The target mineral is separated using heavy liquids, then hand-picked under the microscope for the purest possible sample.
This mineral sample is then baked gently overnight in a vacuum furnace.
Then the gas sample is cleaned of all unwanted gasses such as H A variant of the K-Ar method gives better data by making the overall measurement process simpler.
The key is to put the mineral sample in a neutron beam, which converts potassium-39 into argon-39.
This atom is not stable, and will break down, releasing nuclear energy in the process.
Basis of Radiocarbon Dating Problems with Radiocarbon Dating The Earth's Magnetic Field Table 1 Effect of Increasing Earth's Magnetic Field Removal of Carbon From the Biosphere Water Vapour Canopy Effect on Radiocarbon Dating Figure 1 Apparent Radiocarbon Dates Heartwood and Frozen Time Early Post-Flood Trees Appendix Radiocarbon Date Table HOW ACCURATE IS RADIOCARBON DATING? The normal carbon atom has six protons and six neutrons in its nucleus, giving a total atomic mass of 12.
Radiocarbon dating is frequently used to date ancient human settlements or tools. It is a stable atom that will not change its atomic mass under normal circumstances.
When they strike ordinary atoms in the upper atmosphere, the cosmic rays smash them apart. Some of these neutrons then collide with nitrogen atoms.
This collision is less destructive than the initial collision that produced them.