Compare contrast relative dating radiometric dating

But really, how do scientists figure out how old their dinosaur bones are?

Paul is super awesome, so I'm going to take him at his word.

For example, techniques based on isotopes with half lives in the thousands of years, such as Carbon-14, cannot be used to date materials that have ages on the order of billions of years, as the detectable amounts of the radioactive atoms and their decayed daughter isotopes will be too small to measure within the uncertainty of the instruments.

One of the most widely used and well-known absolute dating techniques is carbon-14 (or radiocarbon) dating, which is used to date organic remains.

Along the way, we'll learn how stratigraphic succession and radioactive decay contribute to the work of paleontologists.

Consider the following scenario: Paul the Paleontologist is a very famous scientist who has studied dinosaur bones all over the world.

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