Five laws of relative dating
Three of these are known as Steno's principles, and a fourth observation, on crystals, is known as Steno's Law.The quotes given here are from the English translation of 1916.
INTRODUCTION Scientists have good evidence that the earth is very old, approximately four and one-half billion years old.This principle allows us to piece together the succession of fossil life that defines much of the geologic time scale. And we know of many more causes, from tectonics to intrusions, that can tilt and fold rocks."Materials forming any stratum were continuous over the surface of the Earth unless some other solid bodies stood in the way."This principle allowed Steno to link identical rocks on opposite sides of a river valley and deduce the history of events (mostly erosion) that separated them.Scientific measurements such as radiometric dating use the natural radioactivity of certain elements found in rocks to help determine their age.Scientists also use direct evidence from observations of the rock layers themselves to help determine the relative age of rock layers. Fw-300 #ya-qn-sort h2 /* Breadcrumb */ #ya-question-breadcrumb #ya-question-breadcrumb i #ya-question-breadcrumb a #bc .ya-q-full-text, .ya-q-text #ya-question-detail h1 html[lang="zh-Hant-TW"] .ya-q-full-text, html[lang="zh-Hant-TW"] .ya-q-text, html[lang="zh-Hant-HK"] .ya-q-full-text, html[lang="zh-Hant-HK"] .ya-q-text html[lang="zh-Hant-TW"] #ya-question-detail h1, html[lang="zh-Hant-HK"] #ya-question-detail h1 #Stencil .
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In 1669, Niels Stensen (1638-1686), better known then and now by his Latinized name Nicolaus Steno, formulated a few basic rules that helped him make sense of the rocks of Tuscany and the various objects contained within them.
His short preliminary work, (Provisional report on solid bodies naturally embedded in other solids), included several propositions that have since become fundamental to geologists studying all kinds of rocks.
With it we can untangle intricate sequences of geologic events such as faulting, folding, deformation, and emplacement of dikes and veins. It gave Steno a reliable, geometrical means of distinguishing minerals from each other as well as from rock clasts, fossils and other "solids embedded in solids." Steno did not call out his Law and his Principles as such.
His own ideas of what was important were quite different, but I think they are still well worth considering.
The module is an integrated unit which addresses the following National Science Education Standards: *Science as Inquiry: Students develop the abilities necessary to do scientific inquiry identify questions, design and conduct scientific investigations, use appropriate tools and technologies to gather, analyze and interpret data, think critically and logically to make the relationships between evidence and explanations, communicate results, and use mathematics in all aspects of scientific inquiry.