Radioactive dating radiometric
The imprint of a leaf was also discovered within the basalt, which was also regarded as remarkable, remembering that the enclosing rock was once molten lava erupted at 1000–1200°C (about 1800–2200°F).So how could these tree trunks have survived being engulfed by molten lava?Since the tree trunks were entombed in the basalt lava, the wood is thus supposedly at least 30 million years old.Also, what looked like the tree roots were found in the siltstone below the basalt, suggesting the trees when alive were rooted into the siltstone and thus growing on a land surface that was then covered by basalt lava.magazine has been continuously published since 1978, we are publishing some of the articles from the archives for historical interest, such as this.For teaching and sharing purposes, readers are advised to supplement these historic articles with more up-to-date ones suggested in the Related Articles and Further Reading below.The next image (below left) is of charred fossil wood; and beside that is intact fossil wood (Note biro gives size perspective).
At top, is fossil wood in basalt that includes—from left to right—basalt, wood and siltstone.
This siltstone belongs to the Permian German Creek coal measures, conventionally believed to be around 255 million years old.
At approximately four metres (13 feet) thick, the basalt flow is relatively thin, Since the tree trunks were engulfed at the bottom of the flow, cooling may have been immediate, with any water present in the wood aiding extremely rapid encapsulation and thus preservation.
The local geological context makes the basalt flow approximately ‘30 million years old’, in keeping with other basalt flows in the region all regarded as of Tertiary age (in the conventional terminology).
After digging through the thin surface sands and clays, followed by basalt, 21 metres (almost 69 feet) down they found pieces of wood entombed in the bottom basalt flow.Those on-site at the time speculated that there had been two distinct trees, partly standing, still organic in nature, and thus not petrified.