Ess Study Guide

Topics: World population, Population, Soil Pages: 38 (10307 words) Published: September 10, 2013
1.1.1 Outline the concepts and characteristics of a system
* Storages of matter or energy
* Flows: inputs into the system and outputs from the system * Processes which transfer or transform energy or matter
* System: An assemblage of parts and the relationships between them which together constitutes an entity or whole. They always must contain energy, matter, and information. * Feedback mechanisms that maintain feedback and equilibrium * Ex. Photosynthesis: Transforms carbon dioxide, water, and light into biomass and oxygen * Ex. Respiration: Transforms Biomass into Carbon dioxide and water * Ex. Diffusion: Allowing the movement of nutrients and water into the trees * Ex. Consumption: Transferring tissue from one trophic level to another 1.1.2 Apply the systems concept on a range of scales * Ecosystem: Biologic community of interdependent organisms in the physical environment they inhabit * Gaia hypothesis: The Earth is a single living organism in which feedback mechanisms maintain equilibrium. * Ex. Population/energy of a vegetable garden

* Ex. Population/energy of a tropical rainforest
* Ex. Feedback, waste, and population of Gaia as a whole 1.1.3 Define the terms open system, closed system, and isolated system * Open system: Exchanges in matter and energy
* Ex. Forest, Most common
* Closed system: Exchanges energy but not matter with its surroundings * Ex. Fish tank, the Earth
* An Isolated system: Exchanges neither energy or matter with its surroundings * Ex: The Universe
1.1.4 Describe how the first and second laws of thermodynamics are relevant to environmental systems * First Law: Energy is neither created or destroyed, but it can change forms * Second Law: In any isolated system, Entropy tends to increase spontaneously * Entropy: A measure of the amount of disorder, chaos, or randomness in a system. The greater the disorder, the higher the level of entropy. #Energyisneededtocreateorder 1.1.5 Explain the nature of equilibria

* Equilibrium: The tenancy of a system to return to an original state following a disturbance. At equilibrium, a state of balance exists among the components of a system. There may be fluctuations but no sudden changes. * Steady State: continuous inputs and outputs, but the system remains constant. * Ex. Body Mass

* Static State: There is no change over time. The static equilibrium can change * Ex. The location of a rock
* Stable Equilibrium: Tends to return to the same state after a disturbance * Unstable Equilibrium: Does not tend to return to the same state after a disturbance 1.1.6 Define and explain the principles of positive feedback and negative feedback * Negative: Self-regulating method of control leading to the maintenance of a steady state equilibrium. * Ex. Thermostat

* Positive: Leads to an additional increasing change in a system. It accelerates deviation. * Ex. Greenhouse gasses leading to higher temperatures, leading to melting of permafrost, leading to more gasses 1.1.7 Describe transfer and transformation processes * Transfer: Movement of matter or energy through a system that does not involve a change of form or state. * Transformation: Movement of matter or energy through a system that does involve a change of form or state. * Both types of movement use energy. Transfers require less energy and are more efficient than transformations. * Transfers normally flow through a system and involve a change in location. * Transformations either lead to an interaction within a system, the formation of a new end product, or they involve a change of state. * Ex. Transfers: Movement of material through living organisms, Movement of material in a nonliving process, Movement of energy. * Ex. Transformations: Matter Transformations, energy...
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