# What determines isotopes for carbon dating sex advice websites

For carbon, there are a lot of C-12, a couple of C-13, and a few C-14 atoms.

When you average out all of the masses, you get a number that is a little bit higher than 12 (the weight of a C-12 atom).

There is a time when it loses its extra neutrons and becomes C-12.

The loss of those neutrons is called radioactive decay. For carbon, the decay happens in a few thousand years (5,730 years).

It also has some applications in geology; its importance in dating organic materials cannot be underestimated enough.

This is called the half-life—the amount of time required for one-half of a given number of atoms to disintegrate. The plot of the number of tiles as a function of the number of turns looks like this: Again, I made radioactive spheres disappear when they decayed.

This is fine, because when carbon-14 decays, it produces nitrogen-14. But you could imagine that if you knew that the sample started with 20 percent blue spheres and you knew their half-life, then you could determine the age by examining one frame from the animation.

I know can be hard to wrap your head around, so let's model it with a six-sided die. You can use Lego bricks, pennies, beans—anything you can easily count. Every time you roll a one, put that object into a separate pile.

Count the remaining objects and repeat the process until half of them have decayed. It took a while, but we finally got pretty close to 40 tiles left.