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This is interpreted as the duration of formation of the solar nebula and its collapse into the solar disk to form the Sun and the planets.

This 50 million year time span allows for accretion of the planets from the original solar dust and meteorites.

The Canyon Diablo date has been backed up by hundreds of other dates, from both terrestrial samples and other meteorites.

The meteorite samples, however, show a spread from 4.53 to 4.58 billion years ago.

The accumulation of dislocations generated by high energy cosmic ray particle impacts provides another confirmation of the isotopic dates.

Canyon Diablo Meteorite Further information: Canyon Diablo (meteorite) The Canyon Diablo meteorite was used because it is a very large representative of a particularly rare type of meteorite that contains sulfide minerals (particularly troilite, Fe S), metallic nickel-iron alloys, plus silicate minerals.The radioactive parent elements used to date rocks and minerals are: Radiometric dating using the naturally-occurring radioactive elements is simple in concept even though technically complex.If we know the number of radioactive parent atoms present when a rock formed and the number present now, we can calculate the age of the rock using the decay constant.Martian meteorites that have landed upon Earth have also been dated to around 4.5 billion years old by lead-lead dating.Lunar samples, since they have not been disturbed by weathering, plate tectonics or material moved by organisms, can also provide dating by direct electron microscope examination of cosmic ray tracks.

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