Soil is a mixture of organic matter, gases and organisms that together support life. Earth's body of soil, called the pedosphere, has four important functions: as a medium for plant growth as a means of water storage and purification as a modifier of Earth's atmosphere as a habitat for organismsAll of these functions, in their turn, modify the soil; the pedosphere interfaces with the lithosphere, the hydrosphere, the atmosphere, the biosphere. The term pedolith, used to refer to the soil, translates to ground stone in the sense "fundamental stone". Soil consists of a solid phase of minerals and organic matter, as well as a porous phase that holds gases and water. Accordingly, soil scientists can envisage soils as a three-state system of solids and gases. Soil is a product of several factors: the influence of climate, relief and the soil's parent materials interacting over time, it continually undergoes development by way of numerous physical and biological processes, which include weathering with associated erosion.
Given its complexity and strong internal connectedness, soil ecologists regard soil as an ecosystem. Most soils have a dry bulk density between 1.1 and 1.6 g/cm3, while the soil particle density is much higher, in the range of 2.6 to 2.7 g/cm3. Little of the soil of planet Earth is older than the Pleistocene and none is older than the Cenozoic, although fossilized soils are preserved from as far back as the Archean. Soil science has two basic branches of study: pedology. Edaphology studies the influence of soils on living things. Pedology focuses on the formation and classification of soils in their natural environment. In engineering terms, soil is included in the broader concept of regolith, which includes other loose material that lies above the bedrock, as can be found on the Moon and on other celestial objects as well. Soil is commonly referred to as earth or dirt. Soil is a major component of the Earth's ecosystem; the world's ecosystems are impacted in far-reaching ways by the processes carried out in the soil, from ozone depletion and global warming to rainforest destruction and water pollution.
With respect to Earth's carbon cycle, soil is an important carbon reservoir, it is one of the most reactive to human disturbance and climate change. As the planet warms, it has been predicted that soils will add carbon dioxide to the atmosphere due to increased biological activity at higher temperatures, a positive feedback; this prediction has, been questioned on consideration of more recent knowledge on soil carbon turnover. Soil acts as an engineering medium, a habitat for soil organisms, a recycling system for nutrients and organic wastes, a regulator of water quality, a modifier of atmospheric composition, a medium for plant growth, making it a critically important provider of ecosystem services. Since soil has a tremendous range of available niches and habitats, it contains most of the Earth's genetic diversity. A gram of soil can contain billions of organisms, belonging to thousands of species microbial and in the main still unexplored. Soil has a mean prokaryotic density of 108 organisms per gram, whereas the ocean has no more than 107 procaryotic organisms per milliliter of seawater.
Organic carbon held in soil is returned to the atmosphere through the process of respiration carried out by heterotrophic organisms, but a substantial part is retained in the soil in the form of soil organic matter. Since plant roots need oxygen, ventilation is an important characteristic of soil; this ventilation can be accomplished via networks of interconnected soil pores, which absorb and hold rainwater making it available for uptake by plants. Since plants require a nearly continuous supply of water, but most regions receive sporadic rainfall, the water-holding capacity of soils is vital for plant survival. Soils can remove impurities, kill disease agents, degrade contaminants, this latter property being called natural attenuation. Soils maintain a net absorption of oxygen and methane and undergo a net release of carbon dioxide and nitrous oxide. Soils offer plants physical support, water, temperature moderation and protection from toxins. Soils provide available nutrients to plants and animals by converting dead organic matter into various nutrient forms.
A typical soil is about 50% solids, 50% voids of which half is occupied by water and half by gas. The percent soil mineral and organic content can be treated as a constant, while the percent soil water and gas content is considered variable whereby a rise in one is balanced by a reduction in the other; the pore space allows for the infiltration and movement of air and water, both of which are critical for life existing in soil. Compaction, a common problem with soils, reduces this space, preventing air and water from reaching plant roots and soil organisms. Given sufficient time, an undifferentiated soil will evolve a soil profile which consists of two or more layers, referred to as soil horizons, that differ in one or more properties such as in their texture, density, consistency, temperature and reactivity; the horizons differ in thickness and gene
Geological Survey of Norway
Geological Survey of Norway, abbr: NGU is a Norwegian government agency responsible for geologic mapping and research. The agency is located in Trondheim with about 200 employees, it is subordinate to the Norwegian Ministry of Trade and Fisheries. NGU's main work is related to collecting and impart knowledge related to the physical and mineralogical characteristics of the countries bedrock, mineral resources and groundwater. Important areas include the Arctic, Antarctica and the continental shelf. With the motto "Geology for the Society", NGU provides maps and geological information in national databases; the activity is organized after five key principles:1. Long-term value creation from geological resources 2. Increase use of geoscience knowledge in spatial planning and development 3. Enhanced knowledge of the country’s construction and geological processes 4. Good communication and customization of geological knowledge 5. Increased quality and efficiency through good interaction internally and externally The Geological Survey of Norway was established on 6 February 1858 by Order in Council.
A few years earlier, the geology student Theodor Kjerulf had submitted the idea of a Norwegian geological survey to the Norwegian interior ministry. The survey would serve to map the country´s agricultural areas and mineral deposits, as well as systematically study how the Norwegian landscape had been formed. In the mid-19th century Norway was modernizing by developing industry and knowledge, along with evolving cultural life. An institution such as a Norwegian geological survey would be "convenient, scientifically necessary and honorable for the nation"; the first years of its existence, mapping the bedrock, superficial deposits and mineral resources was its principal task, but it contributed to a Norwegian sense of ownership to the land, something, important around 1905, after the Union with Sweden was dissolved. The manager Theodor Kjerulf, his assistant, Tellef Dahll, shared the mapping of Norway, they purchased equipment, planned the work and trained their field assistants to carry out the surveys.
Manager Kjerulf along with Dahll and several assistants had, after about twenty years of work, completed three impressive sets of maps. Det sødenfjeldske in 1:400 000, Trondheim stift in 1:800 000 and Det nordlige Norge in 1:1 million; the maps and their descriptions gave new and valuable knowledge about the Norwegian landscape, showed that it was possible to combine the scientific and cultural ambitions Kjerulf had fronted when he set out to create the survey. There are five support divisions within the agency: Geological Mapping Solid Earth Geology Quaternary Geology Marine Geology Geochemistry and Hydrogeology Geohazard and Earth Observation Geological Resources and Environment Geophysics Natural Construction Materials Mineral resources NGU Laboratory Information and Communication Technology Geomatics and IT HR & Resource Management HR Accounting and Administration Communications and Public Relations Communication Official website
Snow refers to forms of ice crystals that precipitate from the atmosphere and undergo changes on the Earth's surface. It pertains to frozen crystalline water throughout its life cycle, starting when, under suitable conditions, the ice crystals form in the atmosphere, increase to millimeter size and accumulate on surfaces metamorphose in place, melt, slide or sublimate away. Snowstorms develop by feeding on sources of atmospheric moisture and cold air. Snowflakes nucleate around particles in the atmosphere by attracting supercooled water droplets, which freeze in hexagonal-shaped crystals. Snowflakes take on a variety of shapes, basic among these are platelets, needles and rime; as snow accumulates into a snowpack, it may blow into drifts. Over time, accumulated snow metamorphoses, by sintering and freeze-thaw. Where the climate is cold enough for year-to-year accumulation, a glacier may form. Otherwise, snow melts seasonally, causing runoff into streams and rivers and recharging groundwater. Major snow-prone areas include the polar regions, the upper half of the Northern Hemisphere and mountainous regions worldwide with sufficient moisture and cold temperatures.
In the Southern Hemisphere, snow is confined to mountainous areas, apart from Antarctica. Snow affects such human activities as transportation: creating the need for keeping roadways and windows clear. Snow affects ecosystems, as well, by providing an insulating layer during winter under which plants and animals are able to survive the cold. Snow develops in clouds; the physics of snow crystal development in clouds results from a complex set of variables that include moisture content and temperatures. The resulting shapes of the falling and fallen crystals can be classified into a number of basic shapes and combinations, thereof; some plate-like and stellar-shaped snowflakes can form under clear sky with a cold temperature inversion present. Snow clouds occur in the context of larger weather systems, the most important of, the low pressure area, which incorporate warm and cold fronts as part of their circulation. Two additional and locally productive sources of snow are lake-effect storms and elevation effects in mountains.
Mid-latitude cyclones are low pressure areas which are capable of producing anything from cloudiness and mild snow storms to heavy blizzards. During a hemisphere's fall and spring, the atmosphere over continents can be cold enough through the depth of the troposphere to cause snowfall. In the Northern Hemisphere, the northern side of the low pressure area produces the most snow. For the southern mid-latitudes, the side of a cyclone that produces the most snow is the southern side. A cold front, the leading edge of a cooler mass of air, can produce frontal snowsqualls—an intense frontal convective line, when temperature is near freezing at the surface; the strong convection that develops has enough moisture to produce whiteout conditions at places which line passes over as the wind causes intense blowing snow. This type of snowsquall lasts less than 30 minutes at any point along its path but the motion of the line can cover large distances. Frontal squalls may form a short distance ahead of the surface cold front or behind the cold front where there may be a deepening low pressure system or a series of trough lines which act similar to a traditional cold frontal passage.
In situations where squalls develop post-frontally it is not unusual to have two or three linear squall bands pass in rapid succession only separated by 25 miles with each passing the same point in 30 minutes apart. In cases where there is a large amount of vertical growth and mixing the squall may develop embedded cumulonimbus clouds resulting in lightning and thunder, dubbed thundersnow. A warm front can produce snow for a period, as warm, moist air overrides below-freezing air and creates precipitation at the boundary. Snow transitions to rain in the warm sector behind the front. Lake-effect snow is produced during cooler atmospheric conditions when a cold air mass moves across long expanses of warmer lake water, warming the lower layer of air which picks up water vapor from the lake, rises up through the colder air above, freezes and is deposited on the leeward shores; the same effect occurs over bodies of salt water, when it is termed ocean-effect or bay-effect snow. The effect is enhanced when the moving air mass is uplifted by the orographic influence of higher elevations on the downwind shores.
This uplifting can produce narrow but intense bands of precipitation, which deposit at a rate of many inches of snow each hour resulting in a large amount of total snowfall. The areas affected by lake-effect snow are called snowbelts; these include areas east of the Great Lakes, the west coasts of northern Japan, the Kamchatka Peninsula in Russia, areas near the Great Salt Lake, Black Sea, Caspian Sea, Baltic Sea, parts of the northern Atlantic Ocean. Orographic or relief snowfall is caused when masses of air pushed by wind are forced up the side of elevated land formations, such as large mountains; the lifting of air up the side of a mountain or range results in adiabatic cooling, condensation and precipitation. Moisture is removed by orographic lift, leaving drier, warmer air on the leeward side; the resulting enhanced productivity of snow fall and the decrease in temperature with elevation means that snow depth
Earth science or geoscience includes all fields of natural science related to the planet Earth. This is a branch of science dealing with the physical constitution of its atmosphere. Earth science is the study of our planet’s physical characteristics, from earthquakes to raindrops, floods to fossils. Earth science can be with a much older history. Earth science encompasses four main branches of study, the lithosphere, the hydrosphere, the atmosphere, the biosphere, each of, further broken down into more specialized fields. There are both holistic approaches to earth sciences, it is the study of Earth and its neighbors in space. Some earth scientists use their knowledge of the planet to locate and develop energy and mineral resources. Others study the impact of human activity on Earth's environment, design methods to protect the planet; some use their knowledge about earth processes such as volcanoes and hurricanes to plan communities that will not expose people to these dangerous events. The earth sciences can include the study of geology, the lithosphere, the large-scale structure of the earth's interior, as well as the atmosphere and biosphere.
Earth scientists use tools from geography, physics, chemistry and mathematics to build a quantitative understanding of how the earth works and evolves. Earth science affects our everyday lives. For example, meteorologists study the watch for dangerous storms. Hydrologists warn of floods. Seismologists try to predict where they will strike. Geologists study rocks and help to locate useful minerals. Earth scientists work in the field—perhaps climbing mountains, exploring the seabed, crawling through caves, or wading in swamps, they measure and collect samples they record their findings on charts and maps. The following fields of science are categorized within the earth sciences: Physical geography covers aspects of geomorphology, soil study, meteorology and biogeography. Geology describes the rocky parts of its historic development. Major subdisciplines are mineralogy and petrology, geomorphology, stratigraphy, structural geology, engineering geology, sedimentology. Geophysics and geodesy investigate the shape of the Earth, its reaction to forces and its magnetic and gravity fields.
Geophysicists explore the earth's core and mantle as well as the tectonic and seismic activity of the lithosphere. Geophysics is used to supplement the work of geologists in developing a comprehensive understanding of crustal geology in mineral and petroleum exploration. Seismologists use geophysics to understand plate tectonic shifting, as well as predict seismic activity. Soil science covers the outermost layer of the earth's crust, subject to soil formation processes. Major subdivisions in this field of study include pedology. Ecology covers the interactions between the flora; this field of study differentiates the study of Earth from the study of other planets in the Solar System, Earth being the only planet teeming with life. Hydrology and limnology are studies which focus on the movement and quality of the water and involves all the components of the hydrologic cycle on the Earth and its atmosphere. "Sub-disciplines of hydrology include hydrometeorology, surface water hydrology, watershed science, forest hydrology, water chemistry."
Glaciology covers the icy parts of the Earth. Atmospheric sciences cover the gaseous parts of the Earth between the exosphere. Major subdisciplines include meteorology, atmospheric chemistry, atmospheric physics. Plate tectonics, mountain ranges and earthquakes are geological phenomena that can be explained in terms of physical and chemical processes in the earth's crust. Beneath the Earth's crust lies the mantle, heated by the radioactive decay of heavy elements; the mantle is not quite solid and consists of magma, in a state of semi-perpetual convection. This convection process causes the lithospheric plates to move, albeit slowly; the resulting process is known as plate tectonics. Plate tectonics might be thought of as the process; as the result of seafloor spreading, new crust and lithosphere is created by the flow of magma from the mantle to the near surface, through fissures, where it cools and solidifies. Through subduction, oceanic crust and lithosphere returns to the convecting mantle. Areas of the crust where new crust is created are called divergent boundaries, those where it is brought back into the earth are convergent boundaries and those where plates slide past each other, but no new lithospheric material is created or destroyed, are referred to as transform boundaries Earthquakes result from the movement of the lithospheric plates, they occur near convergent boundaries where parts of the crust are forced into the earth as part of subduction.
Volcanoes result from the melting of subducted crust material. Crust material, forced into the asthenosphere melts, some portion of the melted material becomes light enough to rise to the surface—giving birth to volcanoes; the troposphere, mesosphere and exosphere are the five layers which make up Earth's atmosphere. 75 % of the gases in the atmosphere are located within the lowest layer. In all, the atmosphere is made up of about 78.0% nitrogen, 20.9% ox
University of Oslo
The University of Oslo, until 1939 named the Royal Frederick University, is the oldest university in Norway, located in the Norwegian capital of Oslo. Until 1 January 2016 it was the largest Norwegian institution of higher education in terms of size, now surpassed only by the Norwegian University of Science and Technology; the Academic Ranking of World Universities has ranked it the 58th best university in the world and the third best in the Nordic countries. In 2015, the Times Higher Education World University Rankings ranked it the 135th best university in the world and the seventh best in the Nordics. While in its 2016, Top 200 Rankings of European universities, the Times Higher Education listed the University of Oslo at 63rd, making it the highest ranked Norwegian university; the university has 27,700 students and employs around 6,000 people. Its faculties include Theology, Medicine, Mathematics, natural sciences, social sciences and Education; the university's original neoclassical campus is located in the centre of Oslo.
Most of the university's other faculties are located at the newer Blindern campus in the suburban West End. The Faculty of Medicine is split between several university hospitals in the Oslo area; the university was founded in 1811 and was modeled after the University of Copenhagen and the established University of Berlin. It was named for King Frederick VI of Denmark and Norway and received its current name in 1939; the university is informally known as Universitetet, having been the only university in Norway, until 1946 and was referred to as "The Royal Frederick's", prior to the name change. The Nobel Peace Prize was awarded in the university's Atrium, from 1947 to 1989, making it the only university in the world to be involved in awarding a Nobel Prize. Since 2003, the Abel Prize is awarded in the Atrium. Five researchers affiliated with the university have been Nobel laureates. In 1811, a decision was made to establish the first university in the Dano-Norwegian Union, after an agreement was reached with King Frederik VI, who had earlier believed that such an institution might encourage political separatist tendencies.
In 1813, The Royal Frederik's University was founded in a small city at that time. Circumstances changed one year into the commencement of the university, as Norway proclaimed independence. However, independence was somewhat restricted, as Norway was obliged to enter into a legislative union with Sweden based on the outcome of the War of 1814. Norway retained its own constitution and independent state institutions, although royal power and foreign affairs were shared with Sweden. At a time when Norwegians feared political domination by the Swedes, the new university became a key institution that contributed to Norwegian political and cultural independence; the main initial function of The Royal Frederick University was to educate a new class of upper-echelon civil servants, as well as parliamentary representatives and government ministers. The university became the centre for a survey of the country—a survey of culture, language and folk traditions; the staff of the university strove to undertake a wide range of tasks necessary for developing a modern society.
Throughout the 1800s, the university's academic disciplines became more specialised. One of the major changes in the university came during the 1870s when a greater emphasis was placed upon research, the management of the university became more professional, academic subjects were reformed, the forms of teaching evolved. Classical education came under increasing pressure; when the union with Sweden was dissolved in 1905, the university became important for producing educated experts in a society which placed increasing emphasis on ensuring that all its citizens enjoy a life of dignity and security. Education, health services and public administration were among those fields that recruited personnel from the university's graduates. Research changed qualitatively around the turn of the century as new methods, scientific theories and forms of practice changed the nature of research, it was decided that teachers should arrive at their posts as qualified academics and continue academic research alongside their role as teachers.
Scientific research—whether to launch or test out new theories, to innovate or to pave the way for discoveries across a wide range of disciplines—became part of the increased expectations placed on the university. Developments in society created a need for more and more specialised and practical knowledge, not competence in theology or law, for example; the university strove to meet these expectations through increasing academic specialisation. The position of rector was established by Parliament in 1905 following the Dissolution of the Union. Waldemar Christofer Brøgger became the university's first rector. Brøgger vacillated between a certain pessimism and a powerfully energetic attitude regarding how to procure finances for research and fulfill his more general funding objectives. With the establishment of the national research council after World War II, Brøgger's vision was fulfilled; this coincided with a massive rise in student enrollment during the 1960s, which again made it difficult to balance research with the demands for teaching.
In the years leading up to 1940, research was more linked with the growth of the nation, with progress an
Hydrogeology is the area of geology that deals with the distribution and movement of groundwater in the soil and rocks of the Earth's crust. The terms groundwater hydrology and hydrogeology are used interchangeably. Groundwater engineering, another name for hydrogeology, is a branch of engineering, concerned with groundwater movement and design of wells and drains; the main concerns in groundwater engineering include groundwater contamination, conservation of supplies, water quality. Wells are constructed for use in developing nations, as well as for use in developed nations in places which are not connected to a city water system. Wells must be designed and maintained to uphold the integrity of the aquifer, to prevent contaminants from reaching the groundwater. Controversy arises in the use of groundwater when its usage impacts surface water systems, or when human activity threatens the integrity of the local aquifer system. Hydrogeology is an interdisciplinary subject; the study of the interaction between groundwater movement and geology can be quite complex.
Groundwater does not always follow the surface topography. Taking into account the interplay of the different facets of a multi-component system requires knowledge in several diverse fields at both the experimental and theoretical levels; the following is a more traditional introduction to the methods and nomenclature of saturated subsurface hydrology. Hydrogeology, as stated above, is a branch of the earth sciences dealing with the flow of water through aquifers and other shallow porous media; the shallow flow of water in the subsurface is pertinent to the fields of soil science and civil engineering, as well as to hydrogeology. The general flow of fluids in deeper formations is a concern of geologists and petroleum geologists. Groundwater is a viscous fluid; the mathematical relationships used to describe the flow of water through porous media are the diffusion and Laplace equations, which have applications in many diverse fields. Steady groundwater flow has been simulated using electrical and heat conduction analogies.
Transient groundwater flow is analogous to the diffusion of heat in a solid, therefore some solutions to hydrological problems have been adapted from heat transfer literature. Traditionally, the movement of groundwater has been studied separately from surface water and the chemical and microbiological aspects of hydrogeology; as the field of hydrogeology matures, the strong interactions between groundwater, surface water, water chemistry, soil moisture and climate are becoming more clear. California and Washington both require special certification of hydrogeologists to offer professional services to the public. Twenty-nine states require professional licensing for geologists to offer their services to the public, which includes work within the domains of developing, and/or remediating groundwater resources. For example: aquifer drawdown or overdrafting and the pumping of fossil water may be a contributing factor to sea-level rise. One of the main tasks a hydrogeologist performs is the prediction of future behavior of an aquifer system, based on analysis of past and present observations.
Some hypothetical, but characteristic questions asked would be: Can the aquifer support another subdivision? Will the river dry up if the farmer doubles his irrigation? Did the chemicals from the dry cleaning facility travel through the aquifer to my well and make me sick? Will the plume of effluent leaving my neighbor's septic system flow to my drinking water well? Most of these questions can be addressed through simulation of the hydrologic system. Accurate simulation of the aquifer system requires knowledge of the aquifer properties and boundary conditions. Therefore, a common task of the hydrogeologist is determining aquifer properties using aquifer tests. In order to further characterize aquifers and aquitards some primary and derived physical properties are introduced below. Aquifers are broadly classified as being either confined or unconfined, either saturated or unsaturated. An aquifer is a collection of water underneath the surface, large enough to be useful in a spring or a well. Aquifers can be unconfined, where the top of the aquifer is defined by the water table, or confined, where the aquifer exists underneath a confining bed.
There are three aspects that control the nature of aquifers: stratigraphy and geological formations and deposits. The stratigraphy relates the geometry of the many formations that compose the aquifer; the lithology refers to the physical components of an aquifer, such as the mineral composition and grain size. The structural features are the elements t