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05-Apr-2016 20:20

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There are many radiometric clocks and when applied to appropriate materials, the dating can be very accurate.

As one example, the first minerals to crystallize (condense) from the hot cloud of gasses that surrounded the Sun as it first became a star have been dated to 4568 plus or minus 2 million years....!! Other events on earth can be dated equally well given the right minerals.

Atomic number of an atom = number of protons in the nucleus of that atom. The mass number may vary for an element, because of a differing number of neutrons. Radioactive decay occurs by releasing particles and energy.

Elements with various numbers of neutrons are called isotopes of that element. Note that some elements have both radioactive and non-radioactive isotopes. Radioactive decay occurs by releasing subatomic particles and energy.

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For the first time he was able to exactly measure the age of a uranium mineral.The carbon-14 (C-14) method is used to date specimens that are 40,000 years old or younger. A graph of lead-207/lead-206 ratio versus time is shown in Figure 2.6 (b) Potassium-argon Method.Methods used to date rocks one million years of age and older include: uranium-238/lead-206, uranium-235/lead-207, thorium-232/lead-208, lead-207/lead-206, potassium-40/argon-40, and rubidium-87/strontium-87. The potassium-argon method of age dating has certain advantages over the uranium-thorium-lead methods because potassium is more widely found among rocks in different areas.Most atoms are neutral overall, with the number of protons equaling the number of electrons.

If there is an unequal number of protons and electrons, the atom has a charge (positive or negative), and it is called an ion. Mass number is the sum of the number of protons plus neutrons.

The original atom is referred to as the parent and the following decay products are referred to as the daughter.