Generally a shorter half-life leads to a higher time resolution at the expense of timescale. In the previous hypothetical example, one assumption is that all the argon was produced from the radioactive decay of potassium And gas can indeed move through rocks, albeit rather slowly. Animals and plants contain abundant carbon. And since the decay rate was much faster in the past, those who do not compensate for this will end up with age-estimates that are vastly inflated from the true age of the rock. This page was last edited on 12 Mayat
After another half-life, one fourth of the original substance will remain. These methods are applicable to materials that are up to aboutyears old. Special Publications, Geological Society of London. So, by comparing the argon to potassium ratio in a volcanic rock, we should be able to estimate the time since the rock formed. Related Media. Boltwood had conducted studies of radioactive materials as a consultant, and when Rutherford lectured at Yale in Boltwood was inspired to describe the relationships between elements in various decay series. It is conceptual.