Hey, I know that this is a dinosaur website, but you can't study dinosaurs without knowing some geology. However geology in itself is a huge topic so I cannot hope to teach you much on this website. What I have done is include some interesting geological snippets and a history of the quest to find the age of the Earth, so have a read and let me know what you think.
Barberton has some of the oldest rocks on Earth. And they are the best preserved. And in those rocks lies the first evidence for a moon, plate tectonics and ancient, unicellular life. Earth scientists come from all over the world to see these rocks, so why not join the adventure. For more click here
Vredeford Dome is the largest and most ancient meteorite impact crater ever found on Earth. And we are very happy that the impact took place 2 billion years ago, for if it were to happen now, our world would never be the same again. So read more here about how this 10 km wide asteroid made its mark on Planet Earth.
James Hutton is the acknowledged father of modern geology, so read about how he came to his his view of how the world worked, and how he totally changed the way we view our world. And then there is the story about the first geological map and how William Smith mapped Britain. Read more here.
Bishop Ussher, by studying the book of Genesis and a whole bunch of other ancient documents set the date, and time, of creation at 6 pm on Saturday, October 22, 4004 BC. We may well pour scorn on this date but there are those who still subscribe to this improbably precise reckoning and it may still be seen in the margins of some old bibles printed around the turn of the last century. Read more here on how he arrived at this incredibly precise reckoning of the moment when it all began.
It was a bad time for liberal thinkers. Galileo had recently been arrested and forced to recant his heretical views that the Earth went around the Sun. Descartes’ view of the world was essentially that a few simple laws governed the universe, and these laws were what created the complex world around us. Read more here about how the great thinkers of their time brought on a quiet revolution.
“Pat, you just go in and get an iron meteorite – I’ll get it for you. We’ll get the lead out of the iron meteorite. You measure its isotopic composition and you stick it into the equation. And you’ll be famous, because you have will have measured the age of the Earth.”
It took Patterson 7 years to build a completely lead free laboratory and to obtain a result, which dated the Earth at 4550 million years. After three hundred years we had at last a date for the beginning of the World. And that figure still stands to this day. Follow the drama here.