Radiometric dating clocks
Free 5-day trial Radiometric dating is used to estimate the age of rocks and other objects based on the fixed decay rate of radioactive isotopes.Learn about half-life and how it is used in different dating methods, such as uranium-lead dating and radiocarbon dating, in this video lesson. As we age, our hair turns gray, our skin wrinkles and our gait slows.The use of 14C in meteorite dating is solely based on its production by cosmic rays (and for terrestrial samples, with its production in the atmosphere).26Al and some other nuclides not mentioned are also used in this way.
Actually, meteorites that formed by melting, e.g., the various types of achondrites, usually give more precise ages.When the isotope is halfway to that point, it has reached its half-life.There are different methods of radiometric dating that will vary due to the type of material that is being dated.After the second half-life has elapsed, yet another 50% of the remaining parent isotope will decay into daughter isotopes, and so on.For all practical purposes, the original isotope is considered extinct after 6 half-life intervals. A small portion of a meteorite is vaporized in the device forming ions.