Limitations and disadvantages of radiocarbon dating
There are essentially two parts in the process of radiocarbon dating through accelerator mass spectrometry.
The first part involves accelerating the ions to extraordinarily high kinetic energies, and the subsequent step involves mass analysis.
Burning the samples to convert them into graphite, however, also introduces other elements into the sample like nitrogen 14.
When the samples have finally been converted into few milligrams of graphite, they are pressed on to a metal disc.
Mass spectrometers detect atoms of specific elements according to their atomic weights.
Accelerator mass spectrometry also takes less time to analyze samples for carbon 14 content compared to radiometric dating methods that can take one or two days.From these data, concentration ratio of the isotopes can be known to allow evaluation of the level of fractionation.