posted on Aug, 2 2010 @ 07:39 PM
Carbon-14 dating is the standard method used by scientists to determine the age of certain fossilized remains. As scientists will often claim
something to be millions or billions of years old (ages that do not conform to the Biblical account of the age of the earth), Christians are often
left wondering about the accuracy of the carbon-14 method. The truth is, carbon-14 dating (or radiocarbon dating, as it’s also called) is not a
precise dating method in many cases, due to faulty assumptions and other limitations on this method.
Carbon has a weight of twelve atomic mass units (AMU’s), and is the building block of all organic matter (plants and animals). A small percentage
of carbon atoms have an atomic weight of 14 AMU’s. This is carbon-14. Carbon-14 is an unstable, radioactive isotope of carbon 12. As with any
radioactive isotope, carbon-14 decays over time. The half-life of carbon 14 is approximate 5,730 years. That means if you took one pound of 100
percent carbon-14, in 5,730 years, you would only have half a pound left.
Carbon-14 is created in the upper atmosphere as nitrogen atoms are bombarded by cosmic radiation. For every one trillion carbon-12 atoms, you will
find one carbon-14 atoms. The carbon-14 that results from the reaction caused by cosmic radiation quickly changes to carbon dioxide, just like normal
carbon-12 would. Plants utilize, or “breath in” carbon dioxide, then ultimately release oxygen for animals to inhale.