MadSci Network: Earth Sciences

Re: Are there any knownmaterial that we can use to last more than million year?

Date: Wed Dec 12 14:36:47 2007
Posted By: Matthew Buynoski, Process Integration Engineer, Nanosys, Inc.
Area of science: Earth Sciences
ID: 1197449626.Es

Hello, Stev!

Many materials will last more than a million years, in the right environment.  For example, one could 
use gold (which is chemically inactive) and as long as you don't have hydrothermal solutions around 
(i.e. bury whatever you want to save in a continental craton) you stand a reasonable chance of having 
whatever's inside the gold envelope last for a long as the geology of the planet doesn't go volcanic 
there or suffer faulting.  Most native gold that is found in mines has been there for considerably longer 
than one milliion years. 

Similarly, you could use a number of refractory metal oxides (e.g. TiO2, HfO2, Ta2O5, etc) or silicon 
dioxide in any geologically "calm" environment.  Quartz crystals mined in Brazil are some hundreds of 
millions of years old, so certainly at least SiO2 can last a very long time.

The key is not the material so much as the environment you put it in. 

Current Queue | Current Queue for Earth Sciences | Earth Sciences archives

Try the links in the MadSci Library for more information on Earth Sciences.

MadSci Home | Information | Search | Random Knowledge Generator | MadSci Archives | Mad Library | MAD Labs | MAD FAQs | Ask a ? | Join Us! | Help Support MadSci

MadSci Network,
© 1995-2006. All rights reserved.