(P.5) Fomenko’s Carbon Dating, Vol. 1, Ch. 1.16.1-1.16.3

The claims below were “(Written by Professor A. S. Mishchenko, Doctor of Physical and Mathematical Sciences from the Moscow State University Department of Mathematics and Mechanics, a prominent scientist of the V. A. Steklov Mathematics Institute of the Russian Academy of Sciences, nominated State Premium of the Russian Federation Laureate in 1996, a specialist in topology and geometry, functional analysis, differential equations and their applications.)”

Total: 40
Supported: 35
Contradicted: 1
Undetermined: 4

Total Determined: 36/40 (90%)
Supported: 35/36 (97.22%)
Contradicted: 1/36 (2.77%)

As of right now, Fomenko’s grade on this part is 97.22% (35/36) which is an A+.

Fomenko’s overall grade is shown on the overview article: Examining Fomenko’s New Chronology.

Fomenko’s Citations

# [110] Butomo S.I. “Radiocarbon dating and construction of an absolute chronological scale of archaeological sites.” – Archeology and natural sciences. Moscow, Nauka, 1965, pp. 35-45.

# [390] Klein L.S. “Archeology Argues with Physics”. – Journal “Nature”, 1966, No.2, p.51-62.

# [391] Klein L.S. “Archeology Argues with Physics (continued)”. – Journal “Nature”, 1966, No.3, p.94-107.

# [478] Libby W.F. “Carbon-14 – Nuclear Chronometer of Archeology”. – The UNESCO Courier, 1968, No.7 (No.139).

# [480] Libby W.F. “Radiocarbon – Atomic Clock”. – Yearbook “Science and Humanity”, 1962, Moscow, publishing house Knowledge, p.190-200.

# [567] Nagata Takesi. “Earth’s magnetic field in the past”. – Yearbook “Science and Humanity”, 1965, Moscow, publishing house Knowledge, pp. 169-175.

# [986] Aitkin M.J. “Physics and Archeology”. – M., IL, 1963. English edition: Aitken M. “Physics and Archeology”. – Interscience Publishers, New York, 1961.

# [1025] Bakker I., Vogel I., Wislanski T. “TRB and other C-14 Dates from Poland”. – “Helinium”, IX, 1969.

# [1038] Blo “ss Christian, Niemitz Hans-Ulrich. << C14-Crash. (Das Ende der Illusion mit Radiokarbonmethode und Dendrochronologie datieren zu ko” nnen) >>. – Mantis Verlag, Gra “felfing, 1997.

# [1080] Craig Harmon. “The natural distribution of radiocarbon and the exchange time of carbon dioxides between atmosphere and sea”. – Tellus. 1957. Vol. 9, pp. 1-17.

# [1081] Craig Harmon. “Carbon-13 in plants and the relationships between Carbon-13 and Carbon-14 variations in nature”. – J. Geol., 62, 1954, pp. 115-149.

# [1082] Crowe C. “Carbon-14 activity during the past 5000 years”. – Nature. 1958. Vol. 182, p. 470.

# [1124] Fergusson GI “Reduction of atmospheric radiocarbon concentration by fossil fuel carbon dioxide and the mean life of carbon dioxide in the atmosphere”. – Proc. Royal. Soc. Lond. 1958, 243 A, pp. 561-574.

# [1250] Libby WF “Radiocarbon dating”. Second edition, Univ. of Chicago Press, Chicago, 1955.

# [1431] Suess H. “Secular variations”. – Journal of Geophysical Research, v. 70, No.23, 1965.

# [1432] Suess H. “Bristlecone Pine. Radioactive Dating and Methods”. – Vienna, 1968.

# [1433] Suess H. “Bristlecone Pine Calibration of the Radiocarbon”. – XII Nobel Symposium on Radiocarbon Variations and Absolute Chronology. Uppsala, 1969.

# [1473] Vries Hesselde. “Variation in concentration of radiocarbon with time and location on Earth”. – Koninkl. Nederlandse Akad. Wetensch. Proc. 1958, ser. B. 61, pp. 1-9.

# [1480] Willis EH, Tauber H., Mu “nnich KO” Variations in the atmospheric radiocarbon concentration over the past 1300 years. “-” Radiocarbon “, 1960, v. 2, p.1.

# [1491] << Zeitenspru “nge”. Interdisziplina “res Bulletin. Sonderdruck. September 1996. Thema “Absolutdatierung”. – Mantis Verlag, Germany.


The Examination

16.1 – Libby’s Initial Idea

Claim 1:

“A better representation of the modern problems most frequently encountered in the archaeological application of the radiocarbon method requires that we return into the 50-s and the 60-s for a close study of the foundations that the edifice of historical and archaeological applications is based upon. The matter is that the first steps of the method’s creation and development led to a large number of natural complications, many of which afflict it to this day, and lead to further error aggravation. Also see the book [1038], and the article [1491] recently published in Germany.”

Claim 1 is undetermined. How is error aggravation accounted for?

Claim 2:

“These complications need to be addressed again in order to attract the attention of the physicists to the necessity of a fresh analysis of the foundations of this method’s archaeological applications, especially considering what we learn about the Scaligerian chronology.”

Claim 2 is supported. I am aware of some issues which need to addressed, such as a lack of referential statistics produced from analysis of known-age samples.

Claim 3:

“The actual concept of radiocarbon dating belongs to W. F. Libby ([1250]).”

Claim 3 is supported. This is well known.

Claim 4:

“Shortly after the end of WWII, the American Willard Frank Libby had published the results of the discovery that made him world famous and had received the Guggenheim Award and the Nobel Prize. Studying the interaction between artificially produced neutrons and nitrogen atoms, Libby came to the conclusion (1946) that the nuclear reactions observed in his experiments should also occur naturally – that is, the neutrons produced by the atmosphere of the Earth should become absorbed by nitrogen atoms and transform into C14, the radioactive isotope of carbon. Minute amounts of this radioactive carbon mix with the stable isotopes of carbon, C12 and C13, taking part in the formation of carbon dioxide molecules that are subsequently consumed by plants, and animals (including humans) further up the food chain. Such molecules should be present in the tissues as well as the effluvia of living bodies. The discovery of mild radioactivity of the miasma emanated by Baltimore sewage in 1947 had been the first proof of the correctness of Libby’s estimations. The radioactivity of growing trees, seashells etc had been estimated in the following two years, 1948-1949. As well as any other radioactive element, the radioactive carbon isotope has a constant hallmark decay rate. Its global concentration would keep on diminishing by a factor of two every 5568 years, according to Libby, if it hadn’t been for the constant generation of C14 in the atmosphere that keeps the supply regular. The amount of C14 lost equalling the amount gained.
The death of a living organism excludes it from this process and makes it stop accumulating carbon from air (plants) or food (animals). The radioactivity of a dead organic body (a corpse, piece of wood, charcoal) keeps on falling – at a constant rate, which is an important fact.
Therefore it suffices to measure how much the overall radioactivity of a dead organism has decreased in comparison to the living ones in order to determine the time when this organism stopped refreshing its
cells – the date when a tree had been cut down, a bird had been shot, or a human had died. This is naturally
far from being an easy task, since the radioactivity of carbon as found in natural conditions is very weak (even before the death of an organism – one C14 atom per every 10 billion atoms of regular carbon). However, Libby had developed the means and the techniques of measurement and numeric conversion that led to the naissance of the radiocarbon method of dating ancient objects” ([390], pages 52-53).”

Claim 4 is supported.[3]

Claim 5:

“Let us now consider the basics of this method, particularly [390], [391], [1250], [1080], [986], [110], [1081], [1082], [1480], [414], [1431], [1432], [1433], [1025], [1124], [1473], [567], [480], and [478].”

Claim 5 is supported. This is a solid collection of references for getting familiar with the basics of carbon dating. I also counted this as supported because the basics are considered in the following text.


16.2 – Basics of C14 Dating

Claim 6:

“Cosmic rays produce neutrons as they pass through the atmosphere of Earth.”

Claim 6 is supported.[4, p.88]

Claim 7:

“The density of the neutron current depends on the altitude.”

Claim 7 is supported. There was one main difference between the sources. Where the above quote says “density”, the source material says “intensity”.[4, p.91]

Claim 8:

“The results of density measurement of this current with aerostatic probes can be seen in fig. 1.62 on graph A ([986], page 138).”

Claim 8 is supported. The page number differs but I think that’s due to the edition difference, where their edition is the 1963 one I think in Russian, mine is the 1961 English edition. The graphs they provided are accurate but lack the extra details given in Aitken’s book.[4, pp.91-92]

Claim 9:

“The measurements were conducted in the state of New Jersey, USA, and belong to the period preceding 1955.”

Claim 9 is supported. The information is in the description of figure 6.2.[4, p.91]

Claim 10:

“The peak of neuron content falls on the height of approximately 40 thousand feet (12 kilometres).”

Claim 10 is supported. It peaks around 40,000 feet before plummeting.[4, p.91]

Claim 11:

“Close to the actual surface of Earth, the neutron current density drops to zero.”

Claim 11 is supported.[4, p.91]

Claim 12:

“This leads us to the following two conclusions:
1) Neutrons are generated in the stratospheric layers of the atmosphere, thus being secondary cosmic ray particles that are born with the passing of the primary cosmic rays through the atmosphere.
2) All of these neutrons immediately engage in nuclear reactions, and only a minute part of them reaches the surface of the Earth.”

Claim 12 is supported.

Claim 13:

“Graph B in fig. 1.62 reflects the dependence of the neutron current on the height of 30 thousand feet on the geomagnetic latitude ([986], page 139).”

Claim 13 is undetermined.

Claim 14:

“The measurements were conducted before 1955.”

Claim 14 is supported.[4, p.92]

Claim 15:

“This graph makes one think that the primary particles of cosmic radiation that give birth to neutrons are charged and reflected by the magnetic field of the Earth.”

Claim 15 is undetermined.

Claim 16:

“It is significant that the neutron current density in the latitudes of 50 degrees (the latitude of Paris, Prague, Kiev and Kharkov) is three times higher than measured at the latitudes of 20-30 degrees (the Red Sea coast, the north coast of Africa).”

Claim 16 is supported. I granted this as significant because that is worth knowing for carbon dating. Also the information agrees with the graphs.

Claim 17:

“The atmospheric neutron generation rate per minute equals roughly 6 x 1020 neutrons/min, with error rate equalling 25% ([986], p. 139).”

Claim 17 is supported.[4, p.92]

Claim 18:

“Thus, every minute 4.5 x 1020 to 7.5 x 1020 neutrons are generated on planet Earth.”

Claim 18 is supported. The math is based on the equation and error rate from Claim 17.

Claim 19:

“These neutrons collide with the atoms of atmospheric nitrogen and oxygen and react with them.”

Claim 19 is supported.[4, p.92]

Claim 20:

“The probability rate of a neuron reacting with a nitrogen atom is supposed to be a few thousand times higher than such for oxygen atoms ([986], pp. 139-140).”

Claim 20 is contradicted. Aitken claimed the probability rate was a thousand times higher, not a few thousand times higher.[4, p.92] Possibly the edition they used said a few thousand?

Claim 21:

“Neutrons of low energy levels (heat neutrons) engage in C14 radioactive carbon reactions for the most part:

N14 + n → C14 + H1 (1)

Claim 21 is supported.[4, p.92]

Claim 22:

“The section of this reaction comprises roughly 1.7 x 10-24 cm2. See [986], page 140.”

Claim 22 is supported.[4, p.92]

Claim 23:

“Fast neurons may react in two more ways:

N14 + n → B11 + He4 (2)
N14 + n → C12 + H3 (3)”

Claim 23 is supported.[4, p.93]

Claim 24:

“However, compared to the section of the reaction (1), their sections are very small.”

Claim 24 is supported.[4, p.93]

Claim 25:

“The reaction (3) results in the production of tritium H3 that has a half-life period of 12.5 years and transforms into He3, a stable helium isotope.”

Claim 25 is supported.[4, p.93]

Claim 26:

“The speed of tritium H3 generation is estimated to equal 1% of that of C14 generation.”

Claim 26 is supported.[4, p.93]

Claim 27:

“M. J. Aitken writes the following in his monograph titled Physics and Archaeology:
“A relatively small amount of neutrons reaches the surface of the Earth… and it would be reasonable to suggest (? – A. F.) that every neutron produced by the cosmic rays creates a radiocarbon atom, hence the speed of neutron generation equals that of radiocarbon production. This amounts to roughly 7.5 kilos of radiocarbon per year” ([986], page 104).”

Claim 27 is supported. The first sentence is close to what is said on [4, p.88] and the second sentence is close to what’s found on [4, p.94].

This claim cites page 104 which stuck out as odd to me because they had cited pages 138, 139, and 140 all in a row and then they jumped back to 104. Possibly this is just an error and it is suppose to be 140 instead of 104. Possibly they put the wrong page number intentionally as a tell to say they fabricated this quote. I’d have to see the edition they were using. The 7.5 kilos thing fits in with everything else but the rest of the quote seems out of place. I’m tempted to give Claim 27 a “contradicted point”. Let me know what you think should be done here. Do I give it a supported point and a contradicted point; one for having correct information about carbon dating and the other for having a botched citation?

Claim 28:

“Radiocarbon C14 decays according to the formula:

C14 → N14 + β (4)”

Claim 28 is supported.[4, p.93]

Claim 29:

“The half-life period equals approximately 5600 years, so 1% of radiocarbon decays in about 80 years.”

Claim 29 is supported.[4, p.93]

Claim 30:

“It is thus easy to estimate that the amount of C14 that is constantly present on Earth equals about 60 tonnes, with the error rate comprising about 25%, that is, 45 to 75 tonnes.”

Claim 30 is supported.[4, p.94]

Claim 31:

“The generated radiocarbon mixes with other elements in the atmosphere, and is assimilated by oceans and living beings.”

Claim 31 is supported.[4, p.94]

Claim 32:

“The carbon propagation sphere is called the carbon exchange reservoir.”

Claim 32 is supported.[4, p.94]

Claim 33:

“This includes the atmosphere, the biosphere, sea surface and ocean depths, q.v. in fig. 1.63 ([986], page 30).”

Claim 33 is supported.[4, p.94] I’m not sure if their page number citation is correct but the carbon exchange reservoir does include the atmosphere, biosphere, and marine biosphere.

Claim 34:

“The numbers on this picture refer to the carbon content in one part of the carbon reservoir or the other, with atmosphere carbon content equalling 1.”

Claim 34 is supported. It’s them describing their graph.

Claim 35:

“The part of carbon that escapes the reservoir as oceanic sediment is not shown on the diagram.”

Claim 35 is undetermined.

Claim 36:

““We use the term radiocarbon age in order to refer to the period of time between the point that the object ceases to be part of the exchange reservoir and the moment the C14 measurements are conducted” ([110], page 32).”

Claim 36 is supported.

16.3 – Basic Hypotheses

Claim 37:

“In theory, the radiocarbon age measurement concept is a simple one. It suffices to know:
1) The radiocarbon volume for the moment of the object’s departure from the exchange reservoir;
2) the exact half-life period of radiocarbon C14.”

Claim 37 is supported.

Claim 38:

“After that, provided the possession of a sufficient specimen volume, one has to measure the current radiocarbon content, and calculate the time passed since the object stopped taking part in carbon exchange by simple subtraction and division.”

Claim 38 is supported.

Claim 39:

“However, this seemingly simple idea encounters a number of serious complications in practical application.”

Claim 39 is supported.

Claim 40:

“We should also note right away that any diminishing of the relative C14 content in the specimen for any reason at all leads to the increase of its alleged age.”

Claim 40 is supported.



[1] – http://chronologia.org/en/seven/1N01-EN-071-092.pdf. Accessed 2 Aug. 2021.

[2] – http://chronologia.org/lit_nx.html. Accessed 2 Aug. 2021.

[3] – Kleyn, L. S, Arkheologiya sporit s fizikoy – Spor o dostovernosti i tochnosti radiouglerodnoy khronologii [Archeology argues with physics – The controversy over the reliability and accuracy of radiocarbon chronology]: Priroda. no. 2. p.51-62, and no. 3. p.94-107, illus., 1966. https://textarchive.ru/c-2179111-pall.html. Accessed 2 Aug. 2021.

[4] – Aitken, M. Physics and Archaeology. 1st ed., Interscience Publishers, 1961. Accessed 9 Aug. 2021.

[5] – https://achs.edu/grading-scale/. Accessed 10 Aug. 2021.

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