Radiocarbon dating of pollen by accelerator mass spectrometry Free granny live cam
The unstable nature of carbon 14 (with a precise half-life that makes it easy to measure) means it is ideal as an absolute dating method.The other two isotopes in comparison are more common than carbon-14 in the atmosphere but increase with the burning of fossil fuels making them less reliable for study (2); carbon-14 also increases, but its relative rarity means its increase is negligible. After this point, other Absolute Dating methods may be used.The measurement time is much more rapid – you don’t have to sit around and wait for the carbon-14s to decay – and also the precision is better.
The next big step in the radiocarbon dating method would be Accelerated Mass Spectrometry which was developed in the late 1980s and published its first results in 1994 (3).A mass spectrometer is an instrument that uses a series of magnets to bend a beam of ions and then physically count how many there are, so with AMS radiocarbon dating, we can measure a carbon-12, 13 and 14 beam, and we measure the ratio of 14 to 13, and from that, we can tell how much C-14 is in the sample.So the most important things about AMS radiocarbon dating as opposed to conventional is that the sample size is much, much smaller.There are a number of ways to enter into a career in studying radiocarbon dating.Typically, a Master's Degree in chemistry is required because of the extensive lab work.
Dr Christine Prior is Team Leader of the Rafter Radiocarbon Laboratory at GNS Science.