Carbon dating rock
Since limestone contains very little, if any, radiocarbon, clam shells will contain less radiocarbon than would have been the case if they had gotten their carbon atoms from the air.
This gives the clam shell an artificially old radiocarbon age.
Thus, it is possible (and, given the Flood, probable) that materials which give radiocarbon dates of tens of thousands of radiocarbon years could have true ages of many fewer calendar years. The shells of live freshwater clams have been radiocarbon dated in excess of 1600 years old, clearly showing that the radiocarbon dating technique is not valid.
The shells of live freshwater clams can, and often do, give anomalous radiocarbon results.
Libby thus reasoned that by measuring carbon 14 levels in the remains of an organism that died long ago, one could estimate the time of its death.
The field of radiocarbon dating has become a technical one far removed from the naive simplicity which characterized its initial introduction by Libby in the late 1940's.
Acknowledgments: The editor wishes to acknowledge many useful comments and contributed material from numerous friends and colleagues, including Glenn Branch, Brent Dalrymple, Peter Hess, Mark Isaak, Duane Jeffery, Kenneth Miller, Steven Peck, Eugenie Scott and others.
Q&A: Evolution, Creationism and Intelligent Design (28 articles).
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He first noted that the cells of all living things contain atoms taken in from the organism's environment, including carbon; all organic compounds contain carbon.
Most carbon consists of the isotopes carbon 12 and carbon 13, which are very stable.