Atom used in radiocarbon dating

07 May

When these curves are used, their accuracy and shape are the factors that determine the accuracy and age obtained for a given sample.Plants take up atmospheric carbon dioxide by photosynthesis, and are eaten by animals, so every living thing is constantly exchanging carbon-14 with its environment as long as it lives.

When plants fix atmospheric carbon dioxide ( allows the age of the sample to be estimated.Because the cosmic ray bombardment is fairly constant, there’s a near-constant level of carbon-14 to carbon-12 ratio in Earth’s atmosphere.Organisms at the base of the food chain that photosynthesize – for example, plants and algae – use the carbon in Earth’s atmosphere.The resulting data, in the form of a calibration curve, is now used to convert a given measurement of radiocarbon in a sample into an estimate of the sample's calendar age.Other corrections must be made to account for the proportion of (reservoir effects).