Radiocarbon dating in groundwater systems: Chapter 4

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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) [101]; Ruben and Kamen (1941) [102]). 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) [103]; Libby et al. (1949) [104]) 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.

Additional publication details

Publication type Book chapter
Publication Subtype Book Chapter
Title Radiocarbon dating in groundwater systems: Chapter 4
Year Published 2013
Language English
Publisher International Atomic Energy Agency
Publisher location Vienna, Austria
Contributing office(s) National Research Program - Eastern Branch
Description 57 p.
Larger Work Type Book
Larger Work Subtype Other Government Series
Larger Work Title Isotope Methods for Dating Old Groundwater
First page 33
Last page 89