When radiocarbon dating a piece of wood or charcoal, the event dated is the growth of the tree ring. A samples radiocarbon age can tell us when the organism was alive and not when the material from that organism was used.
Can carbon dating tell us the age of something?
Geologists do not use carbon-based radiometric dating to determine the age of rocks. Carbon dating only works for objects that are younger than about 50,000 years, and most rocks of interest are older than that.
Can you carbon date a living tree?
Radiocarbon Dating Because wood can be dated directly and by radiocarbon, scientists used bristlecone pines to calculate a new calibration curve, and convert radiocarbon results into accurate calendar dates.
Does more carbon-14 mean older?
For older objects, scientists dont use carbon-14 as a measure of age. Instead, they often look to radioactive isotopes of other elements present in the environment. For the worlds oldest objects, uranium-thorium-lead dating is the most useful method.