Formula for carbon 14 dating
This allows corrections to be made on radiocarbon dates in order to produce more accurate dates.Radiocarbon dating, or carbon-14 dating, can be used to date material that had its origins in a living thing as long as the material contains carbon.Geologists measure the abundance of these radioisotopes instead to date rocks.Radiocarbon dating can easily establish that humans have been on the earth for over twenty thousand years, at least twice as long as creationists are willing to allow.So, if we measure the rate of beta decay in an organic sample, we can calculate how old the sample is. Question: Kieth and Anderson radiocarbon-dated the shell of a living freshwater mussel and obtained an age of over two thousand years.ICR creationists claim that this discredits C-14 dating. Answer: It does discredit the C-14 dating of freshwater mussels, but that's about all.This article will answer several of the most common creationist attacks on carbon-14 dating, using the question-answer format that has proved so useful to lecturers and debaters. Answer: Cosmic rays in the upper atmosphere are constantly converting the isotope nitrogen-14 (N-14) into carbon-14 (C-14 or radiocarbon).Living organisms are constantly incorporating this C-14 into their bodies along with other carbon isotopes.
It should be noted that it is not the artefact that is being dated, it is the soot, ash or charring.
Thus, a freshly killed mussel has far less C-14 than a freshly killed something else, which is why the C-14 dating method makes freshwater mussels seem older than they really are.
When dating wood there is no such problem because wood gets its carbon straight from the air, complete with a full dose of C-14.
Geologists do not use carbon-based radiometric dating to determine the age of rocks.
Carbon dating only works for objects that are younger than about 50,000 years, and most rocks of interest are older than that.