Science, Medicine & Mathematics
Published scientific literature consists of papers and articles, patents, reports, government documents, and books, among other formats. Documenting experimentation and discovery in disciplines ranging from chemistry to physics, from mathematics to medicine, this literature is worth keeping as it preserves research records and enables future generations of scientists to build upon discoveries dating back centuries. Special Collections also preserves manuscripts and archival material, including field notes and other data recorded by scientists and mathematicians in the course of their research. Whether knowledge is acquired in the laboratory, by chance, or through other means, the course of action or study that informed conclusions may also be used to inform future studies. For example, scientific literature in disciplines such as astronomy helps inform the future, giving scientists the ability to predict such natural phenomena as lunar and solar eclipses, comet sightings, and solar flares.