In contrast to relative dating techniques whereby artifacts were simply designated as "older" or "younger" than other cultural remains based on the presence of fossils or stratigraphic position, 14C dating provided an easy and increasingly accessible way for archaeologists to construct chronologies of human behavior and examine temporal changes through time at a finer scale than what had previously been possible.
The application of Accelerator Mass Spectrometry (AMS) for radiocarbon dating in the late 1970s was also a major achievement.
Protons and neutrons make up the center (nucleus) of the atom, and electrons form shells around the nucleus.
The number of protons in the nucleus of an atom determines the element.
Note that, contrary to a popular misconception, carbon dating is not used to date rocks at millions of years old.
Before we get into the details of how radiometric dating methods are used, we need to review some preliminary concepts from chemistry.
This has caused many in the church to reevaluate the biblical creation account, specifically the meaning of the word “day” in Genesis 1.
With our focus on one particular form of radiometric dating—carbon dating—we will see that carbon dating strongly supports a young earth.However, a little more knowledge about the exact ins and outs of carbon dating reveals that perhaps it is not quite as fool-proof a process as we may have been led to believe.At its most basic level, carbon dating is the method of determining the age of organic material by measuring the levels of carbon found in it.Radiocarbon dating is one of the most widely used scientific dating methods in archaeology and environmental science.It can be applied to most organic materials and spans dates from a few hundred years ago right back to about 50,000 years ago - about when modern humans were first entering Europe.Specifically, there are two types of carbon found in organic materials: carbon 12 (C-12) and carbon 14 (C-14).