How to calculate age using carbon dating

The proportions of different oxygen and hydrogen isotopes provide information about ancient temperatures, and the air trapped in tiny bubbles can be analysed to determine the level of atmospheric gases such as carbon dioxide.

Since heat flow in a large ice sheet is very slow, the borehole temperature is another indicator of temperature in the past.

Below this depth, electromechanical or thermal drills are used.

The cutting apparatus of a drill is on the bottom end of a drill barrel, the tube that surrounds the core as the drill cuts downward.

It can make some snow sublimate, leaving the top inch or so less dense.

When the sun approaches its lowest point in the sky, the temperature drops and hoar frost forms on the top layer.

An auger is essentially a cylinder with helical metal ribs (known as flights) wrapped around the outside, at the lower end of which are cutting blades.

The bubbles disappear and the ice becomes more transparent.

The weight above makes deeper layers of ice thin and flow outwards.

These data can be combined to find the climate model that best fits all the available data. Coastal areas are more likely to include material of marine origin, such as sea salt ions.

Greenland ice cores contain layers of wind-blown dust that correlate with cold, dry periods in the past, when cold deserts were scoured by wind.

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