Thumbnail Image

Towards a radiocarbon calibration for oxygen isotope stage 3 using New Zealand kauri (Agathis australis)

It is well known that radiocarbon years do not directly equate to calendar time. As a result, considerable effort has been devoted to generating a decadally resolved calibration curve for the Holocene and latter part of the last termination. A calibration curve that can be unambiguously attributed to changes in atmospheric ¹⁴C content has not, however, been generated beyond 26 kyr cal BP, despite the urgent need to rigorously test climatic, environmental, and archaeological models. Here, we discuss the potential of New Zealand kauri (Agathis australis) to define the structure of the ¹⁴C calibration curve using annually resolved tree rings and thereby provide an absolute measure of atmospheric ¹⁴C. We report bidecadally sampled ¹⁴C measurements obtained from a floating 1050-yr chronology, demonstrating repeatable ¹⁴C measurements near the present limits of the dating method. The results indicate that considerable scope exists for a high-resolution ¹⁴C calibration curve back through OIS-3 using subfossil wood from this source.
Journal Article
Type of thesis
Turney, C. S. M., Fifiel, L. K., Palmer, J. G., Hogg, A. G., Baillie, M. G., L., Galbraith, R., …, Tims, S. G. (2007). Towards a radiocarbon calibration for oxygen isotope stage 3 using New Zealand kauri (Agathis australis). Radiocarbon, 49(2), 447-457.
University of Arizona, Department of Geosciences
This article has been published in the journal: Radiocarbon. © 2007 by the Arizona Board of Regents on behalf of the University of Arizona. Used with permission.