Radioactive dating uranium lead
This is an enormous branch of geochemistry called Geochronology.
In order to put the rest of the argument in context, I include here a very brief review of the background to Harris’s claims.
If a number of samples are analyzed and the results are shown to define a straight line within error, then a precise age is defined because this is only possible if each is a closed system and each has the same initial ratio and age.
The uncertainty in determining the slope is reduced because it is defined by many points.
For example, a problem I have worked on involving the eruption of a volcano at what is now Naples, Italy, occurred 38500 years ago with a plus or minus of 300 years.
So, when the materials are appropriate and one carefully avoids contamination and re setting radiometric clocks can be VERY ACCURATE.
magazine has been continuously published since 1978, we are publishing some of the articles from the archives for historical interest, such as this.