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A radiocarbon dating question


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#31    questionmark

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Posted 16 July 2013 - 06:06 PM

View PostRiaan, on 16 July 2013 - 05:52 PM, said:

Would the C12/C14 atmospheric ratio be the same in the middle of a forest (presumably where the RC dated trees were found) and on an island in the sea (Thera) to within 3%? 3% is a very small difference.

Could happen, depending on the age of the tested sample. The older the bigger the divergence in the ratio. That is mostly because the longer the time the less C14 is left.

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#32    cormac mac airt

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Posted 16 July 2013 - 06:07 PM

View PostRiaan, on 16 July 2013 - 05:52 PM, said:

Would the C12/C14 atmospheric ratio be the same in the middle of a forest (presumably where the RC dated trees were found) and on an island in the sea (Thera) to within 3%? 3% is a very small difference.

Considering that the middle of a forest and plants on an island are using the same atmosphere then yes, the atmospheric ratio would be the same. Your example of location is not a determining factor AFAIK, atmospheric conditions are. You might find this article of interest:

http://researchcommo...656A?sequence=1

cormac

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#33    Riaan

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Posted 16 July 2013 - 06:09 PM

View PostNatureBoff, on 16 July 2013 - 05:53 PM, said:

The millennial cycle, most likely 1800yr lunar tidal cycle imv, is also a factor. It could also be influences from inside the Earth too.

With reference to my previous 2 posts above (see the calculations), if the flare of solar activity increased the C14 content of the atmosphere by 3% in the year 1360 BCE, the olive tree RC date of 1613 BCE for the eruption of Thera may be out by 253 years?

Author of Thera and the Exodus, published February 2013

Details here.

#34    Insanity

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Posted 16 July 2013 - 06:13 PM

An atom is distinguished to be a particular element by the number of protons in the nucleus, and could have any number of neutrons or electrons, stability aside.  Isotopes have the same number of protons and electrons, and thus are of the same element, but differ in the number of neutrons.

Previously it was stated that the creation of 146C is by 147N gaining two neutrons, which is incorrect.  If it was gaining two neutrons, than it would become 167N and would indeed be another isotope of nitrogen.
The nuclear chemistry only involves a single neutron and is 147N + 10n --> 146C + 11p, the net change is the lost of a proton.  Until the number of protons changes again, it is carbon and this is why it chemically behaves like carbon, it is carbon.

The monkey in a silk dress is an appropriate analogy for isotopes such as when gaining or losing neutrons, but the lost or gain of a proton does indeed change the element and the monkey would become a pig or some other species.

That an isotope is really the element that it decays into doesn't work well with the isotopes that can and do decay into two or more different elements or isotopes, albeit at different ratios.

3617Cl is an example as it primarily decays into 3618Ar (98% of the time), and into 3616S (2% of the time) as well.  Do we call Cl-36 Argon 98% of the time?
5328Ni decays into 5327Co (55%) and 5226Fe (45%) of the time.
3118Ar decays into 3016S (55% of the time), into 3117Cl (~40% of the time), into 2915P (~2.5% of the time), and into 2814Si (~2% of the time)

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#35    questionmark

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Posted 16 July 2013 - 06:34 PM

View PostInsanity, on 16 July 2013 - 06:13 PM, said:

An atom is distinguished to be a particular element by the number of protons in the nucleus, and could have any number of neutrons or electrons, stability aside.  Isotopes have the same number of protons and electrons, and thus are of the same element, but differ in the number of neutrons.

Previously it was stated that the creation of 146C is by 147N gaining two neutrons, which is incorrect.  If it was gaining two neutrons, than it would become 167N and would indeed be another isotope of nitrogen.
The nuclear chemistry only involves a single neutron and is 147N + 10n --> 146C + 11p, the net change is the lost of a proton.  Until the number of protons changes again, it is carbon and this is why it chemically behaves like carbon, it is carbon.

The monkey in a silk dress is an appropriate analogy for isotopes such as when gaining or losing neutrons, but the lost or gain of a proton does indeed change the element and the monkey would become a pig or some other species.

That an isotope is really the element that it decays into doesn't work well with the isotopes that can and do decay into two or more different elements or isotopes, albeit at different ratios.

3617Cl is an example as it primarily decays into 3618Ar (98% of the time), and into 3616S (2% of the time) as well.  Do we call Cl-36 Argon 98% of the time?
5328Ni decays into 5327Co (55%) and 5226Fe (45%) of the time.
3118Ar decays into 3016S (55% of the time), into 3117Cl (~40% of the time), into 2915P (~2.5% of the time), and into 2814Si (~2% of the time)

It does not matter how many times you want to repeat the nomenclature learned by heart (and evidently not understood): You still don't get a pig, you get a monkey that during some time behaves like a pig.

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#36    Riaan

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Posted 16 July 2013 - 06:39 PM

View Postcormac mac airt, on 16 July 2013 - 06:07 PM, said:

Considering that the middle of a forest and plants on an island are using the same atmosphere then yes, the atmospheric ratio would be the same. Your example of location is not a determining factor AFAIK, atmospheric conditions are. You might find this article of interest:

http://researchcommo...656A?sequence=1

cormac

From the conclusion of this article:

The new calibration curves, ratified by the 20th International Radiocarbon Conference, are replacements for IntCal04 and Marine04 and should provide improved 14C calibration from 12–50 cal kBP. We realize that the assumption of a constant reservoir offset for the marine data is an oversimplification, but at present this is the only feasible option. It is also important to recognize that portions of the IntCal09 and Marine09 curves from 14.5–50 cal kBP rely heavily on the non-varved Cariaco Basin data set. The calibration framework is an ongoing, incrementally improving process over time as data are acquired and improved, so it must be realized that these new curves are not definitive but will be a significant improvement for samples older than ~12 cal kBP. More importantly, it provides a widely agreed curve, which is urgently needed for many fields of study.

Although this article concentrates on a later period, it shows the the calibration process is not perfect.

Author of Thera and the Exodus, published February 2013

Details here.

#37    cormac mac airt

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Posted 16 July 2013 - 06:50 PM

View PostRiaan, on 16 July 2013 - 06:39 PM, said:

From the conclusion of this article:

The new calibration curves, ratified by the 20th International Radiocarbon Conference, are replacements for IntCal04 and Marine04 and should provide improved 14C calibration from 12–50 cal kBP. We realize that the assumption of a constant reservoir offset for the marine data is an oversimplification, but at present this is the only feasible option. It is also important to recognize that portions of the IntCal09 and Marine09 curves from 14.5–50 cal kBP rely heavily on the non-varved Cariaco Basin data set. The calibration framework is an ongoing, incrementally improving process over time as data are acquired and improved, so it must be realized that these new curves are not definitive but will be a significant improvement for samples older than ~12 cal kBP. More importantly, it provides a widely agreed curve, which is urgently needed for many fields of study.

Although this article concentrates on a later period, it shows the the calibration process is not perfect.

Of course it's not perfect, that's why dates are given with a range. But we're not talking about 14.5 - 50 cal kBP, we're talking about an event (Thera's eruption) that happened within the last 3613 +/- 10 years BP (1613 +/- 10 BC). Just because you'd like it to be 1360/1364 BC  in order to substantiate your link doesn't make it so.

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#38    questionmark

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Posted 16 July 2013 - 07:00 PM

View Postcormac mac airt, on 16 July 2013 - 06:50 PM, said:

Of course it's not perfect, that's why dates are given with a range. But we're not talking about 14.5 - 50 cal kBP, we're talking about an event (Thera's eruption) that happened within the last 3613 +/- 10 years BP (1613 +/- 10 BC). Just because you'd like it to be 1360/1364 BC  in order to substantiate your link doesn't make it so.

cormac

And that is what most don't understand, science is never substantiated by one observation.
The Thira (sorry, prefer the Greek spelling) eruption is not only substantiated by C14 analysis but also by less spectacular means like ashes found in datable civilization strata.

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#39    cormac mac airt

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Posted 16 July 2013 - 07:32 PM

View Postquestionmark, on 16 July 2013 - 07:00 PM, said:

And that is what most don't understand, science is never substantiated by one observation.
The Thira (sorry, prefer the Greek spelling) eruption is not only substantiated by C14 analysis but also by less spectacular means like ashes found in datable civilization strata.

And we're not just relying on one sample, the olive tree from the eruption, for a date as stated here:

Quote

A study led by archaeologist Sturt Manning from Cornell University obtained radiocarbon dates from 127 samples of wood, bone and seed from Akrotiri and other Aegean sites. Following calibration and cross-checking among three different laboratories, they date the eruption to between 1660 and 1613 BCE, within 95% confidence intervals.

http://www.heritaged...thera-eruption/

So with 128 samples total (127 + the olive tree) showing a date within the 17th century BC that pretty much puts a nail in any attempt to relocate the event to nearly 300 years later IMO.

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#40    questionmark

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Posted 16 July 2013 - 07:41 PM

View Postcormac mac airt, on 16 July 2013 - 07:32 PM, said:

And we're not just relying on one sample, the olive tree from the eruption, for a date as stated here:



http://www.heritaged...thera-eruption/

So with 128 samples total (127 + the olive tree) showing a date within the 17th century BC that pretty much puts a nail in any attempt to relocate the event to nearly 300 years later IMO.

cormac

Besides the little detail of the datable ashes found in Turkey (Watkins and others, 1978; Sigurdsson and others, 1990).

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#41    Insanity

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Posted 16 July 2013 - 07:50 PM

View Postquestionmark, on 16 July 2013 - 06:34 PM, said:

It does not matter how many times you want to repeat the nomenclature learned by heart (and evidently not understood): You still don't get a pig, you get a monkey that during some time behaves like a pig.

I can understand why you say it is a monkey behaving like a pig for a duration, when in this case it is N14 becoming C14 and returning to N14, but it can get more complicated than that.

Cl36 as an example again.  It can be naturally created from Ar36, Cl35, K39, and Ca40 via cosmic rays, but decays to Ar36 and S36.  
Four different animals (or is it three?) that each separately learned to behave as another for a while and then behave as one that three of the previous weren't or behave as one that neither were?

We can explain chemistry however we wish, however, the nomenclature was developed so that people involve in that type of science would use the same terminology and methods of naming, rather than each person or group of people using there own as they saw fit at the time.  Under the accepted nomenclature, carbon-14 is considered an isotope of carbon as it has 6 protons, regardless of the  number of neutrons it has or having a half-life of 5,700 years.

We can disagree on whether carbon-14 is really a carbon atom, or nitrogen-14 behaving as a carbon atom for some time.

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#42    Oniomancer

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Posted 16 July 2013 - 07:54 PM

View Postquestionmark, on 16 July 2013 - 05:27 PM, said:

The question here is not with what you hit me but the nature of it. That many errors were committed (and still are used as convention) while defining elements does not change their nature. And they are certainly not useful when you are trying to explain the decay process of atoms containing more neutrons than can be bound by it in a stable fashion.

It helps if you don't confuse the issue and the OP with erroneous statements, and since the decay process here is from one entire atomic number to another, it most certainly is erroneous. Duration doesn't matter as long as it ceases to be one element and becomes another, which by all conventions is does.

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#43    Swede

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Posted 16 July 2013 - 10:25 PM

View Postquestionmark, on 16 July 2013 - 08:07 AM, said:

Chemically until it decays it is a carbon like isotope, not carbon. And because most people don't get that they have problems with understanding carbon dating.

Precisely. Isotopes are a variant of a given atomic structure based upon neutron count. However, the basic nature of an atomic structure is based upon its proton count. To elaborate:

N: Atomic No.= 7
Protons = 7
Electrons = 7
Neutrons = 7

C: Atomic No. = 6
Protons = 6
Electrons = 6
Neutrons = 6

14C:
Protons = 6
Electrons = 6
Neutrons = 8

You will note that both C and 14C have the same number of protons and 14C is thus not placed in the N series, which contains quite a number of radioactive isotopes.

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#44    Swede

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Posted 17 July 2013 - 12:33 AM

View PostRiaan, on 16 July 2013 - 06:09 PM, said:

With reference to my previous 2 posts above (see the calculations), if the flare of solar activity increased the C14 content of the atmosphere by 3% in the year 1360 BCE, the olive tree RC date of 1613 BCE for the eruption of Thera may be out by 253 years?

Merely a note or two:

While solar flares can and do influence 14C production, the effect is comparatively minimal, with the majority of 14C production being the product of cosmic rays.

With the above in mind, solar flare activity capable of increasing 14C production by 3% would have been a quite notable event. As such, one would expect such an event to appear as a notable spike in the calibration proxies. To my knowledge, there is not a spike of this nature/timeline reflected in the CALIB/OxCal programs. Have you actually run your "hypothesis" through these programs? And studied the graphics? OxCal is particularly clear in this regard.

As already presented by Cormac and Questionmark, you would appear to be attempting to hypothetically modify existing data to serve your own purposes.

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#45    NatureBoff

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Posted 17 July 2013 - 04:35 AM

View PostRiaan, on 16 July 2013 - 06:09 PM, said:



With reference to my previous 2 posts above (see the calculations), if the flare of solar activity increased the C14 content of the atmosphere by 3% in the year 1360 BCE, the olive tree RC date of 1613 BCE for the eruption of Thera may be out by 253 years?
Yes, I think you are right. I've come across this before where the uncalibrated carbon dates are intuitively more accurate than the calibrated dates. It was a report about beetles in the Holocene in arctic Siberia. The millennial cycle isn't well understood by mainstream science, therefore being generally ignored, so giving ample room for a deviation in the effectiveness of the calibration. The 253yr difference is easily within the bounds of error imv. Good luck with your excellent research.

Edited by NatureBoff, 17 July 2013 - 04:36 AM.

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