Department of Geophysics
The idea of introducing Geophysics as a subject of study in Andhra University was conceived during 1946, and the Department of Geophysics was started in 1949 to train students in two branches viz., (1) Meteorology and Oceanography and (2) Physics of Earth. It is not a mere coincidence that the Geological Survey of India had commenced extensive geophysical surveys for oil in the Cambay Basin a couple of years later in 1948. It signifies the vision of successive Vice-chancellors of the University to initiate new courses to provide trained manpower to cater to the needs of the Nation. Although Benaras Hindu University has the credit of starting for the first time in the country a full fledged M.Sc. course in Geophysics. Consistent with the healthy practices that the University had followed, the Department was initially headed, in succession, for proper orientation and direction by retired Directors of Indian Meteorological Department Dr. N.K.Sur and Dr. S.R.Savur, and later by Prof. M.S.Krishan, the renowned geologist and retired Director of Geological Survey of India. The erstwhile Department of Geophysics was bifurcated into Departments of Geophysics and Department of Meteorology and Oceanography in 1962, and Prof. B.S.R.Rao, who was deputed and trained at the Imperial College, London for the purpose was appointed Head Of the Department of Geophysics.
The curriculum of the geophysics course has always been a balanced blend of topics concerning structure and composition of the earth and exploration methods for locating oil, minerals and water. When a compromise had to be made, the tilt was always towards the latter. When it has been increasingly realized that root cause for the dynamics of the earth crust lies with the oceans, the University was prompt in introducing the M.Sc. course in Marine Geophysics in 1976, again for the first time in India.
Hydrology has always been a part of the syllabus of the geophysics course. Frequent failures of monsoon, increased dependence on ground water even for agriculture and unpredicted cyclones every year brought out the need for a better management of water resources and identification of ground water at larger depths. A part-time PG diploma course in "Hydrology and Ground Water Exploration was accordingly during 1980, which was upgraded to M.Sc. course in Hydrology in 1985.
Department of Geophysics
Andhra University, Visakhapatnam
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