How does radioactive decay related to radiometric dating
Everything is composed of elements and there are about 90 naturally occurring ones, such as hydrogen, carbon, oxygen and iron.Each element comes in different forms, called isotopes, most of which are stable and do not change.Neither can we travel into the past to make the necessary measurements. This is the fatal problem that essentially makes radioactive dating useless as a primary method for determining age. They may assume that different minerals in the rock originally had the same isotopic ratios to start with.Or they may assume that different rock samples from the same geographical area had the same ratio.Normal people are not familiar with isotopes, mass spectrographs, rubidium, strontium or half lives.We find ourselves in the position where we are being asked to trust the specialists, of not being able to check the facts first hand.We don’t know what happened to the rock during its ‘lifetime’.An hour glass is only useful if it is not disturbed.
Like an hour glass, it is said, you simply measure the parent and the daughter elements and you can calculate the age.
It came from a geologic philosophy, not a scientific measurement.
Note too that radioactive dating is something that most people don’t understand.
It’s like cracking the hourglass and having some of the sand leak out, or other sand leak in.
How can we know what disturbances have affected the elements in our rocks? Did you hear about the old wood cutter who was bragging about his axe?