The Geologic Time Scale 2012 is the framework for deciphering the history of our planet Earth. The authors have been at the forefront of chronostratigraphic research and initiatives to create an international geologic time scale for many years, and the charts in this book present the most up-to-date, international standard, as ratified by the International Commission on Stratigraphy and the International Union of Geological Sciences. This 2012 geologic time scale is an enhanced, improved and expanded version of the GTS2004, including chapters on planetary scales, the Cryogenian-Ediacaran periods/systems, a prehistory scale of human development, a survey of sequence stratigraphy, and an extensive compilation of stable-isotope chemostratigraphy. This book is an essential reference for all geoscientists, including researchers, students, and petroleum and mining professionals. The presentation is non-technical and illustrated with numerous colour charts, maps and photographs. The most detailed international geologic time scale available that contextualizes information in one single reference for quick desktop access. Gives insights in the construction, strengths, and limitations of the geological time scale that greatly enhances its function and its utility. Aids understanding by combining with the mathematical and statistical methods to scaled composites of global succession of events. Meets the needs of a range of users at various points in the workflow (researchers extracting linear time from rock records, students recognizing the geologic stage by their content).