Radiometric dating rock types
To achieve stability, these atoms must make adjustments, particularly in their nuclei.In some cases, the isotopes eject particles, primarily neutrons and protons.
Geologists must first choose a suitable rock unit for dating.They must find rocks that contain these parent radioisotopes, even if they are only present in minute amounts.Most often, this is a rock body, or unit, which has formed from the cooling of molten rock material (called magma).The nucleus contains protons (tiny particles each with a single positive electric charge) and neutrons (particles without any electric charge).Orbiting around the nucleus are electrons (tiny particles each with a single electric charge).Most people today think that geologists have proven the earth and its rocks to be billions of years old by their use of the radioactive dating methods. Given so much time, the ‘impossible’ becomes possible, the possible probable, and the probable virtually certain.
Ages of many millions of years for rocks and fossils are glibly presented as fact in many textbooks, the popular media, and museums. One has only to wait: time itself performs the miracles.”1 Yet few people seem to know how these radiometric dating methods work.
Thus, the parent isotopes that decay are called radioisotopes.
Actually, it isn’t really a decay process in the normal sense of the word, like the decay of fruit.
(These are the moving particles which constitute the radioactivity measured by Geiger counters and the like.) The end result is stable atoms, but of a numbers of protons and electrons.
This process of changing the isotope of one element (designated as the parent) into the isotope of another element (referred to as the daughter) is called radioactive decay.
However, it is the interpretation of these chemical analyses of the parent and daughter isotopes that raises potential problems with these radioactive dating methods.