Biosphere - Research Article from World of Earth Science

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The biosphere is the space on and near Earth's surface that contains and supports living organisms and ecosystems. It is typically subdivided into the lithosphere, atmosphere, and hydrosphere. The lithosphere is the earth's surrounding layer composed of solid soil and rock, the atmosphere is the surrounding gaseous envelope, and the hydrosphere refers to liquid environments such as lakes and oceans, occurring between the lithosphere and atmosphere. The biosphere's creation and continuous evolution result from physical, chemical, and biological processes. To study these processes a multi-disciplinary effort has been employed by scientists from such fields as chemistry, biology, geology, and ecology.

The Austrian geologist Eduard Suess (1831–1914) first used the term biosphere in 1875 to describe the space on Earth that contains life. The concept introduced by Suess had little impact on the scientific community until it was resurrected by the Russian scientist Vladimir Vernadsky (1863–1945) in 1926 in his book, La biosphere...

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This section contains 985 words
(approx. 4 pages at 300 words per page)
Buy the Biosphere Encyclopedia Article
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Biosphere from Gale. ©2005-2006 Thomson Gale, a part of the Thomson Corporation. All rights reserved.