Start Beta analytic inc radiocarbon dating

Beta analytic inc radiocarbon dating

However, unlike in an exponential decay, the half-life depends on the initial quantity, and the prospective half-life will change over time as the quantity decays.

Nevertheless, when there are many identical atoms decaying (right boxes), the law of large numbers suggests that it is a very good approximation to say that half of the atoms remain after one half-life.

There are various simple exercises that demonstrate probabilistic decay, for example involving flipping coins or running a statistical computer program.

For example, the image on the right is a simulation of many identical atoms undergoing radioactive decay.

At a minimum, multiple radiocarbon ages from a sequence of units are necessary to assign a reliable age to events within a glacial sequence.

A quantity of carbon-14 will decay to half of its original amount (on average) after 5,730 years, regardless of how big or small the original quantity was.

After another 5,730 years, one-quarter of the original will remain.

The decay of many physical quantities is not exponential—for example, the evaporation of water from a puddle, or (often) the chemical reaction of a molecule.