Accelorator mass spectrometry for dating
carbon, beryllium, aluminium, iodine, uranium or plutonium), and for preparing the appropriate target material for measurement in the accelerators.-counting method) or by directly counting the radiocarbon atoms using a method called Accelerator Mass Spectrometry (AMS).The best conventional counters can still achieve higher precision and lower backgrounds than an AMS system assuming a suitably large pure sample can be found.
Before sampling, the surface layers are usually removed because these are most susceptible to contamination.
The group provides analysis and performs research for a range of scientific studies related to the environment, archaeology, heritage, biology and nuclear safeguards particularly with Australian universities.
This research is based on delivering radiocarbon dating analyses from diverse natural materials such as lake sediments, groundwaters and surface waters, tree-rings, ice-cores, corals, soils and air to better understand our changing environment, landscape and climate.
A small amount of this gas is bled into a mass spectrometer where the stable isotope ratios of carbon and nitrogen are measured.
These ratios provide useful information on the purity of the sample and clues about the diet and climatic conditions of the living organism.The accelerator is used to help remove ions that might be confused with radiocarbon before the final detection.