Can carbon dating
From that point onwards, the unstable carbon-14 decays with its half life of almost 5700 years, and the amount of carbon-12 remains the same.Hence, gradually, the ratio of stable carbon to radioactive carbon also decreases.Then they apply C-14’s decay rate to the difference to calculate an age range.But can anyone know exactly how much C-14 an artifact originally had? Also, in rare cases, C-14 might seep into or leach from a sample after it was deposited. So while news reports sound absolutely confident when quoting C-14 results, we know those dates did not come from directly measurable science; they came from measurements that scientists interpreted using their assumptions about the past.
Although carbon-14 dating technique has its limitations, still it is a very helpful tool for archaeologists.
When cosmic rays collide with the atoms, it creates an energetic neutron, which, upon hitting a nitrogen atom (7 neutrons and 7 protons), creates a carbon-14 atom (6 protons and 8 neutrons) and a hydrogen atom (1 neutron, 0 proton).
Carbon-14 is radioactive, and has a half life of about 5700 years.
The most common form of carbon in the atmosphere is carbon-12, which is a stable isotope of carbon.
An unstable form of carbon isotope, carbon-14, also known as radiocarbon, is formed when cosmic rays hit atoms in the upper atmosphere of the earth.