by Dr Carl Wieland An attempt to explain this very important method of dating and the way in which, when fully understood, it supports a ‘short’ timescale.
In fact, the whole method is a giant ‘clock’ which seems to put a very young upper limit on the age of the atmosphere.
Along with hydrogen, nitrogen, oxygen, phosphorus, and sulfur, carbon is a building block of biochemical molecules ranging from fats, proteins, and carbohydrates to active substances such as hormones.
All carbon atoms have a nucleus containing six protons.
Isotopes participate in the same chemical reactions but often at differing rates.
When isotopes are to be designated specifically, the chemical symbol is expanded to identify the mass (for example, C is not stable.
The use of various radioisotopes allows the dating of biological and geological samples with a high degree of accuracy.
The article is in straightforward language and the non-technical reader could profitably work through it.
, we find that this ration is the same if we sample a leaf from a tree, or a part of your body.
This represents the ideal date for the amount of 14C measured for the sample.
However, as the quantity of 14 absorbed by all life fluctuates from year to year, the figure must be calibrated based on known fluctuation.