Describe how carbon 14 is used as a dating method
In the 19th and early 20th century incredibly patient and careful archaeologists would link pottery and stone tools in different geographical areas by similarities in shape and patterning.
Then, by using the idea that the styles of objects evolve, becoming increasing elaborate over time, they could place them in order relative to each other - a technique called seriation.
The calibrated date is also presented, either in BC or AD or with the unit cal BP (calibrated before present - before 1950).
View the full list Radiocarbon dating has transformed our understanding of the past 50,000 years.
Radioactive decay can be used as a “clock” because it is unaffected by physical (e.g. For instance, the amount varies according to how many cosmic rays reach Earth.
This is affected by solar activity and the earth’s magnetic field.
In 2008 we could only calibrate radiocarbon dates until 26,000 years.
Now the curve extends (tentatively) to 50,000 years.