Pros and cons of dating objects with carbon 14
This indicated that equilibrium had not in fact been reached, throwing off scientists’ assumptions about carbon dating. Sometimes carbon dating will agree with other evolutionary methods of age estimation, which is great.They attempted to account for this by setting 1950 as a standard year for the ratio of C-12 to C-14, and measuring subsequent findings against that. Other times, the findings will differ slightly, at which point scientists apply so-called ‘correction tables’ to amend the results and eliminate discrepancies.The half-life of carbon is 5,730 years, which means that it will take this amount of time for it to reduce from 100g of carbon to 50g – exactly half its original amount.
It is very difficult for scientists to know how much carbon would have originally been present; one of the ways in which they have tried to overcome this difficulty was through using carbon equilibrium.
Since the universe is estimated to be millions of years old, it was assumed that this equilibrium had already been reached.