How does radiocarbon dating work

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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.

At high geomagnetic latitudes, the carbon-14 spreads evenly throughout the atmosphere and reacts with oxygen to form carbon dioxide.

Carbon dioxide also permeates the oceans, dissolving in the water.

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).

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So, scientists can estimate the age of the fossil by looking at the level of decay in its radioactive carbon.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.If you're seeing this message, it means we're having trouble loading external resources on our website.If you're behind a web filter, please make sure that the domains *.and *.are unblocked.

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