The University of Arizona

Conventions for Reporting Radiocarbon Determinations

Andrew R Millard


Current conventions for reporting radiocarbon determinations do not cover the reporting of calibrated dates. This article proposes revised conventions that have been endorsed by many 14C scientists. For every determination included in a scientific paper, the following should apply: (1) the laboratory measurement should be reported as a conventional radiocarbon age in 14C yr BP or a fractionation-corrected fraction modern (F14C) value; (2) the laboratory code for the determination should be included; and (3) the sample material dated, the pretreatment method applied, and quality control measurements should be reported. In addition, for every calibrated determination or modeled date, the following should be reported: (4) the calibration curve and any reservoir offset used; (5) the software used for calibration, including version number, the options and/or models used, and wherever possible a citation of a published description of the software; and (6) the calibrated date given as a range (or ranges) with an associated probability on a clearly identifiable calendar timescale.

DOI: 10.2458/56.17455


calibration; software; calendar ages

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