The ideal geochronometer would be a universally stable phase that quantitatively retains both parent and daughter isotopes. Though a few mineral systems such as zircon U-Pb dating come reasonably close to this ideal, most minerals are incompletely retentive of daughter-product nuclides under crustal conditions. The mechanisms by which the daughter product can be lost from minerals include dissolution–reprecipitation reactions (e.g., salt; Obradovich et al. 1982), recrystallization (e.g., micas undergoing deformation; Chopin and Maluski 1980), and diffusive loss (e.g., 40Ar degassing of K-feldspar; Foland 1974). The latter mechanism is perhaps the most common source of discrepancy between...

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