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Protocol for AMS radiocarbon dating of plant macrofossil material

Becky Briant and Ian Lawson

1. Get someone to give you the money

2. Preparation of samples

  • Sampling and sieving:
  • Picking: Drying: Submitting samples for dating:

    3. Checking the dates when you get them back from the radiocarbon lab

    There are several things that you might want to check for. Fortunately for you, there's a spreadsheet that I (Becky) have written which does these things. It's called 'Radiocarbon contamination checks'. You can download this spreadsheet by clicking on the link below;

    Download the 'Radiocarbon contamination checks' Spreadsheet
    Infinite dates? Amount of contamination required?

    Are your dates statistically similar to each other?

    4. Useful references

    Bowman, S. 1990. Radiocarbon Dating. British Museum Press, London.

    Mook, W.G. & Waterbolk, H.T. 1985. Radiocarbon Dating. European Science Foundation Handbooks for Archaeologists No. 3, European Science Foundation, Strasbourg.

    Olssen, I.U. 1986. Radiometric Dating. In: Berglund, B.E. (ed.) Handbook of Holocene Palaeoecology and Palaeohydrology. Wiley, Chichester.

    Polach, H.A. & Golson, J. 1966. Collection of specimens for radiocarbon dating and interpretation of results. Australian Institute of Aboriginal Studies Manual No.2, Australian National University, Canberra.

    Vogel. Analytical Chemistry. In the chemistry laboratory in the Main Labs.

    Becky Briant

    Ian Lawson