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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.
Some scientists prefer the terms chronometric or calendar dating, as use of the word "absolute" implies an unwarranted certainty of accuracy.After yet another 5,730 years only one-eighth will be left.By measuring the carbon-14 in organic material, scientists can determine the date of death of the organic matter in an artifact or ecofact.Argon, a noble gas, is not commonly incorporated into such samples except when produced in situ through radioactive decay.
The date measured reveals the last time that the object was heated past the closure temperature at which the trapped argon can escape the lattice.
This is a radiometric technique since it is based on radioactive decay.