2019 - 2020

  Geosciences Lab                                                                                      
Prof. Nili HarnikKaplun - Physics324Mon1200-1600 Sem  2
University credit hours:  4.0

Course description

The students will perform, in pairs, five experiments plus a summary lab, chosen for them from the list of labs below. Each lab will demonstrate a physical principle or phenomenon related to different topics in Earth sciences.


List of labs:


The balance of forces in a Hurricane

Convection (as in the boundary layer, clouds, the Earth's mantle, planets)

The general circulation of the atmosphere: the Hadley cell and mid latitude storms

Topographic planetary waves

Radiative transfer- Beer-Lambert law and Rayleigh scattering

Basic principles of remote sensing

Energy balance and climate of a planet

Cloud formation

Gravity currents‪, relevant to the flow of  ice sheets‪, lava‪, and more

Exoplanet detection

Remote sensing of asteroids


The students will use a variety of instruments, including Weather in a Tank (a rotating water tank), a spectrophotometer and resistance‪-based temperature sensors, as well as a variety of data acquisition and processing software, the main one of which is MATLAB

  The course has a detailed moodle web page which includes an instructions file foreach lab as well as general instructions and details aobut the summarizing lab‪. The instructions file includes background and the goals of each expriment‪. The detailed plannig and execution of the experiments will be done by the students‪, with guidance from the instructors‪.

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