Earth’s Youngest Banded Iron Formation to Exist in Western China


Scientists have now one more reason to change how they see the evolution of the complex life, now that they’ve discovered the Earth’s youngest banded iron formation. A new study was done by the geologists from the University of Alberta.

The iron formation seems to be pretty young for its Cambrian age

This banded iron formation, which was located in the west of China, was classified as a Cambrian one, according to its age.  It is about  527 million years old – but it’s actually young if we are to compare it by the discoveries that we did until this point. The banded iron formations started about3.8 billion years ago was thought to be finished before even the Cambrian Period could start, 540 million years ago.

This is a very important thing, as it’s the first discovery of a banded iron formation from the Precambrian, which is actually Early Cambrian, according to its age. This shows proof of the existence of extensive iron-rich conditions at a certain time, the thing that suggests the geochemical proxies, as said by Kurt Konhauser, who is a teacher at the Department of Earth and Atmospheric Sciences.

The study was led by Zhiquan Li and was supervised by Kurt Konhauser.

We all know that the Early Cambrian is famous for the ascent of animals, so the level of oxygen in seawater ought to have been nearer to close present-day levels. This is essential as the accessibility of oxygen has for some time been believed to be a handbrake on the development of complex life, and one that ought to have been mitigated by the Early Cambrian, as said by Leslie Robbins, who is the co-creator of the paper.

How did they do the study?

The specialists contrasted the topographical attributes and geochemistry with ancient and present-day tests to locate some similarities for their statement. The group depended on the utilization of uncommon earth components to show that the bond framed in, or close to, a chemocline that was placed in a stratified iron-rich basin.


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