Radiometric dating age of the earth
Fifty thousand years ago, a rock hurled down from space to form Meteor Crater in Arizona.
Shards of that asteroid have been collected from the crater rim and named for the nearby Canyon Diablo.
In the early 20th century, scientists refined the process of radiometric dating.
By studying other bodies in the solar system, scientists are able to find out more about the early history of the planet.The Canyon Diablo meteorite is important because it represents a class of meteorites with components that allow for more precise dating.In 1953, Clair Cameron Patterson, a renowned geochemist at the California Institute of Technology, measured ratios of lead isotopes in samples of the meteorite that put tight constraints on Earth's age.The nearest body to Earth, the moon, doesn't experience the resurfacing processes that occur across Earth's landscape.As such, rocks from early lunar history still sit on the surface of the moon.