The relative dating method worked very well, but only in sites which were had a connection to the relative scale. When radiocarbon dating was developed, it revolutionised archaeology, because it enabled them to more confidently date the past, and to build a more accurate picture of the human past.
The archaeologist Colin Renfrew (1973) called it the development of this dating method 'the radiocarbon revolution' in describing its great impact upon the human sciences.
You can work out that after about 50 000 years of time, all the radiocarbon will have gone.
After twice that time (about 11000 years), another half of that remaining amount will have disappeared.
After another 5568 years, again another half will have disappeared.
Because carbon is very common on Earth, there are alot of different types of material which can be dated by scientists.
Below is a list of the different kinds of materials which can be dated: Libby tested the new radiocarbon method on carbon samples from prehistoric Egypt whose age was known.
Libby later received the Nobel Prize in Chemistry in 1960 for the radiocarbon discovery.