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Tom Jordan has made a fundamental contribution to our understanding of the grandest- scale problems of the earth's tectonics by stimulating our consciousness about the deeper part of continents. He has stimulated not only seismologists and other geophysicists but also geochemists by introducing the idea of the continental tectosphere.

This idea, of which the origin can be traced to his Ph.D. thesis, has given a unity to his impressive body of work accomplished over the past decade employing a variety of approaches ranging from mathematical to geochemical. It is rare that a scientist at such an early stage of his career conceives an original working hypothesis which then keeps him productive, diversified, and developing consistently over a decade.