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Willard Libby (1908–1980), a professor of chemistry at the University of Chicago, began the research that led him to radiocarbon dating in 1945.
We know that it is older than Christendom, but whether by a couple of years or a couple of centuries, or even by more than a millenium, we can do no more than guess." [Rasmus Nyerup, (Danish antiquarian), 1802 (in Trigger, 19)].
Levels of carbon-14 become difficult to measure and compare after about 50,000 years (between 8 and 9 half lives; where 1% of the original carbon-14 would remain undecayed).
The question should be whether or not carbon-14 can be used to date any artifacts at all? There are a few categories of artifacts that can be dated using carbon-14; however, they cannot be more 50,000 years old.
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Theoretically, if one could detect the amount of carbon-14 in an object, one could establish that object’s age using the half-life, or rate of decay, of the isotope.