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Chapter 4

ANTH 1210 Chapter 4: Topic 42

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ANTH 1210
Haskel J.Greenfield

o982 Historical Dating Date written on it Coin with date, foundation deposits, corner stones, monumental inscriptions (Roman emperors give date of year of reign), time capsules Texts (Troy and the Iliad) Heinrich Schliemann RadioCarbon Dating Willard Libby invented technique in 1949 First dates published in 1950 Measures amount of carbon isotope C14 Radioactive isotope unstable, decay at constant rate Measure amount if decay, calculate amount of time since decay began Process of C14 Nitrogen atoms in upper atmosphere Cosmic rays hit nitrogen atoms, cause them to release a proton becoming carbon 14 (isotope of carbon 1213) o All living things radioactive Through oxidation, C14 bonds with 2 oxygen atoms forming carbon dioxide Radioactive CO2 absorbed Half Life The time that half of the radioactive material will decay (change) into a nonradioactive form Since the half life of C14 is know the amount of time elapsed since the death of the organism can be measured Half life decay rate back to N14 Corrected rate (C14) 5730 years Original rate 5568 years C14 decay rate to establish age Start w 15cpmgm o Sample 5730 years okd 7.5 cp gram
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