Gutenberg , Beno
(1889–1960) German–American geologist
Gutenberg was educated at the Technical University in his native city of Darmstadt and at the University of Göttingen, where he obtained his PhD in 1911. He then taught at the University of Freiburg becoming professor of geophysics in 1926. He emigrated to America in 1930, taking a post at the California Institute of Technology, and later served as director of the seismological laboratory (1947–58).
In 1913 Gutenberg suggested a structure of the Earth that would explain the data on earthquake waves. It was known that there were two main types of waves: primary (P) waves, which are longitudinal compression waves, and secondary (S) waves, which are transverse shear waves. On the opposite side of the Earth to an earthquake, in an area known as the shadow zone, no S waves are recorded and the P waves, although they do appear, are of smaller amplitudes and occur later than would be expected. Gutenberg proposed that the Earth's core, first identified by Richard Oldham in 1906, is liquid, which would explain the absence of S waves as, being transverse, they cannot be transmitted through liquids. Making detailed calculations he was able to show that the core ends at a depth of about 1800 miles (2900 km) below the Earth's surface where it forms a marked discontinuity, now known as the Gutenberg discontinuity, with the overlying mantle. Its existence has been confirmed by later work including precise measurements made after underground nuclear explosions.
In collaboration with Charles Richter, Gutenberg produced a major study, On Seismic Waves (1934–39), in which, using large quantities of seismic data, they were able to calculate average velocity distributions for the whole of the Earth.

Scientists. . 2011.

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  • GUTENBERG, BENO — (1889–1960), geophysicist. Born in Darmstadt, from 1912 to 1923 Gutenberg was assistant at the International Seismological Bureau at Strasbourg. He was then appointed teacher at Frankfurt University, where he became professor in 1926. In 1930 he… …   Encyclopedia of Judaism

  • Gutenberg, Beno — ▪ American seismologist born June 4, 1889, Darmstadt, Ger. died Jan. 25, 1960, Los Angeles, Calif., U.S.       American seismologist noted for his analyses of earthquake waves (seismic wave) and the information they furnish about the physical… …   Universalium

  • Beno Gutenberg — Pour les articles homonymes, voir Gutenberg. Beno Gutenberg (4 juin 1889 25 janvier 1960) est un géologue et sismologue allemand de la première moitié du XXe siècle. Biographie Cett …   Wikipédia en Français

  • Beno Gutenberg — (auch: Benno, * 4. Juni 1889 in Darmstadt, Deutschland; † 25. Januar 1960 in Pasadena, USA) war ein deutscher Seismologe, der mit seinem Lebenswerk entscheidend zum heutigen Verständnis des Erdaufbaus beigetragen hat. Inhaltsverzeichnis 1 Leben 1 …   Deutsch Wikipedia

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  • Beno — ist die Kurzform des Vornamens Benedikt. Bekannte Namensträger: Beno († nach 1098), schismatischer Kardinal Beno Eckmann (1917 2008), schweizerischer Mathematiker Beno Gutenberg (1889 1960), deutscher Seismologe Beno Lapajne (* 1973),… …   Deutsch Wikipedia

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  • Beno Gutenberg — (4 de junio de 1889 25 de enero de 1960), sismólogo alemán que hizo varias contribuciones importantes a la ciencia. Colega de Charles Francis Richter en el Instituto Tecnológico de California y colaborador en el desarrollo de la escala de Richter …   Enciclopedia Universal

  • Beno Gutenberg — Infobox Scientist name = Beno Gutenberg box width = image width =150px caption = Beno Gutenberg birth date = June 4, 1889 birth place = Darmstadt death date = January 25, 1960 death place = residence = citizenship = nationality = Germany… …   Wikipedia

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