Published Thursday, August 13, An international group of scientists have improved the technique for assessing the ages of historical objects, increasing the accuracy of radiocarbon dating. Researchers at the Universities of Sheffield, Belfast, Bristol, Glasgow, Oxford, St Andrews, and Historic England, plus international colleagues, used measurements from almost 15, samples from objects dating back as far as 60, years ago, as part of a seven-year project. Using these measurements, they created new international radiocarbon calibration IntCal curves, which are fundamental across the scientific spectrum for accurately dating artefacts and making predictions about the future.
Inaccuracies in radiocarbon dating -- ScienceDaily
Carbon dating , also known as radiocarbon dating, is a scientific procedure used to date organic matter. It depends upon the radioactive decay of carbon C 14 , an unstable isotope of carbon which is continually synthesized in the upper atmosphere by cosmic rays. Plants take up atmospheric C 14 for as long as they live, through the process of photosynthesis. Animals take up atmospheric C 14 indirectly, by eating plants or by eating other animals that eat plants. Measuring the proportion of C 14 as opposed to C 12 remaining in a sample then tells us how long ago the sample stopped taking up C 14 — in other words, how long ago the thing died.
How can scientists accurately date when stone tools were made, like those found at Lake Turkana in Kenya? Radiocarbon dating is widely used to date materials like charcoal from hearths and carbonate in snail shells, Dr. Kent said, but it is limited to about the last 50, years because of the short half-life of carbon
Question: "Is carbon dating a reliable method for determining the age of things? Several factors affect radiocarbon test results, not all of which are easy to control objectively. Carbon dating is reliable within certain parameters but certainly not infallible.