Radiocarbon year

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Dependence between radiocarbon age (Yr = time in years) and the dendro age (calendar age) - age determined by dendrochronology - for the past twelve millennia

The radiocarbon years ( Engl. Radiocarbon = radiocarbon ) is a virtual measurement of time after the radiocarbon dating (in the Anglo-American language as "radiocarbon dating" means). It would correspond to a tropical year if the originally made assumptions were exactly correct:

  1. The rate of formation of 14 C nuclei on earth was constant at today's level and the ratio of 14 C / 12 C was completely constant. With the help of tree rings ( dendrochronology ), a calibration curve has now been created that records the actual fluctuations.
  2. The half-life used is correct. In fact, it is around 3% too small. For comparability with older literature, uncalibrated 14 C data are still given, calculated with the old value.

14 C-years are therefore only a different way of writing the measured isotope ratio and should be regarded as chronologically dimensionless. They become calendar years by means of calibration .

See also: Age determination

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