Potassium half life dating
Radiometric dating, often called radioactive dating, is a technique used to determine the age of materials such as rocks.It is based on a comparison between the observed abundance of a naturally occurring radioactive isotope and its decay products, using known decay rates.We are told that of all the radiometric dates that are measured, only a few percent are anomalous.This gives us the impression that all but a small percentage of the dates computed by radiometric methods agree with the assumed ages of the rocks in which they are found, and that all of these various methods almost always give ages that agree with each other to within a few percentage points.
A useful application of half-lives is radioactive dating.
After one half-life has elapsed, one half of the atoms of the nuclide in question will have decayed into a "daughter" nuclide, or decay product.
In many cases, the daughter nuclide is radioactive, resulting in a decay chain.
This chain eventually ends with the formation of a stable, nonradioactive daughter nuclide.
Each step in such a chain is characterized by a distinct half-life.
By establishing geological timescales, radiometric dating provides a significant source of information about the ages of fossils and rates of evolutionary change, and it is also used to date archaeological materials, including ancient artifacts.