American physical chemist Willard Libby led a team of scientists in the post World War II era to develop a method that measures radiocarbon activity.He is credited to be the first scientist to suggest that the unstable carbon isotope called radiocarbon or carbon 14 might exist in living matter. Libby and his team of scientists were able to publish a paper summarizing the first detection of radiocarbon in an organic sample. Libby who first measured radiocarbon’s rate of decay and established 5568 years ± 30 years as the half-life. Libby was awarded the Nobel Prize in Chemistry in recognition of his efforts to develop radiocarbon dating.
Over the years, carbon 14 dating has also found applications in geology, hydrology, geophysics, atmospheric science, oceanography, paleoclimatology, and even biomedicine.
This has caused many in the church to reevaluate the biblical creation account, specifically the meaning of the word “day” in Genesis 1.
With our focus on one particular form of radiometric dating—carbon dating—we will see that carbon dating strongly supports a young earth.
Recall that atoms are the basic building blocks of matter.
Atoms are made up of much smaller particles called protons, neutrons, and electrons.
Radiocarbon dating is a method of estimating the age of organic material.