Radioactive carbon dating method


13-Feb-2018 16:11

Professor Willard Libby produced the first radiocarbon dates in 1949 and was later awarded the Nobel Prize for his efforts.

Radiocarbon dating works by comparing the three different isotopes of carbon.

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In 1946, Willard Libby proposed an innovative method for dating organic materials by measuring their content of carbon-14, a newly discovered radioactive isotope of carbon.(This, in turn, is caused by variations in the magnetic fields of the earth and sun, for example.) Although the ratio of radiocarbon to stable carbon in the atmosphere has varied over time, it is quite uniform around the globe at any given time because the atmosphere mixes very quickly and constantly.Plants obtain all their carbon atoms from the atmosphere.The ratio of radiocarbon to stable carbon atoms in the atmosphere has varied in the past.

This is because the amount and strength of cosmic radiation entering the earth's atmosphere has varied over time.

date of organic material - but an approximate age, usually within a range of a few years either way.