The rules are the same in all cases; the assumptions are different for each method.To explain those rules, I'll need to talk about some basic atomic physics. Hydrogen-1's nucleus consists of only a single proton.To test the hypothesis, researchers sought cases in which nuclear decay could be compared against some other natural phenomenon.
The meaning of this equation is that the rate of change of the number of nuclei over time is proportional only to the number of nuclei.Rock ages obtained by these dating methods, usually ranging from millions to billions of years, directly contradict belief in a 6,000 year old earth. In effect, young-earth creationists of the 21st century finally accepted what mainstream science had known since the early 20th century, namely that nuclear decay was the best and perhaps only viable explanation for the isotopic patterns observed in rocks and minerals today.For years, the young-earth community had attempted to discredit radiometric dating by essentially claiming that very little nuclear decay has occurred since the formation of the earth. Conceding the occurrence of billions of years’ worth of nuclear decay created a major dilemma for people believing in a 6,000-year-old earth.Levels of carbon-14 become difficult to measure and compare after about 50,000 years (between 8 and 9 half lives; where 1% of the original carbon-14 would remain undecayed).The question should be whether or not carbon-14 can be used to date any artifacts at all? There are a few categories of artifacts that can be dated using carbon-14; however, they cannot be more 50,000 years old.However, this strategy began to change in 1997, when Dr. The only possible solution, apart from abandoning a young-earth position altogether, was to postulate that nuclear decay rates were accelerated in the recent past. The ensuing eight-year research program, called RATE for Radioisotopes and the Age of The Earth, acknowledged that much larger quantities of nuclear decay have occurred in most geological processes than could be explained by an earth only a few thousand years old.The key is to measure an isotope that has had time to decay a measurable amount, but not so much as to only leave a trace remaining.Given isotopes are useful for dating over a range from a fraction of their half life to about four or five times their half life.Carbon dating is used to determine the age of biological artifacts up to 50,000 years old.This technique is widely used on recent artifacts, but educators and students alike should note that this technique will not work on older fossils (like those of the dinosaurs alleged to be millions of years old).