Absolute dates must agree with dates from other relative methods in order to be valid.
The most widely used and accepted form of absolute dating is radioactive decay dating. Radioactive decay refers to the process in which a radioactive form of an element is converted into a nonradioactive product at a regular rate.
When the organism dies, the supply stops, and the carbon-14 contained in the organism begins to spontaneously decay into nitrogen-14.
The time it takes for one-half of the carbon-14 to decay (a period called a half-life) is 5,730 years.
The nucleus of every radioactive element (such as radium and uranium) spontaneously disintegrates over time, transforming itself into the nucleus of an atom of a different element.
In the process of disintegration, the atom gives off radiation (energy emitted in the form of waves). Each element decays at its own rate, unaffected by external physical conditions.
In addition to the radiocarbon dating technique, scientists have developed other dating methods based on the transformation of one element into another.By measuring the amount of original and transformed atoms in an object, scientists can determine the age of that object.Cosmic rays: Invisible, high-energy particles that constantly bombard Earth from all directions in space.Dating techniques are procedures used by scientists to determine the age of an object or a series of events.The two main types of dating methods are relative and absolute.