By the mid-1940s, Willard Libby realized that the decay of C research—his life’s work—Libby was awarded the Nobel Prize in Chemistry in 1960, and the age of radioactive dating was born.Before we delve into radioactive decay and its use in dating rocks, let’s review some essential nuclear physics concepts.This feature of nuclear construction produces, groups of elements with the same number of protons but differing numbers of neutrons.Because these families have the same number of protons in the nucleus, they also have the same number of electrons orbiting the nucleus and thus exhibit the same chemical behavior.These issues will be detailed in subsequent articles.In the processes of beta and positron decay, the energy is shared between the emitted beta or positron particles and an antineutrino or neutrino respectively.Due to the extremely short half-lives of the Po isotopes, this would present a serious problem for those wanting to date the rocks at millions or billions of years old.Diffusion rates of the Thus, the observed evidence in rocks extracted from the earth’s crust present several conundrums—problems that center on assumptions made in using radioisotope decay within a rock sample as a clock to date the origins of that sample.
As these alpha particles travel through a mineral matrix, they deposit their energy in the mineral itself.
The chemical properties of each element are defined by the number of protons it contains in its nucleus and, consequently, the number of corresponding electrons that orbit it.
However, elements beyond hydrogen’s single proton have varying numbers of neutrons that do not necessarily equal the amount of protons in the nucleus.
These radiohalos originate from tiny point-like inclusions of U or some other naturally occurring radioisotope within the crystal.
Unfortunately for the secularist, there are radiohalos formed from what appears to be primordial Po (polonium), rather than Po in the form of daughter isotopes from U decay.