Carbon dating in the news
Researchers can thus determine the amount of time that has passed since the buried crystal was last exposed to heat.
In the case of thermoluminescence, resetting the crystal clock means heating it to around 500 degrees Celsius.
The dating confirmed that the horse does indeed date back 1,000 years to the Tang dynasty, as its style suggests.The following summaries offer a quick introduction to some of the dating techniques researchers have been using to explore and reconstruct our planet's past, from 4.5 billion years ago to the present.Kate Wong RADIOACTIVE ISOTOPES The premise behind techniques involving the use of radioactive isotopes is straightforward.The first step toward accurately measuring geologic time came at the turn of the 20th century, when French physicist Henry Becquerel discovered the natural radioactive decay of uranium.Shortly thereafter, building on related work by Ernest Rutherford, American chemist Bertram Borden Boltwood determined that he could use the predictable decay of radioactive elements such as uranium into other elements to keep track of time.
Carbon 14 can thus reliably date items only up to around 40,000 years old.