ENVIRONMENTAL SCIENCE farmers, write short synthetic essays, and undertake a research project designed together with the class. By the end of the course students are able to: evaluate the importance of wheat and other temperate grains to the feeding of human populations in past, present and future contexts; review current and traditional methods of evaluation of food quality and grain processing (bread production in particular) and relate these to modern nutritional problems; describe the growth cycle of wheat in general terms and relate the production cycle to current issues of sustainability including greenhouse gas emissions, carbon sequestration, energy requirements, and soil conservation; and compare and contrast the socio-economic importance of wheat to Maine, Germany, and the United Kingdom. Prerequisites: formal application, signature of the instructor, introductory German highly desirable, and any of the following courses: Theory and Practice of Organic Gardening, Chemistry of Cooking, The Contemporary Culture of Maine Organic Farmers, or Agroecology.
& MATHEMATICS █ PHYSICS OF SUSTAINABLE ENERGY Anna Demeo & Dave Feldman Course limit: 20 Cost: $50 The aim of this course is to help students learn basic physics and quantitative and analytical skills so they can participate intelligently and responsibly in policy discussions, personal and community decisions, and ventures in the area of sustainable energy. We begin with basic physics, including: the definition of energy, the difference between energy and power, different forms of energy, and the first and second laws of thermodynamics. We provide students with basic scientific and economic introductions to alternative energy technologies. Along the way, students gain mathematical skills in estimation and dimensional analysis, and learn to use spreadsheets to assist in physical and financial calculations. A weekly lab helps students to understand the physical principles behind different energy technologies and gain experience gathering and analyzing data. Students who successfully complete this course are able to apply what they have learned to basic issues in sustainable energy. For example, they are able to evaluate and analyze a proposed technology improvement by considering its dollar cost, carbon reduction, return on investment, payback time, and how all this might depend on, for instance, interest rates or the cost of electricity or gasoline. Students are also able to analyze the potential of a technology or energy source to scale up. For example, they are able to consider not only the
benefits to a homeowner of a solar installation, but also analyze the degree to which solar power may contribute to Maine’s energy needs. This is a demanding, introductory, class. Evaluations are based on weekly problem sets, participation, and a final project. At least one college level class in mathematics or physical science is recommended. Prerequisites: permission of instructor.
█ PHYSICS I: MECHANICS & ENERGY Dave Feldman Course limit: 20 Cost: $15 This course is the first of a two-course sequence covering a range of standard introductory physics topics. The goals of the course are: to introduce students to important physical ideas both conceptually and mathematically; and to help students improve their quantitative skills. The first part of the course consists of a broad look at the three conservation laws: the conservation of momentum, energy, and angular momentum. Along the way, we learn about vectors, work, potential energy, thermal energy, and the energy stored in chemical bonds. We conclude with a treatment of Newton’s laws of motion. If time permits, we may cover some topics from chaotic dynamics. Evaluations are based on participation in class and lab, weekly homework, and two un-timed, open note exams. This course makes extensive use of algebra and trigonometry. Potentially difficult math topics will be reviewed as necessary. Prerequisites: Understanding Functions, a strong high school algebra background, or permission of the instructor.
█ PHYSICS II: INTRODUCTION TO CIRCUITS Anna Demeo Course limit: 15 Cost: $50 This course provides students with a broad introduction to circuits. Students with little or no previous knowledge in electronics learn fundamentals of circuits in both the analog and digital realm. The course covers topics such as current, voltage, power, resistors, capacitors, and digital logic circuits. This is a hands-on course focusing more on the “how to" than the “why.” By the end of the course students should be able to independently develop, implement, test, and document basic circuits. Evaluations are based on problem sets, participation in lab and class, and a final project or exam. This course makes extensive use of algebra. A college level math, physics, or chemistry class is recommended but not required. Prerequisites: high school algebra.
This is the College of the Atlantic Guidebook prospectus for 2014