Levels of carbon-14 become difficult to measure and compare after about 50,000 years (between 8 and 9 half lives; where 1% of the original carbon-14 would remain undecayed).
Thus they had a radiocarbon ‘age’ far less than a million years!
Although it sometimes requires taking minute samples of an object, even that damage may be unacceptable for some artifacts.
The new method does not involve removing a sample of the object.
) is only 5,730 years—that is, every 5,730 years, half of it decays away.
After two half lives, a quarter is left; after three half lives, only an eighth; after 10 half lives, less than a thousandth is left.
Diamond is the hardest substance known, so its interior should be very resistant to contamination.