This assumption is backed by numerous scientific studies and is relatively sound.However, conditions may have been different in the past and could have influenced the rate of decay or formation of radioactive elements.Help us reduce the maintenance cost of our online services.Because your computer is running an older version of internet browser, it no longer meets the features of modern websites.A tal scopo, nel 1982 una commissione guidata dal chimico Robert H. Gove dell'Università di Rochester, si occupò di interpellare diversi laboratori specializzati in datazioni di piccoli campioni.
Scientists place great faith in this dating method, and yet more than 50% of radiocarbon dates from geological and archaeological samples of northeastern North America have been deemed unacceptable after investigation.
The correctness of the method depends greatly on the condition that in the last 40 or 50 thousand years the quantity of water in the hydrosphere (and carbon diluted in it) has not substantially changed. The method depends also on the condition that during the same period of time the influx of cosmic rays or energy particles coming from the stars and the sun has not suffered substantial variations.
To check on the method before applying it on various historical and paleontological material, Libby chose material of Egyptian archaeology, under the assumption that no other historical material from over 2,000 years ago is so secure as to its absolute dating.
But as the method was refined, it started to show rather regular anomalies.
First, it was noticed that, when radiocarbon dated, wood grown in the 20th century appears more ancient than wood grown in the 19th century.