Robert Dietz Research Paper

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Robert Dietz was an American geophysicist and oceanographer who set forth the theory of seafloor spreading. He was a scientist who contributed to and used new methods for seafloor exploration, including scuba and bathyscaph. Dietz was widely known for pioneering contributions to the geological aspects of the theory of the plate tectonics. He made important scientific contributions to the recognition of impact structures, particularly of ancient, eroded impact scars on Earth. Dietz was educated at the University of Illinois where he received his BS., MS. and Ph.D. in Geology. Dietz published prolifically in scientific and popular scientific journals and was both synthesizer of key research and a generator of controversial speculation. Robert …show more content…

Dietz's most substantial contribution to science were his ideas about impact craters on Earth, which he referred to as Astroblemes. He investigated circular structures on Earth that had long been held to be crypto volcanic and showed through his work investigating shatter cones that the land features were impact craters. Dietz found that the Sudbury site in Canada was an astrobleme. Contributed widely to the idea of catastrophic events in Earth's history. Dietz accompanied Admiral Byrd on his final expedition to Antarctica. Dietz made major contributions in three general areas of Earth and planetary sciences: marine geology and geomorphology; continental drift and plate tectonics; and planetary geology, particularly the study of impact structures. He traveled widely in the United States and around the world, was a keen observer, and had a gift for finding adventure. He was an independent and broad thinker who relished the discussion of ideas and who commonly recognized the significance of new concepts before their …show more content…

An early proponent of the idea that the Moon’s craters were impact-generated rather than volcanic, Dietz expected such craters to have been formed also on Earth. However, he noted, Earth is geologically active and has an ocean and atmosphere, so these craters would have been eroded, deformed, and recycled. Certain ancient circular structures on Earth had characteristics that Dietz, along with a few other renegades, assigned to impact rather than volcanism. In this field, he is best known for having interpreted the Sudbury structure in Canada as a deformed and eroded impact structure. Dietz was thinking about how the Hawaiian chain of islands and seamounts might be moving on a “conveyor belt.” By 1958, he was entertaining ideas about continental drift. Dietz went on to analyze the long-term evolution of continents, especially of their boundaries with the ocean. With student and illustrator John C. Holden, he published several influential and widely cited papers on geological aspects of plate tectonics, the most famous being their geological reconstruction of the ancient supercontinent of

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