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If there is too much daughter product(in this case nitrogen-14), age is hard to determine since the half-life does not make up a significant percentage of the material's age.
The range of practical use for carbon-14 dating is roughly a few hundred years to fifty thousand years.
As shown in the diagram above, the radioactive isotope carbon-14 originates in the Earth's atmosphere, is distributed among the living organisms on the surface, and ceases to replenish itself within an organism after that organism is dead.
Uranium-lead dating is one of the most complicated of all dating techniques.
In radiometric dating, the decaying matter is called the parent isotope and the stable outcome of the decay is called the daughter product.
Since the half-life of carbon-14 is 5730 years, scientists can measure the age of a sample by determining how many times its original carbon-14 amount has been cut in half since the death of the organism.
But, as the NC State study suggests, that final figure might not be taking other variables into account.
For one, the atoms of different elements will diffuse through a material at different rates due to a process known as differential mass diffusion.Much of our understanding of the ancient history of our planet comes from radioisotope dating, a process where scientists calculate the amount of certain isotopes in a geological sample to determine how old it is.