MS Krishnan obtained his PhD degree (1924) from the University of London, UK. His specialization was in Geology. He was Assistant Superintendent and Superintendent geologist, Geological Survey of India; Curator, Indian Museum (1935-36); Assistant Director and Director, Geological Survey of India; and Director, Indian School of Mines, Dhanbad.
Academic and Research Achievements: Indian economic geology owes its development to Krishnan who was responsible for guiding large field-party surveys and training young geologists of the Geological Survey of India. He carried out pioneering work on the stratigraphical sequences of the Gangpur Series of rocks in which he could demarcate a definite stage, which was later named 'Gangpur Stage of Krishnan'. He also carried out many field investigations on economic mineral deposits of the former Madras Presidency. Furthermore, Krishnan investigated radioactive minerals and rare-earth minerals, which were to form the nucleus of the atomic minerals division of the Department of Atomic Energy. He authored Textbook on Geology of India and Burma, which is currently in its sixth edition.
Other Contributions: Krishnan played a key role in the nationalization of metallurgical coal in India. The UN report (1954) on the global ore resources had incorporated several important suggestions he had made. He served on the Editorial Board of Economic Geology and was on the INSA Council (1965-67).
Awards and Honours: Krishnan was a Fellow of Indian Academy of Sciences, Bangalore. He was General President of Indian Science Congress (1956); a Member of Geological Society of London (1939-41); American Institute of Mining and Metallurgical Engineers (1954-56). A Gold Medal of the Geographical Union has been instituted in his memory.