You are on page 1of 6

Universidad de Cundinamarca

Facultad de educacin
Geografa fsica
Johan Esteban Silva Prez 181213235

Understanding Earth (Review)
The modern theory and practice of geology
John Grotzinger, a professor of geology at the California Institute of Technology Division
of Geological and Planetary Sciences, His works are mainly focused on the chemical and
physical interactions between life and the environment, in addition to the studies done in
biogeological Earth Grotzinger is also active in the investigation of the geology of Mars
and has made contributions to the Mars Exploration Program at NASA. Moreover, Thomas
H. Jordan is an American seismologist known and current director of the Earthquake Center
Southern California University of Southern California. He was head of the Science
Department at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology, and a member of the National
Academy of Sciences USA Frank across press, is an American geophysicist who has
advised four presidents of the USA, has been president of the National Academy of
Sciences United States, has published many scientific papers and is co-author of this book,
and finally we siever Raymond who was a geologist from the University of Chicago, and
contributed input to this research.
The book refers to earth understanding the different geological processes that occur on
Earth, the authors start from the central idea - the earth is IT ONLY referring to the delicate
balance that the earth has to sustain life, then many questions are asked such as how the
Hawaiian islands were created? Or why the oceans are so deep? Geologists - are
responsible for studying all these phenomena that occur on earth at this point the authors
make reference to us approximate the number of years with the earth and the solar system
however focuses on the idea that they are very few billion years that life on earth has
developed, land is understood as a complex world of interacting components, some on the
solid surface, other in the atmosphere and in the oceans other to understand these different
components, geologists should study each one separately as if they were separated to have a
complete picture of how the earth works, all without neglecting the importance of the
existing links in different geosystems of the earth - geosystems refers to planet earth seen as
a unity-at this point the book reference is made to different examples; - Gases from
volcanic systems can trigger changes in the system of Climate.
We also explain the objective of science to explain how the universe of scientific method
works, it is a general plan based on methodical observations - methodical refers to a method
and order. - And based on experiments, then these procedures-what a hypothesis which is
the explanation of the investigation from the recollect- data and this document is presented
to the scientific community to open a critical front is proposed to investigate when this
hypothesis is confirmed by other scientists, credibility is earned and this same this same
hypothesis can be further research reference as a starting point the primary hypothesis and
that is how scientific theories can explain many things are created.
Moreover we also face the method of "scientific models" which are made in computer
programs - or computers- to simulate the behavior of natural systems, from numerical
calculations, this is a great help to scientists because there phenomena that are not easily
replicated in a real laboratory for the need for extension of space and time periods, these
investigations are mentioned in the scientific community in order to find support from other
fellow scientists, it is clear that these investigations arise as a character intuitive or a
thorough analysis between the scientific community itself.
The next chapter of the book shape and surface of the earth is called, and as its title implies
speaks of the earth, geodesy is an ancient branch of science which is in charge of studying
the shape and surface of the land, he sets an example to complement the above; - Colon in
1492 set course west of India because he believed in a theory of geodesy favored by Greek
philosophers which posed; live in an area, and thanks to his bad math found the "new
Credit for determining the size of the ground Eratosthenes, the librarian of Alexandria in
ancient Egypt, and the day was about 250 ac with a scientific method to demonstrate that
the soil should be curved, and the surface was a perfect curve sphere, and so was
demonstrated - the Greeks admired the perfection geometrically
With powerful scientific evidence supported by the (spherical geometry) a hypothesis was
created, and not just think that hypothesis also many more - such as the distance the tall
mast of a ship disappears into the horizon.
Makes it clear why well-designed experiments and good measurements are essential to the
scientific method: give us new information about the natural world. Much more precise
measurements have shown that the Earth is not a perfect sphere. Due to its daily rotation,
the planet protrudes slightly in Ecuador, which is flattened slightly at the poles. In addition,
the smooth curvature of the surface of the earth is disturbed by changes in elevation
terrene.- highlights the author
In the next chapter, you begin to talk about the geological record, like many sciences,
geology depends on laboratory experiments and computer simulations to describe and study
the earth's surface and interior. Geology has its own style and unique perspective, however.
is an outdoor science as the essential data are collected by geologists in the field and remote
sensing devices such as satellites orbit the earth, geologists comparing direct observations
thus deduced from the geological record-the geological record is the information preserved
in rocks formed at various times throughout the long history of the earth, the author
presents the theory of uniformitarianism of James Hutton Scottish, who states that "the
present is the key to the past" uniformitarianism is based on the idea - the geological
processes we see in action, have worked in a very similar geological-time along the way but
this does not mean that all processes have happened slowly He holds the author, there are
sudden events as a crater formed by a meteorite, the geologist observed nature at work and
uses the principle of uniformitarianism in interpreting features found in the older rocks.
In the next chapter of the book talks about the different layers of the earth, at this point the
author frames us the vision that had until a century in which the world was divided into two
heaven and hades ago, where the sky was full of light and transparency and hades full of
lava and where you could not see beyond, until a century ago, geologists began to look
further into the interior, began to look from the waves produced by the earthquakes - A
earthquake is caused when a fracture occurs in geological rocks with great force and cause
vibrations- these waves are used in instruments that allow geologists to investigate the inner
workings of the earth, in the nineteenth century the evidence of earth layers was proposed
by the German physicist Emil Wiechert, geologists began to discover the interior of the
earth, where they were set that is divided into different concentric layers - concentric refers
to having the same center as another object or figure-of different positions .
The following chapter discusses the mantle and core, reaching an earth model bilayer
agreed with the value gallstone average density of the earth, on the other hand, it could also
explain the existence of the nickel-iron meteorites: bits were the nucleus of an Earth-like
planet (or planets) that had broken apart, probably by collisions with other planets. At this
point Wiechert got to work his hypothesis earth layers using waves produced by
seismometers located in different parts of the world, came to identify an internal mass of
shadows, which the call the core, these waves come in two types basic: the compression
waves, which expand and compress as they travel through solid, liquid or gas, and shear
waves, which involve movement from side to side, shear waves can propagate only through
the solid, which resist shear, and not through fluids such as air and water, they have no
resistance to such movement, in 1906, a British seismologist, Robert Oldham, was able to
resolve the paths traveled by different types of seismic waves and show that the waves do
not propagate through the core. The core, at least in its outer part, is liquid, so that the iron
melts at a certain temperature.
The inner core; his mantle is solid and the outer part of the core is liquid, the boundary
between the core and mantle seismic waves reflected only as a reflection of light waves, but
in 1936 the Danish seismologist Inge Lehmann discovered another surface other acute
spherical surface in depth, indicating a central mass with a higher density than the liquid
core. This inner sphere is two thirds the size of the moon and geologists of the time were
puzzled by the existence of an inner core "frozen" after it was found that the inner core is
freezing on alloy nickel-iron, this shows that the "freeze" was due to higher pressure rather
than lower temperatures in the center of the earth.
In the next chapter the author talks about the crust of the earth, called Mohorovicic Croatian
scientist had detected another limit to the relatively shallow depth of 40 kilometers below
the European continent. But it was also found that this limit is less deep beneath the
continents that the rocks in the oceanic crust contain more iron and therefore is denser than
continental rock. Because the continental crust is thicker and less dense than oceanic crust,
the continents travel by high floating like rafts floating on the denser mantle.
In the mid-twentieth century they had already discovered all the main layers of the Earth -
crust, mantle, outer core, Internal- core along with this more subtle features are also found,
the mantle is divided into layers an upper layer and a lower , and are separated by a
transition zone where the density is increasing, it was also found that the outer core of the
earth could be made of an alloy of iron-nickel pure, because the densities of these metals
are higher observed that the density of the outer core, the density of the solid inner core is
slightly greater than the outer core and is consistent with a little iron-nickel alloy almost
The next chapter shows the earth as a system of interacting components, the earth is
continually changing through geological activity such as earthquakes, volcanoes and ice
restless planet, this activity is driven by two heat engines: one internal and one external,
external engine earth is powered by solar energy - heat supplied to the surface of the ground
by the soldiers and the internal engine of the Earth is driven by heat energy trapped in the
planet's origin and this has generated radioactivity in the deep interior, on the other hand
the hot sun and atmospheric weather along with the oceans, is responsible for our climate
and weather, erode When rain, wind and ice. Furthermore mountains shape the landscape
and how the landscape, in turn, changes the climate. Everything is related to each other and
changing one harms others, all these parts of the world and their interactions constitute a
set, a set called the earth system.
The author focuses on this point in the earth system, start by giving some basic features, the
ground system is an open system that interacts and exchanges energy with the cosmos, the
radiant energy from the sun powers the weathering and erosion of the surface of the earth
and helps the growth of plants, of which almost all living beings feed. Our climate is
controlled by the balance between solar energy entering the Earth system, the exchange of
material between the earth and the space is relatively small for scientists.
In the last chapter of the first part of the book the author focuses on three (3) major
geosystems operating on a global scale, climate system, the tectonic plates and the
geodynamo, the climate system; you start by giving the definition of "time" which is the
term we use to describe the temperature, precipitation, cloudiness and winds observed in a
given place and time on the surface of the earth, different climate variables which can be -
warm, rainy, fresh- at this point must be stressed that the atmosphere is so complex that the
best predictors can fail, the climate is primarily governed by changes in solar input in
seasonal and daily cycles: hot summers, cold winters; days are warmer, cooler nights.
Climate is a description of these climate cycles obtained by the average temperature and
other variables over many years of observation. - Well defined by the author, the climate
system not only describes the behavior of the atmosphere, but also how the climate is
influenced by the hydrosphere, cryosphere, biosphere and lithosphere.
The system of tectonic plates, some of the most dramatic geological events on Earth -
volcanic eruptions and earthquakes, for example - are also the result of interactions within
the Earth system. These phenomena are driven by the internal heat of the earth, escaping
through the movement of solid material in the Earth's mantle. From this land is zoned for its
layers which are chemically distinct, the discovery of plate tectonics in 1960 led to the first
unified theory that explains the global distribution of earthquakes and volcanoes,
continental drift, the formation of mountains, and many other geological phenomena, the
strong outer layer, or lithosphere "weak", "stone", asthenosphere when subjected to force,
the lithosphere tends to behave as an almost rigid and brittle shell, while the asthenosphere
flows like a moldable solid.
Finally global geodynamo system which involves the interaction that produces a magnetic
field inside the Earth, the magnetic field reaches far into outer space, making compasses
pointing north and provide shielding from radiation biosphere sun's harmful when rocks are
formed, they become slightly magnetized by this field, so geologists can study how the
magnetic field behaved in the past and use it to help decipher the geological record. The
internal magnetic field of the Earth behaves like a powerful magnet bar which is located in
the center of the earth and tilted about 11 from its axis of rotation. Magnetic forces on
earth points in the north magnetic pole and outward in the south magnetic pole which
makes the earth are a geoid and one spherical surface "as scientists thought of antiquity."
The first part of the book is very good personal opinion, makes a great contribution to the
academic society, revealing the different forms of operation of the land, which should go
much deeper in order to get to know the planet earth But to and to preserve it, the text
presents a little true chronological disorder when referring to the order of time, but in return
has much argument against the different theories proposed over time, then something is
worth noting that the book is explanation of some terms that are somewhat complex in
theory, one of the main virtues of the book is its wealth of explanatory images, which are a
great complement to understand the various phenomena that occur in the earth and their
individual operation, although in some parts of the book lack examples, pictures are a great
promoter of the different theories, this book is a great help in explaining the academic
community that is forming on topics related to geology and its various branches