithosphere
Evidence from geophysical data (gravity, seismology, magnetics, heat flow, electromagnetics); receiver functions; thickness and seismic velocity structure; rheology.
Oceanic Lithosphere
Typical structure; midocean ridges; transform faults; oceanic plateaux and large igneous provinces; passive continental margins; subduction zones and volcanic arcs; subducting plates.

Information for Visiting Students
Prerequisites  None 
High Demand Course? 
Yes 
Course Delivery Information

Academic year 2015/16, Available to all students (SV1)

Quota: None 
Course Start 
Semester 2 
Timetable 
Timetable 
Learning and Teaching activities (Further Info) 
Total Hours:
100
(
Lecture Hours 10,
Seminar/Tutorial Hours 3,
Supervised Practical/Workshop/Studio Hours 3,
Feedback/Feedforward Hours 2,
Summative Assessment Hours 2,
Programme Level Learning and Teaching Hours 2,
Directed Learning and Independent Learning Hours
78 )

Assessment (Further Info) 
Written Exam
80 %,
Coursework
20 %,
Practical Exam
0 %

Additional Information (Assessment) 
Written Exam: 80%, Course Work: 20 %, Practical Exam: 0%.
Exam has a section of compulsory shorter questions, and then a choice of one out of two longer questions. 10% of the course work mark is from the assessed group presentation; the other 10% is from an essay.

Feedback 
Students will make a nonassessed group presentation, in the same groups as their assessed presentation later in the semester, where they get feedback, from staff and fellow students. Students can hand in the problem sheet for written feedback; the problems are discussed in dedicated tutorials. 
Exam Information 
Exam Diet 
Paper Name 
Hours & Minutes 

Main Exam Diet S2 (April/May)  Global Geophysics  1:30  
Learning Outcomes
On completion of this course, the student will be able to:
 An integrated, detailed knowledge of Global Geophysics, especially the threedimensional structure of the Earth and how it is determined. Part of the material is highly mathematical, whilst other parts are based on physical understanding.
 A detailed understanding of the topics covered in the course, some of which gained through the requisite reading and seminar presentations on recent, forefront developments.
 Ability to offer professional level insights into the subject.
 Mathematical competence in the relevant areas
 Ability to review critically and consolidate knowledge in the relevant areas

Reading List
Potential Theory in Gravity and Magnetic Applications, Blakely, R., C.U.P.
Theory of the Earth, Don Anderson, Blackwell Science Inc., 1989.
Introduction to Seismology, Peter M. Shearer, Cambridge University Press, 1999.
The Earth's Mantle, Ian Jackson (ed), Cambridge University Press, 2000.
The Earth¿s Core, J.A. Jacobs, Academic Press, 1987.
Geodynamics, Donald L. Turcotte and Gerald Schubert, Cambridge University Press, 2002 (2nd Edition)
The Solid Earth: An Introduction to Global Geophysics, C.M.R. Fowler, C.U.P.

Additional Information
Graduate Attributes and Skills 
Not entered 
Additional Class Delivery Information 
Lectures on Tuesdays and Thursdays at 10:0010:50, Weeks 111. 
Keywords  Global_Geophysics 
Contacts
Course organiser  Prof Kathy Whaler
Tel: (0131 6)50 4904
Email: Kathy.Whaler@ed.ac.uk 
Course secretary  Ms Casey Hollway
Tel: (0131 6)50 8510
Email: Casey.Hollway@ed.ac.uk 

