Carbon is constantly cycled through the Earth's oceans, plant life, animal life, and atmosphere. Characteristics and Properties Carbon is found on Earth in the form of three different allotropes including amorphous, graphite, and diamond.
Allotropes are materials made from the same element, but their atoms fit together differently.
The method was developed by Willard Libby and his colleagues at the University of Chicago in 1949.
In 1960, he was awarded the Nobel Prize in Chemistry for this work.
One of the key characteristics of carbon is its ability to make long chains of molecules through linking up with other carbon atoms. It is a major element in many rock formations such as limestone and marble.
The relatively short-lived C taken into organic matter is also slightly variable. However, under about 20,000 years the results can be compared with dendrochronology, based on tree rings.
For the most accurate work, variations are compensated by means of calibration curves.
While on a hike, a couple from Germany found what is now referred to as the Iceman.
You might be wondering how we know that the Iceman is more than 5,000 years old. Carbon dating is a way of telling the age of a once living thing by measuring the amount of carbon inside of it.