After 5,730 years, the amount of carbon 14 left in the body is half of the original amount.
Libby estimated that the steady-state radioactivity concentration of exchangeable carbon-14 would be about 14 disintegrations per minute (dpm) per gram.
In 1960, Libby was awarded the Nobel Prize in chemistry for this work.
When finding the age of an organic organism we need to consider the half-life of carbon 14 as well as the rate of decay, which is –0.693.
For example, say a fossil is found that has 35% carbon 14 compared to the living sample. We can use a formula for carbon 14 dating to find the answer.
The technique of radiocarbon dating was developed by Willard Libby and his colleagues at the University of Chicago in 1949.