Define carbon dating kids
Radiocarbon decays slowly in a living organism, and the amount lost is continually replenished as long as the organism takes in air or food.Once the organism dies, however, it ceases to absorb carbon-14, so that the amount of the radiocarbon in its tissues steadily decreases.The amount of carbon-14 in the air has stayed the same for thousands of years.There is a small amount of radioactive carbon-14 in all living organisms because it enters the food chain.Once an organism dies, it stops taking in carbon-14.The carbon-14 it contained at the time of death decays over a long period of time, and the radioactivity of the material decreases.
Because carbon-14 decays at this constant rate, an estimate of the date at which an organism died can be made by measuring the amount of its residual radiocarbon. When isotopes are unstable they emit energy in the form of radiation.The curie was named after Marie and Pierre Curie who discovered the element radium. The half-life of an isotope is the time on average that it takes for half of the atoms in a sample to decay.Absolute age dating is like saying you are 15 years old and your grandfather is 77 years old.
To determine the relative age of different rocks, geologists start with the assumption that unless something has happened, in a sequence of sedimentary rock layers, the newer rock layers will be on top of older ones. This rule is common sense, but it serves as a powerful reference point.In fact, the whole method is a giant ‘clock’ which seems to put a very young upper limit on the age of the atmosphere.