Mapping the Earth

  • Pamela Elizabeth Clark
  • Chuck Clark
Part of the SpringerBriefs in Astronomy book series (BRIEFSASTRON)


A major earthquake in China, a cyclone in Burma, a volcanic eruption in Chile; and that’s just this week’s havoc. Ongoing crises include melting Himalayan glaciers, persistent North American drought, Antarctic ice sliding into the sea, disappearing bees, and blooming algae. We have the capability, through remote sensing and data processing technology, to monitor such acute and chronic disasters in great detail. Is there a way of managing and interpreting such overwhelming detail in order to obtain global-scale context, reveal patterns, improve predictions, and mitigate problems? We would argue that the CSNB mapping technique, described in detail in the introductory chapters, is a tool that could provide such insight. Our approach assumes that nothing can happen ‘here’ without affecting what is happening ‘there’ on the Earth’s surface, whether we are talking about plate tectonics or major storm systems. This is not to denigrate but to supplement existing forecasting models with a tool to focus the global component. In CSNB, any set of identifiable boundaries can be selected as critical and used to define map edges. Thus, any hypothesis, based on the set of critical boundaries it predicts, may be evaluated and tested based on the shapes and relationships illustrated on resulting maps. We use examples from terrestrial tectonics and global current patterns.


Oceanic Crust Plate Tectonic Spreading Center Seafloor Spreading Continental Drift 
These keywords were added by machine and not by the authors. This process is experimental and the keywords may be updated as the learning algorithm improves.


  1. Ackerman, J.: New eyes on the oceans. Natl. Geogr. 198(4), 86–114 (2000)Google Scholar
  2. Clark, C.S.: Visual calculus or perceptual fribble? World maps with constant-scale natural boundaries: a novel projection method well suited to our era. Advances in Extraterrestrial Mapping, ISPRS WG-IV/7, 34, Lunar and Planetary Institute (2003)Google Scholar
  3. Lowman, P.D.: Exploring Space, Exploring Earth: New Understanding of the Earth from Space, p. 382. Cambridge University Press, Cambridge (2002)Google Scholar
  4. Whitmore, T.C.: Wallace’s Line and Plate Tectonics. Clarendon Press, Oxford (1981). 90 ppGoogle Scholar

Copyright information

© The Author(s) 2013

Authors and Affiliations

  • Pamela Elizabeth Clark
    • 1
  • Chuck Clark
    • 2
  1. 1.Institute of Astrophysics and Computational SciencesCatholic University of AmericaWashington, DCUSA
  2. 2.Chuck Clark, ArchitectAtlantaUSA

Personalised recommendations