Uses of Radioisotope in Archeology

  1. In archaeology radioisotope carbon-14 is used to study and estimate the age of ancient artifacts. This method is named as the radiocarbon dating. 
  2. Radiocarbon dating can be used to estimate the age of organic materials, such as wood and leather, up to about 58,000 to 62,000 years.

A piece of wood found in a cave of an archaeology site has a carbon-14 activity 25% of the activity from a live plant. Estimate the age of the wood. [Half-life of carbon-14 = 5730 years]

100%  50%  25%

Carbon-14 take 2 half-life to decay from 100% to 25%, hence the age of the wood
= 2(5730)
= 11460 years