Radioactive dating methods are best used to

25-Jul-2016 15:46 by 8 Comments

Radioactive dating methods are best used to - Totally free chat room for over 60s

By allowing the establishment of geological timescales, it provides a significant source of information about the ages of fossils and the deduced rates of evolutionary change.Radiometric dating is also used to date archaeological materials, including ancient artifacts.

The possible confounding effects of contamination of parent and daughter isotopes have to be considered, as do the effects of any loss or gain of such isotopes since the sample was created.It is therefore essential to have as much information as possible about the material being dated and to check for possible signs of alteration.Precision is enhanced if measurements are taken on multiple samples from different locations of the rock body.Alternatively, if several different minerals can be dated from the same sample and are assumed to be formed by the same event and were in equilibrium with the reservoir when they formed, they should form an isochron. In uranium-lead dating, the concordia diagram is used which also decreases the problem of nuclide loss.Finally, correlation between different isotopic dating methods may be required to confirm the age of a sample.Together with stratigraphic principles, radiometric dating methods are used in geochronology to establish the geological time scale.

Among the best-known techniques are radiocarbon dating, potassium-argon dating and uranium-lead dating.Additionally, elements may exist in different isotopes, with each isotope of an element differing in the number of neutrons in the nucleus.A particular isotope of a particular element is called a nuclide. That is, at some point in time, an atom of such a nuclide will spontaneously transform into a different nuclide.For example, a study of the Amitsoq gneisses from western Greenland used five different radiometric dating methods to examine twelve samples and achieved agreement to within 30 Ma on an age of 3,640 Ma.Accurate radiometric dating generally requires that the parent has a long enough half-life that it will be present in significant amounts at the time of measurement (except as described below under "Dating with short-lived extinct radionuclides"), the half-life of the parent is accurately known, and enough of the daughter product is produced to be accurately measured and distinguished from the initial amount of the daughter present in the material.Different methods of radiometric dating vary in the timescale over which they are accurate and the materials to which they can be applied.

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