The various methods of geochronology have, as a rule, evolved along a characteristic path whereby the earliest work lays out the physical and mathematical foundation and demonstrates its practicality for a few cases using optimal samples. Later work confronts the problems and failures of early assumptions on more general problems, and as the method matures and becomes more generally applied, a standard toolkit of more-or-less rigorous protocols for data interpretation and error estimation is developed. The 230Th/U dating method has evolved along broadly similar lines, but with a discontinuity arising from the revolutionary application by Chen et al. (1986)...

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