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   Active Layer  
Subject: Resources & Reserves
    1. A surface layer of ground, above the permafrost, that is alternately frozen in the winter and thawed in the summer. It is several centimeters to a few meters in thickness. 2. In engineering gelogy, surficial material that undergoes seasonal changes of volume, swelling when wet or frozen and shrinking when dry or thawing. Reference: R.L. Bates & J.A.Jackson, DICTIONARY OF GEOLOGICAL TERMS, Third Edition, American Geological Institute, 1983.
 
  
   Active sensor  
Subject: Remote Sensing
    A remote-sensing system that transmits its own radiation to detect an object or area for observation and receives the reflected or transmitted radiation. Radar is an example of an active system. Compare with passive system. Ref: Remote Sensing Glossary Reference Information for Virtual Nebraska
 
 
  
   ActiveFault  
Subject: Geology
    An active fault is a fault that is likely to have another earthquake sometime in the future. Faults are commonly considered to be active if they have moved one or more times in the last 10,000 years


http://earthquake.usgs.gov/learning/glossary.php?alpha=A
 
 
  
   actual vapor pressure  
Subject: The Earth
    See vapor pressure.
 
 
  
   Adamantine Luster  
Subject: Resources & Reserves
    A biriliant mineral luster, characteristic of minerals with a high index of refraction, e.g. diamond and cerussite. Reference: R.L. Bates & J.A.Jackson, DICTIONARY OF GEOLOGICAL TERMS, Third Edition, American Geological Institute, 1983.
 
 
  
   Adiabatic   
Subject: Resources & Reserves
    Pertaining to the relationship of pressure and volume when a gas or other fluid is compressed or expanded without either giving off or receiving heat. Reference: R.L. Bates & J.A.Jackson, DICTIONARY OF GEOLOGICAL TERMS, Third Edition, American Geological Institute, 1983.
 
 
  
   Adiabatic   
Subject: Geography
    A process in which heat does not enter or leave a system. In the atmospheric sciences, adiabatic processes are often used to model internal energy changes in rising and descending parcels of air in the atmosphere. When a parcel of air rises in expands because of a reduction in pressure. If no other non-adiabatic processes occur (like condensation, evaporation and radiation), expansion causes the parcel of air to cool at a set rate of 0.98 per 100 meters. The opposite occurs when a parcel of air descends in the atmosphere. The air in a descending parcel becomes compressed. Compression causes the temperature within the parcel to increase at a rate of 0.98 per 100 meters.


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   adiabatic process  
Subject: The Earth
    A process that takes place without a transfer of heat between the system (such as an air parcel) and its surroundings. In an adiabatic process, compression always results in warming, and expansion results in cooling. It is a thermodynamic change of state of a system such that no heat or mass is transferred across the boundaries of the system.
 
 
  
   Adit  
Subject: Resources & Reserves
    A horizental passage from the surface into a mine. It is commonly called a tunnel, though in strict usage a tunnel is open at both ends. Also called a drift or adit level. Reference: R.L. Bates & J.A.Jackson, DICTIONARY OF GEOLOGICAL TERMS, Third Edition, American Geological Institute, 1983.
 
 
  
   Adit  
Subject: Geography
    An opening driven horizontally into the side of a mountain or hill for providing access to a mineral deposit.


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