Radiogenic dating definition

The amount of strontium-86 in a given mineral sample will not change.

Therefore the relative amounts of rubidium-87 and strontium-87 can be determined by expressing their ratios to strontium-86: Rb-87/Sr-86 and Sr87/Sr-86 We measure the amounts of rubidium-87 and strontium-87 as ratios to an unchanging content of strontium-86.

The decrease in the amount of potassium required to form the original mineral has consistently confirmed the age as determined by the amount of argon formed.

Carbon-14 dating: See Carbon 14 Dating in this web site.

However, any escaping argon gas would lead to a determined age younger, not older, than actual.

Potassium-Argon dating: The element potassium (symbol K) has three nuclides, K39, K40, and K41. K40 can decay in two different ways: it can break down into either calcium or argon.

The ratio of calcium formed to argon formed is fixed and known.

Radiometric dating is a means of determining the "age" of a mineral specimen by determining the relative amounts present of certain radioactive elements.

By "age" we mean the elapsed time from when the mineral specimen was formed.

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An atom with the same number of protons in the nucleus but a different number of neutrons is called an isotope.

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