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Stones centenarians were found on the shores of Hudson Bay

September 26 2008
09:20

Researchers have discovered on the shores of Hudson Bay (Canada), the oldest rocks on Earth have arisen about 4.28 billion years ago, which pushes for 300 million years into the past age of the oldest known terrestrial rocks geologists. Message on the opening, which may shed light on the era of the birth of our planet, published in the journal Science.

According to modern concepts, the age of our planet is about 4.54 billion years old. Previously considered the most ancient rocks - gneiss, are also found in Canada - 4.03 billion years old.

Authors of the paper, the geologists of the Canadian University of Quebec at Montreal, McGill University and the Carnegie Institution of Washington, investigated the so-called greenstone belt Nuvvuagituk in northern Quebec, on the shores of Hudson Bay, 40 kilometers from the Eskimo settlement Inukyuak (Inukjuak). Geologists in 2001 determined that the rocks in this area have a considerable age.

Pinpoint it helped radioisotope method - measuring the amount of the radioactive element neodymium-142 and samarium, the researchers concluded that they were dealing with the oldest rocks on Earth. These rocks, called "psevdoamfibolity" may be remnants of the primary crust, separated from the mantle after her birth, in katarheyskuyu geological epoch.

"Our discovery not only opens the door to further explore the secrets of the ancient history of Earth - geologists now have a new starting point for research on when and how did life, what was the atmosphere, and when the first continent formed," - notes the study's lead author, Jonathan O ' Neil (Jonathan O'Neil) from McGill University.

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