Frequently Asked Questions

January Fossils provide a record of the history of life. Smith is known as the Father of English Geology. Our understanding of the shape and pattern of the history of life depends on the accuracy of fossils and dating methods. Some critics, particularly religious fundamentalists, argue that neither fossils nor dating can be trusted, and that their interpretations are better. Other critics, perhaps more familiar with the data, question certain aspects of the quality of the fossil record and of its dating. These skeptics do not provide scientific evidence for their views. Current understanding of the history of life is probably close to the truth because it is based on repeated and careful testing and consideration of data. The rejection of the validity of fossils and of dating by religious fundamentalists creates a problem for them: Millions of fossils have been discovered.

Oldest Homo sapiens fossils discovered

Acknowledgements Introduction his document discusses the way radiometric dating and stratigraphic principles are used to establish the conventional geological time scale. It is not about the theory behind radiometric dating methods, it is about their application, and it therefore assumes the reader has some familiarity with the technique already refer to “Other Sources” for more information. As an example of how they are used, radiometric dates from geologically simple, fossiliferous Cretaceous rocks in western North America are compared to the geological time scale.

To get to that point, there is also a historical discussion and description of non-radiometric dating methods.

has been prepared in order to put an end to the mentality that causes these fossils, that represent a complete response to Darwinism, to be hidden away, and that prevents them from being placed before the public.

Renaissance Now, let’s look at some specific examples. One type of atom that does not normally react is Neon. See the picture to the left. It already has the correct number of electrons in it’s outside electron layer so Neon does not react. Neon, along with Helium and Argon are known as non-reacting gasses because they do not need to react to be stable. Other types of atoms such as Hydrogen, Carbon, and Oxygen do not have the correct number of electrons to be stable by itself.

Instead they have to share electrons in molecules to get the correct number of electrons in their outside electron layer. Since we only have to look at the atom that is in the center of the molecule to find out it’s shape, we will concentrate only on Carbon and Oxygen. All the molecules illustrated on this page either have a Carbon or an Oxygen as the center atom.

Carbon will especially be of interest since Carbon is the center atom for all the different Amino Acids. Both Carbon and Oxygen have a deficiency.

Radiometric Dating and the Geological Time Scale

Evolved in Africa, now worldwide When Lived: About , years ago to present The species that you and all other living human beings on this planet belong to is Homo sapiens. During a time of dramatic climate change , years ago, Homo sapiens evolved in Africa. Like other early humans that were living at this time, they gathered and hunted food, and evolved behaviors that helped them respond to the challenges of survival in unstable environments.

Anatomically, modern humans can generally be characterized by the lighter build of their skeletons compared to earlier humans.

The standard approach to looking at fossils in the geological column is to assume that lower is older. Since the geologic column represents millions of years of Earth’s history, then obviously the fossils in each of the layers must be the same age as the layer in which they are found. What is especially interesting is that the fossils do appear to show a progression from the most “simple” of.

Earliest known Homo sapiens fossils discovered This is , years older than previously discovered fossils of Homo sapiens that have been securely dated. The discovery was presented in a study in the journal Nature on Wednesday. This marks the first discovery of such fossils in north Africa, and widens the “cradle of mankind” to encompass all of Africa, the researchers said. Previous finds were in south or east Africa. The fossils, including a partial skull and a lower jaw, belong to five different individuals including three young adults, an adolescent and a child estimated to be 8 years old.

Radiometric dating

Heating the stone tools zeroed out the electrical charge they had been carrying. That means any charge in the tools today would have been generated after they were buried, as the surrounding sediments bombarded the stone with natural radioactivity. The findings add Jebel Irhoud to a slim list of well-dated African fossil sites containing modern humans and their precursors. The find provides further evidence that at least two dramatically different species of hominins occupied Africa at the same time.

Find out more about Homo naledi.

Creation Versus Evolution: We compare the theory of evolution with the Bible’s creation account in easy-to-understand terms, using evidence from the fields of paleontology, geology, biology, and provide links and a bibliography for those who want to study both sides of the issue.

What about the fact that the “simple” organisms are buried in the lower levels and the more “complicated” ones are buried in the higher levels? Doesn’t this fact support the notion that simple organisms evolved into more and more complex organisms over time, with the more complex organisms buried and fossilized above the earlier and simpler life forms? Certainly this seems like a very logical assumption. But, things just aren’t that easy.

There are a number of potential problems with this interpretation of the fossil record. For example, it is interesting to note that some general kinds of fossilized creatures are very generally found in the same relative vertical orientation, with respect to each other in the fossil record, that they would have naturally been found in during life.

Single celled organisms make their first appearance in the lowest layers followed by multicelled ocean bottom-dwelling creatures like sponges and worms etc. Higher up come creatures like bony fishes, then land plants and animals, then birds and larger land animals. Of course, this is a very general pattern and does not explain why certain creatures that lived on the bottoms of oceans, like trilobites, make their first appearance in the Cambrian Ma while other creatures that live on ocean bottoms, like crabs and lobsters, don’t appear until the beginning of the Cretaceous Ma.

If the geologic column truly represents a series of closely spaced catastrophic burial events instead of long ages of time, how can this feature be explained? Certainly this seems like a difficult and rather mysterious problem for those, like myself, who might think to question the long age notion of the fossil record. At least a partial explanation might be found in the fairly recently discovered fact that at least some nested hierarchical patterns to the distribution of different populations both living and within the fossil record seem to be strongly related to ecological and population-size factors.

Radiocarbon dating

At the time that Darwin’s On the Origin of Species was published, the earth was “scientifically” determined to be million years old. By , it was found to be 1. In , science firmly established that the earth was 3. Finally in , it was discovered that the earth is “really” 4. In these early studies the order of sedimentary rocks and structures were used to date geologic time periods and events in a relative way.

Over the past 20 years, paleontologists have made tremendous fossil discoveries, including fossils that mark the growth of whales, manatees, and seals from land mammals and the origins of elephants, horses, and rhinos.

Important We believe any unbiased reader will realize that we were fair with our treatment of the two models in the table above. Yet, although the theory of evolution matches the facts in some cases, evolution is still an unproven theory. By now, you may believe it should be your first choice also. Unlike many others that preceded us, we attempted to find a clear defense of evolution for two reasons: To keep from being accused of bias.

To keep from making claims that someone could refute later. Even though there are a great number of claims in books and on the Internet, we could find no scientific, testable facts that support the theory of evolution. The best site we could find was at The University of California at Berkeley. If you are interested, click here to examine the scientific evidence recorded at UC Berkeley yourself.

It includes lots of pictures, links to other pages, and scientific names. The site is very interesting and informative. Yet, we could not find a listing of the provable, testable facts supporting evolution anywhere.

Radiometric Dating and the Geological Time Scale

My research focuses mainly on carnivore functional morphology. To date we have focused on using 3D dental microwear to evaluate the degree of hard object feeding in cats and bears. Directly linking radiocarbon ages with isotopic results permits the reconstruction of diet and ecology of the species and will help determine if they were influenced by changing climatic conditions over the past 50, years.

New specimens from a single deposit from Project 23 are currently being examined. Most of these insect species are still living today though not necessarily in southern California.

Radiocarbon dating (also referred to as carbon dating or carbon dating) is a method for determining the age of an object containing organic material by using the properties of radiocarbon, a radioactive isotope of carbon.. The method was developed in the late s by Willard Libby, who received the Nobel Prize in Chemistry for his work in It is based on the fact that radiocarbon (

Radioactive decay[ edit ] Example of a radioactive decay chain from lead Pb to lead Pb. The final decay product, lead Pb , is stable and can no longer undergo spontaneous radioactive decay. All ordinary matter is made up of combinations of chemical elements , each with its own atomic number , indicating the number of protons in the atomic nucleus. Additionally, elements may exist in different isotopes , with each isotope of an element differing in the number of neutrons in the nucleus.

A particular isotope of a particular element is called a nuclide. Some nuclides are inherently unstable. That is, at some point in time, an atom of such a nuclide will undergo radioactive decay and spontaneously transform into a different nuclide. This transformation may be accomplished in a number of different ways, including alpha decay emission of alpha particles and beta decay electron emission, positron emission, or electron capture.

Another possibility is spontaneous fission into two or more nuclides.

6 ways America’s national parks have dramatically shaped the history of science

A phenotypic characteristic, acquired during growth and development, that is not genetically based and therefore cannot be passed on to the next generation for example, the large muscles of a weightlifter. Any heritable characteristic of an organism that improves its ability to survive and reproduce in its environment. Also used to describe the process of genetic change within a population, as influenced by natural selection.

A graph of the average fitness of a population in relation to the frequencies of genotypes in it.

Articles home page Creation vs. Evolution 0. Introduction and table of contents The following is an organized presentation on the creation vs. evolution controversy.

A sedimentary rock is just what it sounds like: Sedimentary rocks can consist of sand, clay, chalk and fossils and as a marine geologist I find sedimentary rocks very fascinating! Some may think that sedimentary rocks is a bit dull since sedimentary rocks isn’t created by violent and exciting volcano eruptions from the Earths mantle like the igneous rocks.

No, sedimentary rocks have another type of fascinating origin and every single rock tells a story if you just know how to “read” the rock! That is one of the fascinating thing with sedimentary rocks! The other exciting part with sedimentary rocks is that they tell us about Earths history! I will tell you a little about how to do read the rocks and I hope it will help you to see sedimentary rocks in nature in a new way!

Every single particle in a sedimentary rock initially comes from a rock or as soil on land. By time, the rock is broken down into small particles by weathering and the small particles are transported away. Sometimes the transportation distance is long and sometimes shorter. And most sedimentary rocks consists of small particles that have a long and fascinating story to tell from their long journey behind them. Read on and you will know why and how!

Sediment First we need to make clear what sediment is!

Difference Between Relative and Absolute Dating

Commonly cited examples include horseshoe crabs , Ginkgo trees , hagfish and, perhaps the most famous of all, the coelacanths , a group of lobe finned fish with a very long evolutionary history of which two species still survive in the deep waters of the West Indian Ocean. A modern-day coelacanth Latimeria chalumnae Coelacanths have long been known from the fossil record with the oldest specimen dating back to the Devonian period, some million years ago.

They were however thought to have gone extinct, along with many other animals, in the end Cretaceous mass extinction event. That all changed one day in when a South African museum curator named Marjorie Courtenay-Latimer discovered a coelacanth amongst the catch of a local fisherman. The discovery was a sensation, a fish that had been thought to have been extinct had been rediscovered 65 million years later, it was not extinct!

Left: A bone block appearing to contain ichthyosaur bones and teeth has been polished rather than more respectfully prepared. The result is minimally informative and parts of the specimen have been lost. Better results can be achieved using an air-pen or an acid bath.

The four types of fossils are: There are six ways that organisms can turn into fossils, including: More rarely, fossils have been found of softer body tissues. Bones – these fossils are the main means of learning about dinosaurs. The fossilized bones of a tremendous number of species of dinosaurs have been found since , when the first dinosaur bone was discovered. Teeth and Claws – Sometimes a bit of a broken tooth of a carnivore is found with another dinosaur’s bones, especially those of herbivores.

Lots of fossilized teeth have been found, including those of Albertosaurus and Iguanodon. Eggs , Embryos , and Nests – Fossilized dinosaur eggs were first found in France in Many fossilized dinosaur eggs have been found, at over sites. Sometimes they have preserved parts of embryos, which can help to match an egg with a species of dinosaur.

Homo habilis

Written and designed by Roy Shepherd. Special thanks to my wonderful wife Lucinda Shepherd, friend Robert Randell and various experts for their support. Conserving Prehistoric Evidence Left: A bone block appearing to contain ichthyosaur bones and teeth has been polished rather than more respectfully prepared.

Homo habilis, (Latin: “able man” or “handy man”) extinct species of human, the most ancient representative of the human genus, Homo. Homo habilis inhabited parts of sub-Saharan Africa from roughly to million years ago (mya). In and the first fossils were discovered at Olduvai Gorge in northern discovery was a turning point in the science of.

Lava tubes form during volcanic eruptions, when the top of a lava flow cools and solidifies but hot melt continues to flow underneath. When lava drains from these tube-like conduits, an empty space is left underground. These tunnels and fissures often contain sediment with fossil remains of terrestrial vertebrates [2]. Here, small lakes and bogs, formed within inactive volcanic craters, can be found. The sediments filling the bottom of these small depressions contain fossil plant material [3, 4].

Rare, but sometimes found in these sediments, are skeletal fragments of marine and terrestrial vertebrates such as birds, lizards, and sea lions [1, 5, 7] Fig. Skeletal elements from carcasses can be incorporated in beach deposits and eventually become fossilized. Fossils collected from the lava tubes include tens of thousands of bones and bone fragments of birds, reptiles, and mammals, as well as shells of land snails [2, 8, 9].

Bones from larger organisms such as giant tortoises , on the other hand, represent animals that fell and died trapped in the tubes Fig. Fossil plant material recovered from bog and lake sediments mostly consists of microscopic pollen and spores [3, 4]. However, small-size macroscopic remains such as seeds and plant fragments have also been found [10]. Carcass of a cat found inside the lava tube connected to the opening illustrated in A. There are two approaches to dating a geological object, such as a fossil or a rock.

The first, called absolute dating, aims at assigning a numerical age to the object.

Relative and Absolute Dating