Carbon has unique properties that are essential for life on Earth.Familiar to us as the black substance in charred wood, as diamonds, and the graphite in “lead” pencils, carbon comes in several forms, or isotopes.As explained below, the radiocarbon date tells us when the organism was alive (not when the material was used).

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Radiocarbon dating is one of the most widely used scientific dating methods in archaeology and environmental science.

It can be applied to most organic materials and spans dates from a few hundred years ago right back to about 50,000 years ago - about when modern humans were first entering Europe.

For radiocarbon dating to be possible, the material must once have been part of a living organism.

This means that things like stone, metal and pottery cannot usually be directly dated by this means unless there is some organic material embedded or left as a residue.

All animals in the food chain, including carnivores, get their carbon indirectly from plant material, even if it is by eating animals which themselves eat plants.

The net effect of this is that all living organisms have the same radiocarbon to stable carbon ratio as the atmosphere.

Another isotope, carbon-14, is useful in studying abnormalities of metabolism that underlie diabetes, gout, anemia, and acromegaly.

Various scanning devices and techniques have been developed, including tomography...

Iodine-131 has proved effective in treating hyperthyroidism.

C) dating usually want to know about the radiometric[1] dating methods that are claimed to give millions and billions of years—carbon dating can only give thousands of years.

P) have been valuable in identifying the intermediate compounds formed during carbon assimilation.