What is radiometric dating method

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Contamination from outside, or the loss of isotopes at any time from the rock's original formation, would change the result.It is therefore essential to have as much information as possible about the material being dated and to check for possible signs of alteration.Radiometric dating (often called radioactive dating) is a way to find out how old something is.The method compares the amount of a naturally occurring radioactive isotope and its decay products, in samples. It is the main way to learn the age of rocks and other geological features, including the age of the Earth itself.It may be used to date a wide range of natural and man-made materials.Fossils may be dated by taking samples of rocks from above and below the fossil's original position.

Here he can see that some curved sedimentary rocks have been cut vertically by a sheet of volcanic rock called a dyke.Let us imagine that the date reported by the lab was 150.7 ± 2.8 million years.Our geologist would be very happy with this result.All ordinary matter is made up of combinations of chemical elements, each with its own atomic number, indicating the number of protons in the atomic nucleus.Elements exist in different isotopes, with each isotope of an element differing in the number of neutrons in the nucleus.

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