Cart 0. As a member, you'll also get unlimited access to over 79, lessons in math, English, science, history, and more. The geological time scale is used by geologists and paleontologists to measure the history of the Earth and life. Geologist Ralph Harvey and historian Mott Greene explain the principles of radiometric dating and its application in determining the age of Earth. This page has been archived and is no longer updated.
Radiometric datingradioactive dating or radioisotope dating is a technique which is used to date materials such as rocks or carbonin which trace radioactive impurities were selectively incorporated when they were formed.
Geologists use radiometric dating to estimate how long ago rocks formed, and to infer the ages of fossils contained within those rocks. When paleontologist Mary Schweitzer found soft tissue in a Tyrannosaurus rex fossilher discovery raised an obvious question -- how the tissue could have survived so long? Geologists do not use carbon-based radiometric dating to determine the age of rocks. Many rocks and organisms contain radioactive isotopes, such as U and C The age of fossils can be determined using stratigraphy, biostratigraphy, and radiocarbon dating.
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