The rock record continually stimulates ideas about Earth processes. The ability to quantify the rates of these processes and to rigorously test specific cause-effect relationships requires a time scale. Hence, advances in geochronology — the science of using isotopes to determine the age of Earth materials — have led to many of the transformative ideas and discoveries in the geosciences. WiscAr infrastructure includes two fully-automated mass spectrometers for incremental heating or laser fusion analyses, rock preparation and mineral separation facilities, optical microscopes, and a scanning electron microscope and electron microprobe in the Department of Geoscience. Techniques are continually refined to provide the precise geochronology needed for each project. The goal of our research program is to broadly train students for careers that will impact the future of Earth Sciences.
Early Samples from York K-Ar Lab | University of Toronto Scientific Instruments Collection
Dating is very important in any aspect of human interest. Wherever we go, whatever we encounter, we are required the age or be able to answer the question; how old it is? In the vast field of archaeology, determining the age of any object is very crucial and difficult. The analysis will be absolutely wrong and far away from the reality. We will loose an important key or part of the puzzle, which can never be recovered. Analysis becomes difficult , if we do not have any confirmed data to establish the age of the artifact. In the quest of establishing the date of an artifact, advance in technology helps us every time.
Western Australian Argon Isotope Facility. The Ar technique can be applied to any rocks and minerals that contain K e. Typically, we need to irradiates the sample along with known age standards with fast neutrons in the core of a nuclear reactor.