Radiocarbon dating also referred to as carbon dating or carbon dating is a method for determining the age of an object containing organic material by using the properties of radiocarbon 14 C , a radioactive isotope of carbon. The method was developed by Willard Libby in the late s and soon became a standard tool for archaeologists. Libby received the Nobel Prize for his work in The radiocarbon dating method is based on the fact that radiocarbon is constantly being created in the atmosphere by the interaction of cosmic rays with atmospheric nitrogen. The resulting radiocarbon combines with atmospheric oxygen to form radioactive carbon dioxide , which is incorporated into plants by photosynthesis ; animals then acquire 14 C by eating the plants. When the animal or plant dies, it stops exchanging carbon with its environment, and from that point onwards the amount of 14 C it contains begins to decrease as the 14 C undergoes radioactive decay.
Is Carbon Dating Accurate?
Radiocarbon dating is a key tool archaeologists use to determine the age of plants and objects made with organic material. But new research shows that commonly accepted radiocarbon dating standards can miss the mark -- calling into question historical timelines. Archaeologist Sturt Manning and colleagues have revealed variations in the radiocarbon cycle at certain periods of time, affecting frequently cited standards used in archaeological and historical research relevant to the southern Levant region, which includes Israel, southern Jordan and Egypt. These variations, or offsets, of up to 20 years in the calibration of precise radiocarbon dating could be related to climatic conditions. Pre-modern radiocarbon chronologies rely on standardized Northern and Southern Hemisphere calibration curves to obtain calendar dates from organic material.
I do not understand why the information regarding the fact that there are groups that dispute the accuracy of carbon dating continues to be removed from this article. Please can those involved explain their actions? In the Bible, the Hebrew word used for "day" is "yohm", which often means different lengths of time, such as the length of time it takes for a season, which takes a few months - much longer than a 24 hour day.
Prior to the 20th century, estimating the age of ancient fossils or artifacts was considered a job of a paleontologist or archaeologist. The age of silt layers or rocks was found which served as a reference to the estimate the age of an artifact or a fossil. Although, a relic discovered in frozen ice, caves or places whose age remains unknown made it hard to date it in an accurate manner. So when the process of carbon dating was proposed, the nuclear physicists could determine the approximate age of ages old objects, fossils and extinct materials.