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Carbon dating is radiometric dating, using the carbon 14 isotope.
Carbon 14 is used for fossils of fairly recent origin, as it becomes less and less accurate beyond 10 half lives (about 50 thousand years). Longer lived isotopes such as uranium/uranium, uranium/thorium, and potassium/argon are used to date inorganic materials of volcanic origin, such as rock or layers of volcanic ash, and can yield results ranging from millions to billions of years, accurate to within about a hundred thousand years.
There are different types of radiation: specifically, gamma, alpha and beta radiation. This process of radioactive decay eventually leads to the atoms becoming a different element and achieving stability.
CARBON DATING The most common fossil dating techniques are radiometric dating techniques.
Carbon dating is one type of radiometric dating, there are others.
Carbon dating uses the carbon-14 isotope, with a half life of about 5700 years.
This, of course, is so that it can be properly catalogued, and, if valid, can be related to or associated with other objects from the same era. Fossils and artifacts don't come with labels attached that clearly state their age.
Therefore, scientists need to make use of proper techniques to adequately specify what the age of a fossil or artifact is.