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Title: GG-105: An illustrated voyage through our Solar

GG-105 An illustrated voyage through our
Solar Fall, 2007 Professor Klaus Keil Office
hours in POST 509B Tuesdays and Thursdays, 1000
- 1100 a.m.
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Date Topic Text pages Homework set 5 pts. extra credit Homework due
Aug. 21 1. Introduction 36-47
Aug. 23 2. Course overview
Aug. 28 3 Facts and definitions 10-13
Aug. 30 4. The Sun, our star 20-27
Sept. 4 5. Thermonuclear energy other stars 20-27 Homework, classes 1-5
Sept. 6 6. Mercury, the dead planet 193-207
Sept. 11 7. Venus, the shrouded planet 208-234 Homework due
Sept. 13 8. Earth Climate earthquakes 127-151, 106-113
Sept. 18 9. Earth Plate tectonics volcanism 113-127, 53-62
Sept. 20 Examination 1
Sept. 25 10. Earth Impacts here-elsewhere 48-53, 410-429
Sept. 27 11. Earths Moon Its conquest 164-172
Oct. 2 12. Moon rocks, dust, and lunar meteorites 156-164, 172-176
Oct. 4 13. Moon Origin and evolution 177-192
Oct. 9 14. Mars Exploration by spacecraft 235-277 Homework, classes 6-14
Oct. 11 15. Mars and its landscape 257-271
Oct. 16 16. Martian rocks and meteorites 235-277 Homework due
Oct. 18 17. Is there life on Mars? 244-252, 263- 281
Oct. 23 18. Meteorites Poor mans space probe 384-409
Oct. 25 Examination 2 384-409
Oct. 30 19. Meteorites Composition, and asteroid connection 384-409
Nov. 1 20. Meteorites Fossils of the early Solar System 384-409
Nov. 8 21. Jupiter, the giant planet 286-299
Nov. 13 22. Jupiter and its moons 299-315 Homework, classes 15-22
Nov. 15 23. Saturn, the ringed planet, and its strange moons 316-336
Nov. 20 24. Uranus The first new world 337-357 Homework due
Nov. 27 25. Neptune and its moons 337-357
Nov. 29 26. Pluto, the mystery planet 30-34
Dec. 4 27. Comets 358-383 410-416
Dec. 6 28. The origin of the Solar System
Final examination December 13 1200 noon to 200 p.m., POST 723
  • Three written examinations of multiple choice
    questions will be given (for dates and topics,
    see class schedule), each worth 100 points. In
    terms of material covered, none of the
    examinations are cumulative, i.e., examination 1
    covers the material presented in class and the
    reading assignments in the text book from class
    1-9, examination 2 from class 10-18, and the
    final from class 19-28.
  • The final grade will be calculated based on the
    points achieved in the final examination, and the
    better of examinations 1 and 2 (since one of
    these examinations does not count toward the
    final grade, there will be no make-up of missed
  • There will be 3 voluntary homework assignments
    for extra credit, each worth 5 points. Since the
    final grade is based on a total of 200 points,
    the extra homework assignment can add a possible
    15 points to the final score.
  • The final course grade will be calculated as
  • A gt 180 points D gt 120 lt 140 points
  • B gt 160 lt 180 points F lt 120 points.
  • C gt 140 lt 160 points

  • The Cambridge Guide to the Solar System
  • By Kenneth R. Lang
  • Published by Cambridge University Press, June
  • ISBN139780521813068

Text book web site http//
Class web site http//
The new, close-up view from space Pages 36 - 47
  • Astronomical observations have been carried out
    for hundreds of years with telescopes of ever
    increasing magnification and different
  • The first spacecraft either crash-landed on the
    planets, or flew past the planets and their
    satellites, providing an initial reconnaissance.
  • This was followed by orbiting spacecraft that
    mapped out the global terrain, and took
    high-resolution images.
  • Some spacecraft have landed on the surface of
    Mars and Venus, plunged into the atmosphere of
    Jupiter, landed on Titan, and the asteroid Eros.
  • There have been six manned landings on the Moon
    between 1969 - 1972, returning 382 kilograms of
    rocks for examination in terrestrial
  • There have been detailed laboratory studies by
    many sophisticated analytical techniques of
    returned lunar samples, and asteroidal, lunar and
    Martian meteorites

Percival Lowell 1855 - 1916
The mystical canali (canals) on Mars
The Hubble Space Telescope
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Sputnik 1 Soviets first into space, October
4th, 1957
58 cm in diameter
The Ranger program to explore the Moon, 1961 -
The Ranger spacecraft approaching the Moon.
Important result The craters on the Moon are
not of volcanic, but of impact origin!
The last images obtained before the Ranger
spacecraft crushed into the Moon. These small
craters a few cm across must be of impact origin!
Unmanned Lunar Surveyor Moon landers, 1966 - 1968
US manned landings on the Moon Apollo 11, 12,
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Study with sophisticated analytical techniques in
terrestrial laboratories of lunar rocks and
soil returned to earth by the Apollo astronauts
provided revolutionary insight into the origin
and evolution of the Moon
Thin section photomicrograph in transmitted
polarized light of a lunar basalt, showing a
large, zoned pyroxene (Fe-Mg-silicate) crystal
Mariner 4 Fly-by of Mars July 14, 1965
Viking Landers on Mars, survived from 1976 - 1981
Mars Pathfinder 1997 The rover Sojourner
analyzing a rock.
The Mars Exploration Rovers, Spirit and
Opportunity, launched in the summer of 2003,
landed in January, 2004, and are still running!
Track of the Mars Exploration Rover, Spirit, from
Lander to Crater Bonneville
Voyager Spacecraft, explored Jupiter, Saturn,
Uranus and Neptune
Voyager missions to Outer Solar System 1977 - 1989
Voyager 1 View of Jupiter and 2 of its moons
Galileo Mission to Jupiter 1989 - 2001
Soviet Venera Landers on Venus, 1975 - 1981
Magellan orbiter mission to Venus 1990 - 1994,
imaging entire planet by radar
The NEAR spacecraft explored the asteroid Eros
and landed on it on February 12th, 2001
Landing site
GOES spacecraft orbiting and exploring Earth
GOES Geostationary views of the Earth February
4th, 2004
Visible light
Thermal infrared
Space Shuttle and International Space Station
Research objects and research goals The origin
of stars, planets and the Solar System
  • Research objects
  • Meteorites, other extraterrestrial rocks,
    presolar grains, IDPs, cometary particles
  • Chondrite SiC Mauna Kea Observatories
  • Research goals Tackle fundamental scientific
    problems in cosmochemistry focus on
    inter-diciplinary research develop new
    analytical tools has strong, long-term NASA
  • Raw materials for making stars and planets
    Presolar grains and stellar nucleosynthesis
  • Astrophysical setting(s) of formation of stars
    and the Sun What was the source of the last
    addition of short-lived radionuclides to the
    forming Solar System?
  • Timescales for formation of stars and the Solar
    System How old is the Solar System, and how long
    did it take to form?
  • Origin of stars and planets Where did Earths
    water come from?
  • Sample return missions Stardust Mission to
    comet Wild 2
  • Extraterrestrial rocks Origin and evolution of
    asteroids, Moon and Mars

Analytical instruments
Scanning electron microscope
Electron microprobe
Petrographic microscope
Raman confocal microscope
The center piece of the W.M. Keck Cosmochemistry
Laboratory The Cameca 1280 Secondary Ion Mass
Spectrometer (SIMS Ion Microprobe)
Comet Wild 2 imaged by Stardust spacecraft in
Sample return missions Stardust mission to
comet Wild 2
The ion microprobe and the transmission electron
microscope are the most important instruments for
the study and analysis of star dust
Stardust Mission to comet Wild 2 Successful
Earth landing on January 15, 2006
Entrance into Earths atmosphere
Simulierte Kometenteilchen in Aerogel
Simulated cometary particles lt 10 µm in diameter
impacted into aerogel. Many µ-sized cometary
grains broke into many smaller particles some
were heated during impact and may have been
Space capsule in the Utah desert and in the NASA
Johnson Space Center