Radio carbon dating stone
Charcoal or wood could have been seasoned prior to the actual use of the timber that provided the sample that has been radiocarbon dated.
Hardwoods that are very resilient against decay could have been reused in other structures in later years.
Willard Libby, the pioneer of radiocarbon dating, identified charcoal to be the most reliable material to carbon date.
The time-width of an organism refers to its total growth and exchange period with the biosphere.
In living organisms, which are always taking in carbon, the levels of carbon 14 likewise stay constant.
But in a dead organism, no new carbon is coming in, and its carbon 14 gradually begins to decay.
Charcoal and wood are two of the most widely used materials for accelerator mass spectrometry (AMS) radiocarbon dating.
It just didn’t exist, as a choice, before Ecotricity.
Fragments of charcoal, however, may have a time width that can’t be quantified.
One of the main assumptions of radiocarbon dating is that the organism’s time of death is also the time it ceased carbon exchange with the biosphere.
If this is not the case, such as in wood, the radiocarbon age of the organism at death is not zero.
When radiocarbon dating a piece of wood or charcoal, the event dated is the growth of the tree ring.