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Carbon dating explained gcse

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So, radiocarbon dating can be used to find the age of things that were once alive, like the Iceman.

For example, uranium-lead dating can be used to find the age of a uranium-containing mineral.

It works because we know the fixed radioactive decay rates of uranium-238, which decays to lead-206, and for uranium-235, which decays to lead-207.

So, if you know the radioactive isotope found in a substance and the isotope's half-life, you can calculate the age of the substance. Well, a simple explanation is that it is the time required for a quantity to fall to half of its starting value.

So, you might say that the 'full-life' of a radioactive isotope ends when it has given off all of its radiation and reaches a point of being non-radioactive.


  1. A secondary school revision resource for OCR Gateway Additional GCSE Science about radiation and uses of radioisotopes.

  2. Categories; 2011 Edexcel GCSE. Carbon dating. Short but informative video for radiocarbon dating. CAT CT scanner. Computer Axial Tomography scanners take x-ray slices tomographs at mm distances. Brief video explaining how the Herschel space telescope is using infrared radiation to look out into space.

  3. There's no need to memorise this list for GCSE Chemistry. Carbon generally* has a mass number of 12 see Periodic Tables online or in chemistry textbooks, but another isotope of carbon is carbon-14, which includes an extra 2 neutrons. Carbon-14 is used for dating recent archeological artifacts. Oxygen generally* has a.

  4. Carbon dating uses the amount of carbon-14 in a sample to measure its age.

  5. Feb 4, 2015. GCSE Physics Revision Calculating half-life You can watch all my videos at In this video we take a look at a really important a.

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