However, it is also used to determine ages of rocks, plants, trees, etc. When the sun’s rays reach them, a few of these particles turn into carbon 14 (a radioactive carbon).The highest rate of carbon-14 production takes place at altitudes of 9 to 15 km (30,000 to 50,000 ft).He first noted that the cells of all living things contain atoms taken in from the organism's environment, including carbon; all organic compounds contain carbon.

explain radio carbon dating kids-45

So, using carbon dating for fossils older than 60,000 years is unreliable.

Carbon dating was developed by American scientist Willard Libby and his team at the University of Chicago.

Libby calculated the half-life of carbon-14 as 5568, a figure now known as the Libby half-life.

Following a conference at the University of Cambridge in 1962, a more accurate figure of 5730 years was agreed upon and this figure is now known as the Cambridge half-life.

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.

One of the most frequent uses of radiocarbon dating is to estimate the age of organic remains from archaeological sites.

Carbon dating, also known as radiocarbon dating, is a method of estimating the age of carbon-bearing materials up to 60,000 years old.

The amount of carbon-14 gradually decreases through radioactive beta decay with a half-life of 5,730 years.