UPSC IAS Prelims 2017 Important Questions on Geography (Expected)

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UPSC IAS Prelims 2017 Important Questions on Geography (Expected)

UPSC IAS Prelims 2017 Important Questions: The most competitive civil services recruitment paper, UPSC IAS Civil Services Exam is just a few months away. It is regarded as one of the most challenging papers of the country. Millions of aspirants appear for the Civil Services Examination every year. As of now, IAS Prelims 2017 is scheduled on 18th June, 2017.

Most candidates have already started preparing for the preliminary examination and here is our take on UPSC IAS Prelims 2017 Important Questions on Geography. To facilitate your exam preparation for UPSC IAS Recruitment, here are some of the most essential questions from Geography section.

 

UPSC IAS Prelims 2017 Important Questions on Geography (Expected)

Here’s a list of important questions from Geography which can be expected in the actual paper that can help UPSC IAS aspirants to score more in the Prelims:

Geography Question for IAS Preliminary examination

Q 1. Which of the following conditions are suitable for the formation of dew?

  1. Cloudy sky

  2. Cold and long nights

  3. Calm air

  4. High relative humidity

Select the correct answer using the codes given below.

(a) 1, 2 and 3 only

(b) 3 and 4 only

(c) 1, 2 and 4 only

(d) 2, 3 and 4 only

Ans. d

Explanation:  Dew is the condensation phenomenon observed when the skies are clear and not cloudy hence option 1 is wrong. The rest of the conditions like cold air and long nights, calm air in the environment and high relative density aid the formation of dew.

Q.2 which of the following is/are the terrigenous ocean deposits which are derived mainly from the land?

  1. Muds

  2. Oozes

  3. Red Clays

Select the correct answer using the code given below.

(a) 1 only

(b) 1 and 2 only

(c) 1 and 3 only

(d) 2 and 3 only

Ans. a

Explanation:  

  • Terrigenous ocean deposits are derived mainly from the land. Among the given deposits, only muds are classified as terrigenous deposits. Muds are terrigenous deposits found mainly in the continental shelf and not in slopes, and are classified into blue, green and red (not yellow) according to their chemical composition.
  • Option 2 is incorrect as oozes are pelagic deposits formed by deposition of dead bodies of orgnaisms found in the oceans.
  • Option 3 is incorrect as the red clays are found in the deeper parts of the Ocean floors. They are formed from volcanic dust blown out from volcanoes during volcanic eruptions.

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Q.3 Consider the following statements:

  1. The main constituents of Granitic rocks are Silica and Magnesium.

  2. Oceanic floors are mainly made up of Basaltic rocks.

Which of the statements given above is/are correct?

(a) 1 only

(b) 2 only

(c) Both 1 and 2

(d) Neither 1 nor 2

Ans. b

  • Statement 1 is incorrect – Granite rocks are made up of silica and alumina and it is collectively referred to as Sial.
  • Statement 2 is correct – Ocean floors are made up of Basaltic rock, it comprises mainly silica and magnesium. Hence it is referred to as SiMa.

Q.4.  Arrange the following elements in decreasing order of their weight in composition of earth’s crust.

  1. Silicon

  2. Oxygen

  3. Iron

  4. Aluminium

Select the answer using the code given below.

(a) 1-2-3-4

(b) 2-1-3-4

(c) 2-1-4-3

(d) 1-2-4-3

Ans. C

Explanation: The Major Elements of the Earth’s crust:

Elements By Weight (%)

  1. Oxygen 46.60
  2. Silicon 27.72
  3. Aluminium 8.13
  4. Iron 5.00
  5. Calcium 3.63

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Q.5. Consider the following statements with regard to Tundra type of climate:

  1. It is found north of the Arctic circle in the northern hemisphere.

  2. Rainfall is cyclonic and not convectional.

  3. Mosses and lichens are the natural vegetation of this region.

Which of the statements given above is/ are correct?

(a) 1 and 3 only

(b) 1 only

(c) 2 and 3 only

(d) 1, 2 and 3

Ans. d

Explanation:

  • Statement 1 is correct. Tundra climate is found mainly north of the Arctic Circle in the northern hemisphere. It has long severe winters and cool and short summers.
  • Statement 2 is also correct. No convectional rainfall occurs in this region because of low rate of evaporation and lack of moisture in the air. Cyclonic rainfall takes place. Most of the rainfall takes place in summer days. In the coastal areas, where cyclones are strongly felt, most of the rain falls in winter.
  • Statement 3 is also correct. Due to extremely harsh climatic conditions, hardly any vegetation can survive in this region. There are no trees in Tundra because of very short growing season and very low temperature whole the year round. Mosses, lichens and sedges grow here. In coastal lowlands, some hardy grasses grow.

Q.6 Which among the following are the reasons for unequal distribution of temperature across the surface of ocean?

  1. Distance from the Equator

  2. Distance from the land

  3. Prevailing winds

  4. Oceanic Currents

Select the correct answer using the code given below.

(a) 1 and 3 only

(b) 2 and 4 only

(c) 1, 3 and 4 only

(d) 1, 2, 3 and 4

Ans. d

Explanation:

  • Statement 1 is correct: If the ocean is nearby equator, its surface waters will be warmer compared to that of surface waters near by Polar Regions. This is because of incoming solar radiations.
  • Statement 2 is correct: The ocean/sea nearby land receives more heat due to their contact with land, hence oceans in the northern hemisphere are warmer compared to that of southern hemisphere.
  • Statement 3 is correct: Off-shore winds drive away warm surface waters from the coast, resulting in upwelling, whereas onshore winds pile up warm water near the coast, which raises the temperature.
  • Statement 4 is correct: Warm ocean currents raise the temperature in the cold areas while the cold currents decrease the temperature in warm ocean areas.

Q.7. Which of the following are the useful applications of tides?

  1. Navigation

  2. Desilting of sediments from river estuaries

  3. Generation of electricity

Select the correct answer using the code given below.

(a) 1 and 2 only

(b) 2 and 3 only

(c) 1 and 3 only

(d) 1, 2 and 3

Ans.  d

Explanation:

  • Since tides are caused by the earth-moon-sun positions which are known accurately, the tides can be predicted well in advance. This helps the navigators and fishermen plan their activities. Tidal flows are of great importance in navigation.
  • Tides are helpful in desilting the sediments and in removing polluted water from river estuaries.
  • Electricity generation is well known and a lot of tidal power plants are at work.

Q.8. Sumatra Island is in which country?

(a) Malaysia

(b) Indonesia 

(c) Oman

(d) Srilanka

Answer. A

Q.9. Which of the following statements is/are correct regarding the composition of  Atmosphere?

  1. Oxygen is present only in the troposphere.

  2. Carbon dioxide is the most abundant gas after Nitrogen and Oxygen.

  3. Higher composition of dust particles is found in sub-tropical regions when compared to tropical regions.

Select the correct answer using the code given below.

(a) 1 and 3 only

(b) 2 only

(c) 1 and 2 only

(d) 3 only

Ans. d

Explanation:

  • Statement 1 is incorrect: Oxygen is present in small amounts till 120 Km height of the atmosphere. Troposphere is the lowermost layer of atmosphere present upto average height of 13 Km.
  • Statement 2 is incorrect: Composition of Atmosphere is as follows:

Nitrogen 78.08

Oxygen 20.95

Argon 0.93

Carbon Dioxide 0.036

Neon 0.002

  • Hence it’s the Argon and not Carbon dioxide which is abundant gas after Nitrogen and Oxygen.
  • Statement 3 is correct: The higher concentration of dust particles is found in subtropical and temperate region due to dry winds in comparison to equatorial and polar region which have humidity in winds.

Q.10. Consider the following pairs:

 Landforms Agent

  1. Playas Glacier

  2. Mushroom Rocks Wind

  3. Stalacites Groundwater

Which of the pairs given above are correctly matched?

(a) 1 and 2 only

(b) 1 and 3 only

(c) 2 and 3 only

(d) 1, 2 and 3

Ans. C

Explanation:

  • Pair 1 is incorrectly matched. Playas are erosional landforms created by winds. Plains are by far the most prominent landforms in the deserts. In basins with mountains and hills around and along, the drainage is towards the centre of the basin and due to gradual deposition of sediment from basin margins, a nearly level plain forms at the centre of the basin. In times of sufficient water, this plain is covered up by a shallow water body. Such types of shallow lakes are called as playas where water is retained only for short duration due to evaporation and quite often the playas contain good deposition of salts.
  • Pair 2 is correctly matched. Many rock-outcrops in the deserts, easily susceptible to wind deflation and abrasion, are worn out quickly leaving some remnants of resistant rocks polished beautifully in the shape of mushroom with a slender stalk and a broad and rounded pear shaped cap above.
  • Pair 3 is correctly matched. Stalactites are depositional landforms by groundwater. Stalactites hang as icicles of different diameters. Normally they are broad at their bases and taper towards the free ends showing up in a variety of forms.

Q.11. With reference to the characteristics of hot deserts, consider the following statements:

  1. Most of the hot deserts lie between 150 and 300 parallels of latitude in both the hemispheres.

  2. They lies in the western parts of continents where trade winds are off shore.

  3. They are under the influence of cold ocean currents.

Which of the statements given above is/are correct?

(a) 1 only

(b) 1 and 3 only

(c) 2 and 3 only

(d) 1, 2 and 3

Ans. d

Explanation:

  • Statement 1 is correct, almost all deserts lies in between 15o and 30o parallels of latitude north and south of the equator. barring few deserts which are mid latitude deserts rest all are trade wind deserts or tropical hot deserts.
  • Statement 2 is correct, they lie in the trade wind belt on the western parts of continents. Here trade winds are offshore bringing literally no rainfall causing dryness.
  • Statement 3 is correct, cold currents produces desicating effect resulting into less precipitation as moisture is not easily condensed.

Q.12. Which among the following factors control the formation of soils?

  1. Parent rock

  2. Topography

  3. Frequency of precipitation

  4. Duration of precipitation

Select the correct answer using the code given below.

(a) 1, 2 and 3 only

(b) 1, 3 and 4 only

(c) 2 and 4 only

(d) 1, 2, 3 and 4

Ans. d

Explanation:

Five basic factors control the formation of soils:

  • parent material;
  • topography;
  • climate;
  • biological activity;
  • time

In fact soil forming factors act in union and affect the action of one another.

The climatic elements involved in soil development are:

  • moisture in terms of its intensity, frequency and duration of precipitation – evaporation and humidity;
  • Temperature in terms of seasonal and diurnal variations.

Q.13. Which of the following is/are correct regarding intrusive volcanic landforms?

  1. Batholith is a large body of magmatic material cooled in deep depths in the form of large domes.

  2. Wall like structure almost perpendicular to the ground is called Sill or Sheet.

  3. Near Horizontal body of intrusive igneous rock is called Dyke.

Select the correct answer using the code given below.

(a) 1 and 2 only

(b) 1 only

(c) 2 and 3 only

(d) 1 and 3 only

Ans. b

Explanation:

  • Statement 1 is correct: When a large body of magmatic material is cooled in the deeper depths of earth and develops in form of large domes it is called Batholith. These are granitic bodies and appear on surface after denudational processes remove the overlying materials
  • Statement 2 is incorrect: Wall like structure that are almost perpendicular to surface are called Dykes
  • Statement 3 is incorrect: Horizontal body of igneous rocks are called Sill/sheet.

Q.14. As we go up in the mountains, one find it difficult to breathe. Which of the following is the reason behind?

(a) With decrease in temperature, air becomes denser at higher latitudes.

(b) The air becomes thinner at higher altitudes.

(c) The air pressure is low at higher altitudes.

(d) Both (b) and (c)

Ans. d

Explanation:  Atmosphere exists in layer around the earth. Due to stratification and gravity, the density of air decrease as we go up in the mountains. Air becomes thinner at higher latitudes and therefor one find it difficult to breathe as one goes up. This is because of low pressure i.e. lesser air pressing down from above.

Q.15. Consider the following pairs:

Parameter Measured by Instrument

  1. Wind direction: Anemometer

  2. Wind speed: Wind vane

  3. Relative Humidity: Hygrometer

Which of the pairs given above is/are correctly matched?

(a) 1 and 2 only

(b) 2 and 3 only

(c) 1 and 3 only

(d) 3 only

Ans. d

Explanation:  

  • Pair 1 is incorrect: Wind direction is measured by Wind vane or weather clock.
  • Pair 2 is incorrect: Wind speed is measured by Anemomenter.
  • Pair 3 is correct: Relative Humidity is measure by Hygrometer.

Q.16. Which of the following statements is/are correct with regard to earthquake waves?

  1. P waves can travel through solid, liquid and gaseous materials.

  2. S waves can travel only through liquid material.

  3. Velocity of P waves increases at it enters from denser to rarer medium.

Select the correct answer using the code given below.

(a) 1 only

(b) 3 only

(c) 1 and 2 only

(d) 1, 2 and 3

Ans. a

Explanation:  

  • Statement 1 is correct as P wave are like Sound waves and can travel in all the three mediums of solid, liquid and gas.
  • Statement 2 is not correct as S waves can only travel in solid medium and cannot travel in liquid and gaseous medium.
  • Statement 3 is incorrect. Velocity of P waves is in proportional to density of medium and hence it decreases as it enters from denser to rarer medium or solid to liquid medium.

Q.17 Consider the following statements regarding heating of Earth’s atmosphere:

  1. Atmosphere gets heated through convection till the Troposphere.

  2. Atmosphere gets heated by short wave terrestrial radiation.

  3. Heating of atmosphere through conduction is limited to only lower layers of atmosphere.

Which of the statements given above is/are correct?

(a) 1 and 3 only

(b) 2 only

(c) 1 and 2 only

(d) 3 only

Ans. A

Explanation:

  • Statement 1 is correct: The air in contact with the earth rises vertically on heating in the form of currents and this Process of vertical heating of the atmosphere is called Convection. This convective transfer of energy is confined only to the troposphere (lowermost layer of atmosphere).
  • Statement 2 is incorrect: Air gets heated from Long wave terrestrial radiation and not from short wave radiation.
  • Statement 3 is correct: When two objects of dissimilar temperature come in contact, heat transfer take through process of conduction. When atmosphere comes in contact of heated earth surface then conduction starts but it is important in heating only lower layers of atmosphere.

Q.18. Consider the following statements:

  1. Terrestrial planets are much larger than the Jovian planets.

  2. Jovian planets have relatively high densities.

  3. Terrestrial planets have higher gravity than Jovian planets.

Which of the statement given above is/are correct?

(a) 1 and 3 only

(b) 2 only

(c) 1, 2 and 3

(d) None

Ans. d

Explanation:

  • Out of the nine planets, mercury, venus, earth and mars are called Terrestrial, meaning earth-like as they are made up of rock and metals, and have relatively high densities. The rest five are called Jovianor Gas Giant planets.
  • Jovian planets are much larger than the Terrestrial planets. So statement 1 is incorrect.
  • Terrestrial planets have relatively high densities than Jovian planets. So statement 2 is also incorrect.
  • Terrestrial planets have lower gravity than Jovian planets. So statement 3 is also incorrect.

Q.19. Consider the following statements:

  1. Places at different latitudes will have different time.

  2. Countries with smaller north –south extent are bound to have single time zone.

Which of the statements given above is/are correct?

(a) 1 only

(b) 2 only

(c) Both 1 and 2

(d) Neither 1 nor 2

Ans. d

Explanation:

  • Statement 1 is incorrect. Latitude has no effect on time. It is the longitude which affects time. Places at different longitudes will have different time.
  • Statement 2 is incorrect. It is the east-west extent which decides the number of time zones, not the northsouth extent. Countries with smaller north-south extent and larger east-west extent can have more than single time zones.

Q.20. Which of the following statements is/are correct regarding Earthquakes?

  1. The point where energy is released during earthquake is called Hypocentre.

  2. All the earthquakes take place in Aesthenosphere.

Select the correct answer using the code given below.

(a) 1 only

(b) 2 only

(c) Both 1 and 2

(d) Neither 1 nor 2

Ans. a

  • Statement 1 is correct: as the Point where energy is released is called Focus or hypocentre.
  • Statement 2 is not correct: All natural Earthquakes takes place in Lithosphere which is earth crust and uppermost solid part of mantle and not Aesthenosphere.

Q.21. On the surface of earth, we do not experience strong upward winds because:

(a) the vertical pressure gradient force of air is balanced by the frictional force.

(b) there is no rapid change in atmospheric pressure vertically.

(c) the vertical pressure gradient force of air is balanced by the opposite gravitational force.

(d) the air near the surface having more water molecules is heavy to move upward.

Ans. c

Explanation:

  • Statement a is incorrect:  The vertical pressure gradient force is not balanced by the frictional force.
  • Statement b is incorrect: In the lower atmosphere the pressure decreases rapidly with height. The decrease amounts to about 1 mb for each 10 m increase in elevation.
  • Statement c is correct: The vertical pressure gradient force is balanced by nearly equal gravitational force which is exerted downward in opposite direction to that of air movement.
  • Statement d is incorrect: It is not necessary that the air present at the surface has more water molecules.

The air is denser because of gravity and so has high pressure. Perhaps we should remember that air moves from high pressure area to low pressure area.

Q.22. Identify the ocean current based on the following characteristics.

  1. It is formed by the eastward deflection of Gulf Stream.

  2. Canaries current, a cold current along the Iberian Coast is formed because of it.

  3. It helps in moderating the climate of Europe.

Select the correct answer using the code given below.

(a) Benguela current

(b) Labrador current

(c) North Atlantic Drift

(d) Kuroshio current

Ans. c

Explanation: The above all are statements related to the North Atlantic Drift. The eastward deflection of the Gulf Stream under the influence of westerlies and Coriolis takes it to the west Europe coast. It branches out in three directions, along the Arctic, eastwards towards the Britain and southwards towards the Iberian coast in the form of Canaries Current. It carries warm waters to the west coast of Europe and helps in moderating the Climate.

Q.23. Bars, Barriers and Spits are:

(a) Erosional landforms created by sea waves.

(b) Depositional landforms along the coasts.

(c) Erosional features made by glaciers.

(d) Despositional features in deserts.

Ans. b

Explanation:

  • Bars, Barriers and Spits are depositional landforms.
  • A ridge of sand and shingle formed in the sea in the off-shore zone (from the position of low tide waterline to seaward) lying approximately parallel to the coast is called an off-shore bar. An off-shore bar which is exposed due to further addition of sand is termed a barrier bar.
  • The off-shore bars and barriers commonly form across the mouth of a river or at the entrance of a bay. Sometimes such barrier bars get keyed up to one end of the bay when they are called spits.

Q.24. Consider the following statements regarding the Continental Shelves:

  1. These are extended margins of oceanic crust.

  2. There is uniformity in the width of continental shelves of the every ocean.

  3. The sedimentary deposits found here are sources of fossil fuels.

Which of the statements given above is/are correct?

(a) 1 only

(b) 2 and 3 only

(c) 3 only

(d) 1, 2 and 3

Ans. c

Explanation:

  • Statement 1 is incorrect: Continental shelves are extended margins of continental crust. Continental shelf, Continental slope and Continental rise, are part of continental margin.
  • Statement 2 is incorrect: Width of the continental shelves vary from one ocean to another. These are almost absent or very narrow along margins like coasts of Chile, West coast of Sumatra, whereas Siberian shelf in the Arctic Ocean, the largest in the world, stretches to 1,500 km in width.
  • Statement 3 is correct. Due to large amount of sedimentary deposits, continental shelves are the sources of marine fossil fuels like petroleum.

Q.25. With reference to Coriolis force, which of the following statements is/are correct?

  1. The magnitude of Coriolis force is directly proportional to the wind speed.

  2. The Coriolis force is maximum at the equator.

  3. The Coriolis force will vanish if the earth stops rotating around its axis.

Select the correct answer using the code given below.

(a) 1 and 2 only

(b) 3 only

(c) 1 and 3 only

(d) 1, 2 and 3

Ans. b

Explanation:

  • Statement 1 is incorrect: Coriolis force is caused because of the rotation of the earth around its axis. Its magnitude does not depend on the wind speed. However the deflection of wind due to Coriolis force is more if the wind velocity is high.
  • Statement 2 is correct: At the equator, the Coriolis force is zero and it is maximum at poles.
  • Statement 3 is correct: Coriolis force is generated due to the rotation of the earth about its axis. It affects the direction of the winds. So when earth stops rotating about its axis then the Coriolis force will vanish.

Q.26. Venus is considered as ‘Earth’s twin’ because:

(a) its period of revolution is same as that of Earth.

(b) it has abundant amount of water.

(c) it has approximately same size, mass and density as that of Earth.

(d) it completes one rotation on its axis in 24 hours.

Ans. c

Explanation: Venus is often considered as ‘Earth’s twin’ because of its close proximity in size, mass (weight) and density. No other planet is as similar to the Earth as Venus.

 

  1. Arrange the following ocean relief features in the correct sequence of occurrence from land to ocean basin.

(a) Continental Shelf-Continental Rise- Continental Slope-Abyssal Plain

(b) Abyssal Plain-Continental Shelf- Continental Rise-Continental Slope

(c) Continental Shelf-Abyssal Plain- Continental Slope-Continental Rise

(d) Continental Shelf-Continental Slope- Continental Rise-Abyssal Plain

Ans. d

Explanation: The correct order is:

Continental Shelf-Continental Slope-Continental Rise-Abyssal Plain.

Continental Margins form the transition between continental shores and deep-sea basins. They include continental shelf, continental slope, continental rise and deep-oceanic trenches. The Abyssal plains are extensive plains that lie between the continental margins and mid-oceanic ridges. The abyssal plains are the areas where the continental sediments that move beyond the margins get deposited.

Q.28. The effectiveness of any Green House Gas (GHG) molecules depends on which of the following factors?

  1. Magnitude of its concentration

  2. Its lifetime in the atmosphere

  3. Wavelength of the radiation it absorbs

Select the correct answer using the code given below.

(a) 1 and 2 only

(b) 1 and 3 only

(c) 2 and 3 only

(d) 1, 2 and 3

Ans. d

Explanation: The effectiveness of any GHG molecule depends upon 3 factors:

  • Magnitude of its concentration.
  • Its lifetime in the atmosphere, that is, the duration for which it stays in the atmosphere.
  • Wavelength of the radiation it absorbs.

Q.29. Which of the following are the effects of ocean currents?

  1. Arid areas in the west coasts of the continents in tropical and subtropical latitudes.

  2. Narrow annual range of temperature in the mid and high latitude on the western coast

  3. Replenishment of oxygen and the growth of planktons.

Select the correct answer using the codes given below.

(a) 1 and 2 only

(b) 1 and 3 only

(c) 2 and 3 only

(d) 1, 2 and 3

Ans. d

Explanation:

  • Statement 1 is correct. West coasts of the continents in tropical and subtropical latitudes (except close to the equator) are bordered by cool waters. Their average temperatures are relatively low with narrow diurnal and annual ranges. Fog will be there, but generally the areas are arid.
  • Statement 2 is correct. West coasts of the continents in the middle and higher latitudes are bordered by warm waters which cause a distinct marine climate. They are characterized by cool summers and relatively mild winters with a narrow annual range of temperatures.
  • Statement 3 is also correct. The mixing of warm and cold currents help to replenish the oxygen and favour the growth of planktons, the primary food for fish population. The best fishing grounds of the world exist mainly in these mixing zones.

Q.30. With reference to a particular region, consider the following statements:

  1. The temperature of the region is uniformly high.

  2. Annual range of temperature is very small.

  3. Rainfall occurs in every month of the year.

The above statements describe which one of the following types of climate?

(a) Tropical Monsoon climate

(b) Tropical wet and dry climate

(c) Tropical wet climate

(d) Humid subtropical climate

Ans. c

Explanation:

  • Option (a) is incorrect. In Tropical Monsoon Climate, rainfall occurs mostly in summer. Winter is dry.
  • Option (b) is incorrect. In Tropical wet and dry regions, the wet season is shorter and dry season is longer.
  • Option (c) is correct. In Tropical wet climate, Rainfall occurs throughout the year, the annual range of temperature is negligible and there is uniformly high temperature as they lie in the equatorial region.
  • Option (d) is incorrect. In humid sub-tropical climate, although rainfall occurs throughout the year, the annual range of temperature is not very small. However, the daily range of temperature is small.

Q.31. Which of the following processes is/are associated with physical weathering?

  1. Frost wedging

  2. Salt weathering

  3. Temperature changes and expansion

Select the correct answer using the code given below.

(a) 1 only

(b) 2 and 3 only

(c) 1 and 3 only

(d) 1, 2 and 3

Ans. d

Explanation:

Option 1 is correct: Freezing, thawing and frost wedging results in physical weathering as it results in periodic expansion and contraction of the rocks. Frost weathering occurs due to growth of ice within pores and cracks of rocks during repeated cycles of freezing and melting. This process is most effective at high elevations in mid-latitudes where freezing and melting is often repeated. Glacial areas are subject to frost wedging daily. In this process, the rate of freezing is important. Rapid freezing of water causes its sudden expansion and high pressure. The resulting expansion affects joints, cracks and small inter granular fractures to become wider and wider till the rock breaks apart.

Option 2 is correct: Salt weathering results in physical weathering. Salts in rocks expand due to thermal action, hydration and crystallisation. Salt crystals in near-surface pores cause splitting of individual grains within rocks, which eventually fall off. This process of falling off of individual grains may result in granular disintegration or granular foliation.

Option 3 is correct: Various minerals in rocks possess their own limits of expansion and contraction.

Because of diurnal changes in the temperatures, the internal movement among the mineral grains of the superficial layers of rocks takes place regularly. Due to differential heating and resulting expansion and contraction of surface layers results into subsequent exfoliation.

Q.32. Which of the following statements is/are correct regarding Volcanoes?

  1. Shield Volcanoes are made up of basalt.

  2. Deccan Traps are examples of flood basalt province.

  3. Composite Volcanoes are made of highly fluid lava.

Select the correct answer using the code given below.

(a) 1 only

(b) 1 and 2 only

(c) 3 only

(d) 1 and 3 only

Ans. b

Explanation:

  • Statement 1 is correct: Shield volcanoes are mostly made up of basalt which is very fluid lava and thus they spread to large distance and do not attain much height
  • Statement 2 is correct: Flood basalt provinces outpour highly fluid lava that flows for long distances. Deccan Traps are examples of flood basalt province.
  • Statement 3 is incorrect. Composite Volcanoes are made up of high viscous and cooler lava than basalt and are explosive volcanoes.

Q.33. Consider the following pairs:

Name of Tropical Cyclones : Region

  1. Typhoons : Indian Ocean

  2. Cyclones : South China Sea

  3. Hurricane : United States of America

  4. Willy-willy Australia

Which of the above mentioned pairs are correctly matched?

(a) 1, 2 and 3 only

(b) 1 and 2 only

(c) 3 and 4 only

(d) 1, 2, 3 and 4

Ans. Typhoons occur in the China sea.

Explanation:

  • Tropical cyclones in the Indian Ocean.
  • Hurricanes in the West Indian Islands in the Caribbean.
  • Tornadoes in the Guinea lands lands of West Africa and the Southern USA in which the local name of Whirlwind is often applied and Willy-Willies occur in the North West Australia.

Q.34. With respect to the rotation of earth, which of the following statements is/are correct?

  1. Earth’s rotational speed decreases towards the equator.

  2. Rotation is the reason behind the flattened the pole of earth.

Select the correct answer using the code given below.

(a) 1 only

(b) 2 only

(c) Both 1 and 2

(d) Neither 1 nor 2

Ans. b

Explanation:

  • Statement 1 is incorrect as rotational speed of earth depends on radius. Earth’s rotational speed increases as we move towards equator as earth has maximum radius at equator.
  • Statement 2 is correct because of earth’s rotation a centrifugal force is created that has led to creation of bulge at the middle of earth and flattened the poles at top.

Q.35. Which of the following evidences were proposed by Alfred Wegener in support of the theory of Continental Drift?

  1. Matching of the shorelines of continents.

  2. Ancient rocks of Brazil coast matches with those from western Africa.

  3. Presence of Tillite and placer deposits across continents.

  4. Distribution of fossils.

Select the correct answer using the code given below.

(a) 1, 3 and 4 only

(b) 1, 2 and 3 only

(c) 2 and 3 only

(d) 1, 2, 3 and 4

Ans. d

Explanation:

  • The evidences proposed by Alfred Wegner with respect to his theory were.
  • Matching of the continents – The shorelines of Africa and South America facing each other have a remarkable and unmistakable match.
  • Rocks of same ages across the oceans – The belt of ancient rocks of 2,000 million years from Brazil coast matches with those from western Africa. The earliest marine deposits along the coastline of South America and Africa are of the Jurassic age.
  • Presence of Tillite deposits across continents – It is the sedimentary rock formed out of deposits of glaciers. The Gondawana system of sediments from India is known to have its counter parts in six different landmasses of the Southern Hemisphere. At the base the system has thick tillite indicating extensive and prolonged glaciation. Counter parts of this succession are found in Africa, Falkland Island, Madagascar, Antarctica and Australia besides India.
  • Distribution of fossils – The observations that Lemurs occur in India, Madagascar and Africa led some to consider a contiguous landmass “Lemuria” linking these three landmasses. Mesosaurus was a small reptile adapted to shallow brackish water. The skeletons of these are found only in two localities: the Southern Cape Province of South Africa and Iraver formations of Brazil. The two localities presently are 4,800 km apart with an ocean in between them.
  • Placer Deposits presence and absence across continents – The occurrence of rich placer deposits of gold in the Ghana coast and the absolute absence of source rock in the region is an amazing fact. The gold bearing veins are in Brazil and it is obvious that the gold deposits of the Ghana are derived from the Brazil plateau when the two continents lay side by side.

 Q.36. which of the following is/are necessary to cause change of seasons on earth?

  1. Earth’ revolution

  2. Earth’s rotation

  3. Inclination of earth’s axis

Select the correct answer using the code given below.

(a) 1 and 2 only

(b) 3 only

(c) 1 and 3 only

(d) 1, 2 and 3

Ans. c

Explanation:

  • Statement 1 is correct because earth’s revolution causes different seasons by changing weather conditions by difference in heating on surface of earth.
  • Statement 2 is incorrect because rotation is responsible for day and night. It does not cause change in heating of earth’s surface. So it is not required to cause seasons.
  • Statement 3 is correct as inclination causes seasons because due to inclination, sun rays fall at earth’s surface at different angles and causes difference in temperature.

Q.37. With reference to the China type climate consider the following statements:

  1. It receives rainfall under the influence of South East Monsoon.

  2. It has high annual range of temperature.

  3. It is characterised by occurrence of intense tropical cyclones.

Which of the statements given above is/are correct?

(a) 1 and 2 only

(b) 2 and 3 only

(c) 1 and 3 only

(d) 1, 2 and 3 only

Ans. d

Explanation:

  • Statement 1 is correct: It has South East monsoon during summer with heavy rainfall and North West monsoon during winter with dry and cold weather.
  • Statement 2 is correct: It has high annual temperature range.During winter a steep pressure gradient is set up between the cold mongolia and siberia and the warmer Pacific coastlands. This leds to the flow of continental polar streams.
  • Statement 3 is correct: It is characterised by the formation of tropical cyclone in southern China. e.g. typhoons. The cyclones originate in the Pacific Ocean and move westward to the coastal lands bordering the South China Sea.

Q.38. Which of the following is/are the characteristics of Mediterranean climate?

  1. Shifting of wind belts

  2. Dry, warm summer with off-shore trade winds

  3. Confined to the Western margins of the continents, between 30 to 40 degrees latitudes.

Select the correct answer using the code given below.

(a) 1 only

(b) 2 and 3 only

(c) 1 and 3 only

(d) 1, 2 and 3

Ans. d

Explanation:

  • All the given conditions are the characteristics of Mediterranean climate.
  • Statements 1 and 2 are correct. Shifting of wind belts is the main characteristic of Mediterranean climate. During summers this region will be under the influence of Offshore Trade winds resulting in dry conditions. During winters, these regions come under influence of Westerlies and receive rainfall.
  • Statement 3 is also correct. The Mediterranean type of climate is confined to the Western portions of the continental masses, between 30-40 degrees North and South both.

Q.39. Despite the long duration of sunshine in summers, the Polar Regions have very low temperatures. Which of the following is/are the reasons for this?

  1. Most of the time the Sun remains near to the horizon.

  2. Much of the Sun rays are reflected by the ground snow or used up in melting up of ice cover.

Select the correct answer using the code given below.

(a) 1 only

(b) 2 only

(c) Both 1 and 2

(d) Neither 1 nor 2

Ans. c

Explanation:  Both the statements are correct. Sun when is near the horizon, sunrays will be very faint, this though causes little warmth but these rays are either reflected by the ground snow or used up in melting of ice. Hence, it has little power left to raise the temperature.

Q.40. Which of the following are cold ocean currents?

  1. Gulf stream

  2. Californian current

  3. Humboldt current

  4. Agulhas current

  5. Benguela Current

Select the correct answer using code given below.

(a) 2 and 3 only

(b) 1, 3 and 5 only

(c) 2, 3 and 5 only

(d) 1, 2 and 4 only

Ans. c

Explanation:

  • Gulf stream is a warm current which flows south-east of USA.
  • California current is cold current which flows along the coasts of the western USA.
  • Humboldt current or Peruvian current is cold current which flows along the west coast of South America.
  • Benguela Current in Atlantic ocean is a cold current.
  • Agulhas is a warm oceanic current of Southwest Indian ocean.

Q.41. Which of the following factors influence the temperature of air at any place?

  1. Latitude

  2. Altitude

  3. Distance from the sea

  4. Ocean currents

Select the correct answer using the code given below.

(a) 2 and 3 only

(b) 1, 3 and 4 only

(c) 1 and 4 only

(d) 1, 2, 3 and 4

Ans. d

Explanation:

  • Latitude affects insolation at a point which affects temperature of any place.
  • As earth get heated by terrestrial radiation so the temperature of atmosphere in troposphere goes on decreasing with rise in altitude.
  • Due to higher specific heat of water and moderating influence of sea breeze, places near the sea always have moderate temperatures.
  • Warm ocean currents increases the temperature and cold currents cools the place. Scandinavian countries have moderate temperatures (in spite of their latitude) due to effect of North Atlantic Drift (a warm current).

Q.42. Consider the following statements:

  1. The highest sea surface temperature is recorded at the equator.

  2. The oceans of northern hemisphere have lower temperature compared to that southern hemisphere.

Which of the statements given above is/are not correct?

(a) 1 only

(b) 2 only

(c) Both 1 and 2

(d) Neither 1 Nor 2

Ans. c

Explanation:

  • Statement 1 is incorrect: the highest sea surface temperature is observed not exactly at the equator but slightly towards north of it. This is due to cloud cover and high precipitation at the equator.
  • Statement 2 is incorrect: The oceans of northern hemisphere have higher temperature compared to that southern hemisphere. This is due to the unequal distribution of land and water in the northern and southern hemispheres.

  1. Consider the following pairs:

River Country

  1. Mississippi: USA

  2. Mekong: China

  3. Irrawady : Vietnam

Which of the pairs given above is/are correctly matched?

(a) 1 and 2 only

(b) 2 only

(c) 1 and 3 only

(d) 1, 2 and 3

Ans.a

Explanation:

  • The Mississippi River is the chief river of the largest drainage system on the North American continent. Flowing entirely in the United States of America, it forms the Mississippi River Delta at the Gulf of Mexico.
  • The Mekong is a trans-boundary river in Southeast Asia. It is the world’s 12th-longest river and the 7th longest in Asia. From the Tibetan Plateau the river runs through China’s Yunnan province, Myanmar, Laos, Thailand, Cambodia and Vietnam.
  • The Irrawaddy River is a river that flows from north to south through Myanmar. It is the country’s largest river and most important commercial waterway.

Q.44. With reference to Fold Mountains, consider the following statements:

  1. Fold Mountains are mainly found at constructive plate boundaries.

  2. In a folding, upfolds are called anticlines and downfolds are syncline.

Which of the statements given above is/are correct?

(a) 1 only

(b) 2 only

(c) Both 1 and 2

(d) Neither 1 nor 2

Ans. b

Explanation:

  • Statement 1 is incorrect – Fold Mountains are mainly found at convergent plate boundaries which are destructive in nature. They occur along the plate margins of continent-continent, continent-ocean or ocean-ocean.
  • Statement 2 is correct – The upfolded waves in a folding are called anticlines and the troughs or downfolds are synclines.

Q.45. Alfred Wegener proposed which of the following forces to be responsible for continental drift?

  1. Rotation of earth

  2. Tidal force of the moon

  3. Tidal force of the sun

Select the correct answer using the code given below.

(a) 1 only

(b) 1 and 2 only

(c) 2 and 3 only

(d) 1, 2 and 3

Ans. d

Explanation:  Alfred Wegener suggested that the movement responsible for the drifting of the continents was caused by pole-fleeing force and tidal force. The polar-fleeing force relates to the rotation of the Earth. The earth is not a perfect sphere; it has a bulge at the equator. This bulge is due to the rotation of the earth. The second force that was suggested by Wegener-the tidal force-is due to the attraction of the Moon and the Sun that develops tides in oceanic waters. Wegener believed that these forces would become effective when applied over many million years. However, most of scholars considered these forces to be totally inadequate.

Q.46. A rainfall type has the following characteristics:

  1. Common in the summer or in the hotter part of the day.

  2. Short duration heavy rainfall with thunder and lightning.

  3. Common in the equatorial regions and interior parts of the continents.

Which of the following type of rainfall have all the above characteristics?

(a) Orographic Rainfall

(b) Conventional Rainfall

(c) Cyclonic Rainfall

(d) Thunderstorms

Ans. b

Explanation: Convectional Rainfall: The air on being heated, becomes light and rises up in convection currents. As it rises, it expands and loses heat and consequently, condensation takes place and cumulous clouds are formed. With thunder and lightning, heavy rainfall takes place but this does not last long. Such rain is common in the summer or in the hotter part of the day. It is very common in the equatorial regions and interior parts of the continents, particularly in the northern hemisphere.

Q.47. Which of the following work as both erosional and depositional agent?

  1. Running Water

  2. Ground Water

  3. Glaciers

  4. Wind

  5. Waves

Select the correct answer using the code given below.

(a) 1, 3 and 4 only

(b) 2 and 3 only

(c) 1, 3, 4 and 5 only

(d) 1, 2, 3, 4 and 5

Ans. d

Explanation: Running water, ground-water, glaciers, wind and waves are powerful erosional and depositional agents shaping and changing the surface of the earth aided by weathering and mass wasting processes. These geomorphic agents acting over long periods of time produce systematic changes leading to sequential development of landforms. Each geomorphic agent produces its own assemblage of landforms.

Q.48. Consider the following statements:

  1. Soils in tropical regions are characterised by high humus content.

  2. in dry regions, salts accumulates in the top layer of soil due to capillary action.

Which of the statements given above is/are correct?

(a) 1 only

(b) 2 only

(c) Both 1 and 2

(d) Neither 1 nor 2

Ans. b

Explanation:

  • Statement 1 is incorrect. Humus accumulates in cold climates as bacterial growth is slow. In humid tropical and equatorial climates, bacterial growth and action is intense and dead vegetation is rapidly oxidised leaving very low humus content in the soil.
  • Statement 2 is correct. In dry climates, because of high temperature, evaporation exceeds precipitation and hence ground water is brought up to the surface by capillary action and in the process the water evaporates leaving behind salts in the soil. Such salts form into a crust in the soil known as hardpans.

Q.49. Which of the following statements is/are correct regarding interior structure of the earth?

  1. Moho’s discontinuity forms the boundary between Mantle and Core of the Earth.

  2. Lithosphere is the main source of magma that erupts as lava in Volcano.

  3. Outer core is liquid while the inner core is solid.

Select the correct answer using the code given below.

(a) 1 and 2 only

(b) 1 and 3 only

(c) 3 only

(d) 1, 2 and 3

Ans. c

Explanation:

  • Statement 1 is not correct because Moho’s discontinuity is boundary between Crust and Mantle. Boundary between Mantle and core is called guntenberg’s discontinuity.
  • Statement 2 is not correct. It is the Aesthenosphere, not lithosphere which is a source of Magma. Lithosphere consist of crust and uppermost solid mantle while Aesthenosphere is upper and weak portion of mantle extending upto 400 km.
  • Statement 3 is correct. Outer core is liquid and inner core is solid. Since the outer core is liquid, we find Shadow zones of P and S waves.

Q.50. Consider the following pairs.

Date Seasons

  1. 21st June: Summer in northern hemisphere

  2. 23rd September: Autumn in Southern Hemisphere

  3. 21st March: Spring in southern hemisphere

  4. 22nd December: Winter in northern hemisphere

Which of the pairs given above is/are correctly matched?

(a) 1 and 2 only

(b) 2 only

(c) 1 and 4 only

(d) 1, 3 and 4 only

Ans. c

Explanation:

  • 21st June – Summer in northern hemisphere
  • 23rd September – Autumn in Northern Hemisphere
  • 21st March – Spring in Northern Hemisphere
  • 22nd December – Winter in Northern Hemisphere
  • So only 1 & 4 are correctly matched

Here we conclude our article on UPSC IAS Prelims 2017 Important Questions. Stay tuned with us for more information on IAS Examination.

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