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If any one of these assumptions is shown to be faulty the whole system must become suspect.

The theory is built on one critical assumption, that the C12 to C14 ratio has been in equilibrium for several thousand years (60,000 or more).

This variation of carbon reacts and interacts just like C12 except that the nucleus of the atom is unstable, causing it to break down over time., occurs at the precise rate of one half per 5,700 years.

In other words, C14 decays such that every 5,700 years exactly one half of the initial amount has transformed back into nitrogen.

After the organisms die, this ratio would change at a precise rate according to the half-life of C14. In the above example where the original ratio is 100:1 and the ratio at the time of dating 400:1 we would surmise that the organism has been dead for 11,400 years (5,700 plus 5,700).

The product of these collisions is a radioactive form of carbon, C14.Most often the procedure is applied in dating archeological artifacts such as bone, cloth, wood, plant fibers, and especially relics created by human activity.This dating method is used for estimating the age of materials assumed to be about 60,000 years old or less (this limitation is related to the radioactive of carbon, see below). This dating process works by measuring the ratio of normal carbon-12 atoms (C12) to radioactive carbon-14 (C14) in the remnants of once-living plants and animals.As a result, the ratio of C12 to C14 in the atmosphere is the same in all living things.At death, however, this ratio in organic material begins to change.

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