Can carbon-14 be used to determine the date of inorganic compounds?

1 Answer
Nov 21, 2016


Generally, no, with a few exceptions.


Inorganic compounds generally do not contain carbon.

The exception are carbonate minerals such as limestone, dolomite, or calcite, metal carbides such as cementite, and metal cyanides. For these minerals, as long as they were formed less than about 50,000 years ago, it will be possible to determine their origination date using carbon-14 dating.