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New contender for Earth's oldest rocks

Northern Quebec may host intact rocks as old as 4.28 billion years

12:52pm, September 25, 2008

Scientists may have found the world’s oldest intact rocks in a 10-square-kilometer patch of bedrock on the eastern shore of Canada’s Hudson Bay. Geochemical analyses suggest the rocks are around 4.28 billion years old, which would mean they solidified less than 300 million years after Earth formed.

If the dating holds true, the new oldest rocks could be a trove of information about geological processes during Earth’s earliest history, the researchers report in the Sept. 26 Science.

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