The methods work because radioactive elements are unstable, and they are always trying to move to a more stable state. This process by which an unstable atomic nucleus loses energy by releasing radiation is called radioactive decay.
The thing that makes this decay process so valuable for determining the age of an object is that each radioactive isotope decays at its own fixed rate, which is expressed in terms of its half-life.
Radiometric dating, or radioactive dating as it is sometimes called, is a method used to date rocks and other objects based on the known decay rate of radioactive isotopes.
Different methods of radiometric dating can be used to estimate the age of a variety of natural and even man-made materials.
It has become increasingly clear that these radiometric dating techniques agree with each other and as a whole, present a coherent picture in which the earth was created billions of years ago.
Many are completely unaware of the great number of independent, laboratory measurements that have shown these methods to be consistent.
Radioactive decay has become one of the most useful methods for determining the age of formation of rocks.
However, in the very principal of radiometric dating there are several vital assumptions that have to be made in order for the age to be considered valid.
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.May 2004 Chuck Roche, Ph D One topic for skeptics involves the age of the earth.Many creationists have argued for a young earth, one less than 15,000 years, while others allow for just a few million years.Most young earth creationists reject all of these points.As a scientific skeptics, we ask ourselves: is this really the case?