Department of Geology

Geology is the study of the Earth. It is a field-oriented, multi disciplinary science, which investigates the properties of the earth and its substances. It gives an insight into the 4.5 billion years old history of the Earth going all the way back to the formation of the solar system, and into the processes that are acting upon it even today. It deals with some of society's most important problems, such as energy, water and mineral resources viz. coal, oil and natural gas; the environment; climate change; and natural hazards like landslides, volcanoes, earthquakes, floods and tsunamis. By studying the history, composition, changes that occur on the earth, geologists foresee how events, processes of the past influence the future.

The subject is surprisingly relevant and important for a wide range of exciting careers. Geology graduates stand a good chance of entering professions directly related to their degree, which can range from the groundwater industry to oil, gas and petroleum companies to the construction industry. Addressing the issues pertinent to Environmental geology like combating the effects of climate change, maximising water supplies or mitigating the impact of natural calamities and geological investigations for major civil structures are among the roles to which Geology graduates are particularly suited. Geologists also stand a good chance of gaining employment overseas, if travelling appeals to the individual who wish to take up this course for study.

About the Department

This department was started in the year 1949 with under graduate programme in Geology under the invaluable technical expertise offered by Prof. P.Muthusamy Iyer, the doyen of Geology in Tamil Nadu during yester years. It is the second oldest one among all the departments of Geology in Tamil Nadu. It has produced very eminent geologists who occupied/occupy high positions in various departments like Geological Survey of India, Oil and Natural Gas Corporation, Coal India Limited, Universities, Colleges, Mines, Groundwater Board etc. Besides professional geologists, the department has also shaped many illustrious personalities from all walks of life; Vice chancellor, bureaucrats, businessmen, politician, etc. to name a few. The department was elevated as Post Graduate and Research Department from the academic year 2012-13 onwards. The department is keeping a fabulous geological museum on par with international standard with rare collection of minerals, rocks and fossils of more than 3000 specimens from different parts of the world like USA, Germany, Australia, South Africa, etc. thanks to the yeoman service of the great philanthropist and founder of this college Dr.RM. Alagappa Chettiar who took meticulous effort to establish this museum.

The department has two modern laboratories with well furnished both field and laboratory equipment like Brunton and Clinometer compasses, Auto level, GARMIN and MEGALLEN GPS, imported and Indian made monocular and trinocular microscopes of Lieca, Lawrance & Mayo, OPTIKA, CENSIKO make for studying minerals, rocks and ores; stereo zoom microscopes, and phase contrast microscopes for studying micro fossils, spores, pollens and diatoms; hand held microscopes for observing minute surface features of minerals, rocks and fossils, object visualiser, computers, data output and photocopying devices, audio visual equipments and public address system. Well equipped exclusive laboratory for Sedimentological analysis and Remote Sensing and GIS laboratory for processing of aerial and satellite data with higher end state-of-the-art processor based hp computer are the cynosure of the department.

The department maintains a separate library, besides the central library, and periodically updates the stock of books. It has a whopping collection of more than 2500 text and reference books in more than 50 titles in addition to multitude of back volumes of international publications i.e. Nature, Science, American Journal of Science, Economic Geology, Geochimica et Cosmochimica acta, Geological Society of America Bulletin and The American Mineralogist. The back volumes of National publications available in the department include Indian Minerals, Indian Mineralogists, Mineral Information Services, Global Mining and Metallurgical Society of India and Journal of the Geological Society of India. The department is currently receiving 6 research journals viz. Journal of the Geological Society of India, Journal of the Indian Association of Sedimentologists, Indian Journal of Geomorphology, The Indian Mineralogist, Journal of Applied Geochemistry and Current Science. Further, everyone can access and download the e-contents of books and journals through UGC’s INFLIBNET-N LIST e-resources from central library.

The department is also engaged in research aside teaching. Within last nine years, three major and minor research projects to the tune of about 70 lakhs have been successfully completed by obtaining grants from Indian National Centre for Ocean Information Services; a unit of Ministry of Earth Sciences, Department of Science and Technology and University Grants Commission. Currently, five research scholars are on the roll of Ph.D. programme working on thrust areas like storm and tsunami deposits, hydrogeology and hydro geochemistry, natural resources management through remote sensing and GIS and application of hyper spectral remote sensing in the exploration of radioactive coastal placers. The department used to conduct seminar/workshop, awareness programme, invited lecture sessions by eminent scholar from various fields of Geology frequently alongside the regular academic programme.