How do we know the age of the Earth?

Discussion in 'Earth Science' started by Saint, Apr 22, 2017.

  1. Saint Valued Senior Member

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    How do we know the age of the Earth?
    Use Carbon 14 to test?
     
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  3. Xelasnave.1947 Valued Senior Member

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    From a goggle.
    Based on the very old zircon rock from Australia we know that theEarth is at least 4.374 billion years old. But it could certainly be older. Scientists tend to agree that our little planet is around 4.54 billion years old—give or take a few hundred million.May 16, 2014
    How Do We Know the Earth Is 4.6 Billion Years Old? | Smart News ...

    https://www.google.com.au/url?sa=t&source=web&rct=j&url=http://www.smithsonianmag.com/smart-news/how-do-we-know-earth-46-billion-years-old 180951483/&ved=0ahUKEwie59ixnbfTAhVGKJQKHf2iDTkQFggnMAI&usg=AFQjCNHI4kFvi8axlnB6YEffEfb2pZL3EQ
     
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  5. Xelasnave.1947 Valued Senior Member

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    I don't seem to be able to get that link to work so you will have to take it simply as an acknowledgment that it not my words.
    Alex
     
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  7. Xelasnave.1947 Valued Senior Member

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    I suppose the next question is how do we date the zircon rock.
    Alex
     
  8. Michael 345 Valued Senior Member

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    Nice restaurant and a bunch of flowers?

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  9. Seattle Valued Senior Member

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    Not carbon but uranium dating.
     
  10. Saint Valued Senior Member

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    Is it based on the half life of uranium?
     
  11. iceaura Valued Senior Member

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  12. DaveC426913 Valued Senior Member

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    This bears repeating.

    Like with a lot of astrophysical science, no one measurement is considered certain.

    What happens is, we have multiple techniques that provide ranges - they each individually put a constraint on the age - either 'no younger than' or 'no older than' - or, sometimes, both.
    So, one method might constrain the Earth to be, say, no younger than 4 billion years, but could be older, whereas another method might say no older than 5 billion years, but could be younger.

    Then we use other methods that further narrow it. when we get a half dozen methods that all agree, we conclude that we have a pretty good idea of the Earth's age.

    But it is always changing by a little. A few million years either way, as we refine our tests.

    Those constraints still apply though. The Earth's age will never be 3 billion years, or 7 billion years. We're just fine-tuning it now.
     
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  13. origin Trump is the best argument against a democracy. Valued Senior Member

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    I think that is a nice simple overview of how the age of the earth is determined.
     
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  14. Michael 345 Valued Senior Member

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    A clear case of KISSES

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  15. DaveC426913 Valued Senior Member

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    Yeah but it'll fall on deaf eyes.

    Saint will just dismiss it as sciencey-double-talk and then assert that we're all evil.
     
  16. timojin Valued Senior Member

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    We just don't know, we speculate as if we really know
     
  17. origin Trump is the best argument against a democracy. Valued Senior Member

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    Sure we do: 4.54 +/- 0.05 billion years.
    It is not just speculation.

    Perhaps you should stick to posting in the religion section?
     
  18. timojin Valued Senior Member

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    You can live in your fantasy , if it makes you happy . thinking that we know. Watch out our knowledge might change within one or more years.
     
  19. Michael 345 Valued Senior Member

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    6,000 years because some old book says so???

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  20. exchemist Valued Senior Member

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    It does not seem to be fantasy that the ratios of lead to uranium in the oldest minerals suggest an age of >4 bn years. Or do you think this has been made up? Details here: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Age_of_the_Earth

    Don't forget we are in the hard science sections here. So if you claim it is fantasy, you should be prepared to offer some evidence for your contention.

    Incidentally if your religious convictions are the stumbling block here, you might find the way this link approaches the subject more appealing: http://godandscience.org/youngearth/age_of_the_earth.html
     
    Last edited: Apr 28, 2017
  21. DaveC426913 Valued Senior Member

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    What exactly makes you think we don't have a good handle on the age of the Earth?
    What evidence or argument do you have that our number is not accurate?
     
  22. timojin Valued Senior Member

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  23. exchemist Valued Senior Member

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    Yes, that is 2 copies of what I wrote.
     
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