Earth Materials and Internal Processes

Department of Earth Sciences, School of Geography, Earth and Environmental Sciences

College of Life and Environmental Sciences


Code 23324

Level of study First Year

Credit value 20

Semester Across both

Module description

Geochemistry of planet Earth, solar and meteorite studies and composition of the primitive solar nebula. Mineral structure and composition with particular reference to the main rock-forming mineral groups. X-ray diffraction studies of minerals. Magmas: origins and mechanisms of production in various global tectonic settings.  Magma ascent, and processes operating in magma chambers.  Fractional crystallization.  Emplacement of magmas at high crustal levels and the extrusion of volcanic material.  Major and trace element geochemistry; the use of one- and two-component phase diagrams in understanding magma origins and evolution; applications of radiogenic isotopes.  Identification of rocks and minerals in hand specimen. Introduction to the use of the petrological microscope.

Teaching and learning methods

Lectures and practical classes