date_range Starts on January 30, 2020
event_note End date March 20, 2020
list 7 sequences
assignment Level : Intermediate
chat_bubble_outline Language : English
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Key Information

credit_card Free access
verified_user Fee-based Certificate
timer 7 hours in total

About the content

Chemistry, often referred to as the central science, concerns matter and the transformations it can undergo. While many aspects of chemistry can be applied to solving various problems relevant to our society, chemistry also offers a convenient framework to understand the complexity of the natural world surrounding us. The goal of this course is to apply chemical principles to understand the natural (non-living) world around us and appreciate its complexity.

The chemical principles usually covered in general chemistry, undergraduate inorganic chemistry, and physical chemistry enable us to examine many aspects of the Earth. We will look at the formation of the elements, and describe the reason for the different abundances, and what this means for the Earth’s composition. We will also look at how isotopes can be used as chemical tracers and “clocks”, leading us to insight on the various processes of the Earth, and even our own bodies. Finally, we will see how geochemistry can help us understand, or even combat the many environmental and technological problems that we face.What you’ll learn:

  • How the Earth’s elements are formed
  • What determines the elements’ abundances and distribution on Earth
  • How can we identify the climate millions of years ago
  • How to use isotopes to identify what we eat
  • How can we classify something as general as “rocks”, and explain the diversity
  • How geochemistry can help be applied to solve environmental/technological problems

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Prerequisite

Introductory physical chemistry and inorganic chemistry, some calculus

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Syllabus

Week 1: The formation and distribution of elements in space
  • Nucleosynthesis I
  • Nucleosynthesis II
  • The elements today: chondrites
Week 2: Mineralogy: Just a “rock”?
  • Silicate minerals
  • Igneous rocks
  • Metamorphic rocks
Week 3: Distribution of elements on Earth: Igneous processes
  • What’s a trace element?
  • Magma and melting
  • Melting and crystallization
Week 4: Where the fun begins: Radiogenic isotope chemistry
  • Dating methods
  • Tracing methods
Week 5: Stable isotope chemistry I (Basics)
  • Equilibrium fractionation processes, geothermometry
  • Kinetic fractionation processes, precipitation
  • Biological processes
Week 6: Stable isotopes II (Paleoclimatology)
  • Milankovitch cycles
  • Paleoclimatology and CO2 levels
Week 7: Geochemistry and our Future
  • Helium as a resource
  • Terraforming and CO2
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Instructors

Yoji Kobayashi
Associate Professor
Kyoto University

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Platform

Edx

Harvard University, the Massachusetts Institute of Technology, and the University of California, Berkeley, are just some of the schools that you have at your fingertips with EdX. Through massive open online courses (MOOCs) from the world's best universities, you can develop your knowledge in literature, math, history, food and nutrition, and more. These online classes are taught by highly-regarded experts in the field. If you take a class on computer science through Harvard, you may be taught by David J. Malan, a senior lecturer on computer science at Harvard University for the School of Engineering and Applied Sciences. But there's not just one professor - you have access to the entire teaching staff, allowing you to receive feedback on assignments straight from the experts. Pursue a Verified Certificate to document your achievements and use your coursework for job and school applications, promotions, and more. EdX also works with top universities to conduct research, allowing them to learn more about learning. Using their findings, edX is able to provide students with the best and most effective courses, constantly enhancing the student experience.

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