Radiometric dating human fossils

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Carbon-14 is also passed onto the animals that eat those plants.After death the amount of carbon-14 in the organic specimen decreases very regularly as the molecules decay.Carbon-14 has a half-life of 5,730 ± 40 years, meaning that every 5,700 years or so the object loses half its carbon-14.

But while the difficulties of single life may be intractable, the challenge of determining the age of prehistoric artifacts and fossils is greatly aided by measuring certain radioactive isotopes. There are two main methods determining a fossils age, relative dating and absolute dating.Relative dating is used to determine a fossils approximate age by comparing it to similar rocks and fossils of known ages.The half-lives of several radioactive isotopes are known and are used often to figure out the age of newly found fossils.Different isotopes have different half-lives and sometimes more than one present isotope can be used to get an even more specific age of a fossil.

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