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What is the difference between relative and absolute dating?
What is the difference between relative and absolute dating? | Yahoo Answers
Share facts or photos of intriguing scientific phenomena. Did You Know? Although both relative and absolute dating methods are used to estimate the age of historical remains, the results produced by both these techniques for the same sample may be ambiguous. Geological specimens that are unearthed need to be assigned an appropriate age. To find their age, two major geological dating methods are used. These are called relative and absolute dating techniques. Absolute dating, also called numerical dating, arranges the historical remains in order of their ages.
Relative Vs. Absolute Dating: The Ultimate Face-off
The difference between relative dating and absolute dating is that relative dating is a method of sequencing events in the order in which they happened. Absolute dating is a method of estimating the age of a rock sample in years via radiometric techniques. Short Answer:. The term relative dating is distinguished from absolute dating to make it clear that one does not get a specific estimate of the age of an object from relative dating , but one does get such an estimate of true age from absolute dating. There are several techniques employed in both sets of methods.
Relative age allows scientists to know whether something is older or younger than something else, while absolute age means that scientists know the exact number in years that have passed since the object was created. Relative age will require the comparison of two or more objects, whereas absolute age does not. Relative age comes up often in various fields, such as archeology. If archaeologists find a site with layers in it, they can make assumptions about the relative age based on the composition of materials in each layer. For example, if an area used for trash has modern refuse in it such as CDs and computers, and the layer underneath has cans made of tin, then it is safe to say the layer of tin cans have a greater relative age than the layer with modern refuse.