A to Z of Earth Scientists (Notable Scientists)

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9780816045808: A to Z of Earth Scientists (Notable Scientists)
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Provides concise biographical profiles of more than 150 men and women throughout history whose scientific discoveries and inventions have significantly impacted the field of Earth science.

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Intended for high-school and early college students and general readers, this volume in the Notable Scientists series contains entries on approximately 200 earth scientists. Most are currently or recently active, but some significant older scientists have also been included. Among the subdisciplines covered in the text are geochemistry, geophysics, mineralogy, paleontology, petrology, sedimentology, structural geology, and tectonics. Although the coverage spans the globe, there is an emphasis on Americans. In the preface, Gates explains that the book is shorter than planned mainly because of the difficulty of obtaining information on currently active scientists.

Each entry consists of an entry head with the subject's name, dates, nationality, and field(s) of specialization. This is followed by an essay ranging in length from 750 to 1,500 words, with most averaging about 1,000 words. The essays generally cover basic biographical information such as educational background, positions held, prizes awarded, etc. The rest of the essay is devoted to the scientist's work. Though very readable, the text includes many technical terms that not always explained. In the preface readers are encouraged to keep an earth science dictionary handy, especially if they have no course background in the subject.

The book concludes with lists of entries based on country of birth, country of major scientific activity, year of birth, and field of study for each scientist. The book also includes a chronology, which would be of use to students looking for a scientist from a particular time period, as well as an extensive bibliography.

The list of biographical dictionaries of earth scientists is short, if not nonexistent. Generally, current reference information for students on earth scientists is limited to that which may be found in single- and multivolume sets on scientists in general. This would be a useful resource for high-school, college, and public libraries requiring reference material devoted solely to earth scientists.

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