Radioactive dating techniques
Thus, as living things take in carbon, they inevitably will take up a small amount of radioactive carbon into their bodies.
When these lifeforms die, they stop taking in new carbon.
Though still heavily used, relative dating is now augmented by several modern dating techniques.
Radiocarbon dating involves determining the age of an ancient fossil or specimen by measuring its carbon-14 content.
Only the latter two "extinct" nuclides are used in dating.
By examining the object's relation to layers of deposits in the area, and by comparing the object to others found at the site, archaeologists can estimate when the object arrived at the site.26Al and some other nuclides not mentioned are also used in this way.Thus, although "extinct", these nuclides are present in meteorites, but produced by a more recent process.There are well-known methods of finding the ages of some natural objects.Trees undergo spurts in growth in the spring and summer months while becoming somewhat dormant in the fall and winter months.
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Carbon-14 is also passed onto the animals that eat those plants.