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Its weak metallic character is illustrated by its amphoteric nature; lead and lead oxides react with acids and bases, and it tends to form covalent bonds.Compounds of lead are usually found in the 2 oxidation state rather than the 4 state common with lighter members of the carbon group.Their isotopic concentration in a natural rock sample depends greatly on the presence of these three parent uranium and thorium isotopes.For example, the relative abundance of lead-208 can range from 52% in normal samples to 90% in thorium ores; As time passes, the ratio of lead-206 and lead-207 to lead-204 increases, since the former two are supplemented by radioactive decay of heavier elements while the latter is not; this allows for lead–lead dating.Uranium–lead dating and lead–lead dating on this meteorite allowed refinement of the age of the Earth to 4.55 billion ± 70 million years.Apart from the stable isotopes, which make up almost all lead that exists naturally, there are trace quantities of a few radioactive isotopes.

In 2014, annual global production of lead was about ten million tonnes, over half of which was from recycling.Lead's high density, low melting point, ductility and relative inertness to oxidation make it useful.These properties, combined with its relative abundance and low cost, resulted in its extensive use in construction, plumbing, batteries, bullets and shot, weights, solders, pewters, fusible alloys, white paints, leaded gasoline, and radiation shielding.With its high atomic number, lead is the heaviest element whose natural isotopes are regarded as stable; lead-208 is the heaviest stable nucleus.(This distinction formerly fell to bismuth, with an atomic number of 83, until its only primordial isotope, bismuth-209, was found in 2003 to decay very slowly.) The four stable isotopes of lead could theoretically undergo alpha decay to isotopes of mercury with a release of energy, but this has not been observed for any of them; their predicted half-lives range from 10 times the current age of the universe).Three of the stable isotopes are found in three of the four major decay chains: lead-206, lead-207, and lead-208 are the final decay products of uranium-238, uranium-235, and thorium-232, respectively.These decay chains are called the uranium series, the actinium series, and the thorium series.The similarity of ionization energies is caused by the lanthanide contraction—the decrease in element radii from lanthanum (atomic number 57) to lutetium (71), and the relatively small radii of the elements from hafnium (72) onwards.This is due to poor shielding of the nucleus by the lanthanide 4f electrons.Lead is a chemical element with symbol Pb (from the Latin plumbum) and atomic number 82.It is a heavy metal that is denser than most common materials.


  1. Provenancing ancient pigments Lead isotope analyses of the copper compound of egyptian blue pigments from ancient mediterranean artefacts

  2. Isotope One of two or more species of atoms of an element with the same atomic number but different atomic masses.

  3. DETERMINING AGE OF ROCKS AND FOSSILS FRANK K. MCKINNEY THE AGE of fossils intrigues almost everyone. Students not only want to

  4. Lead is a chemical element with symbol Pb from the Latin plumbum and atomic number 82. It is a heavy metal that is denser than most common materials.

  5. The genesis of gold mineralisation hosted by orogenic belts A lead isotope investigation of Irish gold deposits

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