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The type of radiometric dating used depends greatly on the approximate time period you are studying and so varies depending on if the material you are studying is an artifact or a fossil. Radiometric dating is the term for a method to determine the age of an object based on the concentration of a particular radioactive isotope contained within it.
Example sentence: One of the early tests of radiometric dating was to estimate the age of the wood from an ancient Egyptian artifact, for which the age was already known from historical documents.
In order to establish this dating method in this application an attempt has been made to trace the sources of the anomalies.
To illustrate these efforts, dating results from a rhyodacite of Mauna Kuwale, Oahu, Hawaii, are reported.
Radioactive dating is also known as Radiometric dating.
Carbon 14 dating is the best known example of radiometric dating, but there are many others.
Most radiocarbon dating labs have liquid scintillation counters for radiometric dating and accelerator mass spectrometers for AMS dating.
It is the difference between sand running out of an hour glass and determining what time it is by how much sand is left. If you can determine how much of that radioactive isotope ought to have been in a sample at the start and you can measure how much is left, you can tell how much time has passed.
The potassium-argon method is attractive for dating volcanics since it can be applied to rocks of Pleistocene age and older, thus encompassing important periods of general volcanic activity.
However it has been found that dates obtained on whole rocks and on included minerals frequently show gross discordances.