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Originally posted by yorkshirelad
reply to post by bismarck
Interesting theory which can be shot down in flames due to something that theorists forget. History can actually be measured and cross referenced. So dig up some bones in a grave dated 500ad. Carbon date the bones and hey presto you can find out if the date matches the physics of atomic decay !
With lots of grave sites carbon dated you can be damned sure we have not missed 300 years !!!!!!
FYI :carbon is not the only element with isotopes. something the "carbon dating is flawed" conspiracists seem to forget. Carbon dating is great for determining when something that lived died.
Then there's tree rings, ice cores etc etc.
Carbon dating is a mainstay of geology and archaeology - but an enormous peak discovered in the amount of carbon-14 in the atmosphere between 45 thousand and 11 thousand years ago casts doubt on the biological carbon cycle that underpins the technique.
Calibration methods The raw radiocarbon dates, in BP years, are calibrated to give calendar dates. Standard calibration curves are available, based on comparison of radiocarbon dates of samples that can be dated independently by other methods such as examination of tree growth rings (dendrochronology), deep ocean sediment cores, lake sediment varves, coral samples, and speleothems (cave deposits
Wiggle matching uses the non-linear relationship between the 14C age and calendar age to match the shape of a series of closely sequentially spaced 14C dates with the 14C calibration curve.
Approximate dating For approximate analysis it is assumed that the cosmic ray flux is constant over long periods of time; thus carbon-14 is produced at a constant rate and the proportion of radioactive to non-radioactive carbon is constant: ca. 1 part per trillion (600 billion atoms/mole).
Accurate dating In 1958, Hessel de Vries showed that the concentration of carbon-14 in the atmosphere varies with both time and locality. In order to obtain the most accurate results in carbon dating, calibration curves must be employed.
Other mechanisms of producing C-14 14C can also be produced at ground level at a rate of 1 x 10−4 atoms per gram per second, which is not considered significant enough to impact on dating without a known other source of neutrons.