2022 Advanced Earth and Space Sciences D

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Academic unit or major
Graduate major in Earth and Planetary Sciences
Yokoyama Tetsuya 
Class Format
Lecture    (HyFlex)
Media-enhanced courses
Day/Period(Room No.)
Mon5-6(理学院 地球惑星科学系, 石川台2号館, 307室)  Thr5-6(理学院 地球惑星科学系, 石川台2号館, 307室)  
Course number
Academic year
Offered quarter
Syllabus updated
Lecture notes updated
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Course description and aims

This course focuses on geochemical application of radiogenic isotopes by following the textbook "Geochemistry" by W. White. The basic knowledge about radiogenic isotopes will be given in the first seven classes. In the second half of the course, students will make presentations regarding the topics below;
1) Classical but essential tracers (Sr, Nd, Pb)
2) K-Ar and Ar-Ar dating
3) Rare gas geochemistry
4) Non traditional isotopes

Student learning outcomes

At the end of this course, students will be able to understand:
1) principles for radioactive decay and the origin of isotopes
2) geochemical applications of radiogenic isotopes
3) dating of earth's materials
4) geochemical evolution of mantle and crust


Radiogenic isotopes, Mantle, Crust, Chemical evolution, Chronology

Competencies that will be developed

Specialist skills Intercultural skills Communication skills Critical thinking skills Practical and/or problem-solving skills

Class flow

Before coming to class, students should read the course schedule and prepare for the topics with handouts and references.

Course schedule/Required learning

  Course schedule Required learning
Class 1 Structure of nuclei Understanding of elemental particles
Class 2 Origin of elements Understanding of stellar nucleosynthesis
Class 3 Stability of nuclei Understanding of binding energy and Weizsäcker's formula
Class 4 Radioactive decay Understanding of the styles and equation of radioacitive decay
Class 5 Basic geochronology Understanding of principle for radiometric dating method using long-lived and short-lived nuclids
Class 6 Presentation 1 (Rb-Sr system) Understanding of Rb-Sr radiometric dating and its application
Class 7 Presentation 2 (Rb-Sr system) Understanding of Sm-Nd radiometric dating and its application
Class 8 Presentation 3 (U-Th-Pb system) Understanding of U-Th-Pb radiometric dating and its application
Class 9 Presentation 4 (rare gas isotopes) Understanding of rare gas geochemistry
Class 10 Presentation 5 (Re-Os system) Understanding of Re-Os radiometric dating and its application
Class 11 Presentation 6 (14C dating) Understanding of 14C radiometric dating and its application
Class 12 Presentation 7 (geochemical evolution of continental crust) Understnding of the chemical and isotopic evolution of continental crust
Class 13 Presentation 8 (geochemical evolution of mantle) Understnding of the chemical and isotopic evolution of mantle
Class 14 Presentation 9 (geochemical evolution of subduction zone) Understnding of the chemical and isotopic evolution of subduction zone

Out-of-Class Study Time (Preparation and Review)

To enhance effective learning, students are encouraged to spend approximately 100 minutes preparing for class and another 100 minutes reviewing class content afterwards (including assignments) for each class.
They should do so by referring to textbooks and other course material.


W.M. White "Geochemistry" Wiley-Blackwell

Reference books, course materials, etc.

Handouts will be provided during the class

Assessment criteria and methods

Students will be assessed on their understanding of the geochemical application of radiogenic isotopes.
Students' course scores are based on discussion during the class (30%) and group presentation (70%).

Related courses

  • EPS.A330 : Geochemistry and Cosmochemistry
  • EPS.A201 : Introduction to Material Sciences of Earth and Planet
  • LAS.A101 : Earth and Space Sciences A
  • LAS.A102 : Earth and Space Sciences B

Prerequisites (i.e., required knowledge, skills, courses, etc.)

No prerequisites

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