Abstract

In 1913, Frederick Soddy's research on the fundamentals of radioactivity led to the discovery of “isotopes.” Later that same year, Arthur Holmes published his now famous book The Age of the Earth, in which he applied this new science of radioactivity to the quantification of geologic time. Combined, these two landmark events did much to establish the field of “isotope geochronology” – the science that underpins our knowledge of the absolute age of most Earth (and extraterrestrial) materials. In celebrating the centenary, this issue brings together modern perspectives on the continually evolving field of isotope geochronology – a discipline that reflects and responds to the demands of studies ranging from the early evolution of the Solar System to our understanding of Quaternary climate change, and the 4.5 billion years in between.

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