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Graphite, one of the softest materials known, is a form of carbon that is primarily used as a lubricant.
Although it does occur naturally, most commercial graphite is produced by treating petroleum coke, a black tar residue remaining after the refinement of crude oil, in an oxygen-free oven.
Welcome to the K12 section of the Radiocarbon WEBinfo site.
In order for carbon dating to be accurate, we must know what the ratio of carbon-12 to carbon-14 was in the environment in which our specimen lived during its lifetime.
Rasmus Nyerup's quote reminds us of the tremendous scientific advances which have taken place in the 20th century.
In Nyerup's time, archaeologists could date the past only by using recorded histories, which in Europe were based mainly on the Egyptian calendar.
Naturally occurring graphite occurs in two forms, alpha and beta.
These two forms have identical physical properties but different crystal structures.