Chronometric dating in archaeology a review
It cannot be used to accurately date a site on its own.
However, it can be used to confirm the antiquity of an item.
This technique is based on the principle that all objects absorb radiation from the environment.
This process frees electrons within minerals that remain caught within the item.
One of the most widely used and well-known absolute dating techniques is carbon-14 (or radiocarbon) dating, which is used to date organic remains.
The half-life of potassium-40 is 1.3 billion years, far longer than that of carbon-14, allowing much older samples to be dated.
Potassium is common in rocks and minerals, allowing many samples of geochronological or archeological interest to be dated.
Absolute dating provides a numerical age or range in contrast with relative dating which places events in order without any measure of the age between events.
In archaeology, absolute dating is usually based on the physical, chemical, and life properties of the materials of artifacts, buildings, or other items that have been modified by humans and by historical associations with materials with known dates (coins and written history).
An additional problem with carbon-14 dates from archeological sites is known as the "old wood" problem.