Radioactive isotope dating calculator
The formula for the fraction remaining is one-half raised to the power given by the number of years divided by the half-life (in other words raised to a power equal to the number of half-lives).If we knew the fraction of a radioactive element still remaining in a mineral, it would be a simple matter to calculate its age by the formula To determine the fraction still remaining, we must know both the amount now present and also the amount present when the mineral was formed.Carbon dating is when scientists try to measure the age of very old substances.The Half Life is independent of the physical state (solid, liquid, gas) temperature, pressure, the chemical compound in which the nucleus finds itself, and essentially any other outside influence. Carbon dating has given archeologists a more accurate method by which they can determine the age of ancient artifacts. Libby invented carbon dating for which he received the Nobel Prize in chemistry in 1960.
Above is a graph that illustrates the relationship between how much Carbon 14 is left in a sample and how old it is.
Half-life is defined as the amount of time it takes a given quantity to decrease to half of its initial value.
The term is most commonly used in relation to atoms undergoing radioactive decay, but can be used to describe other types of decay, whether exponential or not.
The number of protons in the nucleus of an atom is called its atomic number.
The sum of protons plus neutrons is the mass number.