Relative age dating lab answers
Geologists were beginning to accept the views of Hutton that the Earth is unimaginably ancient.
[*In part, this estimate is so low because these early geologists did not recognize that unconformities--which represent missing units of time, often caused by erosion--are rampant in the rock record, as well as the fact that some metamorphic rocks were once sedimentary, and thus left out of their calculations.]What key discovery, then, allowed geologists to begin assigning absolute age dates to rocks and ultimately discover the age of the Earth? of some isotopes of elements that occur naturally in rocks.
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For example, some geologists observed how long it took for a given amount of sediment (say, a centimeter of sand) to accumulate in a modern habitat, then applied this rate to the total known thickness of sedimentary rocks.