Radiocarbon dating curve
(Assumption 3) If a sample is altered by contact with, or contaminated by inclusion of, material that contains older or younger radiocarbon, the analysis cannot give the right answer.
But the practical archaeologist has learned what to do about it when a sample comes back from the laboratory with a date different from what he expected. Evzen Neustupný, of the Archaeological Institute of the Czech Academy of Sciences, told the symposium: “Contamination of samples by either modern or ancient carbon can often be clearly discerned if the result of a measurement deviates considerably from the expected value.” To paraphrase his words, he does not recognize the contamination of the sample before he sends it in, but when he looks at it again, with the unpalatable answer attached, he can see clearly that it was contaminated.
Such findings conflict with the Bible chronology, according to which the first man was created only 6,000 years ago. Has the increased refinement and apparent success of the radiocarbon clock made the Bible chronology obsolete?There the radio-chemistry experts from many countries met together with geologists and archaeologists. Libby, of the University of California at Los Angeles, who pioneered carbon-14 dating in 1949.They discussed their latest researches into the theory and the practical use of radiocarbon (carbon 14) for dating. The report of the conference conveys an overall feeling of satisfaction with current successes of the method.It is true that divergences larger than this have been found between the “radiocarbon age,” as calculated from the radioactivity, and the real age of known samples, but this may be taken into account with a calibration curve measured in several laboratories.This curve is based chiefly on wood taken from long-lived trees that have been dated by counting their annual rings.