Radiometric dating (often called radioactive dating) is a technique used to date materials such as rocks, usually based on a comparison between the observed abundance of a naturally occurring radioactive isotope and its decay products, using known decay rates.
It is the principal source of information about the absolute age of rocks and other geological features, including the age of the Earth itself, and can be used to date a wide range of natural and man-made materials.
The method compares the abundance of a naturally occurring radioactive isotope within the material to the abundance of its decay products, which form at a known constant rate of decay.
In these cases, usually the half-life of interest in radiometric dating is the longest one in the chain, which is the rate-limiting factor in the ultimate transformation of the radioactive nuclide into its stable daughter.Isotopic systems that have been exploited for radiometric dating have half-lives ranging from only about 10 years (e.g., , whose decay rate may be affected by local electron density.This transformation is accomplished by the emission of particles such as electrons (known as beta decay) or alpha particles.While the moment in time at which a particular nucleus decays is random, a collection of atoms of a radioactive nuclide decays exponentially at a rate described by a parameter known as the half-life, usually given in units of years when discussing dating techniques.A Data Matrix code is a two-dimensional matrix barcode consisting of black and white "cells" or modules arranged in either a square or rectangular pattern.
The information to be encoded can be text or numeric data. The length of the encoded data depends on the number of cells in the matrix.Different methods of radiometric dating vary in the timescale over which they are accurate and the materials to which they can be applied.Additionally, elements may exist in different isotopes, with each isotope of an element differing in the number of neutrons in the nucleus.Additionally, elements may exist in different isotopes, with each isotope of an element differing only in the number of neutrons in the nucleus.A particular isotope of a particular element is called a nuclide. That is, at some random point in time, an atom of such a nuclide will be transformed into a different nuclide by the process known as radioactive decay.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.