Passage Reading and English Comprehension
(a) Comparing two scientific theories and contrasting the predictions that each would make concerning a natural phenomenon
(b) Describing a new theoretical model and noting that it explains the nature of observations made of a particular natural phenomenon
(c) Evaluating the results of a particular scientific experiment and suggesting further areas for research
(d) Explaining how two different natural phenomena are related and demonstrating a way to measure them
186. According to the passage, which of the following is an accurate statement concerning meteor streams?
(a) Meteor streams and comets start out with similar orbits, but only those of meteor streams are perturbed by planetary gravitation.
(b) Meteor streams grow as dust particles are attracted by the gravitational fields of comets.
(c) Meteor streams are composed of dust particles derived from comets.
(d) Comets may be composed of several kinds of materials, while meteor streams consist only of large dust particles.
187. The author states that the research described in the first paragraph was undertaken in order to
(a) determine the age of an actual meteor stream
(b) identify the various structural features of meteor streams
(c) explore the nature of a particularly interesting meteor stream
(d) test the hypothesis that meteor streams become broader as they age
188. It can be inferred from the passage that which of the following would most probably be observed during the Earth’s passage through a meteor stream if the conventional theories were correct?
(a) Meteor activity would gradually increase to a single, intense peak, and then gradually decline.
(b) Meteor activity would be steady throughout the period of the meteor shower.
(c) Meteor activity would rise to a peak at the beginning and at the end of the meteor shower.
(d) Random bursts of very high meteor activity would be interspersed with periods of very little activity.
189. According to the passage, why do the dust particles in a meteor stream eventually surround a comet’s original orbit?
(a) They are ejected by the comet at differing velocities.
(b) Their orbits are uncontrolled by planetary gravitational fields.
(c) They become part of the meteor stream at different times.
(d) Their velocity slows over time.
190. The passage suggests that which of the following is a prediction concerning meteor streams that can be derived from both the conventional theories mentioned in and the new computer-derived theory?
(a) Dust particles in a meteor stream will usually be distributed evenly throughout any cross section of the steam.
(b) The orbits of most meteor streams should cross the orbit of the Earth at some point and give rise to a meteor shower.
(c) Over time the distribution of dust in a meteor stream will usually become denser at the outside edges of the stream than at the center.
(d) Meteor showers caused by older meteor streams should be, on average, longer in duration than those caused by very young meteor streams.
191. It can be inferred from the last paragraph of the passage that which of the following must be true of the Earth as it orbits the Sun?
(a) Most meteor streams it encounters are more than 2,000 years old.
(b) When passing through a meteor stream, it usually passes near to the stream’s center.
(c) It crosses the Geminid meteor stream once every year.
(d) It usually takes over a day to cross the actual Geminid meteor stream.
192. Which of the following is an assumption underlying the last sentence of the passage?
(a) In each of the years between 1970 and 1979, the Earth took exactly 19 hours to cross the Geminid meteor stream.
(b) The comet associated with the Geminid meteor stream has totally disintegrated.
(c) The computer-model Geminid meteor stream provides an accurate representation of the development of the actual Geminid stream.
(d) The Geminid meteor stream has not broadened as rapidly as the conventional theories would have predicted.
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