Earth Science: An Illustrated Guide to Science
is one of eight volumes in the Science Visual Resources
set. Containing six sections, a comprehensive glossary, a Web site guide, and an index, Earth Science
is an ideal learning tool for students and teachers of science. Full-color diagrams, graphs, charts, and maps on every page illustrate the essential elements of the subject, while parallel text provides key definitions and step-by-step explanations.The six sections include:
- "Planet Earth" considers Earth's place in the Solar System and its relationship to the Sun, the Moon, and the environment of interplanetary space. Topics covered in this section include solar and lunar eclipses, tides, seasons, and Earth's magnetic field.
- "Earth's History" examines the basic principles used by geologists to determine the age of rocks and the use of fossil evidence in determining the sequence of geological events. There is a comprehensive survey of the history of life on Earth and a general description of each of the geological eons. A sequence of pages traces the history of the North American continent through each geological period, showing the prevailing conditions and the kind of life-forms that have flourished there.
- "Earth's Rocks" is concerned with the processes that create and modify Earth's geology. The relative abundance of minerals on our planet; the formation of igneous, sedimentary, and metamorphic rocks; and the processes of plate tectonics are examined in this section.
- "Air and Oceans" is an overview of the shallow but complex layer of gas and water that surrounds our planet and supports all animal and plant life. The types and causes of all significant weather phenomena are covered here, as well as the intimate connections between the oceans and the atmosphere. Heat transfer between air and oceans and the planet-wide systems of circulation driven by solar energy are also explained here.
- "Erosion and Weathering" looks at the constant wearing down of the Earth's rocks by the combined actions of the atmosphere and the oceans. Mechanical and chemical weathering, the formation and movement of soil, and the geological forms produced by the actions of rivers and glaciers are all featured in this section. Wind erosion and the formation and spread of desert landscapes are also covered.
- "Comparisons" gives the relative scales of major planetary features, such as oceans, rivers, continents, and mountain ranges.