From Stone to Star: A View of Modern Geology

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9780674838666: From Stone to Star: A View of Modern Geology
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"From Stone to Star" chronicles one of the great scientific adventures of our time. Written by the geochemist Claude Allegre, it offers a glimpse into the sophisticated isotopic detective work that has established a geologic chronology of the earth and transformed our understanding of its genesis and history. It provides an introduction to the history methods and theories of modern geology. In 18th-century and 19th-century Europe, geologists exploring the earth's surface collected fossils and hotly debated the origin of the layered and folded rocks that contained them. The development of seismology, the study of earthquakes, in the 20th century shifted the focus from the terrestrial crust to the earth's deep interior. Our knowledge of the chemistry of the earth and of the solar system has been revolutionized by the advances in laboratory technology. High resolution mass spectrometry has allowed scientists to explore the very hearts of atoms; geologists have applied this method of analysis to meteorites and lunar rocks. They have also scrutinized detailed photographs of distant planets gathered by unmanned probes. Scientists can now measure the isotopic composition of atoms with extreme precision. As miraculous as it may seem, a microgram of meteorite yields more information about the structure of the earth and the primitive history of the solar system than years of fieldwork on the earth's surface. Allegre was a project scientist during the interplanetary space missions and was awarded the Crafoord Prize 1986 by the Royal Swedish Academy of Science.

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From the Back Cover:

Chronicling one of the great scientific adventures of our time, the eminent geochemist Claude Allegre offers a fascinating glimpse into the sophisticated isotopic detective work that has established a geologic chronology of the earth and transformed our understanding of its genesis and history. From the fossil collecting methods of eighteenth-century geologists to the development of high resolution mass spectronomy, this book provides an engaging introduction to the history, methods, and theories of modern geology.

About the Author:

Claude Allègre is Professor of Earth Sciences, Universitè de Paris, and a 1986 recipient of the Crafoord Prize awarded by the Royal Swedish Academy of Sciences.

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9780674838673: From Stone to Star: A View of Modern Geology

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Publisher: Harvard University Press, 1994
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