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Tutor profile: Brianna H.

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Brianna H.
Geosciences Student at the University of Arizona
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Questions

Subject: Geology

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Question:

Can you use only color to identify a mineral? Why or why not?

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Brianna H.
Answer:

No, you cannot use only color to identify a mineral. As color is not a unique identifier for most minerals, other properties, such as streak, hardness, effervescence, and luster, must be utilized to properly identify a mineral.

Subject: Environmental Science

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Question:

What is a negative feedback loop? What is a positive feedback loop? Can you give an example of each?

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Brianna H.
Answer:

A negative feedback loop occurs when the product of an input in the system results in a lessening of that input. This sort of feedback loop is essential to keep environments in balance. For example, when too large of a population of wolves are introduced to an area, they eat a higher proportion of prey animals than is sustainable, so a number of the wolves die out due to starvation, decreasing their numbers. A positive feedback loop occurs when an input in a system results in an increase in that input. The albedo effect is an example of this. As the planet warms, more and more ice melts, leaving earth's surface less reflective and more absorbent of sunlight; as a result, the earth warms further.

Subject: Earth Science

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Question:

We know based off of the theory of plate tectonics that the Earth's plates are moving, and that at convergent plate boundaries, subduction zones may occur. What kinds of plates interact at subduction zones, and what happens to each of the plates?

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Brianna H.
Answer:

Subduction zones are where an oceanic crustal plate and a continental crustal plate collide. Because oceanic crust is denser than continental crust, it is subducted, or pushed underneath the continental crust. As the oceanic crust is pushed below the Earth's surface, it melts, forming magma. This magma may rise and form volcanoes on the overlying continental crust.

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