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Separating out the zircons is, therefore, a very meticulous process.
Geologists then break up the rock into mineral grains and set them in a very thick liquid.
This radioactive series will require a little over 6.5 billion years to complete.
This means that any lead found in zircon minerals was made by radioactive decay, after the formation of the mineral.
This makes the zircons go straight back to the starting point on the Concordia graph, off of their original line. As long as no other geological event occurs, the whole Discordia line moves along the Concordia line, pointing to the age of the geological event that caused the disturbance.
The graph will show not only the age of the rocks but also when important geological events occurred in the past.
Even though zircon is very common, it is also very small.
It is usually found in the form of tiny grains, making up usually less than 10% of a given sample, spread out through the rock.
In another 710 million years, there would be only one 235U atom for every three 207Pb atoms.The Concordia is a graph that shows the aging of zircons.The older they get, the farther out along the curve they go. However, even though zircon is very strong, sometimes a geological event occurs that allows lead to escape. Scientists can use monazite, titanite, baddeleyite and zirconolite for uranium dating. Zircon is commonly found as the primary mineral in igneous rocks. Scientists use this method to date rocks that formed from between 1 million to 4.5 billion years ago, and they estimate the Earth is 4.543 billion years old.
Zircon also concentrates Uranium (You) and (although less so) Thorium (Th) and excludes lead (Pb), which means it has a very high You/Pb ratio.