Carbon dating accuracy debate

Through analysis of ice cores, scientists learn about glacial-interglacial cycles, changing atmospheric carbon dioxide levels, and climate stability over the last 10,000 years. This picture shows a traversing field camp from December 2010. From top to bottom: * Levels of carbon dioxide (CO2). High rates of snow accumulation provide excellent time resolution, and bubbles in the ice core preserve actual samples of the world’s ancient atmosphere[6].

Seasonal differences in the snow properties create layers – just like rings in trees.

Unfortunately, annual layers become harder to see deeper in the ice core.

It must have a suitable freezing point and viscosity.

Collecting the deepest ice cores (up to 3000 m) requires a (semi)permanent scientific camp and a long, multi-year campaign[6].

The bottom plot shows global ice volume derived from δ18O measurements on marine microfossils (benthic foraminifera) from a composite of globally distributed marine sediment cores. An example of using stable isotopes to reconstruct past air temperatures is a shallow ice core drilled in East Antarctica[10].

Last modified 10-Oct-2018 20:41