The radiocarbon dating and authentication of iron artifacts

P. T. Craddock, M. L. Wayman, A. J.T. Jull

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

19 Scopus citations


The continuing improvements in accelerator mass spectrometry (AMS) dating technology mean that it is possible to work on ever smaller samples, which in turn, make an ever wider range of sample potentially available for dating. This paper discusses some of the difficulties arising with the interpretation of AMS dates obtained from carbon in iron. The overriding problem is that the carbon, now in chemical combination with the iron, could have come from a variety of sources with very different origins. These are now potentially an iressolvable mixture in the iron. For iron made over the last millennium, there are the additional problems associated with the use of both fossil fuel and biomass fuel in different stages of the iron making, leading to great confusion, especially with authenticity studies.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)717-732
Number of pages16
Issue number3
StatePublished - 2002

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Archaeology
  • Earth and Planetary Sciences(all)


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