Birth - Death
1926 - 1987
Geologist and geophysicist, who studied plate tectonics and their role in earthquakes. Professor at Stanford University and Dean of the School of Earth Sciences. He was instrumental in developing a way to measure the changes in the Earth’s magnetic alignment and the geomagnetic polarity time scale. This enabled the testing of the seafloor spreading hypothesis, which gave some of the first credible evidence to the theory of plate tectonics, for which he became a leader in researching and teaching. Recipient of numerous awards, including Vetlesen Prize (1970) and the Arthur Day Prize of the National Academy of Sciences (1984). President of the American Geophysical Union from (1978-1980). Elected to the United States National Academy of Sciences, the American Academy of Arts and Sciences, and the American Philosophical Society. A number of memorial prizes were established in his name after his death. Partner was fellow geophysicist Clyde Wahrhaftig.