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Of all the isotopic dating methods in use today, the uranium-lead method is the oldest and, when done carefully, the most reliable. Unlike any other method, uranium-lead has a natural cross-check built into it that shows when nature has tampered with the evidence. Uranium comes in two common isotopes with atomic weights of and we'll call them U and U. Both are unstable and radioactive, shedding nuclear particles in a cascade that doesn't stop until they become lead Pb. The two cascades are different-U becomes Pb and U becomes Pb. What makes this fact useful is that they occur at different rates, as expressed in their half-lives the time it takes for half the atoms to decay.

This data is compared to a curve called the Concordia diagram. This diagram has been made by using the ratio of uranium to lead of all the rocks dated with this method and their assumed age.

Scientists know that there are geological events that can disturb the zircon and release the lead created from the uranium. This would reset the time recorded by this method.

To try to account for this, a radiometric dater will use many different samples and use the ones that fit the Concordia curve. If they do not fit, it is assumed that it signifies a large geological event [1].

This method started to be used in [2]. Uranium-lead dating is one of the first radiometric dating method that found the supposed age of the earth to be 4.

The part of the rock a dater will use to date the rock is normally the zircon in the rock. It is assumed that when the rock cools to the point that it makes the zircon, all of the lead is excluded from the zircon.

If this is true, it makes the dating simple because if the half-lifes are correct, the dater only has to find the ratio of the amount of lead and uranium in the sample [1].

### Using Uranium/Lead Dating to Estimate the Age of a Rock (Question 2)

The benefits of using zircon is that the trapping temperature is C. This temperature makes the zircon hard to pull out substances out of it.

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From what has been observed, even small amounts of rock metamorphosis should not disturb the elements in the zircon. Another benefit is that zircon has been found in most igneous rocks. The last of the benefits is that the zircon, itself, is very hard. This fact helps with extracting the zircon out of the rock it was in [1].

Most radiometric daters prefer using zircon for these reasons, but it is not the only compound used for uranium-lead dating.

Uranium-Lead dating is a radiometric dating method that uses the decay chain of uranium and lead to find the age of a rock. As uranium decays radioactively, it becomes different chemical elements until it stops at lead. The reason for stopping at lead is because lead is not radioactive and will not change into a different element. uranium-lead dating All naturally occurring uranium contains U and U (in the ratio ). Both isotopes are the starting points for complex decay series that eventually produce stable isotopes of lead. U decays to Pb (half-life = Ma, see DECAY CONSTANT) by a process of eight alpha-decay steps and six beta-decay steps. U decays to Pb (half-life = Ma) by a. Of all the isotopic dating methods in use today, the uranium-lead method is the oldest and, when done carefully, the most reliable. Unlike any other method, uranium-lead has a natural cross-check built into it that shows when nature has tampered with the evidence.

Some other compounds used that have zirconium are zirconoliteand badeleyite. Other compounds that do not contain zirconium but are commonly used for this method are titaniteand monazite.

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Since most radiometric daters prefer using zircon for this process, geologists often call uranium-lead dating zircon dating [1]. With all radiometric dating processes, the accuracy of uranium-lead dating is called into question.

Other articles where Uranium-lead dating is discussed: dating: Uranium-lead method: As each dating method was developed, tested, and improved, mainly since , a vast body of knowledge about the behaviour of different isotopic systems under different geologic conditions has evolved. It is now clear that with recent advances the uranium-lead method is superior. Nov 01, Uranium-lead (U-Pb) dating is one of the oldest[1] and most refined of the radiometric dating schemes, with a routine age range of about 1 million years to over billion years, and with. Looking for uranium-lead dating? Find out information about uranium-lead dating. A method for calculating the geologic age of a material in years based on the radioactive decay rate of uranium to lead and of uranium to lead Explanation of uranium-lead dating.

Some of the classic problems with this kind of dating process include what the process can really date, how far the radiometric process can date accurately, and the assumptions taken so the dating process works. One assumption is to use a worldview that uniformitarianism is accepted [3].

Main purpose of this website is to help the public to learn some interesting and important information about radiation and dosimeters. Uranium-lead dating is based on the measurement of the first and the last member of the uranium series. Uranium-lead dating is one of the oldest radiometric dating methods.

Periodic Table. That is: Uranium-lead dating method is usually performed on the mineral zircon.

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Radiation Protection: Knoll, Glenn F. ISBN Stabin, Michael G. Martin, James E.

January Nuclear and Reactor Physics: J. Lamarsh, Introduction to Nuclear Reactor Theory, 2nd ed.

Lamarsh, A. Baratta, Introduction to Nuclear Engineering, 3d ed.

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The long half-life of the isotope uranium (?10 9 years) makes it well-suited for use in estimating the age of the earliest igneous rocks and for other types of radiometric dating, including uranium-thorium dating and uranium-uranium dating. Uranium-lead dating is based on the measurement of the first and the last member of the.

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