Use of carbon 14 in carbon dating

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As soon as it dies, however, the C ration gets smaller.

In other words, we have a ‘clock’ which starts ticking at the moment something dies.

It is assumed that the ratio has been constant for a very long time before the industrial revolution. (For on it hangs the whole validity of the system.) Why did W. Libby, the brilliant discoverer of this system, assume this?

Libby knew that C was entering and leaving the atmosphere (and hence the carbon cycle).

By examining the object's relation to layers of deposits in the area, and by comparing the object to others found at the site, archaeologists can estimate when the object arrived at the site.

Though still heavily used, relative dating is now augmented by several modern dating techniques.

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Love-hungry teenagers and archaeologists agree: dating is hard.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.Think of it like a teaspoon of cocoa mixed into a cake dough—after a while, the ‘ratio’ of cocoa to flour particles would be roughly the same no matter which part of the cake you sampled.The fact that the C doesn’t matter in a living thing—because it is constantly exchanging carbon with its surroundings, the ‘mixture’ will be the same as in the atmosphere and in all living things.

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