Scientific controversy with radioisotopic dating
An example of the ingenious technical work and hard-fought debates underlying the main story is the use of radioactive carbon-14 to assign dates to the distant past.
The Talmudic rabbis, Martin Luther and others used the biblical account to extrapolate back from known history and came up with rather similar estimates for when the earth came into being.
The prodigious mobilization of science that produced nuclear weapons was so far-reaching that it revolutionized even the study of ancient climates.
Nuclear laboratories, awash with funds and prestige, spun off the discovery of an amazing new technique radiocarbon dating.
The radioactive isotope carbon-14 is created in the upper atmosphere when cosmic-ray particles from outer space strike nitrogen atoms and transform them into radioactive carbon.
Some of the carbon-14 might find its way into living creatures.
Climate science required the invention and mastery of many difficult techniques.