Absolute dating of fossils depends on the decay of

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The study of fossils across geological time, how they were formed, and the evolutionary relationships between taxa (phylogeny) are some of the most important functions of the science of paleontology.

A half-life is the time needed for half of a sample of a radioactive substance to undergo radioactive decay In other words, a half-life is the time needed for half of the parent material to become daughter material The rate of radioactive decay is predictable The rate of radioactive decay depends on what parent material is decaying The rate of decay is different for different types of parent material Radiometric Dating = the method of determining the age of an object based on the ratio of parent material to daughter material Radioactive parent isotopes and their stable daughter products Radioactive Parent Stable Daughter Potassium 40 Argon 40 Rubidium 87 Strontium 87 Thorium 232 Lead 208 Uranium 235 Lead 207 Uranium 238 Lead 206 Carbon 14 Nitrogen 14 Each radioactive isotope has its own unique half-life.A half-life is the time it takes for half of the parent radioactive element to decay to a daughter product.Half Lives for Radioactive Elements Radioactive Parent Stable Daughter Half life Potassium 40 Argon billion yrs Rubidium 87 Strontium billion yrs Thorium 232 Lead billion years Uranium 235 Lead million years Uranium 238 Lead billion years Carbon 14 Nitrogen years The proportion of parent to daughter tells us the number of halflives, which we can use to find the age in years.Perhaps the most widely used evidence for the Theory of Evolution through Natural Selection is the fossil record.The fossil record may be incomplete and may never fully completed, but there are still many clues to evolution and how it happens within the fossil record.

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