We use two main dating techniques in glacier archaeology – typological dating (the shape of the artefact) and radiocarbon dating.
Typological dating Typological dating used to be the only available absolute dating technique for archaeologists.
It uses the naturally occurring radioisotope carbon-14 (14C) to estimate the age of carbon-bearing materials up to about 58,000 to 62,000 years old.
Carbon has two stable, nonradioactive isotopes: carbon-12 (12C) and carbon-13 (13C).
We are glad to report that Nature News 18 October 2012 and Science Daily 19 October 2012 report that the Carbon 14 method is in need of an overhaul – something we have been saying for years.
We guarantee our answer below will stretch your grey cells, but you will find it well worthwhile to endure to the end.
This nullifies the carbon-14 method as well as demonstrating that the earth is less than 10,000 years old. One suspects that the scientific world would not be using the carbon-14 method if it were so obviously flawed.
Could it be that the whole scientific community has missed this point, or is it another case of creationist daydreaming?
The carbon-14 isotope would vanish from Earth's atmosphere in less than a million years were it not for the constant influx of cosmic rays interacting with molecules of nitrogen (N) into organic compounds during photosynthesis, the resulting fraction of the isotope 14C in the plant tissue will match the fraction of the isotope in the atmosphere.
After plants die or are consumed by other organisms, the incorporation of all carbon isotopes, including 14C, stops.
This major groundwork was laid down by the archaeologists of the late 19 We mainly use typological dating for arrows and arrowheads in glacier archaeology.
The pioneer work in this respect is Oddmunn Farbregd’s book on Iron Age and Medieval arrow chronology from 1972, based on the finds from the Oppdal Mountains in Norway.
Carbon-14 dating can be used on objects ranging from a few hundred years old to 50,000 years old.