University of arizona carbon dating dinosaur bones
It also means that any contamination, especially from recent sources, can have a profound effect on the result making any sample appear to be much younger than it is. It also means that care must be taken that the carbon being measured is actually the carbon that was present when the organic matter was made.For this reason, it is not used to date mineralised fossils.The claim that dinosaurs co-existed with humans is a popular creationist notion supported by alleged human footprints found in rocks alongside fossilized dinosaur footprints (see Cole and Godfrey 1985 and Kuban 1989a and 1989b for an extensive discussion of this topic), prehistoric petroglyphs which creationists interpret as depictions of dinosaurs (Dahmeretal. 1990), and a few surprisingly recent radiocarbon dates obtained for apparent charcoal or carbonized wood supposedly associated with dinosaur bones (Bierle and Fields 1979; Morris 1984).The special significance of the new dates reported by CRSEF, and presumably the justification for an article in the Columbus Dispatch, is that the objects which were dated are actual dinosaur fossils including specimens obtained from the paleontological collections of the Carnegie Museum of Natural History.The process of fossilisation replaces the original organic matter with minerals, some of which may contain carbon, but carbon derived not from the fossil but from the environment, and this process can take place over a very long period and the resulting minerals will always be in dynamic equilibrium with their environment.So what has this to do with Hugh Miller and creationist lies?CRSEF Dinosaur Research The Creation Research, Science Education Foundation (CRSEF) is a non-profit, tax exempt corporation founded in Millersburg, Ohio in 1972 "to advance knowledge of the scientific evidences against evolution in schools and among the general public" (CRSEF n.d.).In addition to their search for traces of people and dinosaurs in the Cretaceous limestone of the Paluxy River area of Texas CRSEF researchers also are looking for Noah's Ark on Mt. CRSEF obtained several fragments of fossilized dinosaur bone from the paleontological collections of the Carnegie Museum of Natural History "by disguising the nature of the creationist science group" (Lafferty 1991:2B) and by misrepresenting the nature of their proposed research.
No responsible curator would have approved of sacrificing valuable dinosaur fossils for unsuitable tests.
The dating technique is based on three facts: C in the general background is very small to begin with, being only about one atom in one trillion.
This means that a reasonably large sample is needed to begin with and, more importantly, it doesn't take long, no matter how large the sample, for the number of C dating is only useful up to about 50,000 years and decreasingly so as that age approaches.
Not all carbon is organic in origin and not all carbon in archaeological samples is derived from the original organic carbon.
For example, although carbonates may be present in the mineralised bones of which fossils are made, this does not mean it came from the original bone.