Radio carbon dating information

During the period of a plant's life, the plant is taking in carbon dioxide through photosynthesis, which is how the plant makes energy and grows.

Animals eat plants, and some eat other animals in the food chain.

I have tried here to answer some of the frequently asked questions that I receive from students via email, as well as providing some basic information about scientific dating methods.

"Everything which has come down to us from heathendom is wrapped in a thick fog; it belongs to a space of time we cannot measure.

Because carbon is very common on Earth, there are alot of different types of material which can be dated by scientists.

Below is a list of the different kinds of materials which can be dated: Libby tested the new radiocarbon method on carbon samples from prehistoric Egypt whose age was known.

Rasmus Nyerup's quote reminds us of the tremendous scientific advances which have taken place in the 20th century.

In Nyerup's time, archaeologists could date the past only by using recorded histories, which in Europe were based mainly on the Egyptian calendar.

He and two students first measured the "half-life" of radiocarbon.It is called 'radio'-carbon, because it is 'radioactive'.This means that its atomic structure is not stable and there is an uneasy relationship between the particles in the nucleus of the atom itself.The C14 method has been and continues to be applied and used in many, many different fields including hydrology, atmospheric science, oceanography, geology, palaeoclimatology, archaeology and biomedicine.All plants and animals on Earth are made principally of carbon.

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You can work out that after about 50 000 years of time, all the radiocarbon will have gone.

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