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Carbon dating works on organic matter, all of which contains carbon.
However it is less useful for dating metal or other inorganic objects.
Most rocks contain uranium, allowing uranium-lead and similar methods to date them.
Other elements used for dating, such as rubidium, occur in some minerals but not others, restricting usefulness.
The oldest rock so far dated is a zircon crystal that formed 4.4-billion-years ago, which was only 200 million years or so after the Earth itself formed.
The time that it takes for half of a sample to decay is known as the half life of the isotope.One problem is that potassium is also highly mobile and may move into older rocks.This depends on the decay of uranium-237 and uranium-238 to isotopes of lead.One way Young Earth Creationists and other denialists try to discredit radiometric dating is to cite examples radiometric dating techniques providing inaccurate results. Helens, creationists attempted discredit the discipline through dishonest practices.This is frequently because the selected technique is used outside of its appropriate range, for example on very recent lavas. The Institute for Creation Research's RATE project aimed to show scientifically that methods of radiometric dating produced wildly inconsistent and incorrect values.