Radiocarbon is the main international journal of record for research articles and date lists relevant to 14C and other radioisotopes and techniques used in archaeological, geophysical, oceanographic, and related dating.

This archive provides access to Radiocarbon Volumes 1-54 (1959-2012).

As of 2016, Radiocarbon is published by Cambridge University Press. The journal is published quarterly. Radiocarbon also publishes conference proceedings and monographs on topics related to fields of interest. Visit Cambridge Online for new Radiocarbon content and to submit manuscripts.

ISSN: 0033-8222


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Recent Submissions

  • The Iron I/IIA Transition in the Levant: A Reply to Mazar and Bronk Ramsey and a New Perspective

    Finkelstein, Israel; Piasetzky, Eli (Department of Geosciences, The University of Arizona, 2010-01-01)
    Mazar and Bronk Ramsey (2008) recently proposed that the Iron I/IIA transition in the Levant took place during the first half of the 10th century. In the first part of this article, we challenge their method and conclusions. We argue against the inclusion of charcoal in their model, which could lead to an 'old wood effect.' We also argue that in dealing with a transition date, all available data must be taken into consideration. In the second part of the article, we propose Bayesian Model I for the Iron I/IIA transition, which is based on 2 sets of data--for the periods immediately before and after this transition. Our model, along with the other 11 published Bayesian models for this transition that used only short-lived samples, agrees with the Low Chronology system for the Iron Age strata in the Levant and negates all other proposals, including Mazar's Modified Conventional Chronology. The Iron I/IIA transition occurred during the second half of the 10th century. In the third part of the article, we present a new insight on the Iron I/IIA transition. We propose that the late Iron I cities came to an end in a gradual process and interpret this proposal with Bayesian Model II. Mazar and Bronk Ramsey (2008) recently challenged Sharon et al. (2007; also Boaretto et al. 2005) and us (e.g. Finkelstein and Piasetzky 2003, 2007a,b) regarding the date of transition from the Iron I to the Iron IIA in the Levant. While we and Sharon et al. placed this transition in the second half of the 10th century BCE, Mazar and Bronk Ramsey positioned it 'during the first half of the 10th century BCE' and argued that 'the second half of the 10th century BCE should be included in the Iron IIA' (Mazar and Bronk Ramsey 2008:178). We discuss some problems in the methodology of Mazar and Bronk Ramsey that may have influenced their results. In particular, we discuss 1) the exclusion of data; 2) the inclusion of data (charcoal samples); and 3) show that even according to Mazar and Bronk Ramsey, excluding these samples position the late Iron I/IIA transition in the late 10th century. Finally, we present our own 2 Bayesian models for the Iron I/IIA transition.
  • The Impact of Holocene Climate on the Development of Prehistoric Societies in Southern Siberia

    Kulkova, Marianna; Krasnienko, Sergey (Department of Geosciences, The University of Arizona, 2010-01-01)
    Geochemical data of 10Be, 14C, 18O obtained from natural archives (tree rings, ice sheets, varves, corals) indicates that the climate during the Holocene was not stable. The cosmogenic isotope fluctuations are bound by the periodicity on solar activity and climatic changes. The sharpest and most abrupt climatic deteriorations are registered in the Early and Middle Holocene at 8200, 5800, 5400, 4300, and 2800 cal BP. These events are characterized by cold conditions. The impact of climate on human communities in steppe depressions in southern Siberia (Nazarovo, Minusinsk, and Turano-Uyuk) was noticeable. The differences of local landscape-climatic conditions in these depressions were connected with global climatic changes to determine the processes of occupation, development, and migrations of ancient societies during the Neolithic, Bronze Age, and Iron Age. The chronology of archaeological cultures was also correlated with the local and global climatic changes during the Early and Middle Holocene in southern Siberia. Here, we generalize the literature data about Holocene climatic changes and archaeological cultures in the southern Siberia region.
  • The Influences of Hydrology on the Radiogenic and Stable Carbon Isotope Composition of Cave Drip Water, Grotta di Ernesto (Italy)

    Fohlmeister, J.; Schröder-Ritzrau, A.; Spötl, C.; Frisia, S.; Miorandi, R.; Kromer, B.; Mangini, A. (Department of Geosciences, The University of Arizona, 2010-01-01)
    14C and 13C values of C-containing species in cave drip waters are mainly controlled by the C isotope composition of karst rock and soil air, as well as by soil carbon dynamics, in particular the amount of soil CO2 in the unsaturated soil zone and the process of calcite dissolution. Here, we investigate soil carbon dynamics by analyzing the 14C activity and 13C values of C dissolved in cave drip water. Monthly over a 2-yr period, we collected drip water from 2 drip sites, one fast and one relatively slow, within the shallow Grotta di Ernesto Cave (NE Italy). The 14C data reveal a pronounced annual cycle. In contrast, the 13C values do not show an annual pattern and only small interannual variability compared to the 13C values of soil waters. The annual 14C drip-water cycle is a function of drip-rate variability, soil moisture, and ultimately hydrology.
  • The Application of ICELS Systems for Radiocarbon Dating

    Tudyka, Konrad; Pazdur, Anna; Theodórsson, Pall; Michczyński, Adam; Pawlyta, Jacek (Department of Geosciences, The University of Arizona, 2010-01-01)
    Liquid scintillation counting (LSC) for radiocarbon dating is a less expensive method than accelerator mass spectrometry (AMS), provides a high degree of accuracy, and is less prone to contamination due to the larger sample sizes. However, to obtain high precision, a long counting time is needed. The Gliwice Radiocarbon Laboratory is seeking to obtain an increased counting capacity with 2-3 mL benzene samples than we presently can achieve with our 2 Quantulus systems. We are therefore investigating the possibility of using a simple, single-phototube LS system (ICELS) for dating samples younger than 5000 yr. We present the first results of this investigation, including the measurement of 3 VIRI and 3 FIRI intercomparison samples.
  • Table of Contents

    Department of Geosciences, The University of Arizona, 2010-01-01
  • Radiocarbon Laboratories

    Department of Geosciences, The University of Arizona, 2010-01-01
  • Radiocarbon Dating of the Mansuri Paleolithic Site, Cheongwon, Korea

    Kim, K. J.; Jull, A. J. T.; Kim, Ju Yong; Lee, Yung Jo; Hong, Wan; Park, Jung Hun; Woo, Hyung Joo (Department of Geosciences, The University of Arizona, 2010-01-01)
    Construction of a new science complex in Osong, Cheongwon-gun, Korea, has allowed the investigation of 14 different Paleolithic localities, excavated during 2005-2007. Here, we investigated localities 1 and 12 of the Mansuri Paleolithic site to obtain chronological information using radiocarbon dating. The soil deposition rates varied from 0.09 to 0.15 mm/yr over the period ranging from 33 to 31 kyr BP for locality 1. Locality 12 samples were more recent, 10 ka, and have similar accumulation rates, averaging 0.11 mm/yr. The soil ages of locality 12 were found to be younger than 10 kyr BP. Results for both soil and organic materials at this locality gave much younger ages at shallower depths than the ages expected by the Korean Paleolithic cultural history for this region. Therefore, these more recent deposits may not be associated with the cultural layers and are interpreted to have been hydrologically modified following emplacement. 14C dates of the soil and organic materials at locality 12 confirm that there is evidence for multiple human occupations throughout the last 9 kyr BP.
  • Radiocarbon Chronology with Marine Reservoir Correction for the Ritidian Archaeological Site, Northern Guam

    Carson, Mike T. (Department of Geosciences, The University of Arizona, 2010-01-01)
    Archaeological investigations at the Ritidian Site in Guam provide a series of radiocarbon dates spanning the potential range of human presence in the region. Paired marine and terrestrial samples offer a basis for R calculation, as well as evaluation of the utility of different types of marine samples for 14C dating of archaeological contexts. The results indicate an early period of temporary fishing camp activity in the context of higher sea level and little or no stable beach, followed by larger-scale residential activity in the context of lower sea level and an extensive stable beach landform.
  • Precise Comparison of 14C Ages from Choukai Jindai Cedar with IntCal04 Raw Data

    Suzuki, Kayo; Sakurai, Hirohisa; Takahashi, Yui; Sato, Taiichi; Gunji, Shuichi; Tokanai, Fuyuki; Matsuzaki, Hiroyuki; Tsuchiya, Yoko (Department of Geosciences, The University of Arizona, 2010-01-01)
    We measured the radiocarbon ages of 165 single-year tree rings from a Japanese Choukai Jindai cedar using accelerator mass spectrometry (AMS). By wiggle-matching the Choukai_AMS data set to the IntCal04 calibration data using OxCal v 3.10 and using the variation of the correlation coefficients between the Choukai_AMS and IntCal04 data sets, we precisely re-estimated that the 321 Choukai Jindai cedar tree rings range from 780 to 460 cal BC with an accuracy of 8 yr. The Choukai_AMS data set is older than the 3 raw data sets of European tree rings that comprise IntCal04. The Belfast and Seattle data sets are younger by -21.3 +/- 5.5 and -22.7 +/- 5.6 14C yr, respectively. The Choukai Jindai cedar is ~22 14C yr older than the European tree rings, which is equivalent to an offset of -2.8‰ in 14C. In addition, the Choukai_AMS data set correlates well with the Belfast and Seattle data sets, with correlation coefficients of 0.89 and 0.68, respectively, between the temporal profiles. Hence, the temporal profile of the Choukai 14C ages shows a global variation.
  • On-Line Radiocarbon Measurements of Small Samples Using Elemental Analyzer and MICADAS Gas Ion Source

    Ruff, M.; Fahrni, S.; Gaggeler, H. W.; Hajdas, I.; Suter, M.; Synal, H-A; Szidat, S.; Wacker, L. (Department of Geosciences, The University of Arizona, 2010-01-01)
    An on-line measurement system was installed at the MICADAS in Zurich, using an elemental analyzer (EA) as a combustion unit to enable direct radiocarbon measurement of samples containing carbon in the range of 5-100 g possible with minimum effort. The samples are combusted in small capsules and the gaseous combustion products are separated by the EA. The carbon dioxide leaving the EA in a high helium flow is concentrated on a small external trap containing X13 zeolite adsorber material. This new concept, avoiding a cryogenic trapping for the enrichment step, allows the construction of a very compact system able to work even with the smallest samples. Concentrated on the external trap, the carbon dioxide is flushed into the gas-tight syringe of our gas inlet system using a low helium stream. The gas mixture is measured with the MICADAS gas ion source. Several different sample capsules were analyzed to minimize the major blank contribution coming from the sample vessel. The best results were achieved with 25-L tin capsules, which contained only 0.34 0.13 g carbon at 65 pMC. This work describes the development of the on-line system and the protocol for measurement runs. Results are presented for on-line measurements of reference materials and a comparison is performed with typical dating samples measured previously as graphite targets. Finally, relevance and limitations of on-line measurements are discussed.
  • NERC Radiocarbon Age Measurements Determined by Radiometric Counting 1996–2005

    Garnett, M. H.; Harkness, D. D.; Miller, B. F.; Fallick, A. E.; Bryant, C. L. (Department of Geosciences, The University of Arizona, 2010-01-01)
    We describe a new compilation of radiocarbon age measurements performed by the NERC Radiocarbon Laboratory that is freely available to access over the World Wide Web. The database contains 1000 14C measurements performed using the liquid scintillation counting method between 1996 and 2005, and further results will be added as the information is compiled. Contextual information including sampling location and the nature of sample material is provided, alongside 14C age results and publications codes. Hypertext links provide access to the original 14C age report associated with the samples, providing additional details. The 14C measurements were originally performed for earth and environmental science NERC projects and are therefore likely to be most relevant to the Quaternary research community.
  • Investigating a Dated Piece of the Shroud of Turin

    Freer-Waters, Rachel A.; Jull, A. J. Timothy (Department of Geosciences, The University of Arizona, 2010-01-01)
    We present a photomicrographic investigation of a sample of the Shroud of Turin, split from one used in the radiocarbon dating study of 1988 at Arizona. In contrast to other reports on less-documented material, we find no evidence to contradict the idea that the sample studied was taken from the main part of the shroud, as reported by Damon et al. (1989). We also find no evidence for either coatings or dyes, and only minor contaminants.
  • Development of Radiocarbon Dating Methods for Modern Bone Collagenization

    Kim, K. J.; Hong, W.; Park, J. H.; Woo, H. J.; Hodgins, G.; Jull, A. J. T. (Department of Geosciences, The University of Arizona, 2010-01-01)
    The relationship between temperature and time required for collagenization using modern bone samples was investigated. Gelatinized samples of bone collagen were filtered to selectively collect different molecular weight fractions. The results of this study suggest that heating to 70 degrees C for a duration of 12 hr provides the optimal conditions for gelatinization.
  • Editorial Board

    Department of Geosciences, The University of Arizona, 2010-01-01
  • Centre of Research and Restoration of the Museums of France: AMS Radiocarbon Dates List 1

    Richardin, P.; Gandolfo, N.; Moignard, B.; Lavier, C.; Moreau, C.; Cottereau, E. (Department of Geosciences, The University of Arizona, 2010-01-01)
    The national project for the measurement of radiocarbon includes different scientific partners for the accelerator named ARTEMIS (French acronym for Accélérateur pour la Recherche en sciences de la Terre, Environnement, Musologie Install Saclay), available to the scientific community since 2004 (Cottereau et al. 2007). The French Ministry of Culture uses this accelerator mass spectrometry (AMS) facility at the request of archaeologists or curators of museums or of historical monuments. For the preparation of some samples, a laboratory has been installed at the Centre of Research and Restoration of the Museums of France, located in the Louvre Palace. In this report, the first data carried out on vegetal samples from museum objects or archaeological remains, dates are presented in terms of yr BP (before AD 1950).
  • Calibration of Mangerud's Boundaries

    Walanus, Adam; Nalepka, Dorota (Department of Geosciences, The University of Arizona, 2010-01-01)
    The "calibration" of arbitrarily defined (in some sense, "conventional") ages, given in conventional radiocarbon years BP, is now becoming necessary because the term "radiocarbon age" is used less often in archaeological and Quaternary practice. The standard calibration procedure is inappropriate here because Mangerud's boundaries are not measurement results. Thus, another approach to the problem is proposed in order to model the natural situation of many, uniformly distributed, dated samples, which should be similarly divided by the original and "calibrated" boundary. However, the result depends on the value of the typical measurement error and is not unequivocal.
  • Approaches to Estimating Marine Protein in Human Collagen for Radiocarbon Date Calibration

    Dewar, Genevieve; Pfeiffer, Susan (Department of Geosciences, The University of Arizona, 2010-01-01)
    Determining the appropriate approach to calibrating radiocarbon dates is challenging when unknown and variable fractions of the carbon sample are derived from terrestrial and marine systems. Uncalibrated dates from a large number of human skeletons from Western Cape and Southern Cape locales, South Africa (n = 187), can be used to explore alternate approaches to the marine carbon correction. The approach that estimates theoretically expected minimum and maximum values for marine carbon ("expected") is compared to the approach that estimates observed minimum and maximum values ("observed"). Two case studies are explored, wherein skeletons interred together have non-overlapping conventional 14C ages. The case from the Western Cape is explored through carbon isotope values; the case from the Southern Cape uses nitrogen isotope values. In both cases, the approach using observed endpoints yields better date calibration results. Analysis of the large sample shows that mean values for estimated dietary % Marine, as calculated using expected and observed protocols, are significantly different. We conclude that the observed protocol is preferred, and that improved measures of the local marine reservoir (∆R) are needed for this region.
  • A Response to Finkelstein and Piasetzky's Criticism and "New Perspective"

    Mazar, Amihai; Bronk Ramsey, Christopher (Department of Geosciences, The University of Arizona, 2010-01-01)
    The following short paper is a response to criticism by Finkelstein and Piasetzky (2010b), published in the present issue of Radiocarbon, of our 2008 paper in Radiocarbon concerning the evaluation of 14C dates from Iron Age levels in Israel published by Boaretto et al. (2005). We refer to criticism concerning exclusion and inclusion of data. We also evaluate new models suggested by Finkelstein and Piasetzky and in particular their suggestion of regional stages marking the end of the Iron Age in Israel. We also comment on several methodological issues.
  • 14C Record and Wiggle-Match Placement for the Anatolian (Gordion Area) Juniper Tree-Ring Chronology ~1729 to 751 cal BC, and Typical Aegean/Anatolian (Growing Season Related) Regional 14C Offset Assessment

    Manning, Sturt W.; Kromer, Bernd; Bronk Ramsey, Christopher; Pearson, Charlotte L.; Talamo, Sahra; Trano, Nicole; Watkins, Jennifer D. (Department of Geosciences, The University of Arizona, 2010-01-01)
    The East Mediterranean Radiocarbon (inter-)Comparison Project (EMRCP) has measured the 14C ages of a number of sets of tree rings from the Gordion Area dendrochronology from central Anatolia at the Heidelberg Radiocarbon Laboratory. In several cases, multiple measurements were made over a period from the 1980s to 2009. This paper presents the final data set from this work (128 high-precision measurements), and considers (i) the relationship of these data against the standard Northern Hemisphere 14C calibration data set (IntCal09), and (ii) the optimum calendar dating of this floating tree-ring record on the basis of the final set of high-precision 14C data. It finds good agreement between the Anatolian data and IntCal09 in some important intervals (e.g. ~1729 to 1350 cal BC) and observes one period (9th-8th centuries BC) where there appears to be some indication of a regional/growing season signal, and another period (later 14th-13th centuries BC) where IntCal09 may not best reflect the real 14C record. The scale of the typical growing-season-related regional 14C offset (Delta-R) between the Aegean/Anatolian region and IntCal09 is also assessed (for the mid-2nd millennium BC and mid-2nd millennium AD), and found to be usually minor (at times where there are no major additional forcing factors and/or issues with the IntCal09 data set): of the order of 2-4 +/- 2-4 yr.