Columns A, B, C, and D below represent outcrops, of the same sequence of bedrock layers, found within 20 miles of each other. The rock layers have not been overturned. In which New York State landscape region was this fossil found? What is the best classification of this fossil, and during which geologic time period did the organism that produced this fossil exist?
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Geologic Age: Using Radioactive Decay to Determine Geologic Age
Radiometric dating calculates an age in years for geologic materials by measuring the presence of a short-life radioactive element, e. The term applies to all methods of age determination based on nuclear decay of naturally occurring radioactive isotopes. Bates and Jackson To determine the ages in years of Earth materials and the timing of geologic events such as exhumation and subduction, geologists utilize the process of radiometric decay. Geologists use these dates to further define the boundaries of the geologic periods shown on the geologic time scale.
Radiometric Age Dating
Generally, there are four main concepts that students struggle with when thinking about radioactive decay:. Radioactivity and radioactive decay are spontaneous processes. Students often struggle with this concept; therefore, it should be stressed that it is impossible to know exactly when each of the radioactive elements in a rock will decay. Statistical probablity is the only thing we can know exactly.
The process in which the nuclei of radioactive elements break down, releasing fast-moving particles and decay. Played 0 times. Print Share Edit Delete. Live Game Live. Finish Editing.