The University of Arizona

Carbonate Sample Preparation for 14C Dating Using an Elemental Analyzer

Susanne Lindauer, Bernd Kromer


Radiocarbon dating of carbonates is of increasing importance for archaeology and climate research. Like most samples, these usually require pretreatment to remove surface contamination. We studied several pretreatment techniques using snails and shells of different stages of preservation and sensitivity to dissolution during the acid step of the pretreatment. We find that simple acid treatment leads to reliable results, and is applicable especially to very fragile specimens. We also compare conversion of calcite using an elemental analyzer (EA) to the conventional acid dissolution technique.

DOI: 10.2458/azu_js_rc.55.16188


Carbonate; sample preparation; elemental analyzer

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