DePaolo, Donald J. Department of Geology and Geophysics, University of California, Berkeley, California.
Ingram, B. Lynn Department of Geology and Geophysics, University of California, Berkeley, California.
Last reviewed:October 2019
- Radiogenic isotope stratigraphy
- Stable isotope stratigraphy
- Radioactive isotope stratigraphy
- Molecular stratigraphy
- Trace elements
- Related Primary Literature
- Additional Reading
A subdiscipline of stratigraphy and geochemistry that involves correlation and dating of marine sediments and sedimentary rocks through the use of trace-element concentrations, molecular fossils, and certain isotopic ratios that can be measured on components of the rocks. The isotopes used in chemostratigraphy can be divided into three classes: radiogenic (strontium, neodymium, osmium), radioactive (radiocarbon, uranium, thorium, lead), and stable (oxygen, carbon, sulfur). Trace-element concentrations (that is, metals such as nickel, copper, molybdenum, and vanadium) and certain organic molecules (called biological markers or biomarkers) are also employed in chemostratigraphy. See also: Dating methods; Rock age determination
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