Understanding carbon dating
It is naturally unstable and so it will spontaneously decay back into N-14 after a period of time.
It takes about 5,730 years for half of a sample of radiocarbon to decay back into nitrogen.
With the release of key peer-reviewed papers at the 2003 ICC (International Conference on Creationism), it is clear that RATE has made some fantastic progress, with real breakthroughs in this area.
When physicist Dr Russell Humphreys was still at Sandia National Laboratories (he now works full-time for ICR), he and Dr John Baumgardner (still with Los Alamos National Laboratory) were both convinced that they knew the direction in which to look for a definitive answer to the puzzle of why radiometric dating consistently gives ages of millions and billions of years.
There must have been speeded-up decay, perhaps in a huge burst associated with Creation Week and/or a separate burst at the time of the Flood.
There is now powerful confirmatory evidence that at least one episode of drastically accelerated decay has indeed been the case, building on the work of Dr Robert Gentry on helium retention in zircons.
This is exceptionally striking evidence, because a diamond has remarkably strong lattice bonds (that’s why it’s the hardest substance known), so subsequent atmospheric or biological contamination should not find its way into the interior.It takes another 5,730 for half of the remainder to decay, and then another 5,730 for half of what's left then to decay and so on.The period of time that it takes for half of a sample to decay is called a "half-life." Radiocarbon oxidizes (that is, it combines with oxygen) and enters the biosphere through natural processes like breathing and eating.The C results are an independent but powerful confirmation of the stunning helium-diffusion results.It looks like 2003 was a bad year for megachronophiles (lovers of long ages), but a good year for lovers of the Word of God.
In another very important paper, scientists from the RATE group summarized the pertinent facts and presented further experimental data. This effectively limits the age of all buried biota to less than (at most) 250,000 years.