Chemistry Level 1

Carbon dating is a common form of dating that relies on the radioactivity of certain atoms. It has been used extensively in the past to date fossils, rocks, and the age of the earth.

However, though the scientific community has not made much mention of it, carbon dating has been known to frequently yield both very young and very inconsistent dates. This is largely due to several assumptions made by scientists performing carbon dating.

Based on the fact that carbon dating measures amounts of radioactive atoms and uses a certain rate to postulate dates, which of the assumptions listed below do you think must be made to use carbon dating?

A. The rate of radioactive decomposition is constant.

B. No radioactive atoms have been added or removed from a sample over time.

C. There was no "extra" radioactive atoms present when the sample formed.

D. All of the above.


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