Topic 8 - The hydrosphere

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Abstraction
The removal of water from the location where it was found.
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Aerobic
A process or organism that does require oxygen.
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Anaerobic
A process or organism that does not require oxygen.
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Anomalous expansion
Unusual expansion, usually applied to water, which expands as it is cooled below 4°C.
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Aquifer
An underground rock structure from which water is abstracted.
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Catchment area
The area of land that collects water, which will flow down to the lowest point, e.g. a river, lake, aquifer or the sea.
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Coliform count
A measure of sewage pollution based in the presence of the faecal bacterium E. coli.
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Evaporation
The change of water from liquid to gas as hydrogen bonds are broken.
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Groundwater flow
The movement of water through the pore spaces and fissure in permeable rocks.
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Hydrogen bond
The weak electrostatic bond formed between water molecules, which gives water a high boiling point.
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Infiltration
The process by which surface water enters the ground between the particles of soil or rock.
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Interception
Precipitation that does not reach the ground because it lands on vegetation.
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Irrigation
Artificial watering or plants, especially crops.
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Osmosis
The diffusion of water through a partially permeable membrane from an area of high water potential to an area of low water potential.
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Osmotic dehydration
The loss of water, especially from crop roots, caused by the low water potential of soils with a high salt content.
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Pathogen
An organism that causes disease.
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Percolation
The movement of water between the particles of soil or rock.
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Permeability
A measure of the rate at which a fluid, such as water, can flow through rock.
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Porosity
A measure of the percentage of the volume of a rock that is space.
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Potable
Water that is suitable for drinking.
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Precipitation
Condensation of atmospheric water vapour that reaches the Earth’s surface in any liquid or solid form.
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Reservoir
The general name for a storage location for any material, e.g. nitrogen, crude oil, water, iron etc. The term is also used for the stored water retained by a dam.
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Residence time
The average length of time that a molecule remains in a reservoir.
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River channel discharge
The volume of water flowing past a particular point on a river and is a product of cross sectional area and mean water velocity.
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Subsidence
The collapse of the ground surface caused by undermining or a reduction in aquifer rock volume following the over-abstraction of water.
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Throughflow
The sideways movement of water in the ground.
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Topography
The 3D shape of the landscape.
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Transfer rate
The volume of material moved from on reservoir to another.
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Transpiration
The loss of water by evaporation from the stomata of leaves.
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TSS/Total suspended solids
The total amount of organic and inorganic material suspended in a volume of water.
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Other cards in this set

Card 2

Front

A process or organism that does require oxygen.

Back

Aerobic

Card 3

Front

A process or organism that does not require oxygen.

Back

Preview of the back of card 3

Card 4

Front

Unusual expansion, usually applied to water, which expands as it is cooled below 4°C.

Back

Preview of the back of card 4

Card 5

Front

An underground rock structure from which water is abstracted.

Back

Preview of the back of card 5
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