Flaws in carbon dating
As scientists who study earth’s (relatively) modern history rely on this measurement tool to place their findings in the correct time period, the discovery that it is unreliable could put some in a quandary.
For instance, remnants of organic matter formerly held up as solid evidence of the most recent, large-scale global warming event some 40,000 years ago may actually date back far earlier to a previous ice age.
” You cannot know how long the swimmer took unless you knew the time on the wristwatch when the race started.
Without the starting time it is Actually, knowing the starting time is still not enough.
His theory was that all living creatures have a constant proportion of radioactive and non-radioactive carbons in their body because they keep absorbing these elements from the environment.
But as soon as the creature dies it stops absorbing these and sheds any trace of carbon-14 at a decay rate of 50 per cent every 5,700 years.
For over 50 years, scientists and researchers have relied on carbon dating to find the exact age of organic matter.This swimmer is competing in a 1,500 metre race and we have an accurate, calibrated wristwatch.We note that at the instant the swimmer touches the edge of the pool our wristwatch reads and 53 seconds.In the new study using samples taken from Xingkai Lake near the Sino-Russian border in Heilongjiang province, the scientists used both radiocarbon dating and another method known as optically stimulated luminescence.Using light to measure the amount of free electrons trapped in quartz, the team was able to tell how long the samples had been kept away from sunlight, and therefore estimate when it was that they first fell in the lake.
During the race you have to watch the swimmer and count how many laps he has swum so you know that he has done 1,500 metres.