In either case, the inclusions had to be present before they could be included in the younger rock, therefore, the inclusions represent fragments of an older rock.
This principle is often useful for distinguishing between a lava flow and a sill.
From the beginning of this course, we have stated that the Earth is about 4.6 billion years old.
Thus, we can deduce that the mudstone and shale are older than the rhyolite dike.
But, since the rhyolite dike does not cut across the shale, we know the shale is younger than the rhyolite dike.
The goal of this lecture is come to come to a scientific understanding of geologic time and the age of the Earth.
In order to do so we will have to understand the following: To better understand these concepts, let's look at an archeological example: Imagine we are a group of archeologists studying two different trash pits recently discovered on the Tulane University campus and at the Audubon Zoo (where they all aksed for you).
Thus, in a sequence of layers that have not been overturned by a later deformational event, the oldest layer will be on the bottom and the youngest layer on top.
This is the same principle used to determine relative age in the trash pits discussed previously.By carefully digging, we have found that each trash pit shows a sequence of layers.Although the types of trash in each pit is quite variable, each layer has a distinctive kind of trash that distinguishes it from other layers in the pits.Principles of Stratigraphy Stratigraphy is the study of strata (sedimentary layers) in the Earth's crust.Geologist in the 1800s worked out 7 basic principles of stratigraphy that allowed them, and now us, to work out the relative ages of rocks.The Grand Canyon is particularly good for this because different sedimentary rocks have different colors.