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The solar estimate was based on the idea that the energy supply for the solar radioactive flux is gravitational contraction.
These two independent and agreeing dating methods for of the age of two primary members of the solar system formed a strong case for the correctness of his answer within the scientific community.
This estimate was actually reduced over his lifetime to between 20 Ma and 40 Ma and eventually to less than 10 Ma. Perry, in particular, a noted physicists and former assistant to Kelvin, showed that cooling calculations using different but equally likely assumptions and data resulted in ages for the Earth of as much as 29 Ga.
He believed this even though he did admit that some heat might be generated by the tidal forces or by chemical action.There were indeed powerful and unknown sources of energy fueling the Sun’s energy output.The same is true of the basis of Kelvin’s estimate of the age of the Earth.Of course, Kelvin formed his estimates of the age of the Sun without the knowledge of fusion as the true energy source of the Sun.Without this knowledge, he argued that, “As for the future, we may say, with equal certainty, that inhabitants of the Earth cannot continue to enjoy the light and heat essential to their life, for many million years longer, unless sources now unknown to us are prepared in the great storehouse of creation.” This last statement was prophetic.
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In these studies the isotopic ratios of all the noble gases (He, Ne, Ar, Kr, and Xe) of neutron-irradiated meteorites were measured.