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Posted by / 22-Aug-2017 08:06

by Tas Walker A geologist works out the relative age of a rock by carefully studying where the rock is found in the field.The field relationships, as they are called, are of primary importance and all radiometric dates are evaluated against them.Many rocks and organisms contain radioactive isotopes, such as U-235 and C-14.

Here he can see that some curved sedimentary rocks have been cut vertically by a sheet of volcanic rock called a dyke.Half-life is the amount of time it takes for half of the parent isotopes to decay. In another 5,730 years, the organism will lose another half of the remaining C-14 isotopes.This process continues over time, with the organism losing half of the remaining C-14 isotopes each 5,730 years.As the isotopes decay, they give off particles from their nucleus and become a different isotope.The parent isotope is the original unstable isotope, and daughter isotopes are the stable product of the decay. In the first 5,730 years, the organism will lose half of its C-14 isotopes.

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Over time, radioactive isotopes change into stable isotopes by a process known as radioactive decay.