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Founded in 2002 by Nobel Laureate Carl Wieman, the Ph ET Interactive Simulations project at the University of Colorado Boulder creates free interactive math and science simulations.Ph ET sims are based on extensive education research and engage students through an intuitive, game-like environment where students learn through exploration and discovery. As we pointed out in these two articles, radiometric dates are based on known rates of radioactivity, a phenomenon that is rooted in fundamental laws of physics and follows simple mathematical formulas.Dating schemes based on rates of radioactivity have been refined and scrutinized for several decades.Over a thousand papers on radiometric dating were published in scientifically recognized journals in the last year, and hundreds of thousands of dates have been published in the last 50 years.Essentially all of these strongly favor an old Earth.A recent survey of the rubidium-strontium method found only about 30 cases, out of tens of thousands of published results, where a date determined using the proper procedures was subsequently found to be in error.One question that sometimes arises here is how can scientists assume that rates of radioactivity have been constant over the great time spans involved.
And it has been close to a hundred years since the uranium-238 decay rate was first determined.
Another method is to make age measurements on several samples from the same rock unit.
This technique helps identify post-formation geologic disturbances because different minerals respond differently to heating and chemical changes.
In a related article on geologic ages (Ages), we presented a chart with the various geologic eras and their ages.
In a separate article (Radiometric dating), we sketched in some technical detail how these dates are calculated using radiometric dating techniques.