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From Raindrops to Volcanoes: Adventures with Sea Surface Meteorology (Dover Earth Science) Paperback – January 15, 2004

5.0 out of 5 stars 3 customer reviews

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About the Author

anchard /f Duncan /i C. --This text refers to the Hardcover edition.

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Product Details

  • Series: Dover Earth Science
  • Paperback: 208 pages
  • Publisher: Dover Publications (January 15, 2004)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0486434877
  • ISBN-13: 978-0486434872
  • Product Dimensions: 5.4 x 0.5 x 8.5 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 3.2 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 5.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (3 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #3,018,502 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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Format: Paperback
Richard Feynman once remarked that because he knew the different dimensions of physics - philosophical, mathematical, technological, historical, practical, etc. - attracted different students, he baited his lectures with all of these lures in order to bring students in. Between 1959 and 1979 Doubleday Anchor produced a wonderful series of books on science (72 titles in all) aimed at intelligent high school students and written by some of the best scientific talent in the US. The Science Study Series aimed at attracting young minds to science by exploring its many dimensions. Some titles looked at a particular area, some a specific technology, some were historical in approach, others examined policy implications of science. Unlike so many modern popular science books, which focus on the "Geez Whiz" aspects of science, Science Study volumes often addressed very basic and simple (to formulate) questions like: how do birds and butterfiles navigate in migration, what are the properties of water, what is the nature of violent storms? Always the emphasis was on understanding the process of science: how we proceed systematically to gain genuine knowledge.
Duncan Blanchard's FROM RAINDROPS TO VOLCANOES, officially volume 50 in the Science Study Series, was among the very best. Blanchard starts with such simple questions as: how do rain drops form?, how big are they?, what is their shape?, and proceeds to show how the pursuit of these questions can lead one, step by step, very far from where one began. As such, it is not only a beautiful illustration of the logic of scientific investigation, but also a wonderful example of the excitement and open-ended nature of a life in science.
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Format: Paperback
I first read "From Raindrops to Volcanoes" when I was a meteorology student in the late 1960s and interested in cloud physics. It was one of the best of a great series of lay science books published in by Doubleday/Anchor at the time. I reread the book again after many years about two years ago and find it is still one of the best of its genre. Blanchard presents his topic well. I love his book "The Snowflake Man" about Snowflake Bentley, but still rate this as his best. Blanchard, now retired, told me that the material in this book has not been superceded by recent advances in the science, so there is no reason to caution the reader. Blanchard's humorous insights into the world of the research scientist flesh out a well written book.
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By Lo on December 22, 2007
Format: Paperback
in Clouds in a Glass of Beer: Simple Experiments in Atmospheric Physics, Craig Bohren refers to Blanchard's very readable book to study the mechanisms by which salt gets into the atmosphere. I got a copy, and must admit that the book is indeed very readable but above all delightful !!

You will learn, among many other things, how bubbles are formed in the sea, how they break and form a jet, and how the jet produces drops that are ejected into the air above.

Everything starts with observations, followed by experiments (involving a minimum of equipment) in an effort to understand what goes on in the ocean of air, and its interaction with the surface of the sea.
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