# Problems with radiometric dating

### Index

- How reliable is radiometric dating?
- What is a radiometric date?
- What is meant by radioactive dating?
- Why is radiometric dating difficult for young Earth creationists?
- Can all radiometric dating methods be wrong?
- What is the most common radiometric dating method for uranium?
- How is radiometric dating used to date fossils?
- Why do scientists reject all but the oldest dating methods?
- What is the process of radioactive dating?
- What is radiometric dating?
- What is the definition of isotopic dating?
- How do you determine the age of an object using radioactive dating?
- Do creationists ever find incorrect radiometric dating results?
- Why do radiometric dating methods give inflated ages?
- How do radiometric ages agree with geologic mapping?
- Why doesnt radiocarbon dating work on objects older than 20 thousand years?

### How reliable is radiometric dating?

The reliability of radiometric dating is subject to three unprovable assumptions that every geologist must make when using the radioactive “clock”. Radioactive rocks offer a similar “clock.” Radioactive atoms, such as uranium (the parent isotopes), decay into stable atoms, such as lead (the daughter isotopes), at a measurable rate.

### What is a radiometric date?

Radiometric dating or radioactive dating is a technique used to date materials such as rocks or carbon, in which trace radioactive impurities were selectively incorporated when they were formed.

### What is meant by radioactive dating?

A technique used to date materials such as rocks or carbon. Radiometric dating, radioactive dating or radioisotope dating is a technique which is used to date materials such as rocks or carbon, in which trace radioactive impurities were selectively incorporated when they were formed.

### Why is radiometric dating difficult for young Earth creationists?

Radiometric dating of rocks and minerals using naturally occurring, long-lived radioactive isotopes is troublesome for young-earth creationists because the techniques have provided overwhelming evidence of the antiquity of the earth and life.

### Can all radiometric dating methods be wrong?

In regard to the radiometric dating of rocks, it is known that various different radiometric methods often yield quite discordant dates for the same rock, thus proving that they cannot all be correct.

### What is the most common radiometric dating method for uranium?

One common radiometric dating method is the Uranium-Lead method. This involves uranium isotopes with an atomic mass of 238. This is the most common form of uranium.

### How is radiometric dating used to date fossils?

Radiometric dating is based on the half-lives of the radioactive isotopes. These half-lives have been measured over the last 40-90 years. They are not calibrated by fossils.

### Why do scientists reject all but the oldest dating methods?

Yet when asked why they reject all but the oldest science-based dating methods, the answer often given is that (they think) long-age radiometric dating is more reliable and that science settled the matter of the earth’s age many years ago.

### Do creationists ever find incorrect radiometric dating results?

Only rarely does a creationist actually find an incorrect radiometric result (Austin 1996; Rugg and Austin 1998) that has not already been revealed and discussed in the scientific literature. The creationist approach of focusing on examples where radiometric dating yields incorrect results is a curious one for two reasons.

### Why do radiometric dating methods give inflated ages?

We now have a good idea why most radiometric dating methods give inflated ages: there was at least one episode of accelerated radioactive decay in earth’s history. This is the only reasonable way to make sense of the abundance of helium found trapped in various rocks. The abundance of helium indicates that much radioactive decay has happened.

### How do radiometric ages agree with geologic mapping?

Third, the radiometric ages agree, within analytical error, with the relative positions of the dated ash beds as determined by the geologic mapping and the fossil assemblages; that is, the ages get older from top to bottom as they should.

### Why doesnt radiocarbon dating work on objects older than 20 thousand years?

Radiocarbon dating doesnt work well on objects much older than twenty thousand years, because such objects have so little C-14 left that their beta radiation is swamped out by the background radiation of cosmic rays and potassium-40 (K-40) decay.