Uses of radioactive dating Live sex uruguay cam chat

One isotope, carbon-14, is particularly useful in determining the age of once-living artifacts.

A tiny amount of carbon-14 is produced naturally in the upper reaches of the atmosphere, and living things incorporate some of it into their tissues, building up to a constant, albeit very low, level.

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After incorporating radioactive atoms into reactant molecules, scientists can track where the atoms go by following their radioactivity.

One excellent example of this is the use of carbon-14 to determine the steps involved in photosynthesis in plants.

Table 15.5 "Some Radioactive Isotopes with Medical Applications" lists several radioactive isotopes and their medical uses.

In addition to the direct application of radioactive isotopes to diseased tissue, the gamma ray emissions of some isotopes can be directed toward the tissue to be destroyed.

For instance, leaks in underground water pipes can be discovered by running some tritium-containing water through the pipes and then using a Geiger counter to locate any radioactive tritium subsequently present in the ground around the pipes.

(Recall that tritium is a radioactive isotope of hydrogen.) Tracers can also be used to follow the steps of a complex chemical reaction.

Radioactive isotopes have a variety of applications.

Generally, however, they are useful because either we can detect their radioactivity or we can use the energy they release.

If half of the uranium has decayed, then the rock has an age of one half-life of uranium-235, or about 4.5 × 10 y.

In another interesting example of radioactive dating, hydrogen-3 dating has been used to verify the stated vintages of some old fine wines.

Using such methods, scientists determined that the age of the Shroud of Turin (Figure 15.3 "Shroud of Turin"; purported by some to be the burial cloth of Jesus Christ and composed of flax fibers, a type of plant) is about 600–700 y, not 2,000 y as claimed by some.

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