Benjamin F. Datillo, assistant professor of geosciences, has been at IPFW since 2007. His research focuses on the “temporal resolution of the geologic record of the earth’s history.” In other words, he researches the “fuzzy” history of earth by learning what he can from the layers of rock. He studies the eras before the dinosaurs lived through the time when Homo sapiens appear.
His interest in geosciences started as a high school student when a graduate student from his church took him on as an unofficial assistant doing research on fossils. That curiosity and brief research in fossils led into an interest about the history behind layers of rock that form the fossils themselves. Today, his research extends into areas far beyond the history of fossils—investigating the earth’s past environment and looking for specific minerals like phosphate in the rock layers are two main directions. He is currently seeking grant funding from National Geographic Foundation to research living seashells that are similar to brachiopods, a fossil that has long held a special place in Dattilo’s research. He is also seeking funding from the National Science Foundation to continue his research on looking for phosphate. To learn more about Dattilo’s research or his many publications, visit his IPFW webpage.