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But what if one or some combination of these assumptions is incorrect?

Then the computed age based on the accumulation of daughter products will be incorrect (Stasson 1998).

In the initial state, the graph of daughter isotope to the third isotope versus parent isotope to the third isotope should result in a straight, horizontal line.

The process of evaluating the daughter product as a ratio against another isotope of the same element is a valid method because, when a mineral or rock forms from a homogenous state, the elements that are assimilated into crystalline formation are very restricted.

However, isochron dating bypasses this assumption, as explained below. The final condition is the number of atoms of parent and daughter isotopes remaining in the rock and can easily be measured in a lab.

Isochron dating bypasses the necessity of knowing the quantity of initial daughter product in the rock by not using that value in the computation.

This initial ratio allows the non-daughter product isotope to be representative of the initial amount of the daughter product (Stassen 1998).

As time progresses and decay occurs, the number of atoms of the parent isotope decreases, and the number of atoms of the daughter isotope increases accordingly.

Instead, the points would be in a scatter on the graph.

Points that do not fall on a straight line suggest contamination, and this invalidates the results.

It has been established through extensive experimentation that radioactive decay occurs at a constant rate. In this case, the initial condition is the amount of daughter isotope in the rock when it was formed.

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