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­ ­You probably have seen or read news stories about fascinating ancient artifacts.At an ar­chaeological dig, a piece of wooden tool is unearthed and the archaeologist finds it to be 5,000 years old.When scientists first began to compare carbon dating data to data from tree rings, they found carbon dating provided "too-young" estimates of artifact age.

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Also, many fossils are contaminated with carbon from the environment during collection or preservation procedures.Once our geologist had the “index fossil” that was found approximately in the same layer as the newly discovered fossil, he would then see where in the geologic column it came from and presto, he now had a date for his newly discovered fossil.He would simply go to a chart that listed the geologic column by ‘ages’ and find the place where the index fossil appears, and thereby the geologists could tell the paleontologist how old his fossil was.A child mummy is found high in the Andes and the archaeologist says the child lived more than 2,000 years ago.How do scientists know how old an object or human remains are?

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