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A field guide to mortar sampling for radiocarbon dating

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  • Thomas Schrøder Daugbjerg
  • ,
  • Alf Lindroos, Åbo Akademi University, Finland
  • Jan Heinemeier
  • Åsa Ringbom, Åbo Akademi University, Finland
  • Gerard Barrett, Queen's University Belfast, United Kingdom
  • Danuta Michalska, Adam Mickiewicz University in Poznan
  • ,
  • Irka Hajdas, ETHZ, Lab Ion Beam Phys
  • ,
  • Rubina Raja
  • Jesper Olsen

Radiocarbon dating of mortars is a method for absolute dating of historical mortared stone structures. Successful mortar dating studies have answered chronological questions, while other studies have revealed that mortar samples can have complications and contaminants. These can cause inconclusive results even with present state-of-the-art techniques. Previous research shows that adequate and proper sampling of mortar samples is of fundamental importance for a conclusive radiocarbon analysis. Therefore, this article thoroughly reviews the processes and environmental factors that may cause problems for successful radiocarbon dating of mortar samples, and presents best-practice sampling strategies for radiocarbon mortar dating.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1121-1140
Number of pages20
Publication statusPublished - Oct 2021

    Research areas

  • mortarsamplingdelayed hardeningdead carbonrecrystallization, radiocarbon dating

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