Accuracy and precision in radiocarbon dating the line between friends and dating
They arrived at this conclusion by comparing age estimates obtained using two different methods - analysis of radioactive carbon in a sample and determination of the ratio of uranium to thorium in the sample.
In some cases, the latter ratio appears to be a much more accurate gauge of age than the customary method of carbon dating, the scientists said.
It is also called “radiocarbon” because it is unstable and radioactive relative to carbon-12 and carbon-13.
This carbon-14 is radioactive and decays with a half-life of 5730 years.
Since 1947, scientists have reckoned the ages of many old objects by measuring the amounts of radioactive carbon they contain.