Even under ultra high-temperature metamorphic conditions exceeding 1200°C zircon maintains its lead content accumulated during radioactive decay of uranium and thorium.
Rocks do not loose their memory during Earth history but their true ages might be distorted: even under ultra high-temperature metamorphic conditions exceeding 1200°C zircon maintains its lead content accumulated during radioactive decay of uranium and thorium.
Giga year old zircon crystals still contain lead in form of nanometre size spheres of pure lead. However, the inhomogeneous spatial distribution of the lead spheres might falsify ages determined from high-resolution Pb isotope measurement with ion probe.
Zircon is an ideal mineral for age determination of very old rocks because it is believed to be a closed system during Earth history.
Zircon geochronology thus is a standard method of geological age determination. Recently, an international group of earth scientists studied zircon from 3,4 billion years old high-temperature metamorphic rocks from Antarctica with transmission electron microscopy TEM at the GFZ German Research Centre for Geosciences.
TEM investigations revealed that the lead from radioactive decay was not homogeneously distributed in zircon but was accumulated withinin inhomogeneously distributed Pb nano-spheres in zircon with only 5 to 30 nm in diameter.
The inhomogeneous distribution of lead in zircon might adulterate the ages measured with high-spatial resolution ion probe technique.
Monika A. Kusiak et al.: “Metallic lead nanospheres discovered in ancient zircons", Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences, PNAS Early Edition, 06.04.2015, DOI: doi/10.1073/pnas.1415264112
Franz Ossing | Helmholtz-Zentrum Potsdam - Deutsches GeoForschungsZentrum GFZ
Jacobs University supports new mapping of Mars, Mercury and the Moon
21.03.2018 | Jacobs University Bremen gGmbH
Thawing permafrost produces more methane than expected
20.03.2018 | GFZ GeoForschungsZentrum Potsdam, Helmholtz Centre
In just a few weeks from now, the Chinese space station Tiangong-1 will re-enter the Earth's atmosphere where it will to a large extent burn up. It is possible that some debris will reach the Earth's surface. Tiangong-1 is orbiting the Earth uncontrolled at a speed of approx. 29,000 km/h.Currently the prognosis relating to the time of impact currently lies within a window of several days. The scientists at Fraunhofer FHR have already been monitoring Tiangong-1 for a number of weeks with their TIRA system, one of the most powerful space observation radars in the world, with a view to supporting the German Space Situational Awareness Center and the ESA with their re-entry forecasts.
Following the loss of radio contact with Tiangong-1 in 2016 and due to the low orbital height, it is now inevitable that the Chinese space station will...
Fraunhofer Institute for Organic Electronics, Electron Beam and Plasma Technology FEP, provider of research and development services for OLED lighting solutions, announces the founding of the “OLED Licht Forum” and presents latest OLED design and lighting solutions during light+building, from March 18th – 23rd, 2018 in Frankfurt a.M./Germany, at booth no. F91 in Hall 4.0.
They are united in their passion for OLED (organic light emitting diodes) lighting with all of its unique facets and application possibilities. Thus experts in...
A new scenario seeking to explain how Mars' putative oceans came and went over the last 4 billion years implies that the oceans formed several hundred million...
For the first time, an interdisciplinary team from the University of Basel has succeeded in integrating artificial organelles into the cells of live zebrafish embryos. This innovative approach using artificial organelles as cellular implants offers new potential in treating a range of diseases, as the authors report in an article published in Nature Communications.
In the cells of higher organisms, organelles such as the nucleus or mitochondria perform a range of complex functions necessary for life. In the networks of...
Animal photoreceptors capture light with photopigments. Researchers from the University of Göttingen have now discovered that these photopigments fulfill an...
19.03.2018 | Event News
16.03.2018 | Event News
13.03.2018 | Event News
21.03.2018 | Physics and Astronomy
21.03.2018 | Materials Sciences
21.03.2018 | Life Sciences