The Berkeley Geochronology Center (BGC) is a unique place. It is the only institution in the world that is wholly dedicated to deciphering the history of the Earth and our nearby planetary neighbors. The vast history encompassed by this mission requires diverse tools, and BGC thus houses a singular array of techniques and expertise to place important events into timescales ranging from relatively recent times, i.e., thousands of years ago, to that of the early stages of our Solar System billions of years ago.
Much of our work is focused on fundamental scientific questions such as what caused mass extinctions in the past, when and why massive volcanism occurred on Earth, and what was the history of bombardment of the Earth (and our nearby neighbors like the Moon) by extraterrestrial objects. Better understanding of these phenomena and their possible interrelationships relies to large extent on establishing their timing. Much of our work is also focused on issues relevant to societal concerns such as volcanic and seismic hazards, and global climate change.
Rock Magnetism & Paleomagnetism
UC Berkeley News – February 24, 2021
SciTechDaily - July 14, 2020
Did volcanoes contribute to the demise of the dinosaurs?
CNN – February 21, 2019
The American Scholar – September 4, 2018
Strongest evidence of early humans butchering animals discovered in North Africa
Science – November 29, 2018
Earth's orbital changes have influenced climate, life forms for at least 215 million years
Science Daily – May 7, 2018
Scientists discover evidence of early human innovation, pushing back evolutionary timeline
Technology.org – March 21, 2018
8,200 years ago, California's forecast was 150 years of rain
Popular Science – May 3, 2017
Geologists use radioactive clock to document longest earthquake record
Technology.org – June 28, 2017
Study Proposes Asteroid and Volcanic Eruptions Both Caused Dinosaur Extinction
Time – October 7, 2015