Radioactive dating lab

We have subcontractor agreements with several AMS facilities around the world.Materials suitable for radiocarbon dating include charcoal, wood and other plant matter, soils and sediments, shells, bone, carbonates, dissolved inorganic carbonate (DIC), methane and hydrocarbons, and food products.

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Normal handling will not contaminate most sample types, however, samples should be protected from sources of extraneous carbon.

Charcoal and wood samples should be wrapped in aluminum foil or heavy plastic and should not be wrapped in paper.

Contact us to discuss turn-around time and scheduling.

The Oxford Radiocarbon Accelerator Unit (ORAU) is a radiocarbon laboratory engaged in collaborative research across many disciplines where the measurement of the radiocarbon isotope is useful including: The laboratory provides a radiocarbon dating service for people undertaking research in all these areas.

This dating service operates on a commercial basis and in conjunction with NERC/ARHC which funds the NRCF programme for British archaeologists, and with Historic England.

This dating service provides support for all stages of radiocarbon dating from project design and sample choice right through to data analysis.

Radiocarbon dating is the principal method for determining the age of carbon-bearing materials from the present to about 50,000 years ago.

The method takes advantage of the natural occurrence of a radioactive isotope of carbon (C in samples of ancient carbon compounds and comparing this with the amount in modern materials, it is possible to determine the time of cessation of carbon exchange with the atmosphere.

The radiocarbon lab at Geochron uses gas proportional counters to measure methane derived from relatively small samples.

We also offer liquid scintillation analysis using an extra low background Quantulus 1220 for high precision measurements on benzene.

Very small samples (less than 300 mg) are analyzed by accelerator mass spectrometry (AMS).

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