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Re: orion AMS dating
> FYI I was almost got laughed out of Geomorphology for taking those C14
> tests seriously on the DSS.
The AMS batteries on the DSS were conducted by two among what are
probably the three top radiocarbon facilities in the world, Zurich
and Tucson (the third being Oxford). No one in the radiocarbon
profession laughs at either of these labs. Your Geomorphology instructor
is about 30 years out of date and the comments of this instructor as
you represent them are just plain ignorant. C14 is used with great effectiveness
in historic periods all the time. The AMS scrolls dates give precisions
down to c. 20-30 radiocarbon years before calibration in the best cases.
No pottery typological sequence represented at Qumran yet has this
kind of precision with the exception of certain types of lamps. Coins in
association with scrolls are useless for dating since there aren't
any. DSS palaeography is advanced in terms of description and
often relative sequences, but the precision of absolute dating estimates
is a different matter and that is what we are after in the end.
In any case there should be no conflict between palaeographic dating
estimation studies and high-quality C14 data. For basic and readable
up-to-date information on radiocarbon dating the next time you feel
embarrassed in a classroom situation as you described, try Sheridan
Bowman, _Radiocarbon Dating_, London: British Museum, 1990.
p.s. I know the feeling.