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Bayesian Evaluation of the Southern Hemisphere Radiocarbon Offset during the Holocene

  • Alan Hogg (a1), Christopher Bronk Ramsey (a2), Chris Turney (a3) and Jonathan Palmer (a4)
Abstract

While an interhemispheric offset in atmospheric radiocarbon levels from AD 1950–950 is now well established, its existence earlier in the Holocene is less clear, with some studies reporting globally uniform 14C levels while others finding Southern Hemisphere samples older by a few decades. In this paper, we present a method for wiggle-matching Southern Hemisphere data sets against Northern Hemisphere curves, using the Bayesian calibration program OxCal 4.1 with the Reservoir Offset function accommodating a potential interhemispheric offset. The accuracy and robustness of this approach is confirmed by wiggle-matching known-calendar age sequences of the Southern Hemisphere calibration curve SHCal04 against the Northern Hemisphere curve IntCal04. We also show that 5 of 9 Holocene Southern Hemisphere data sets are capable of yielding reliable offset information. Those data sets that are accurate and precise show that interhemispheric offset levels in the Early Holocene are similar to modern levels, confirming SHCal04 as the curve of choice for calibrating Southern Hemisphere samples.

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Copyright
Corresponding author
Corresponding author. Email: alan.hogg@waikato.ac.nz.
References
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Radiocarbon
  • ISSN: 0033-8222
  • EISSN: 1945-5755
  • URL: /core/journals/radiocarbon
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