The Best possible Time resolution: How precise could a Radiocarbon dating method be?
Jull, A J T
Povinec, P P
Pachnerova Brabcova, K
AffiliationUniv Arizona, Dept Geosci
MetadataShow full item record
PublisherUNIV ARIZONA DEPT GEOSCIENCES
CitationSvetlik, I., Jull, A., Molnár, M., Povinec, P., Kolář, T., Demján, P., . . . Simek, P. (2019). The Best possible Time resolution: How precise could a Radiocarbon dating method be? Radiocarbon, 61(6), 1729-1740. doi:10.1017/RDC.2019.134
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AbstractToday, accelerator mass spectrometry (AMS) technology enables us to carry out very precise measurements of radiocarbon (C-14). Unfortunately, due to fluctuations in the C-14 calibration curve, the resulting calibrated time intervals vary from decades up to centuries in calibrated age. Within a time scale of several decades, we can find several time intervals on the C-14 calibration curve which correspond with periods of rapid increases in atmospheric (CO2)-C-14 activity. Some of these "high slope" parts of the calibration curve could be used for fine time resolution for radiocarbon dating of individual samples. Nevertheless, there are certain limitations owing to the properties of the samples measured. We have prepared a time-resolution curve for the C-14 dating method, applying calibration curve IntCal13 and assuming an uncertainty of C-14 analyses +/- 15 yr BP (for recent samples). Our curve of the time resolution covers the last 50 ka. We found several time intervals with time resolution below 50 yr BP for the last 3 ka. Several time intervals which can enable substantially better time resolution compared to neighboring parts of the calibration curve were also found for periods older than 3 ka.
NoteOpen access article
VersionFinal published version
SponsorsOP RDE, MEYS [CZ.02.1.01/0.0/0.0/16_019/0000728]; Nuclear Physics Institute of the Czech Academy of SciencesCzech Academy of Sciences [RVO61389005]; Czech Republic Grant AgencyGrant Agency of the Czech Republic [17-22102s, GA18-11004S]; European UnionEuropean Union (EU); State of Hungary; European Regional Development FundEuropean Union (EU) [GINOP-2.3.2-15-2016-00009]