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In dendrochronology, the age of wood can be determined through the counting of the number of annual rings in its cross section.Tree ring growth reflects the rainfall conditions that prevailed during the years of the tree's life.They also compared their data with salinity records from the Red Sea and found similar agreement, further verifying their model.The team’s findings raise questions about the conditions required for the growth of ice sheets and the causes of rapid changes in sea level.“We’ve discovered that corals behave as a two-box system.
With the decipherment of the Egyptian hieroglyphics, Egyptologists had access to such an absolute timescale, and the age, in calender years, of the Egyptian dynasties could be established.Fossil corals found above or below current sea level show variations in sea level and can be dated by radiocarbon for the past 40,000 years and by the radioactive decay of uranium to thorium for the past 500,000 years.Unfortunately, corals that appear to be otherwise pristine often have more of the isotopes used for dating than can be explained by radioactive decay, making their ages unreliable.Furthermore, Egyptian trade wares were used as a basis for establishing the age of the relative chronologies developed for adjoining regions, such as Palestine and Greece.Thus, Sir Arthur Evans was able to establish an accurate absolute chronology for the ancient civilizations of Crete and Greece through the use of Egyptian trade objects that appeared in his excavations—a technique known as cross-dating.
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These techniques are based upon the measurement of radioactive processes (radiocarbon; potassium-argon, uranium-lead, uranium-thorium, thorium-lead, etc.; fission track; thermoluminescence; optically stimulated luminescence; and electron-spin resonance), chemical processes (amino-acid racemization and obsidian hydration), and the magnetic properties of igneous material, baked clay, and sedimentary deposits (paleomagnetism).