Fission track dating
All ordinary matter is made up of combinations of chemical elements, each with its own atomic number, indicating the number of protons in the atomic nucleus.
Additionally, elements may exist in different isotopes, with each isotope of an element differing in the number of neutrons in the nucleus.
This predictability allows the relative abundances of related nuclides to be used as a clock to measure the time from the incorporation of the original nuclides into a material to the present.
The basic equation of radiometric dating requires that neither the parent nuclide nor the daughter product can enter or leave the material after its formation.
Radiometric dating is also used to date archaeological materials, including ancient artifacts.
Different methods of radiometric dating vary in the timescale over which they are accurate and the materials to which they can be applied.
Another possibility is spontaneous fission into two or more nuclides.
In contrast, apatite ages obtained on basement rocks (granites, granodiorites, gabbros) are related to the uplift history of the Odenwald.
Fission track dating was applied to a large number of apatites for the first time. Apatites taken from different types of rocks from the Odenwald (Germany) were studied.
In apatite it is easy to identify fission tracks on the (0001) face if one uses the oil immersion technique. The fission track ages obtained have to be interpreted individually.
Radiometric dating or radioactive dating is a technique used to date materials such as rocks or carbon, in which trace radioactive impurities were selectively incorporated when they were formed.
The method compares the abundance of a naturally occurring radioactive isotope within the material to the abundance of its decay products, which form at a known constant rate of decay.