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101 years of Geochronology and the EARTHTIME revolution (2003 to present)

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In 1913, Frederick Soddy’s research on the fundamentals of radioactivity led to the discovery of “isotopes.” Later that same year, Arthur Holmes published his now famous book The Age of the Earth, in which he applied this new science of radioactivity to the quantification of geologic time. Combined, these two landmark events did much to establish the field of “isotope geochronology”. In this talk I will outline the developments in geochronologic methods over the past 101 years with an emphasis on the past decade which has witnessed a renewed effort on improving the quantification of purported high-accuracy systems (U-Pb, 40Ar/39Ar). These improvements have been made concurrent with their application to inform a number of geological topics which will be used to illustrate the need for such efforts.

This talk is part of the Sedgwick Club talks series.

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