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Different methods of radiometric dating can be used to estimate the age of a variety of natural and even man-made materials.

The methods work because radioactive elements are unstable, and they are always trying to move to a more stable state. This process by which an unstable atomic nucleus loses energy by releasing radiation is called radioactive decay.

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C) dating usually want to know about the radiometric[1] dating methods that are claimed to give millions and billions of years—carbon dating can only give thousands of years.

One rare form has atoms that are 14 times as heavy as hydrogen atoms: carbon-14, or C ratio gets smaller.

Radiometric dating, or radioactive dating as it is sometimes called, is a method used to date rocks and other objects based on the known decay rate of radioactive isotopes.

Obviously, this works only for things which were once living.

PALEONTOLOGY, AND in particular the study of dinosaurs, is an exciting topic to people of all ages.

Learn about half-life and how it is used in different dating methods, such as uranium-lead dating and radiocarbon dating, in this video lesson. As we age, our hair turns gray, our skin wrinkles and our gait slows.

However, rocks and other objects in nature do not give off such obvious clues about how long they have been around.