How does radioactive decay related to radiometric dating

10-Aug-2017 08:02

how does radioactive decay related to radiometric dating-82

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This is an example where the half-life reduces as time goes on.

(In other non-exponential decays, it can increase instead.) The decay of a mixture of two or more materials which each decay exponentially, but with different half-lives, is not exponential.

The term is also used more generally to characterize any type of exponential or non-exponential decay.

For example, the medical sciences refer to the biological half-life of drugs and other chemicals in the human body. The original term, half-life period, dating to Ernest Rutherford's discovery of the principle in 1907, was shortened to half-life in the early 1950s.

) is the time required for a quantity to reduce to half its initial value.

A biological half-life or elimination half-life is the time it takes for a substance (drug, radioactive nuclide, or other) to lose one-half of its pharmacologic, physiologic, or radiological activity.Note that after one half-life there are not exactly one-half of the atoms remaining, only approximately, because of the random variation in the process.Nevertheless, when there are many identical atoms decaying (right boxes), the law of large numbers suggests that it is a very good approximation to say that half of the atoms remain after one half-life.As an example, the radioactive decay of carbon-14 is exponential with a half-life of 5,730 years.

A quantity of carbon-14 will decay to half of its original amount (on average) after 5,730 years, regardless of how big or small the original quantity was.Consider a mixture of a rapidly decaying element A, with a half-life of 1 second, and a slowly decaying element B, with a half-life of 1 year.

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