Relative age dating methods

Results from different techniques, often measured in rival labs, continually confirm each other.

Every few years, new geologic time scales are published, providing the latest dates for major time lines.

All these labors have not led to a single unexpected finding such as a human fossil from the time of the dinosaurs, or a Jurassic dinosaur in the same rocks as Silurian trilobites.

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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: Fossil sequences were recognized and established in their broad outlines long before Charles Darwin had even thought of evolution.

A key point is that it is no longer necessary simply to accept one chemical determination of a rock’s age.

Age estimates can be cross-tested by using different isotope pairs.

Other critics, perhaps more familiar with the data, question certain aspects of the quality of the fossil record and of its dating.

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