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A particular isotope of a particular element is called a nuclide. That is, at some point in time, an atom of such a nuclide will spontaneously change into a different nuclide by radioactive decay.

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We can now calibrate this out by looking at C14 in tree rings of a known age - but the charge of "C14 dates are wrong" is used by nutters (sorry creationists) either deliberately or in ignorance.

Radiometric dating (often called radioactive dating) is a way to find out how old something is.

The method compares the amount of a naturally occurring radioactive isotope and its decay products, in samples. It is the main way to learn the age of rocks and other geological features, including the age of the Earth itself.

Radiometric dating is also used to date archaeological materials, including ancient artifacts.

Radiometric dating methods are used to establish the geological time scale.

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