The radioactive isotope of carbon, radiocarbon (14C), was first produced artificially in 1940 by Martin Kamen and Sam Ruben, who bombarded graphite in a cyclotron at the Radiation Laboratory at Berkeley, CA, in an attempt to produce a radioactive isotope of carbon that could be used as a tracer in biological systems (Kamen (1963) ; Ruben and Kamen (1941) ). Carbon-14 of cosmogenic origin was discovered in atmospheric CO2 in 1946 by Willard F. Libby, who determined a half-life of 5568 a. Libby and his co-workers (Anderson et al. (1947) ; Libby et al. (1949) ) developed radiocarbon dating of organic carbon of biological origin, which revolutionized research in a number of fields, including archaeology and quaternary geology/climatology, by establishing ages and chronologies of events that have occurred over the past approximately 45 ka.
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Radiocarbon dating in groundwater systems: Chapter 4