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An easier method is to look at the data on age-spectrum plots and assess the reliability of “plateau” sections.Though definitions of what constitutes a plateau vary, a general guideline is that such sections of the age spectra should contain released, whose ages “overlap”. Two steps can never define a plateau, and such data cannot be evaluated on an isochron diagram.Any two points in the universe lie on a straight line!
These authors used these “ages” for defining the time of initiation and duration of flood-basalt volcanism in this province and to refine details (cryptochrons) of the geomagnetic polarity time scale from ~ 60 – 55 Ma. The MSWD ~ 26 and ~ 18, yield ( 2001), that the statistically significant mean value is 58.19 ± 0.26 Ma?
Methodology The basic principle involved is to evaluate critically how much the step ages on the plateau differ from one another.