Introduction Many people have been led to believe that carbon dating (along with other radioactive dating methods) proves the earth to be much older than 6,000 years old.
If the dates received from carbon dating are accurate, it would be a huge problem for those who believe in the Genesis account of creation.
However, when one starts with the Bible and interprets the information received from carbon dating accordingly, one will soon learn that in no way does carbon dating disprove the young earth.
Misconception #2: Carbon dating can be used to date virtually anything Another misconception people have about carbon dating is that it can be used to date virtually anything.
Carbon dating can only be used to date objects that were once living or even apart of a living organism. It cannot be used to directly date inorganic objects, such as rocks (other radioactive dating methods are used to date radioactive rocks).
Be cautious of accepting a carbon age One should not accept any age from a dating method, including carbon dating, without knowing exactly how the dating method works and its limitations.
Many people also don’t realize that carbon dating (along with other radioactive dating methods) is based upon unverifiable assumptions.
Ironically, despite its popularity, it is also one of the most misunderstood methods of dating.
Many people mistakenly believe carbon dating can be used to date objects that are millions or even billions of years old.
The fact is, carbon dating can only be used to date things up to approximately 50,000 years old.
In fact, if an object contains (radioactive) carbon, this should be a clue that the object may not be any older than 50,000 years.
While this doesn’t render the dating method useless, it does bring its overall accuracy into question.
How radioactive carbon is formed Normal carbon atoms weigh 12 atomic mass units, while a radioactive form of carbon weighs 14 atomic mass units, which is called carbon-14 (C-14). It is estimated that only one out of every trillion carbon atoms is C-14.
C-14 is formed in the earth’s upper atmosphere as a consequence of cosmic radiation bombardment.