Hazards of carbon dating

Livermore scientist Karis Mc Farlane analyzes thousands of soil samples at the Center for Accelerator Mass Spectrometry as part of a project to improve models showing how organic and mineral soils accumulate and disperse carbon so researchers can better understand the carbon cycle in deciduous forests.

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Although not all elements and isotopes are able to be utilized by AMS, CAMS' researchers make the most of what nuclear physics has given them.

For example, a steel spearhead cannot be carbon dated, so archaeologists might perform testing on the wooden shaft it was attached to.

This provides good information, but it only indicates how long ago that piece of wood was cut from a living tree.

The Manot Cave, a natural limestone formation, had been sealed for some 15,000 years. — Gihon Spring was crucial to the survival of its inhabitants, and archaeologists had uncovered the remains of a massive stone tower built to guard this vital water supply. — In a new paper, the authors explain how harvesting data from tree-rings could revolutionize the study of ancient civilizations such as the Egyptian and Mayan worlds. — Researchers have used radiocarbon measured in deep-sea fossil corals to shed light on carbon dioxide levels during Earth's last deglaciation.

Fossil corals have the unique advantage that they ...