Problems with radiometric dating techniques

To me it has been a real eye opener to see all the processes that are taking place and their potential influence on radiometric dating.Radiometric dating is largely done on rock that has formed from solidified lava.As the crystallization process continues, the composition of the melt (liquid portion of a magma, excluding any solid material continually changes.For example, at the stage when about 50 percent of the magma has solidified, the melt will be greatly depleted in iron, magnesium, and calcium, because these elements are found in the earliest formed minerals.Of course, there are many problems with such dating methods, such as parent or daughter substances entering or leaving the rock, as well as daughter product being present at the beginning.Here I want to concentrate on another source of error, namely, processes that take place within magma chambers.

For this reason, this arrangement of minerals became known as Bowen's reaction series.

Lava (properly called magma before it erupts) fills large underground chambers called magma chambers.

Most people are not aware of the many processes that take place in lava before it erupts and as it solidifies, processes that can have a tremendous influence on daughter to parent ratios.

Such a large variety of igneous rocks exists that it is logical to assume an equally large variety of magmas must also exist.

However, geologists have found that various eruptive stages of the same volcano often extrude lavas exhibiting somewhat different mineral compositions, particularly if an extensive period of time separated the eruptions.

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