Wiens has a Ph D in Physics, with a minor in Geology.His Ph D thesis was on isotope ratios in meteorites, including surface exposure dating.
He is presently employed in the Space & Atmospheric Sciences Group at the Los Alamos National Laboratory.
By 1907 study of the decay products of uranium (lead and intermediate radioactive elements that decay to lead) demonstrated to B. Boltwood that the lead/uranium ratio in uranium minerals increased with geologic age and might provide a geological dating tool.
As radioactive Parent atoms decay to stable daughter atoms (as uranium decays to lead) each disintegration results in one more atom of the daughter than was initially present and one less atom of the parent.
Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 2012 Digital Edition © William Collins Sons & Co. 1979, 1986 © Harper Collins Publishers 1998, 2000, 2003, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2009, 2012 Cite This Source (rā'dē-ō-mět'rĭk) A method for determining the age of an object based on the concentration of a particular radioactive isotope contained within it.
For inorganic materials, such as rocks containing the radioactive isotope rubidium, the amount of the isotope in the object is compared to the amount of the isotope's decay products (in this case strontium).
Later called Ötzi the Iceman, small samples from his body were carbon dated by scientists.