Among the best-known techniques are radiocarbon dating, potassium-argon dating and uranium-lead dating.By allowing the establishment of geological timescales, it provides a significant source of information about the ages of fossils and the deduced rates of evolutionary change.Radiometric dating is also used to date archaeological materials, including ancient artifacts.Different methods of radiometric dating vary in the timescale over which they are accurate and the materials to which they can be applied.We will deal with carbon dating first and then with the other dating methods.Carbon has unique properties that are essential for life on Earth.
(Only a handful of nuclides with atomic numbers less than 83 emit an -particle.) The product of -decay is easy to predict if we assume that both mass and charge are conserved in nuclear reactions.and is now the principal source of information about the absolute age of rocks and other geological features, including the age of fossilized life forms or the age of the Earth itself, and can also be used to date a wide range of natural and man-made materials.Together with stratigraphic principles, radiometric dating methods are used in geochronology to establish the geological time scale. The term isotope is formed from the Greek roots isos (ἴσος "equal") and topos (τόπος "place"), meaning "the same place"; thus, the meaning behind the name is that different isotopes of a single element occupy the same position on the periodic table. All isotopes of a given element have the same number of protons in each atom.