Relative age dating rocks

Absolute dating places events or rocks at a specific time.

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Development of the geologic time scale and dating of formations and rocks relies upon two fundamentally different ways of telling time: relative and absolute.

Relative dating places events or rocks in their chronologic sequence or order of occurrence.

If a geologist claims to be 45 years old, that is an absolute age.

Superposition: The most basic concept used in relative dating is the law of superposition.

Many sections of the Wasatch fault disturb or crosscut the Provo shoreline, showing that faulting occurred after the lake dropped below this shoreline which formed about 13,500 years ago.

As this example illustrates determining the age of a geologic feature or rock requires the use of both absolute and relative dating techniques.Relative dating techniques provide geologists abundant evidence of the incredible vastness of geologic time and ancient age of many rocks and formations.However, in order to place absolute dates on the relative time scale, other dating methods must be considered.Geologists generally know the age of a rock by determining the age of the group of rocks, or formation, that it is found in.The age of formations is marked on a geologic calendar known as the geologic time scale.Inclusions: Inclusions, which are fragments of older rock within a younger igneous rock or coarse-grained sedimentary rock, also facilitate relative dating.

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