Dating rocks with fossils

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Since the moon and the Earth probably formed at the same time, this supports the current idea of the Earth's age.You can learn more about fossils, dinosaurs, radiometric dating and related topics by reading through the links on the next page.By using radiometric dating to determine the age of igneous brackets, researchers can accurately determine the age of the sedimentary layers between them.Using the basic ideas of bracketing and radiometric dating, researchers have determined the age of rock layers all over the world.Radioactive elements were incorporated into the Earth when the Solar System formed.All rocks and minerals contain tiny amounts of these radioactive elements.

For example, by using a laser, researchers can measure parent and daughter atoms in extremely small amounts of matter, making it possible to determine the age of very small samples [source: New Scientist].

Carbon-14 is a method used for young (less than 50,000 year old) sedimentary rocks.

This method relies on the uptake of a naturally occurring radioactive isotope of carbon, carbon-14 by all living things.

Instead, other methods are used to work out a fossil’s age.

These include radiometric dating of volcanic layers above or below the fossils or by comparisons to similar rocks and fossils of known ages.

Radiometric dating isn't the only method of determining the age of rocks.

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