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Carbon dating acuracy

A new study has found that fossil-fuel emissions could impact radiocarbon dating, which is a vital research technique used to determine the age of organic artifacts in fields like archaeology, geology, and ecology.

Current understanding of the history of life is probably close to the truth because it is based on repeated and careful testing and consideration of data.

C14 is continually being created and decaying, leading to an equilibrium state in the atmosphere.

A vial with a sample is passed between two photomultipliers, and only when both devices register the flash of light that a count is made.

By knowing how much carbon 14 is left in a sample, the age of the organism when it died can be known.

It must be noted though that radiocarbon dating results indicate when the organism was alive but not when a material from that organism was used.

When they die, they stop exchanging carbon with the biosphere and their carbon 14 content then starts to decrease at a rate determined by the law of radioactive decay.

Radiocarbon dating is essentially a method designed to measure residual radioactivity.

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