Progress in Earth science and climate studies: Introduction

John Michael Tutill Thompson

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In this introductory paper, I review the ‘visions of the future’ articles prepared by top
young scientists for the second of the two Christmas 2008 Triennial Issues of Phil. Trans.
R. Soc. A, devoted respectively to astronomy and Earth science. Topics covered in the
Earth science issue include: trace gases in the atmosphere; dynamics of the Antarctic
circumpolar current; a study of the boundary between the Earth’s rocky mantle and its
iron core; and two studies of volcanoes and their plumes. A final section devoted to
ecology and climate covers: the mathematical modelling of plant–soil interactions; the
effects of the boreal forests on the Earth’s climate; the role of the past palaeoclimate in
testing and calibrating today’s numerical climate models; and the evaluation of these
models including the quantification of their uncertainties.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)4503-4508
Number of pages6
JournalPhilosophical Transactions of the Royal Society A: Mathematical, Physical & Engineering Sciences
Issue number1885
Early online date25 Sept 2008
Publication statusPublished - 28 Dec 2008


  • atmosphere and oceans
  • Erath's mantle
  • volcanoes
  • ecology
  • climate change


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