Dictionary of Human Evolution and Biology

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Libby, Willard Frank

US nuclear chemist, Nobel laureate; in 1946-8 devised the chronometric technique for determining the age of organic or fossilized specimens called radiocarbon dating. A member of the Manhattan Project, he noted that a certain isotope, carbon-14, should theoretically decay at a rate steady enough to permit dating, and with much fanfare later successfully dated Egyptian and other artifacts of known calendrical age.

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