Carbon dating notes
The technique of comparing the abundance ratio of a radioactive isotope to a reference isotope to determine the age of a material is called radioactive dating.
Many isotopes have been studied, probing a wide range of time scales.
The Smithsonian Online Virtual Archives (SOVA) provides integrated access to descriptions and detailed inventories of thousands of primary resource collections maintained by archival units across the Smithsonian.
Archival finding aids, also sometimes called collection guides, are the key to unlocking information in SOVA.
The primary sources of the Smithsonian document the history of art, culture, music, design, flight, space exploration, science and technology, landscapes and gardens, and native cultures in the United States, as well as the long history of the Smithsonian itself.By comparing this with a modern standard, an estimate of the calendar age of the artefact can be made.