Carbon dating book of abraham
Notice that the farther away the Mass Number gets from 12-13, the faster they break down (The blue numbers indicate half-lives, the time it takes for one half of the atoms in a sample to break down.).
So the farther the carbon is from the norm, the more unstable it is. They have too many neutrons so they breakdown, releasing a beta particle which effectively converts a neutron into a proton.
Three of the Carbon isotopes (C) are found in nature.
The rest of the carbon isotopes are only of laboratory interest.
So simple arithmetic should tell us the number of neutrons. Carbon 10 would have 4 neutrons and Carbon 11 would have 5 neutrons, and so on.
What should catch your attention is the nature of the various carbon isotopes.
Neutrons that come from these fragmented molecules run into other molecules.
When a neutron collides into a Nitrogen-14 atom, the Nitrogen-14 turns into Carbon-14 along with a proton.
Most carbon atoms have six positively charged protons and six uncharged neutrons.
Since protons and neutrons weigh about the same, the atomic mass of ordinary carbon is 6 6 = 12.
It is called "Carbon-12," which is abbreviated "C." The fact that the atom has six protons is what makes it carbon.
So in this reaction, a neutron is captured by the nitrogen atom and a proton is released.
Thus in the nitrogen atom, a proton is effectively converted into a neutron, which allows a Carbon to be produced.
Looking at the first isotope in the chart, Carbon 9 has 9 (protons neutrons).