Carbon dating explained for kids
The earth has a magnetic field around it which helps protect us from harmful radiation from outer space. The stronger the field is around the earth, the fewer the number of cosmic rays that are able to reach the atmosphere.This would result in a smaller production of The cause for the long term variation of the C-14 level is not known.Note that, contrary to a popular misconception, carbon dating is not used to date rocks at millions of years old.Before we get into the details of how radiometric dating methods are used, we need to review some preliminary concepts from chemistry.
The number of protons in the nucleus of an atom determines the element.
Neutrons that come from these fragmented atoms collide with C to be useful in age estimates.
This is a critical assumption in the dating process.
For example, all carbon atoms have 6 protons, all atoms of nitrogen have 7 protons, and all oxygen atoms have 8 protons.
The number of neutrons in the nucleus can vary in any given type of atom.Scientists use a technique called radiometric dating to estimate the ages of rocks, fossils, and the earth.Many people have been led to believe that radiometric dating methods have proved the earth to be billions of years old.The variation is certainly partially the result of a change in the cosmic ray production rate of radiocarbon.