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Accurate dating methods


Radiometric dating methods estimate the age of rocks using calculations based on the decay rates of radioactive elements such as uranium, strontium, and potassium. On the surface, radiometric dating methods appear to give powerful support to the statement that life has existed on the earth for hundreds of millions, even billions, of years. We are told that these methods are accurate to a few percent, and that there are many different methods. We are told that of all the radiometric dates that are measured, only a few percent are anomalous. This gives us the impression that all but a small percentage of the dates computed by radiometric methods agree with the assumed ages of the rocks in which they are found, and that all of these various methods almost always give ages that agree with each other to within a few percentage points. Since there doesn't seem to be any systematic error that could cause so many methods to agree with each other so often, it seems that there is no other rational conclusion than to accept these dates as accurate.

Scientists now have accurate methods (see below ) for dating fossils. Absolute dating methods such as the potassium/argon and argon-argon methods of dating fossils provide a precise measure of the date of fossil remains or associated minerals. Relative dating methods rely on characteristic faunal and geological patterns to bracket the period when the fossil existed.


Accurate dating methods

Accurate dating methods








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