The Authors:

Thomas L. Moore
C.R. Scotese

Thomas L. Moore: PaleoTerra

Thomas L. Moore received his PhD from the University of Arizona, Tucson in 1999. His undergraduate and masters degrees were earned at Ohio University in 1990 and 1992, respectively.

He worked at Argonne National Laboratory (ANL) from 1999 to 2005. While at ANL, he learned the basics of paleoclimate modeling and applying those results in petroleum exploration.

Since leaving ANL in 2005, Thomas Moore has contrinued to focus on paleoclimate modeling, running over 80 models representing different periods in Earth history and different conditions. In addition, he has focused on bringing geologic data to mobile platforms, such as iOS. See his previous application “DLD: The Devonian Lithological Database”.

C. R. Scotese: Director, PALEOMAP Project

Prof. Christopher R. Scotese received his PhD from the Department of Geophysical Sciences in 1985. His undergraduate degree was from the Department of Geological Sciences, University of Illinois, Chicago Circle. He was founder and the initial project leader of the PLATES Project, Institute for Geophysics, University of Texas at Austin.

He briefly worked as a Senior Research Scientist at Shell Development Company (Bellaire, Texas) before becoming a Professor of Earth and Environmental Sciences at the University of Texas in Arlington, where he has taught Earth History, Global Tectonics, Basin Analysis, and Geographical Information Systems (GIS) for the past 22 years. He is currently planning for his retirement in Chicago where he will write a book on the “Evolution of the Earth System Since the Late Precambrian” that will tell the story that is illustrated by the maps in Ancient Earth.

Scotese’s life work is the PALEOMAP Project. The principal accomplishment of the PALEOMAP Project is the PALEOMAP “PaleoAtlas” (Scotese, 2011a-f), see - This “PaleoAtlas” runs in ArcGIS (ESRI) and takes full advantage of the cartographic and database functionality of this GIS (Geographic Information System). The PaleoAtlas is made up of six volumes: Cenozoic, Cretaceous, Jurassic and Triassic, Late Paleozoic, Early Paleozoic, and Late Precambrian (Neoproterozoic). Each volume has 8 –10 paleoreconstructions; there are 53 paleoreconstructions reconstructions in the completed PaleoAtlas. The oldest paleoreconstruction dates from the breakup of Rodinia (750 Ma, Cryogenian). For each reconstructed time interval there are more than >50 feature layers (map overlays) that describe important tectonic, paleogeographic and paleoclimatic information such as: modern geographic features (political boundaries, coastlines, cities, river and lakes), plate tectonic features (active plate boundaries, age of the ocean floor, ancient plates, and vectors describing plate motion), paleorivers and drainage basins, paleoclimatic information (lithologic indicators of climate such as coals, evaporites, calcretes, tillites, etc), ancient climate zones (Equatorial Rainy Belt, Arid Belt, Warm and Cool Temperate, Polar ), a 3D digital paleogeographic model (PaleoDEM), as well as estimates of highstand and lowstand shorelines, and geological information (outcrop geology, regional lithofacies, coral reefs, and ophiolites).

The spatial-temporal framework provided by the PALEOMAP PaleoAtlas provides the foundation Scotese’s next research project, the “Earth System Archive”, which will be done in collaboration with Dr. Thomas Moore (PaleoTerra). The Earth System Archive is a global, Phanerozoic compilation of important paleo-environmental variables (e.g., elevation, bathymetry, temperature, rainfall, ocean currents, salinity, upwelling, etc.). The goal of the Earth System History Archive is to provide earth scientists and earth historians with a concise, accurate, and informative digital description of the evolution of the Earth System during the past one billion years. Using GIS technology it is now possible to store, retrieve and visualize this wealth of information about the Earth’s distant past.

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