Paleomagnetism measures the ancient orientation of the Earth's magnetic field to help determine the age of rocks. Therefore carbon dating can be used to date plant and animal remains. Using relative and radiometric dating methods, geologists are able to answer the question: Visual Browse Close. Geologists commonly use radiometric dating methods, based on the natural radioactive decay of certain elements such as potassium and carbon, as reliable clocks to date ancient events. The study of stratigraphy enables scientists to determine the age of a fossil if they know the age of layers of rock that surround it.
Each original isotope, called the parent, gradually decays to form a new isotope, called the daughter.
Dating Fossils – How Are Fossils Dated?
Cambridge University Press, Positively charged subatomic particles found in the nucleus of an atom radioactivity radioactive: The age of the earth. Radiogenic isotope geology 2nd ed. Rubidium—strontium dating. Englewood Cliffs, New Jersey: From these assumptions, he calculated that the Earth was million years old.