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The radiocarbon method was developed by a team of scientists led by the late Professor Willard F.

Renfrew (1973) called it 'the radiocarbon revolution' in describing its impact upon the human sciences.Oakley (1979) suggested its development meant an almost complete re-writing of the evolution and cultural emergence of the human species.These isotopes are present in the following amounts C12 - 98.89%, C13 - 1.11% and C14 - 0.00000000010%.Thus, one carbon 14 atom exists in nature for every 1,000,000,000,000 C12 atoms in living material.When each ionized sample reaches the Faraday Cup in which it is stored, a current is produced and measured as an electrical signal.

A computer can then identify the types of atoms present in the sample as well as the number of atoms the sample has.Modern Radiometric Dating Techniques Modern radiometric dating uses many different techniques to identify both organic and inorganic objects.For example, uranium-lead experiments are often conducted on older, inorganic objects because uranium-lead conversions have a much longer half-life than other isotopes.Mass spectrometers are made up of an ion generator, analyzer, and several detectors.The sample is ionized using the ionic generator and then passed through a magnetic field that separates the samples into different groups based on their mass and ionization levels.Desmond Clark (1979) wrote that were it not for radiocarbon dating, "we would still be foundering in a sea of imprecisions sometime bred of inspired guesswork but more often of imaginative speculation" (Clark, 1979:7).