What is chronometric dating

15-Jan-2015 23:43 by 10 Comments

What is chronometric dating - aries female dating scorpio male

There are two main categories of dating methods in archaeology: indirect or relative dating and absolute dating.

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These methods usually analyze physicochemical transformation phenomena whose rate are known or can be estimated relatively well.However, this method is sometimes limited because the reoccupation of an area may require excavation to establish the foundation of a building, for instance, that goes through older layers.In this case, even if the foundation of the building is found in the same stratigraphic level as the previous occupation, the two events are not contemporary.Stratigraphy Inspired by geology, stratigraphy uses the principle of the superposition of strata which suggests that, in a succession of undisturbed SOILS, the upper horizons are newer than the lower ones.Generally, each stratum is isolated in a separate chronological unit that incorporates artifacts.At secular equilibrium, the rate of thorium-230 production (from uranium-234 decay) equals the rate of thorium-230 decay, so U's parent) is also known, it is possible to calculate how long ago the coral stopped incorporating new uranium - became a "closed system".

The mathematics of U-series secular equilibria are well understood but somewhat tedious, and are freely available.

Typically this is accomplished through radiometric dating.

While this is a complex field and the article I've provided a link for explains it better than I could here, the short answer is that different elements' isotopes decay to at a known rate, and by measuring the quantities of the isotopes in question (which are chosen depending on the approximately estimated age of the sample), the age of the sample can be calculated.

Radiocarbon dating can be used for the most recent of these, but the example I'm going to use is uranium-series decay in corals - even though it's a weird one, because unlike most systems it doesn't measure parent-daughter ratios, but rather how closely the system has approached .

Uranium is soluble in natural waters at conditions found on the Earth's surface; thorium, however, is not; so corals (predominantly calcium carbonate), while growing, continuously incorporate uranium but thorium.

This is the only type of techniques that can help clarifying the actual age of an object.

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