Scientific definition of radioactive dating asp net detailsview itemupdating
Now this ‘clock’ works because the initial conditions are known—that is, all the sand grains are in the top glass bowl and none are in the bottom one.If there is already some sand in the bottom glass bowl, then unless this amount is known the hourglass ‘clock’ cannot ‘tell’ the time.The radioactive decay of ‘parent’ isotopes of uranium, thorium, potassium, and rubidium to ‘daughter’ isotopes of lead, argon and strontium respectively is analogous to our hourglass ‘clock’, including these three assumptions.However, in the case of these radioactive ‘clocks’ these three assumptions can be shown to be not only unprovable, but invalid, rendering these ‘clocks’ virtually useless.
Furthermore, even if today’s scientists believe they have the methods, for example graphical and mathematical, for determining how much of the daughter isotope might have been present either at the origin of the earth or the origin of the rock being dated, no one can ever be sure that these ‘answers’ are correct, because there was no scientist present at the beginning to observe those initial conditions, even though the scientists’ calculations may be extremely logical.
At time t = 0, the hourglass is turned upside-down so that all the sand starts in the top bowl.
By time t = 1 hour, all the sand is supposed to have fallen into the bottom glass bowl.
The final assumption is, of course, that the radioactive decay rates have remained constant.
However, once again, this assumption can in no way be proved, because there were no human observers present right throughout the earth’s history to be constantly measuring the radioactive decay rates and to have recorded them.
To achieve stability, some ‘particles’ are ejected from the atoms, and these moving ‘particles’ constitute the radioactivity measured by Geiger counters and the like.