Dating with radioisotope

20-Mar-2017 14:23

­The carbon-14 atoms that cosmic rays create combine with oxygen to form carbon dioxide, which plants absorb naturally and incorporate into plant fibers by photosynthesis.

Animals and people eat plants and take in carbon-14 as well.

U-238 decays very slowly, its half-life being about the same as the age of the Earth (4500 million years).

This means that it is barely radioactive, less so than many other isotopes in rocks and sand.

It has a radioactive decay half-life of about eight days.

When the neutron collides, a nitrogen-14 (seven protons, seven neutrons) atom turns into a carbon-14 atom (six protons, eight neutrons) and a hydrogen atom (one proton, zero neutrons).

For inorganic materials, such as rocks containing the radioactive isotope rubidium, the amount of the isotope in the object is compared to the amount of the isotope's decay products (in this case strontium).

The object's approximate age can then be figured out using the known rate of decay of the isotope.

On a scale arranged according to the increasing mass of their nuclei, uranium is one of the heaviest of all the naturally-occurring elements (Hydrogen is the lightest). Like other elements, uranium occurs in several slightly differing forms known as 'isotopes'.

These isotopes differ from each other in the number of uncharged particles (neutrons) in the nucleus.

When the neutron collides, a nitrogen-14 (seven protons, seven neutrons) atom turns into a carbon-14 atom (six protons, eight neutrons) and a hydrogen atom (one proton, zero neutrons).For inorganic materials, such as rocks containing the radioactive isotope rubidium, the amount of the isotope in the object is compared to the amount of the isotope's decay products (in this case strontium).The object's approximate age can then be figured out using the known rate of decay of the isotope.On a scale arranged according to the increasing mass of their nuclei, uranium is one of the heaviest of all the naturally-occurring elements (Hydrogen is the lightest). Like other elements, uranium occurs in several slightly differing forms known as 'isotopes'.These isotopes differ from each other in the number of uncharged particles (neutrons) in the nucleus.However, scientists can look at the decay of other elements in these objects allowing them to date them up to 2.2 billion years.