Radiocarbon dating journals

All the people whose tissues were tested for the study were residents of the United States.Atmospheric dispersion tends to create uniform levels of carbon-14 around the globe, and researchers believe that these would be reflected in human tissues regardless of location.However, the researchers suggested that soft tissue radiocarbon content would be transferred to, and preserved in, the pupal cases of insects whose larvae feed on these tissues.

Everyone born after that would be expected to have the same level of carbon-14 that prevailed before the nuclear testing era.Now, new applications for the technique are emerging in forensics, thanks to research funded by NIJ and other organizations.In recent years, forensic scientists have started to apply carbon-14 dating to cases in which law enforcement agencies hope to find out the age of a skeleton or other unidentified human remains.Over the past six decades, the amount of radiocarbon in people or their remains depends heavily on when they were born or, more precisely, when their tissues were formed.

Forensic anthropologists at The University of Arizona took advantage of this fact in a recent study funded by NIJ.Radiocarbon levels in teeth formed before then contained less radiocarbon than expected, so when applied to teeth formed during that period, the method was less precise.

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