Radioactive dating methods beyond 60000 years

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If we pretend we can have fractions of coins, after two minutes, we would have 750-187.5, or 562.5 nickels and 437.5 pennies.

We can tabulate the results to get a sense of the “history” of the decay.

It’s a little like bouncers throwing trouble-makers out of a dance club.

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Since all nickelium acts the same way, we do not have to wait around for the last nickel to turn into a penny.

Each nucleus has its own internal “clock,” so we can use that clock to determine how long a sample containing that nucleus has been around.

This clock-like property of an isotope is its “half-life.” Radioactive emission typically changes the atomic number or atomic mass of a nucleus.

Mathematics allows to predict half-lives, some of which are millions of years.

To demonstrate, let us suppose we have a sample of 1000 nickels.

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