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    Zircon fission track dating

    Several different experimental methods are available which attempt to reach this ideal.Different approaches may be best for different types of sample material.The other problem is that uranium is particularly susceptible to weathering.Now since all rocks are somewhat porous, and since we are pretty much obliged to date rocks from near the surface, it's hard to find instances in which uranium has not been lost.Accurate and precise age estimates can be obtained on glass by use of the isothermal plateau fission-track (ITPFT) dating method. Correction for partial track fading is achieved by heating the natural sample and its irradiated aliquot for 30 days at 150°C.

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    This depends on the material having a homogeneous distribution of uranium between the two splits.Fission-track analysis of U-bearing minerals (mainly zircon, apatite and sphene) is based on the natural decay by spontaneous fission of the U atoms, located within the mineral itself (Fleischer et al., 1975).Natural fission of the U nucleus is an explosive event during which two highly charged particles fly in opposite direction from each other at high velocity (Fleischer et al., 1975), producing a single damage trail in the crystal that is identified as a spontaneous fission track.; as you can see from its chemical formula, it is one of the silicate minerals.Although it is not abundant in igneous rocks, it is sufficiently common to be used for the purposes of radiometric dating.

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