Surface exposure dating is a collection of geochronological techniques for estimating the length of time that a rock has been exposed at or near Earth's surface. Surface exposure dating is used to date glacial advances and retreats, erosion history, lava flows, meteorite impacts, rock slides, fault scarps, cave development, and other geological events. It is most useful for rocks which have been exposed for between 103 and 106 years.Cosmogenic radionuclide dating
The most common of these dating techniques is cosmogenic radionuclide dating. Earth is constantly bombarded with primary cosmic rays, high energy charged particles – mostly protons and alpha particles. These particles interact with atoms in atmospheric gases, producing a cascade of secondary particles that may in turn interact and reduce their energies in many reactions as they pass through the atmosphere. This cascade includes a small fraction of hadrons, including neutrons. When one of these particles strikes an a
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