Lecture Note 1 - History of the World - 1500CE Further Reading
Course: History of the World to 1500CE
YouTube Lectures - Richard Bulliet (RB)
Lecture 1 - Further reading 1.2
Introduction to World History - Youtube upload 2010
Below are my notes on points for further reading from lecture 1 prior to studying lecture 2.
Sources: Hyper Physics, C14 dating, Radiocarbon
FR 1.2 - Carbon dating and corrected carbon dating.
Additional sources: BBC Bitesize
Well this is going to test the old grey matter! Ok so Carbon dating is a form of radioactive dating. It can only be applied to matter that was once living and presumed to be in equilibrium with our atmosphere; matter that assimilates carbon dioxide such as plants and animals.
The nitrogen in our atmosphere is bombarded with neutrons that produce a radioactive isotope called carbon - 14. This in turn combines with oxygen to form carbon dioxide which is assimilated by plants and animals through photosynthesis and I assume by animals through merely breathing. When plants and animals die they cease to exchange carbon dioxide with the atmosphere so the carbon - 14 within them begins to decay.
We know the rate of decay of carbon - 14 and as such can use this to calculate time elapsed between historic and current samples.
I have read on into corrected carbon dating but think it is a bit beyond me today and needs some study away from the daily distractions. I do like to understand all aspects of my study but think I need to read from a few more sources to fully grasp this. Its definitely something to mull over. As such I will revisit this FR point shortly.