The Earth’s oldest fossil?

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The uncertainty of science: Geologists this week announced the discovery of what they think is the Earth’s oldest fossil, approximately 3.7 billion years old.

While the press as usual is going gaga over this announcement, it should be noted that many others in the field have expressed significant doubts.

But the discovery involves some of the most physically tortured rocks on Earth, which have been squeezed and heated over billions of years as crustal plates shifted. The pressure and heat recrystallizes the rocks, erasing much of the fine-scale detail that researchers normally use to identify fossilized stromatolites — so the work is already triggering heated debate. “I’ve got 14 queries and problems that need addressing before I’ll believe it,” says Roger Buick, a geobiologist at the University of Washington in Seattle.


  • Localfluff

    I remember this speculative discovery from last year. Not fossils, but identified as the product of life by carbon isotope dating, puts origin of life as early as 4.1 billion years. Not well confirmed that biology is the cause, but it doesn’t seem to be far out.

  • Phill O

    Carbon isotope dating is good to about 50,000 years at best due to the relatively short half life of C14.

    Dating is speculative at best and depends upon the theory people adhere to.

  • Localfluff

    They measured carbon-13 which is radioactively stable (so I don’t know how that helps).

  • Dwight Huth

    Proxima Centauri is older than our Sun at 4.85 billion years old compared to our Sun that is 4.6 billion years old. That is a difference of our Sun being 250 million years younger than Proxima Centauri. Two hundred and fifty million years after Proxima Centauri was born our Sun was born.

    Our Sun which provided solar energy and elements that spurred life here on Earth.

    Starting with each planet here are their ages compared to our Sun’s age.

    Mercury – 4.503 billion years – 97 million years younger
    Venus – 4.503 billion years – 97 million years younger
    Earth – 4.543 billion years – 67 million years younger
    Mars – 4.503 billion years – 97 million years younger
    Jupiter – 4.503 billion years – 97 million years younger
    Saturn – 4.503 billion years – 97 million years younger
    Uranus – 4.503 billion years – 97 million years younger
    Neptune – 4.503 billion years – 97 million years younger
    Pluto – ?

    The age difference of Earth is most likely attributed to the fact that science is able to determine the age of Earth better than other planets due to years of studying samples and radioactive decay found in those samples.

    Approxiamtely 300 billion years after Proxima Centauri was born the planets in the Sol System were born 97 million years after our Sun was born 250 million years after Proxima Centauri.

    The interesting question is; what could have caused our Sun to be born 250 million years after Proxima Centauri? Was it a rupture thate caused the Big Bang to take place? Or was our Sun born from Big Bang ejecta still traveling through space?

    If our Sun was born due to rupture in space-time seeing as how Proxima Centauri is only 4.2 ly away the light from our Sun would have taken 4.2 ly to reach the Proxima Centauri system and might augment the solar energy that is needed by life on Earth possibly allowing life to exist.

    With our Sun possibly being born from a rupture in space time the explosion would have sent a large amount of ejecta hurlting towards the Proxima Centauri system tht because life exists on Earth the same life building components might have been carried with an explosion to any of the planets orbiting Proxima Centauri.

    If Sun was born of Big Bang ejecta that passed by the Proxima Centauri system before settling into the shell’s center then life building material might have been trapped on the planets in Proxima Centauri as well.

    What I have noticed from life in general is this. All life is born within the womb. A womb is a protective shell. A woman’s womb, the shell of an egg or the slimy goop that protects critters like tadpoles. They are all a shell that protects and promotes life from within. Some life doesn’t make it but that is the design of the Universe and how the Universe interacts with the womb and reproduction. If we look at the closet planets to Earth out to a distance of 50 ly there is a trait. The farther we get away from Earth the solar systems become relatively close to one and each other basically forming the shell of an egg or the womb around the Earth. The outer planets from zero to 50 ly would form The Shell or Womb of Life as I call it and would be similar to the egg of the woman that sperm found and then impregnated.

    When looking for solar systems that might have life in them I suggest looking for signs of shell solar systems tht have a lot of planets in the system and are packed relatively close together that would create the shell or womb that would protect the planet with life on it at the center from natural space phenoms like asteroids, comets radiation, etc.

    I would be almost certain that if you studied the layers of the goop inside of a womb around a fetus that the layers distance to each new layer should coincide with the distances from Earth to each solar system within a 50 ly distance from Earth.

  • wayne

    Dwight Huth–
    I’m confused as to what is your main point. (You’re losing me with the “space-time ruptures.”) Please expand slightly.

    My intent is not to pick apart your post, but I would like to clarify two points–

    Our Sun & Planets, are made up of material that was, in part, previously inside older stars that formed & eventually exploded, before our Sun formed.
    Stars can produce all the Elements but they don’t always do so; they can “burn” Elements up to Iron, all the other Elements are created when the star explodes, and are spewed into the surrounding space.
    (one last point; “There is no center of the Universe, and our location isn’t at the center. On large enough scales, the Universe is isotropic & homogenous.” and… Space appears to be flat to a high degree of certainty.)

    Proxima Centauri is 4 light-years away from us, but it’s not 4 light-years further away, from the “origin point.” (there is no “center” of the Universe. There is no inherent reason stars near or far from us, should necessarily be older or younger, just on that alone.)

    tangentially- I suspect you might enjoy these two lectures–

    and this rather technical one– (1 of 10 total for the class) (lots of Maths)

    Cosmology | Lecture 1
    Dr. Susskind at Stanford

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