So, every living thing is constantly exchanging carbon-14 with its environment as long as it lives. The carbon in its body will remain until it decomposes or fossilizes.The amount of carbon-14 gradually decreases through radioactive beta decay with a half-life of 5,730 years.We thank you in advance for partnering with us in this small but significant way. All methods of radioactive dating rely on three assumptions that may not necessarily be true: It is assumed that the rate of decay has remained constant over time.This assumption is backed by numerous scientific studies and is relatively sound.Because carbon-14 decays at this constant rate, an estimate of the date at which an organism died can be made by measuring the amount of its residual radiocarbon.
Plants take in atmospheric carbon dioxide by photosynthesis, and are ingested by animals. Carbon dating, also known as radiocarbon dating, is a method of estimating the age of carbon-bearing materials up to 60,000 years old.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).So, scientists can estimate the age of the fossil by looking at the level of decay in its radioactive carbon. Radiocarbon decays slowly in a living organism, and the amount lost is continually replenished as long as the organism takes in air or food.The highest rate of carbon-14 production takes place at altitudes of 9 to 15 km (30,000 to 50,000 ft).