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Estimates of the Earth’s age have had significant impacts, not only on geology but also on biology, astronomy and biblical creationism. In the 1930s and 1940s, the age of the universe as estimated from the expanding universe was less than 2000 million years, but the age of the Earth as estimated from radiometric dating was perhaps as great as 3000 million years. Astronomers responded to this contradiction in at least three different ways. Some cosmologists favoured Georges Lemaitre’s relativistic model, in which the universe remains about the same size for an indefinite period of time before starting its present...

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