Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences of the United States of America

About the PNAS Member Editor
Name Bowring, Samuel A.
Location Massachusetts Institute of Technology
Primary Field Geology
 Election Citation
Bowring developed U-Pb dating of zircon to an art, applying the technique to unravel geologic processes including the growth of Earth's first crust, assembly and thermal evolution of continents, rates of flood basalt eruption and of biological evolution during species radiations and extinctions, and radiogenic isotope tracing of environmental contaminants.
 Research Interests
Sam Bowring is a geologist interested in using U-Pb geochronology to constrain the rates of geologic processes and to calibrate the timing of significant events in the geologic record. His unwavering pursuit of the highest possible capabilities in U-Pb geochronology has allowed him to investigate the explosion of multi-cellular life in the Early Cambrian - the single most important evolutionary event in Earth history - and to examine the mechanisms of the most significant catastrophic events in the history of life: the end-Permian and the end-Cretaceous mass extinctions. His relentless efforts as a field geologist in the Northwest Territories of Canada led to an understanding of the processes involved in the early growth of continental crust recorded in the 4 billion-year-old Acasta gneisses. Bowring's interests also extend to environmental applications of tracer isotopes using the isotopic composition of Pb, Sr, and U in natural waters to examine the fate and transport of contaminants.

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