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The rate of decay (given the symbol λ) is the fraction of the 'parent' atoms that decay in unit time.
For geological purposes, this is taken as one year.
Carbon, uranium and potassium are just a few examples of elements used in radioactive dating.
Each element is made up of atoms, and within each atom is a central particle called a nucleus.
Radiometric dating methods are the strongest direct evidence that geologists have for the age of the Earth.
All these methods point to Earth being very, very old -- several billions of years old.
Radioactive dating uses the ratios of isotopes and their specific decay products to determine the ages of rocks, fossils and other substances.
It makes no sense at all if man appeared at the end of billions of years.The rules are the same in all cases; the assumptions are different for each method.To explain those rules, I'll need to talk about some basic atomic physics. Hydrogen-1's nucleus consists of only a single proton.When an atom varies in the number of neutrons, the variation is called an isotope. During radioactivity, the unstable isotope breaks down and changes into a different substance.A new, more stable isotope, called the decay or daughter product, takes its place.