Baylor College Medical School

92 11. Earth Science

What conditions are needed for ab accurate radiometric date to be obtained from a mineral sample?

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1. The decay constant and the abundance of K40 must be known accurately.

2. There must have been no incorporation of Ar40 into the mineral at the time of crystallization or a leak of Ar40 from the mineral following crystallization.

3. The system must have remained closed for both K40 and Ar40 since the time of crystallization.

4. The relationship between the data obtained and a specific event must be known.