Acknowledgements

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4.1 Introduction

In the theory of plate tectonics there are three main types of plate boundary, namely: constructive, destructive and conservative plate boundaries.

Figure 5
Figure
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3.1 Comments and explanations

Read the following comments and explanations before answering the questions in Section 3.2.

  • As is the convention for satellites, the Moon's rotation period is defined in the Planetary facts table relative to the planet that it orbits rather than relative to the universe as a whole. This is a
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2.5 The interior

David A. Rothery Teach Yourself Planets, Chapter 6, pp. 66–75, Hodder Education, 2000, 2003.

Copyright © David Rothery

The Moon is the only planetary body other than the Earth for which we have any seismic data that can tell us about its interior. Seismic stations were established at the Apollo 12,14, 15 and 16 sites, which continued to send back data until September 1977 when operations were terminated for budgetary reasons. The Moon is seismically very qu
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2.5 What is water made of?

The size of a water droplet may seem very small but in terms of the scale of scientific measurement it is relatively large. You already know that water is made up of molecules so now consider a water droplet more closely to see what water molecules are made up of. If you could magnify a water droplet until it no longer has a smooth surface, you would see something similar to that shown in Author(s): The Open University

2.2 Going up: using scientific notation for large numbers

Think again about the value for the total volume of water stored on Earth: 1460 000 000 km3.

When dealing with large numbers such as one thousand four hundred and sixty million (1460 000 000), it is tedious to write the number in words or to keep writing all of those zeros. Worse still, it is very easy to lose some of the zeros or add extra ones by mistake. Fortunately, large numbers can be referred to without having to write out all of the zeros. The powers of ten not
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2.4 From phoneme to meaning: the semantic problem

For a vervet monkey, once an alarm call has been assigned to the correct phonological class – leopard, snake or eagle – then the task is straightforward indeed. Each of these sound patterns is connected in long-term memory to some ‘prototype’ of the predator in question, including what it looks like, what it does and so on. The eagle call always means eagle, whatever the context. The activation of the brain trace for the eagle call invariably activates the
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9 Sedimentation at the end of the Caledonian Orgeny; Section 10 Legacy

The document attached below includes the ninth and tenth sections of Mountain building in Scotland, as well as the index. In these sections, you will find the following subsections:

  • 9.1 Introduction

  • 9.2 The Old Red Sandstone and the Devonian Period

  • 9.3 Distribution and stratigraphy of the Late Silurian to Devonian Basins

  • 9.4 Sedimentation and tectonics in the Midland Valley

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8 Multiple plate collisions and the end of the Iapetus Ocean

The document attached below includes the eighth section of Mountain building in Scotland. In this section, you will find the following subsections:

  • 8.1 Introduction

  • 8.2 Palaeocontinental reconstructions

    • 8.2.1 The global view

    • 8.2.2 A model for the closure of the Iapetus Ocean

    • 8.2.3 Summary of Section 8.2

  • 8.3 Tectonics of the Northe
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7 Sedimentation and tectonics at a mid-Ordovician to Silurian active margin

The document attached below includes the seventh section of Mountain building in Scotland. In this section, you will find the following subsections:

  • 7.1 Introduction

  • 7.2 Mid-Ordovician to Silurian sedimentation in the Midland Valley Terrane

    • 7.2.1 Ordivician sedimentation

    • 7.2.2 Silurian sedimentiation

    • 7.2.3 Summary of Section 7.2

  • 7
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11.2 Frequency discrimination

Some findings indicate that, for moderate loudness levels, humans can detect a frequency change of about 1 to 3 Hz for frequencies up to about 1000 Hz. Figure 37 shows a plot of the smallest frequency difference for which two tones can be discriminated for a number of reference tones. You can see from the figure that up to about 1000 Hz, the D
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Learning outcomes

By the end of this unit you should be able to:

  • distinguish between the major anatomical components of the outer, middle and inner ear;

  • describe the function of the outer, middle and inner ear;

  • describe the structure of the cochlea;

  • describe the structural arrangements of the organ of Corti and the function of the basilar membrane;

  • explain the difference between the four coding mechanisms used in order to transmit inform
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References

Barrow, J (1988) The World Within the World, Oxford.
Berkson, W. (1974) Fields of Force, RKP.
Cassidy, D.C., (1992) Uncertainty, New York.
Cohen, I.B., (1987) The Birth of a New Physics, Penguin.
Einstein, A et al. (1952) The Principle of Relativity, New Y
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4 Suggestions for further reading

If you wish to pursue some of the topics discussed in this unit in greater detail you might like to start with one or another of the following works.

General

John D. Barrow (1988), The World Within the World, Oxford.

Richard P. Feynman (1992), The Character of Physical Law, Penguin Books.

Brian Greene (1999), The Elegant Universe, W. W. Norton.

Werner Heisenberg (1990), Physics and Philosophy, Penguin Books.

Jan Hilgevoor
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2.6.1 Unit summary

  1. Laws summarise regularities observed in Nature. They can summarise large numbers of similar phenomena and make it possible to predict the course of particular phenomena.

  2. In physics, many of the laws are expressed mathematically and concern measurable quantities. This aids precision and clarity, and it supports rational argument.

  3. Newtonian mechanics is based on equations (Newton's laws of motion, Newton's law of universal gr
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Richard Feynman

Richard P. Feynman (1918–1988)

Figure 36
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2.5 The uncertain Universe

Despite the impact of relativity, the greatest source of change in the scientific world-view in the twentieth century has undoubtedly been the development of quantum physics. This is the branch of physics that is mainly concerned with microscopic entities such as atoms and molecules, and their constituents. It is by far the most quantitatively accurate part of science, routinely providing predictions that are correct to just a few parts in a million. Quantum physics is also of enormous
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2.3.2 Equilibrium and irreversibility

As the science of thermodynamics developed beyond its industrial roots, two powerful ideas came to the fore – equilibrium and irreversibility. These ideas were already implicit in studies of heat. You have already seen that heat flow from a hot steak to a cold plate is an irreversible process. The effect of this process is to cool down the hot steak and warm up the cold plate, leading to a more uniform distribution of temperature. The heat transfer continues until a state of e
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2.2.1 Mechanics and determinism

It is probably fair to say that no single individual has had a greater influence on the scientific view of the world than Isaac Newton. The main reason for Newton's prominence was his own intrinsic genius, but another important factor was the particular state of knowledge when he was, in his own phrase, ‘in the prime of my age for invention’.

In 1543, a century before Newton's birth. Nicolaus Copernicus launched a scientific revolution by rejecting the prevailing Earth-centred view
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4.7 Safety assessment today

At the time of writing (2006), the descriptions of safety assessment for GM crops and derived products are far more rigorous than the vague prescriptions offered in the early 1990s (see Figure 2). This might be seen as an inevitable development as scientific knowledge increases and technology improves. However, that would only be part of the story. A fully rounded appraisal of the evolution of safety assessment in this field would have to acknowledge the huge part that both the direct critici
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