The half-life is so predictable that it is also referred to as an atomic clock.
Can you guess how much uranium-238 would remain after the passing of another half-life?
Just as in the example with uranium, scientists are able to determine the age of a sample by using the ratios of the daughter product compared to the parent.
Also, when dating with carbon-14, scientists compare the amount of carbon-14 to carbon -12.
Radioactive dating enables geologists to record the history of the earth and its events, such as the dinosaur era, within what they call the geologic time scale.An isotope is a variation of an element based upon the number of neutrons.The disintegration of the neutrons within the atom of the element's nucleus is what scientists call radioactivity.An isotope disintegrates at a constant rate called the half-life --the time it takes for half the atoms of a sample to decay. By counting the number of half-lives and the percentages remaining of parent and daughter isotopes, scientists are able to determine what they call the absolute age of a discovery.Carbon-14 is a specific isotope used in dating materials that were once living.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.Other common isotopes used in radioactive dating are uranium, potassium and iodine.To answer the question to the uranium problem above, after about three half-lives, only 12.5% of uranium-238 would remain. We have over 95 college courses that prepare you to earn credit by exam that is accepted by over 2,000 colleges and universities.You can test out of the first two years of college and save thousands off your degree.Anyone can earn credit-by-exam regardless of age or education level.