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This technique is not restricted to bones; it can also be used on cloth, wood and plant fibers. The short half-life of carbon-14 means its cannot be used to date extremely old fossils.
Carbon-14 dating has been used successfully on the Dead Sea Scrolls, Minoan ruins and tombs of the pharohs among other things. Levels of carbon-14 become difficult to measure and compare after about 50,000 years (between 8 and 9 half lives; where 1% of the original carbon-14 remains undecayed).
The amount of carbon-14 in the air has stayed the same for thousands of years.
There is a small amount of radioactive carbon-14 in all living organisms because it enters the food chain.
The units of measure for time are dependent upon the unit of measure for the rate constant.
The rate of decay is often referred to as the activity of the isotope and is often measured in Curies (Ci), one curie = 3.700 x 10" is the initial amount of radioisotope at the beginning of the period, and "k" is the rate constant for the radioisotope being studied.This element is locked in tiny zircons within the granite. While it stays within the zircon for a period of time, being a very small atom, helium escapes the zircon within a few thousand years.When creation scientists studied granite samples, they made interesting discoveries.When granite rock hardens, it freezes radioactive elements in place.The most common radioactive element in granite is Uranium-238.
It has been determined that the rate of radioactive decay is first order.