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Ldeo cosmogenic dating group international. Donal doherty photography

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Cosmogenic nuclide dating can be used to determine rates of ice-sheet thinning and recession, the ages of moraines, and the age of glacially eroded bedrock surfaces.

The Production Rate of cosmogenic nuclides varies spatially, but is generally assumed to have remained constant at a particular location. One of the largest errors in cosmogenic nuclide dating comes from a poor sampling strategy. Rocks can therefore be left in a stable position or moved slightly, without having suffiicient erosion to remove cosmogenic nuclides from a previous exposure.

Terrestrial cosmogenic nuclides are produced by interactions between secondary cosmic rays and near surface rocks. Trimlines can therefore also be used to reconstruct past ice sheet thickness.

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At Earth's surface most of these nuclides are produced by neutron spallation. In particular, the impact of current environmental change on the nature of Earth Surface Processes is hardly predictable.

Granite and sandstone boulders are frequently used in cosmogenic nuclide dating, as they have large amounts of quartz, which yields Beryllium, a cosmogenic nuclide ideal for dating glacial fluctuations over Quaternary timescales.

Cosmogenic nuclide Cosmogenic nuclides or cosmogenic Calibration of the Argon-Argon Dating Method. That is why it does not matter how long the magma was in the volcano before it erupted.

Cartoon illustrating cosmogenic nuclide exposure ages.

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Watch this video to find out more: By the time the cosmic ray cascade reaches the surface of Earth it is primarily composed of neutrons.

What are cosmogenic nuclides?

Surface exposure dating

Our research interests cover a wide spectrum of earth scientific disciplines and include timing of ice ages, subglacial erosion rates, uplift rates of Pleistocene terraces, and a better understanding of the production systematics of cosmogenic nuclides.

This is called inheritance. The basic principle states that a rock on a moraine originated from underneath the glacier, where it was plucked and then transported subglacially.