This method is not without its own inaccuracies and has limited precision, but it does provide dates in terms of calendar years.
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Thus, it is not possible to accurately date organisms which have died since 1950.
Because of the small size of most industrial samples the Accerator Mass Spectrometry (AMS) method is used.
Suitable specimens are selected by picking through the residue.
Price depends on the nature of the material and turnaround time required; the basic price for analysis with a turnaround time of less than 3 weeks is £395 plus the cost of sample preparation. C ratio therefore remains in equilibrium with the atmosphere.
Careful sample preparation by Strata Data is matched by the world class analysis by Beta Analytic Inc.
Converting the results of the analyses to numerical ages is achieved using the INTCAL13 calibration curve.
However, upon death there is no further uptake of carbon and the 14C decays to 12N with a half life of 5730 years.
Measurement of the amount of C remaining in a dead organism will therefore give the date of its death.
Our reports contain official radiocarbon dating certificates for each sample together with calibration curves showing how each conventional radiocarbon age for samples has been calibrated with the calendar year curve.