By:Daniel J. Peppe(Department of Geology, Baylor University)&Alan L. Deino(Berkeley Geochronology Center)©2013centregalilee.com Education


You are watching: Radiometric dating does not usually work with sedimentary rocks because they

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Citation:Peppe,D.J.&Deino,A.L.(2013)Dating Rocks and Fossils using Geologic Methods.centregalilee.com education Knowledge4(10):1
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Using relative and also radiometric date methods, geologists are able come answer the question: exactly how old is this fossil?

Despite seeming favor a relatively stable place, the Earth\"s surface ar has adjusted dramatically end the past 4.6 exchange rate years. Mountains have been built and also eroded, continents and oceans have moved an excellent distances, and the earth has fluctuated native being very cold and almost completely covered through ice come being very warm and also ice-free. These transforms typically take place so progressively that they are barely detectable end the expectancy of a person life, yet also at this instant, the Earth\"s surface is moving and changing. As these changes have occurred, organisms have actually evolved, and remnants the some have actually been preserved as fossils.

A fossil have the right to be learned to determine what type of biology it represents, just how the biology lived, and also how it was preserved. However, by itself a fossil has little definition unless the is put within part context. The age of the fossil must be determined so it have the right to be compared to various other fossil types from the very same time period. Expertise the ages of related fossil species helps scientists item together the evolutionary background of a group of organisms.

For example, based on the primate fossil record, scientists know that living primates developed from fossil primates and also that this evolutionary history took tens of countless years. By compare fossils of various primate species, scientists can examine how features adjusted and exactly how primates progressed through time. However, the age of every fossil primate demands to be determined so that fossils the the very same age uncovered in various parts of the world and fossils of various ages can be compared.

There are three basic approaches that allow scientists to day geological materials and also answer the question: \"How old is this fossil?\" First, the relative age of a fossil deserve to be determined. Family member dating put geologic events in chronological order there is no requiring that a specific numerical period be assigned to every event. Second, that is possible to recognize the numerical period for fossils or planet materials. Numerical periods estimate the date of a geological event and also can sometimes reveal quite specifically when a fossil types existed in time. Third, magnetism in rocks have the right to be supplied to estimate the period of a fossil site. This method uses the orientation of the Earth\"s magnetic field, which has adjusted through time, to determine ages for fossils and rocks.