Radioactive dating materials
Radioactive dating is a method of dating rocks and minerals using radioactive isotopes.This method is useful for igneous and metamorphic rocks, which cannot be dated by the stratigraphic correlation method used for sedimentary rocks. Some do not change with time and form stable isotopes (i.e.The rate of decay (given the symbol λ) is the fraction of the 'parent' atoms that decay in unit time.For geological purposes, this is taken as one year.He was employed at Caltech's Division of Geological & Planetary Sciences at the time of writing the first edition.He is presently employed in the Space & Atmospheric Sciences Group at the Los Alamos National Laboratory.
This method relies on the uptake of a naturally occurring radioactive isotope of carbon, carbon-14 by all living things. Wiens has a Ph D in Physics, with a minor in Geology.His Ph D thesis was on isotope ratios in meteorites, including surface exposure dating.For radiocarbon dating to be possible, the material must once have been part of a living organism.This means that things like stone, metal and pottery cannot usually be directly dated by this means unless there is some organic material embedded or left as a residue.