The objective of this course is to provide an overview for senior undergraduates and graduates interested in how the Earth’s surface environment evolves and how life regulates and adaptes to these environmental changes during the first 3 billion years of Earth. Coverage of the course includes:
2. Origin of Earth
3. Impact processes on early Earth
4. Archaean geodynamics and the thermal evolution of Earth
5. Antiquties of the ocean and continent
6. First appearance of water
7. When did life emerge?
8. Evidence for the earliest life (I): Fossil record
9. Evidence for the earliest life (II): Geochemical signatures
10. Early atmosphere and ocean (I): Geochemical proxy
11. Early atmosphere and ocean (II): The rise of atmosphieric oxygen
12. Snowball Earth
13. Banded Iron formation
14. Modern analogs from hydrothermal vents and hypersaline microbial mats
15. Coevolution of life and Earth
16. Are we alone in the universe?
Elements (special issue about the Early Earth), 2006, edited by J. W. Valley, 256p.
Archean Geodynamics and Environments, edited by K. Benn, J.-C. Mareschal, and K. Condie, Geophysical Monograph Series, Volume 164, 320p.
Biodiversity of microbial life, editors: Staley, J. T. and Reysenbach, A.-L., John Wiley & Sons, 552p.
Evolution of Early Earth Atmosphere, Hydrosphere, and Biosphereonstraints from Ore Deposits, edited by S. E. Kesler and H. Ohmoto, 331p.
Participation 40%, presentation 30% and homework 30%