Radioactive dating gcse

Radioactive dating enables geologists to record the history of the earth and its events, such as the dinosaur era, within what they call the geologic time scale.Radioactive dating uses the ratios of isotopes and their specific decay products to determine the ages of rocks, fossils, and other substances.Remember, isotopes are variations of elements with a different number of neutrons.

Well, scientists are able to answer all of these wondrous questions and more by use of a process called radiometric, or radioactive, dating.

These are both isotopes of the element carbon present in a constant ratio while an organism is living; however, once an organism dies, the ratio of carbon-14 decreases as the isotope deteriorates.

Radiocarbon dating can only be used to date items back to as far as about 50,000 years old.

An isotope is a variation of an element based upon the number of neutrons.

The disintegration of the neutrons within the atom of the element's nucleus is what scientists call radioactivity.

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Elements occur naturally in the earth, and they can tell us a lot about its past.

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