# Radiometric dating lecture

For permission for any other use please contact author. Diagram from USGS website: This assumption can be tested for.

For more information on radioactivity and geochronology - USGS site - http: What event sets the clock, or more succinctly, dating is the system closed? Material may be used for non-profit educational purposes as long as proper attribution is given. Some of these other isotope systems are also used for dating purposes.

The earth is about 4. Normal concentrations of radioactive material on earth are well below the levels where forced decay occurs so we can use the relatively simple mathematics of exponential decay to describe the process.

If it is packed too densely there is a run away reaction and one of those unpopular mushroom clouds or meltdowns. Forced decay is when the isotopic material is packed densely enough that a decay in one unstable atom sends out a particle that hits another atom and causes it to decay.

Diagram lecture on some short-lived radioactive isotopes, including carbon Radiometric dating - internal clocks in rocks Geochronology: Accuracy, error and testing the technique. A major assumption is that the rock or mineral being dated has been a closed system so that no parent free membership dating websites or daughter product has escaped or been added.

After one half live, half of the original radioactive isotope material in the system under consideration decays. What geologic materials can be dated?

Another half life and half of the remaining material decays, and so on. This is for unforced decay. Return to Physical Geology index page.

This depends on what system is being used, which determines what type of event is being dated. Radioactive decay occurs at an exponential rate, meaning that it can be described in terms of a half life.

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