A map of the geology of Western Australia, showing the location of the Scott Coastal Plain. Minerals from this plain date back as old as 4 billion years, revealing the presence of ancient crust underlying the region.

4 billion-year-old crust found underground in Australia

A 4-billion-year-old piece of Earth’s crust the size of Ireland lurks beneath Western Australia, new research has found.

This crust is one of the oldest on Earth, though not the oldest.This honor goes to rocks in the canadian shield Located on the east coast of Hudson Bay, it has a history of 4.3 billion years. (Earth is 4.54 billion years old.) Most of Earth’s rocky surface was formed in the past few billion years as the crust is constantly being churned by plate tectonics and pushed back into the mantle.

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