Tue, January 27, 2015 @ 6:00pm
DLRC 106, Hillsborough Community College - Dale Mabry Campus, Tampa (Campus Map)
Paradigm shifts are the ideal consequence of scientific progress - evidence of the willingness of practitioners to abandon old ideas in the face of new evidence while searching for a more complete and better explanation of the natural world. In reality, though, these matters are often complicated and contentious. Legitimate scientific debate becomes intertwined with the emotions, biases, and egos of the people involved. In the span of living memory, no paradigm shift in geoscience has been so sweeping and broadly consequential as the Theory of Plate Tectonics. This revolutionary theory traces its roots back to the concept of “continental drift” as introduced in the publication of “The Origin of Continents and Oceans,” by Alfred Wegener, in 1915.
Wegener’s story is that of a scientific adventurer and polymath. While best remembered for his impact on geology, Alfred Wegener possessed a doctorate in astronomy and made significant contributions in meteorology, climatology, and polar research.
While overshadowed by his ideas on continental drift, Wegener’s research into ice crystal nucleation directly led to the development of the ice crystal model for precipitation formation – a major scientific contribution in its own right.
During his lifetime, reaction to the continental drift hypothesis ranged from curious skepticism to outright condemnation. Three decades after his untimely death on an expedition to Greenland in 1930, new evidence interpreted by a new generation of scientists revived Wegener’s hypothesis. Reborn as “Plate Tectonics” the new theory rests solidly on the foundation of Wegener’s earlier work, and today is the cornerstone of geoscience.
This is a talk about a man and his ideas, about good science and bad, and about the interconnectedness of the natural world.
The West Central Florida Chapter of the American Meteorological Society, was chartered in 1961. We have about 100 members. Meetings are held in various places around the Tampa Bay Area including The National Weather Service office in Ruskin, local Television Stations, USF, Museum of Science & Industry, MacDill Air Force Base, and Hillsborough Community College. Meetings focus on the science of meteorology, meteorological tools, exchange of information and friendship.
Currently promotes the development and dissemination of information and education on the atmospheric and related oceanic and hydrologic sciences. Founded in 1919, AMS now has a membership of more than 11,000 professionals, professors, students, and weather enthusiasts. AMS publishes nine atmospheric and related oceanic and hydrologic journals, sponsors more than 12 conferences annually, and offers numerous programs and services.
The American Meteorological Society is now on Facebook: http://www.facebook.com/ametsoc