Questions tagged [earth-history]

Questions relating to Historical Geology.

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3
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1answer
211 views

How does water still exist on the Earth?

Almost all the theories that explain the origin of Earth says, it was way hot back then. That means It was in a lava state in its early days. Then gradually cooled down to the current state. If ...
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2answers
601 views

Were all of Earth's minerals created before Earth's formation, during, or after?

I've heard that during the accretion of proto-planets that formed the earth, 60 minerals were created through the reactions of atoms and molecules in the nebula. Do these first minerals still make up ...
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1answer
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If we assume the mega impact hypothesis for the formation of Moon, where on Earth is the impact point?

Given that Pangaea had C-shape can we assume that the point of impact was in the center of this C-shape? In modern world it would be under Tibet? Or should we assume the oldest shape of the ...
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What composition would the early cratons have? [closed]

I am trying to get into early-Earth geochemistry, and the cratons piqued my interest. They would need a very specific density to float, and the right heat resistance to not melt. What composition ...
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3answers
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Why silicon is abundant in earth surface?

What is the reason for having silicon in so large quantity on earth surface?
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3answers
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What is the age of the earth's oil?

Oil in the ground is found under the oceans and seas. It is made of dead fish. But from what period are those fish? I heard they are about 119 million years old. But fish exist much longer than that. ...
5
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0answers
39 views

Distribution of thermometric devices on earth

In complex climate models, measurements of Earth-based thermometers are used. What is their geographic distribution - historically? Does each measurement get equal weight?
6
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1answer
189 views

What caused the earth's climate to stabilise ~10 thousand years ago?

We can see that the last glacial period ended 12-10K years ago. Interestingly enough, this also appears to coincide with the rise of large human civilisations. My question is: What caused the earth'...
3
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1answer
107 views

Future super-continent

What will the earth look like when the continents recollide? What will the climate be like? Assume global warming has been taken care of.
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Pangaea - Why did all the land mass form in one area?

The thing I find most interesting about Pangaea is that, if all the landmasses were connected, it leaves a massive amount of uninterrupted ocean everywhere else. It seems to suggest that there is a ...
12
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3answers
5k views

Why is Earth's Core Iron?

The two major constituents of the Earth's core are iron and nickel. In documentaries and scientific conversations, iron gets more attention than nickel, probably because it makes up a bigger ...
6
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1answer
154 views

How did the intensity of Earth's magnetic field change through geological time?

Looking at the wikipedia article on the Earth's magnetic field, I see that its strength varies through time. How did Earth's magnetic field change throughout its history, from the beginning of the ...
6
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2answers
601 views

What was the likely composition of Earth's early crust (how did crustal composition evolve)?

Was the first crust entirely mafic (oceanic) crust which was later distilled via volcanic arcs along subduction zones to make felsic rocks or did the earth start with bits of felsic crust? Are the ...
5
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1answer
132 views

Why haven't weeds overtaken the entire planet?

Given how rapidly weed plants spread and grow, choking out all other plant life, how come after millions of years we haven't ended with forests full of thistle or pokeweed, as opposed to pines or oak ...
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2answers
342 views

Is this scientific explanation of The Bible flood accurate?

I googled "the flood and freshwater fish" and came up with this question Christianity StackExchange: How did Noah preserve fresh water fish?. The writer makes a lot of claims like how the salinity of ...
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4answers
842 views

Are craters on Earth covered by vegetation?

When you look at other planets and moons in our solar system most of them have lots of craters. If Earth had no vegetation and water would it also look like this image of Charon? Image Credit: NASA/...
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2answers
315 views

Have there ever been any islands that disappeared due to rising sea level?

With global warming comes rising sea levels. This has been going on for at least fifty years. So haven't there been some islands that have been swallowed by now? An island could be nothing more than ...
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2answers
149 views

Could the original H. naledi “burial chamber” have originally been at a shallower depth?

Homo naledi was a hominid that has recently made the news, in part because the discovery of a large number of fossils appears to suggest ritual "burials" by a species from 2.5 million years ago, ...
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1answer
128 views

Difference between the oxygen/$CO_2$ ratio during the period of the dinosaurs and the present

Here's the base of my question: Was volcanic activity more prevalent when the dinosaurs roamed? Is it true that during the time of the dinosaurs, both the oxygen requirements (by all living creatures ...
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2answers
597 views

Have the landmasses of North and South America ever been part of the same continent?

I know this question have been asked very often, but I could not find a proper answer around StackExchange, so I thought this might be a good place to ask: Have the landmasses of North and South ...
12
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1answer
703 views

For what percentage of the earth's history has there been permanent ice?

Wikipedia comments here that "Permanent ice is actually a rare phenomenon in the history of the Earth, occurring only during the 20% of the time that the planet is under an icehouse effect." A "...
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2answers
505 views

When was the last time there was a landlocked body of water bigger than the Caspian?

Was it the Mediterranean before it dried into small lakes? What was the biggest one before that?
5
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1answer
498 views

What is the earliest tropical cyclone in record?

The question is simple: what is the earliest tropical cyclone (hurricane or typhoon) described in the historical record?
12
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1answer
344 views

Did Jupiter really make Earth (in)habitable?

A new study by Batygyin and Laughlin suggest that a Jupiter migration toward the inner region of the Solar System during the early stages of system formation cleared the habitable region (Goldilocks ...
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1answer
210 views

Did an impact crater influence the formation of uranium deposits in South Australia?

As a supplementary question Did an impact crater cause the formation of the gas fields in north eastern South Australia . South Australia is a well documented uranium province. Could an impact crater, ...
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Did an impact crater cause the formation of the gas fields in north eastern South Australia

In the paper High Impact Reservoirs, the authors claim that impact craters have lead to both the creation and destruction of petroleum source rocks, reservoirs and traps. Recently it was announced ...
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4answers
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What was the first rock in the rock cycle?

I am an undergraduate student but I am a tutor at a High School, and one student asked me. Attempting to explain the rock cycle "if one rock turns into the other then which came first" my gut is ...
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2answers
282 views

Change in earth mass since the time of the dinosaurs

Is there a significant difference in the mass of the Earth between now and the time of the dinosaurs (250 - 75 million years ago)? I was just wondering if the force of gravity on dinosaurs would have ...
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1answer
127 views

How to measure the cycles of earth moving/rotation?

My knowledge of science is very basic, but after some research I have some knowledge, but I am still not clear with so many things regarding to this earth. I have read Laser's Measure the Earth's ...
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1answer
491 views

How was the Earth formed?

What events took place in our Solar System which led to formation of the Earth? I have heard from sources that a big giant star exploded and the Earth was formed. Is this true ?
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Why deep ocean didn't freeze during snowball Earth?

I know that at least twice in its history Earth was totally frozen. I also know that the last time it happened there were already life on Earth, and it survived. In deep water, under the ice, which ...
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1answer
256 views

Is there conclusive evidence for the Antarctic Circumpolar Current developing after the glaciation of Antarctica?

The Antarctic Circumpolar Current (ACC) is the continuous oceanic current that encircles the Antarctic continent, as is often explained in the literature as being the cause of the onset of glaciation ...
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2answers
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What is the tectonic setting for the formation of the Great Dividing Range in Australia?

Australia's Great Dividing Range is the largest mountain range on the continent, running down the length of the eastern part of the continent, as shown in the Geoscience Australia map as a dark line, ...
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1answer
125 views

What does geochemical data tell us about Earth's earliest palaeoclimatic conditions?

Given that the age of the oldest zircon samples are about 4.4 billion years old, and meteorites and other extraterrestrial samples can also give us some indication about the Earth's composition into ...
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1answer
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Why is the concept of “mass extinction” a relatively recent development in geology?

The concept of "mass extinctions", with its catastrophic connotations, is a relatively recent development in the geological sciences. It evolved in the early 1980s, driven by two landmark publications ...
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3answers
345 views

What is the age of the earliest traces of life on Earth?

In the article Oldest rocks, earliest life, heaviest impacts, and the Hadean–Archaean transition (Moorbath, 2005), the author states (based on previous referenced research) that the $\ce{^13C}$ ...
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103 views

Where did the energy released due to gravitational binding energy of the Earth go? [closed]

The gravitational binding energy of the Earth is $2×10^{32} J $, so the same amount of energy must have been released during the Earth's history. According to this and this, the current internal ...
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1answer
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Was volcanic activity more prevalent when the dinosaurs roamed?

Popular film culture often depicts much volcanic activity during the time of the dinosaurs. Assuming "time of the dinosaurs" as the Jurassic (200 million years ago) until the end of the Cretaceous (...
11
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1answer
220 views

What caused a fall in atmospheric oxygen about 1.9 billion years ago?

Using chromium isotopes geochemistry, Frei et al. 2009, describe in the article Fluctuations in Precambrian atmospheric oxygenation recorded by chromium isotopes that after the Great Oxidation Event (...
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5answers
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How do we know the asteroids formed at the same time as earth?

In continuation of the question Why is Earth's age given by dating meteorites rather than its own rocks?, what evidence do we have that the asteroids indeed formed at the same time as earth? Is there ...
12
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2answers
943 views

Have meteorites been found in the oldest sedimentary rocks?

Dropstones sometimes occur in sedimentary rocks. These are foreign rocks and boulders that happened to "drop" into a sediment and were fossilised when the sediment was lithified. (source: Michael C. ...
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3answers
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Why is Earth's age given by dating meteorites rather than its own rocks?

Reading a course on Precambrian, I read that: Earth Age (around 4.5 billion years) is dated thanks to the meteorites hitting Earth during its formation rather than the inner materials composing the ...
10
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1answer
229 views

'Late Veneer' on other planets

Is there any evidence of external material source events, like the 'Late Veneer' on other planets? Or is this theory specific just for Earth? Note, that this question may be related to How and why ...
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3answers
364 views

How do archaeologists address time dilation when analyzing carbon dating results?

It is a proven fact that the gravitational force exerted upon an object directly affects that objects experience of time; the greater the gravity, the slower time passes, and visa versa. While the ...
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2answers
676 views

Why are minerals found in “large” quantities and not scattered throughout the earth as individual atoms?

Heavier elements are created in stars. After stars die they scatter these heavier elements throughout the universe. These elements eventually gather to form planets. But why do we find "chunks" of ...
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4answers
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What is the origin of the dominant atmospheric nitrogen content in Earth's atmosphere?

Comparing the atmospheric compositions of Earth with our nearest neighbours: As the table shows, the Earth's atmospheric nitrogen concentration is 78%, compared to 3.8% for Venus and 2.7% for Mars ...
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1answer
1k views

How old is Casiquiare canal?

Casiquiare canal is the world's largest bifurcation. Since such a large bifurcation seems unlikely to be produced and even less likely to stay for centuries, I wonder how old it is and why all the ...
25
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1answer
632 views

How much have global GPP and biomass changed over Earth's history?

I'm curious about how much is known about this topic: how much has the total amount of life on Earth changed over the 4 billion years or so that it has existed on this planet? Are there estimates of ...
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0answers
63 views

How much does ocean cover percentage change between glacial periods? [duplicate]

Currently, oceans cover about 71% of the total area of Earth. Ice ages can cause this figure to fluctuate, by lowering the sea level and creating land bridges and other features. How much can this ...
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5answers
5k views

During the “Ice Ages” or “Snowball Earth” times, where was all the energy?

We often seem to accept the idea that there were periods of time in which the entire surface of Earth was frozen, for the most part. This implies that there were periods of time in which the entire ...