Carbon dating the process
After the Second World War, tests of nuclear bombs spewed carbon-14 pollution into the atmosphere.This isotope was incorporated into plants and the people who consumed them.The SUERC results showed a 95% probability that the bone samples dated from around AD1430-1460, and over in Oxford the results both came out at around AD1412-1449, again with a 95% confidence. Radiocarbon dating of marine organisms can be out by up to several hundred years, and this effect can occur to a lesser degree in terrestrial life where sea-food forms part of the diet.The mass spectrometry of the Greyfriars bone samples reveals that the individual in question had a high-protein diet including a significant proportion of seafood.The small pieces of bone were combusted to produce carbon dioxide which was then put through a mass spectrometer.Testing two pieces each at two different facilities should provide consistent results – and indeed it did. The proportion of C-14 in the atmosphere, and hence in living things, is not constant but varies over the centuries, and it also varies between the atmosphere and the oceans.
But how the heart regenerates naturally has been hotly contested, says Kenneth Chien of the Harvard Stem Cell Institute in Cambridge. From this science, we are able to approximate the date at which the organism were living on Earth.Radiocarbon dating is used in many fields to learn information about the past conditions of organisms and the environments present on Earth.After above-ground tests were stopped in 1963, levels of the isotope started to fall.
The C in their cardiomyocytes that were higher than was present in the atmosphere at the time of their birth, so some of these cells must have arisen later on in their lives.
Nyerup's words illustrate poignantly the critical power and importance of dating; to order time.