Carbon Dating Carbon dating to determine the age of fossil remains In this section we will explore the use of carbon dating to determine the age of fossil remains. Carbon is a key element in biologically important molecules. During the lifetime of an organism, carbon is brought into the cell from the environment in the form of either carbon dioxide or carbon-based food molecules such as glucose; then used to build biologically important molecules such ksed sugars, proteins, fats, and nucleic acids. Carbon-14, Radiometric Dating and Index Fossils Carbon dating is used to determine the age of biological artifacts up to 50,000 years old. This technique is widely used on recent artifacts, but educators and students alike should note that this technique will not work on older fossils like those of the dinosaurs alleged to be millions of years old. This technique is not restricted to bones; it can also be used on cloth, wood and plant fibers. Carbon-14 dating has been used successfully on the Dead Sea Scrolls, Minoan ruins and tombs of the pharaohs among other things. Carbon-14 is a radioactive isotope of carbon.
One Scientist May Have an Easy Fix If only there were such an easy fix for climate change Radiocarbon dating has been used to determine of the ages of ancient mummies, in some cases going back more than 9000 years. His technique, known as carbon dating, revolutionized the field of archaeology. Related Content Climate Change Might Break Carbon Dating Now researchers could accurately calculate the age of any object made of organic materials by observing how much of a certain form of carbon remained, and then calculating backwards to determine when the plant or animal that the material came from had died. An isotope is a form of an element with a certain number of neutrons, which are the subatomic particles found in the nucleus of an atom that have no charge.