This quartz pebble conglomerate formed three billion years ago, but the zircon crystals in it are up to 4.276 billion years old, making them the oldest dated material on Earth. Zircons undergo uplift, erosion, and growth. Their cores are often older than the rocks in which they are found.
Donated by The Research School of Earth Sciences, Australian National University, Canberra, Australia
Topic: Earth Science
Subtopic: Minerals and Resources
Keywords: Earth (Planet)--Age, Earth (Planet)--History, Geology, Quartz, Zircon