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Carbon 14 dating calibration curve

Two things in the method have to be allowed for: first, the 'date' given is never exact.

The /- figure, which should always be quoted, is a statistical one, meaning that there is a 2 to 1 chance that the correct date lies within that bracket.

The half-life is the time taken for an amount of a radioactive isotope to decay to half its original value.

By obtaining radiocarbon dates for wood of known dendrochronological date, a correction factor can be introduced to calibrate radiocarbon dates. CATEGORY: chronology DEFINITION: An abbreviation used to denote so many years Before Christ" or before the beginning of the Christian calendar.

Uncalibrated dates are raw dates in radiocarbon years. The lower case 'CATEGORY: flora DEFINITION: A small pine tree, approximately 15-40 feet (5-13 m) high, which is the oldest living tree in the world.

Because this decay is constant it can be used as a “clock” to measure elapsed time assuming the starting amount is known.

A unique characteristic of 14C is that it is constantly formed in the atmosphere.


  1. Radiocarbon dating. carbon-14. Carbon with 6 protons and 8 neutrons is called carbon-14 14C. This is an unstable radioactive isotope. About 1 in 1012 carbon atoms. At a few locations on the calibration curve the results are ambiguous. One 14C value could be equivalent to more than one calibrated age.

  2. Inception of radiocarbon dating in the late 1940s, but that evolution was sufficiently advanced so that unique capabilities of. development, including the discovery and characterization of de Vries/Suess “wiggles,” calibration of the 14C timescale, and. develop a comprehensive calibration curve and tables Klein et al.

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